How about Toasters?
We are bombarded on all sides with advertising for all kinds of kitchen gadgets and gear, but the toaster seems to have fallen by the wayside in more ways than one. Most toasters that we've had in the past 10 years have been, well, how to put this nicely...not very satisfying. In fact they've been downright disasters. Not a one has lasted more than a year. We enjoy our toast, and this is not good.
We have just tossed out our 7th or 8th toaster in 5 years. The last one was a top of the line GE. My wife's first comment was that it seemed awefully tinny. She didn't like it from the get-go. I should have listened to her and taken it right back. It failed within 2 months. I took it back for replacement - no problems; however, my wife had made her point. She wanted a toaster that looked and felt solid, not a "wimpy" toaster. She told me to find a "good one". She was sick and tired of getting the short end of the stick.
After much searching on the internet I ended up buying a Krup's 2-slice toaster, model #TT9300 from BigBuyCity on eBay. I must say here that I've been burned by some Yankee peddlars in the past and had second thoughts about buying from this outfit, but I bit the bullet and went for it. They are a great outfit to do business with. I had my new toaster in 5 days, including the weekend! This is a machine and a half for the kitchen! The sides are metal castings - no flimsy, stamped metal here. As my wife put in her first slice she exclaimed, "Now this is a toaster!" It feels so different just pushing down on the start lever - smooth, solid, like a finely made machine. The browning selection knob is a marvel. On all of the other toasters I've had to put down my home-made rye bread twice in order to get it toasted properly. With this Krup toaster I dialed it in at 4 and got just about perfect toast the first time - dumb luck, but I didn't have to put it down twice, and there was still more room to go on the browning selection knob! I fine tuned it to 4.5 - perfect! For those small end pieces the lever can be raised a wee bit more by hand so that you can take out the "smalls" easier with your fingers. I still keep a pair of wood chop sticks around just in case...
We enjoy toasting our home-made breads, and this Krup toaster is the finest that we've come across to date, and I think that we've tried most of them out there. It's a bit commercial looking, but after using it my wife and I feel that it fits right in. So, if you're tired of pushing your bread down twice in order to get it toasted "just right", buy this Krups toaster. You'll be glad you did!