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Old 09-09-2008, 05:26 PM
20,793 posts, read 50,990,302 times
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Originally Posted by Minnehahapolitan View Post
There is also Bauer Bros., on about 22d and Washington. That is the most warehousey warehouse I think I have ever seen. Their prices are more reasonable too. City Salvage (Is that the one near Hennepin and Central?) spends alot of money on rent so that their showroom is all neat and organized. Bauer Bros. just dumps stuff on their floor. You gotta love the hands-on building experience there.
It has to be Bauer Bros because it wasn't a 'showroom' type place, stacks of windows, doors, whatever here and there, nothing fancy about it at all. I want to say it was on Washington but again, it has been a while I don't really remember.
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Old 08-04-2011, 10:09 AM
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I'm a restoration contractor. Here's my input:

Architectural Antiques has the nicest stock in town. They have items from luxury homes, restored lighting fixtures, doors & parts, mantles, plumbing fixtures, etc. The only problem with this place is that it's ridiculously expensive. By far the most expensive place in town. But they have the nicest stuff. Be prepared to pay more than 40% than other stores of the same kind. If you want something rare you might find it there.

Gilded Salvage is smaller, but has a few nice items. Not quite the selection of Architectural Antiques but their prices are much better. Still a little expensive, but more reasonable. The owners are very nice people. They seem to have more vintage cabinets than AA.

City Salvage is a good place to find bars and some old woodwork. They have an extensive collection of old doors in their basement. Some good finds there. Not a good place for old hardware or lighting fixtures. Prices are in between Guilded and AA.

Northwest Architectural Salvage has an interesting selection of lights. The place is a little jumbled and hard to go through, It's a small shop. Not much a selection. The manager who works there is a nice person who likes to help others. They restore lighting fixtures with the old paint and also restore some pieces of hardware. In my opinion towards the bottom of what you should expect in a architectural antique store.

Bauer Brothers..... I don't where to start with this place. You will either think it's full of junk or jems. The building is massive and stocked with everything from old hardware to movie projectors. The company does large scale demolition and they sell what they pull out. Movie theater parts, bars, cabinets, old appliances.... they don't restore anything, just sell it. Their prices are great, definitely the best in town. If you want to go through this place plan for the entire day. They have the largest selection of old house parts in Minneapolis. Not good for old door hardware or lighting fixtures (though they have a few). Their cabinet selection is massive. Door selection could fill all of the other stores combined, have enough vintage radiators, sinks, bathtubs, and parts to build 200 houses.... check this place out. I've been in stores all around the country and rarely find a place like this.
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Old 08-04-2011, 10:43 AM
Location: Home in NOMI
1,635 posts, read 1,970,391 times
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Great salvaged threads - pre 2009.
There are more recent threads on this topic, how did you find this one?
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Old 09-02-2011, 08:28 PM
Location: Victory Neighborhood Minneapolis
1,806 posts, read 4,801,762 times
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Originally Posted by audadvnc View Post
Great salvaged threads - pre 2009.
There are more recent threads on this topic, how did you find this one?
We're about to redo our bathroom and remembering that this thread existed has been hugely helpful. I didn't come across any more recent threads in search- which ones are you specifically referring to?
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Old 09-03-2011, 06:05 AM
Location: Home in NOMI
1,635 posts, read 1,970,391 times
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I've seen a few other threads around, but this is the active one so let's keep it going.

After having visited the various salvage shops over the past year, I found that Builds4fun did a good job of summarizing the pluses and minuses of each shop. I think the shops have been either talking or doing market research on each other's rate cards, as I haven't found so much price divergence as B4F claims. One test is to compare prices on 3 or 5 bulb chandeliers; if the lights in question are not high end custom items, you should find the pricing around $150/lamp is the market medium - perhaps more if it's just been rebuilt (a good idea for 100 year old electrical fixtures with disintegrated paper insulators and dried out wiring). Glass lamp shades will likely be extra, especially the pricey slip shades and hand painted ones.

Also consider Art and Architecture on University Ave, across from KSTP - they have a nice lamp & antique electrical selection and stock repair supplies for same; I've bought four or five bedrooms ceiling lamps from them and have been satisfied. They have interesting sheet metal items there; old copper tubs, galvanized barrels, the occasional skylight.

Architectural Antiques have some really nice high end chandeliers and Tiffany level shades, but expect to pay full price for them because they are the real deal - the kind of fixtures you'd find in the Hill House or some other robber baron's estate. Think fashion model girlfriend - expensive, fragile and sometimes troublesome, but -wow- great on display.

Guilded Salvage has a nice line of new imported iron stock for shelf brackets, etc, which are indistinguishable from the originals but half the cost. They also have a well organized selection of original door frame and ceiling molding, and lots of window shutters from the days people actually used them.

Bauer Bros is on 2nd Ave N near 26th St N (one block off Hwy 94). I thought their prices were out of line for anything that's not junk, but like any of these shops you can probably deal if you're serious and have cash in hand ; they also stock a whole field full of salvaged industrial equipment - HVAC, machines, elevators, lobby skylights, entire bus stops - which I'd guess is their bread-and-butter business.

If you're looking for old stone for countertops or use outside, check out Historic Stone Co on Washington Ave N near Dowling - they have brick, granite cobblestone, marble and granite sheets, limestone and red sandstone lintels and other items off old U of M and Mpls Public Library buildings. Nothing says "antique" like a red sandstone pillar or gargoyle carving that has spent the last 100+ years slowly dissolving from the rain & air pollution, now looking like a stage prop out of an Edgar Allen Poe story.

Sometimes I go to a shop with Serendipity in mind - I'm not looking for anything in particular, but might run across some item that tweaks my interest. For instance I have installed some old push button electrical switches (purchased at Arch. Antiques, also available at Art & Arch., Bauer and possibly other shops) that were coated with multiple layers of ancient lead based paint (don't chew on the posts!). Those 100 year old ceramic switches either work or they don't; if it's working now, it probably will continue to do so for the next 100 years also, because they were built like tanks and designed to last forever it seems. Keep an eye out for original switch plates that can be cleaned up, because you won't find them at Menard's.

Nice old plumbing items like claw foot bathtubs and sinks are readily available at most of these places (Bauer has a few short, 4' claw foot tubs); shop around until you run across one you like. Make sure the iron pieces aren't too rusted or the ceramic is cracked, as broken ones aren't worth repairing.

Last edited by audadvnc; 09-03-2011 at 07:33 AM..
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