Tami’s mint-in-box Mercury exhaust fan

mint-in-box-mercury-exhaust-fanMIB NOS bathroom and kitchen items are still out there, readers. Reader Tami made a big score with this 1980 Mercury exhaust fan, which she found for $27 on craigslist. I asked her if she could tell us the whole story and some more about what’s going on in her kitchen:

Hi Pam,

Background – I’m planning on remodeling and moving my kitchen (just got the plan/engineering estimate today – $5k! Ouch! That doesn’t even include the permits yet, which will run another $2-3k). Since I’m into vintage/retro most everything except toilet paper (for obvious reasons), I will be putting a 1949 Tappan Deluxe in my new kitchen. I was just going to spruce up my current old exhuast fan and hood since it is 48″ wide to put over the Tappan. I routinely search Craigslist for building items, and saw an ad for a brand new in the box Mercury 621 vertical exhaust fan for $27, but didn’t call because I had planned on my old hood and cabinets over my stove.

I saw the ad reposted two more times…and still I didn’t call – can you believe that? What was I thinking? Then one day I was playing around with my house plan software and decided to see how things looked by deleting the cabinets over the stove which would really be no loss to me since I’m only 5′ 2″ and can never reach anything up there unless it is in very front of the cabinet, and I’m on tiptoes. My software has a 3D view so I could see what things looked like – and wow! I loved it without those cabinets…..then I remembered that Mercury fan, which I would just place in the soffit above the stove. Could I be so lucky that it was still available? I searched CL for “mercury fan” and there it was again, posted for the 4th (or maybe 5th or 6th) time! I called the owner, and picked it up the next day leaving $27 poorer, and one brand new clean and shiny Mercury fan richer.

Two pictures attached – grill and directions. Interesting, this was shipped to a hardware store in Oakland CA – I’ll have to look them up to see if they are still in business! Also, the fan direction sheet said at the very bottom, tiny print: Rev. 4/80 – so this fan is no older than April of 1980.



Thanks, Tami, for sharing. Good luck with the kitchen reno. Buckle your seatbelts, you know it’s always…bumpy.

  1. Joyce Hatfield says:

    Does anyone know where I can purchase an exhaust fan like the one pictured? It is exactly like mine in my bath and mine is making a noise and needs to be replaced. After taking the cover off you can tell it just plugs in so the replacement would be easy to do for me.

    1. pam kueber says:

      Joyce, these come up mint-in-box new-old-stock on ebay rarely. You just missed a Mercury… It went for several hundred dollars. See my nav bar (PRODUCTS/Kitchens/Appliances-Accessories – or search Exhaust Fans for two other possibilities I’ve found. The current Nutone has a plastic cover, unfortunately. But there also is a brand that goes way back to the 40s that is still available, Trade-Wind.

  2. kim says:

    ugh, I am just so green with envy especially since that cover is very much like the one someone stole from my own rehab project – oh sure it was dirt and grease covered but it was original and it was mine. I still can not get over wondering where it walked off to or who I had working around my house that would do such a thing. *sigh*

    Good luck with the renovation and I hope to see pix of the fan in place!

  3. John says:

    Hi Tami, Could you read the elecrical specs on the decal, or manual. Id like to know Volts = Amps = Ect…

  4. gavin hastings says:

    Tami- I am so jealous…What a great find!
    Please list your exact address and the time you go to work each day: I will by-pass the jewelry, the television, stock certificates and any other items of value…. You hit upon a treasure!

    Enjoy your “new” appliance.

  5. TappanTrailerTami says:

    Haha Pam! I do feel famous – but I guess not quite as famous as if I were famous with a big fat richly income to go with the fame, LOL.

  6. pam kueber says:

    Colleen, this question is covered in the FAQs on the upper navigation bar. Good luck.

    And please, no buying/selling on the main part of the blog.

  7. TappanTrailerTami says:

    Thanks Pam – I almost feel *famous* now, being posted to your blog 🙂

    As for bumpy reno’s, I just had a contractor who was supposed to estimate my job, stand me up this morning. So far, still no idea really on the cost, other than the afore mentioned plans/permits.

    I can’t wait until I can get to the point of sending you before and after photos…but I have a feeling I’m a long ways from that.


    1. pam kueber says:

      What do you mean *almost famous*, Tami?! FYI, I haven’t reported for a while, but the blog now gets close to 80,000 unique visitors a month. So that’s a lot of folks to be inspired by your MIB NOS find – and kitchen yet to come! 🙂

  8. sumac sue says:

    Our bathroom exhaust fan is just about the best original feature on our house. (t is not a Mercury, and I would have to get on a ladder and take the cover off to figure out the brand right now, so we will pass on that.) But, the point is, these things work great, and look good too.

  9. tailfin says:

    I’m really surprised that Mercury was still using such a dated design in 1980. What a neat find — and MIB too! Craigslist is awesome. Congrats Tami!

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