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Comments on Saturday 27 December 2003:
Why is there no such thing as a combined dishwasher, washing machine and clothes dryer? The latter two are already available in a single unit; surely the only major differences for a dishwasher are that it contains a rack, sprays hotter water, and doesn't spin around? It's certainly not hard to add "don't spin around" functionality to a device, variable temperature is already a feature of most washing machines, and it wouldn't be hard to put a few rack-mounting holes in most top-loading washing machines. Would it be hard to combine all three devices? Obviously it would cost more than any one device, possibly even two, but it'd still be cheaper than all three (one heating element rather than three, one spinny thing rather than two, one shell rather than three), and, probably the better gimmick, it would take up less space and require less plumbing in than having two or three units.

I'd certainly buy the combo device in preference to the clutter of all three, even if it cost the same as the sum of individual units. Having a huge heavy box for each purpose, when even the dishwasher - as most-used of the three - probably wouldn't see usage more often than every three days or so, is just galling. [11:46]

Nameless
Probably because the racks wouldn't fit down through the top of the washing machine. Also, because then you'd have to reach all the way in and then you'd get damp and soap-sticky and the American public doesn't like that. Another also, because the washing machine companies have to be able to make money.

RavenBlack
Did you think at all, or just start writing?

1. The racks would fit down through the top of the washing machine, because they'd be racks that are designed to fit in the machine.

2. You already have to reach all the way in with top-loading washing machines, to remove the clothes; you wouldn't have to do that any more with the dishwasher version since you could load up the rack and then lower the rack full of dishes into the machine.

3. The washing machine company that made the new device would make money. Companies in America very rarely are motivated by "ooh, but we'd better not bring out this innovative product because it would make our competitors sad."

Nameless
I think some, but not very much.

Anyway:

1. Name one way you could design a rack large enough to be useful to fit through the opening of a washing machine.

2. Yes, but then once they were clean you'd have to dig them all out again.

3. You'd be very surprised. Honestly. Half the companies in America have agreements with their competitors - an example being that, let's say, WasherCompanyA is good at making motors but not the racks, so WasherCompanyB trades racks for motors.

Also, most companies make all sorts of appliances, and by selling one rather than three ALL companies would lose money.

On an unrelated topic, do YOU think about the other person's point of view, or just start writing?

RavenBlack
I think the first sentence says it all, really, doesn't it?

1. Very easily. *I* could fit through the opening of many top-loading washing machines, and none of my dishes are as big as me.

2. Again, just like clothes. And you'd just have to pull the rack out, by a handle in its middle, same as you lowered it in.

3. No I wouldn't.

And on the unrelated topic, yes, I do, which is how I come up with good refutation (when required, unlike now) rather than nonsense babbling.

AttackOfTheSpam
Your disdain stings. Really. I obviously am a lower form of life merely because I do not spend every waking moment analyzing the pros and cons of a combination washer/dryer/dishwasher. Woe, truly, is me.

Most of the time, I don't think because thinking depresses me. It's an easy way out, true, but I'd rather be happy for the moment than wedging myself further and further into a cesspool-type mass of depression.

1. Yes, but the racks - to fit inside the washer - would have to be about as wide as the washer itself, so that they could clamp into the center. To fit them at the right angle, you'd probably have to detatch the turnstile, which - while not impossible - would be annoying and inconvenient. It doesn't matter that you can fit your *dishes* through - it matters that you can fit the *rack* through.

2. In order to use the design you suggested, you'd have to pull the whole top of the washer off, which, again, would be possible, if annoying.

3. Then why did you expect the aforementioned companies to produce something that would lose money? There's a method called 'planned obsolescence' that's used by many companies these days. Basically, they create a part of a product specifically so that it fails in order to sell more of that product. This product would contradict that theory and inevitably lose the companies billions.

Another unrelated topic - are there better things to do on a Sunday than argue about combination washer/dryer/dishwashers?

RavenBlack
Aha, I wondered if this Nameless was you.

1. Circular racks that fit around (and even clip into) the turnstile. Two of them that fit at different heights. I said the dishes are not as big as me, and I would fit, ergo a rack that is also bigger than the dishes (the same size as me) would also fit.

2. Top-loading washing machines I've seen have a lid that effectively *is* the whole top of the washer. And you wouldn't have to anyway, if you're thinking a circular rack.

3. The product wouldn't lose money, it would take market share from their competitors and reduce manufacturing costs, while selling for only a small margin less than the sum of the other three (if less at all); a reduction margin more than made up in manufacturing and distribution savings, and further still in the theft of market share.

And the unrelated - no, there is nothing good to do on a Sunday.

Digi
Pray Raven, pray; that's the best thing to do on a Sunday. I think it's about time to you repent anyway, you black-clad hippie-type you! Or something.

A nice "box of wash" would be a good thing. I think that was the original jist; no? I agree.

Market characteristics have nothing to do with whether it'd be a good thing or not.

RavenBlack
Mm, my fault for phrasing it as "why isn't there..." rather than "I want...", I suppose.

AttackOfTheSpam
Damn that name blank. Always being all - blank - and everything.

1. Ah - when you said 'none of my dishes are as big as me,' I kind of misread or something. Right. Yeah. That was eloquent. Anyway,

2. Really? The ones we have take up most of the top, but there's a little rim - and if it was as wide as the washer to clip into the sides, you'd never get it through. I guess we don't have your kind here... Americans never like to be too convenient. Or perhaps I don't spend enough time in Sears. The power tools section is more fun anyway - they have a big sawhorse that you can trash. Good stress relief. Man, that was pointless.

3. Are you sure about those manufacturing costs? True, it would use less metal, but all those little parts - clips and everything - would take a lot of manpower and training to put together. You'd also have to pay for thousands of hours of experimentation, which would cost an initial fortune. Consumer groups might not like the change - it'd be convenient, but some people like having everything separate, because they're afraid they're too stupid to understand a new machine (which is probably true). All in all, it might turn out to be more expensive, if not a failure.

As for the unrelated, there's always something good to do on any day. You just have to be a little out there to find it.

AttackOfTheSpam
Hey! I just realized that I didn't finish my sentence in number one. I'll do that now.

1. Anyway, would you even be able to fit the circular rack through the square hole and still have a big enough rack to clip into the sides? Maybe a totally turnstile-mounted one would be best; that way, you could have one small enough the fit through the lid, and you wouldn't have to worry about it being big enough to reach the sides. Hmm... now I'm thinking...

James (shades)
Hmm. Well, one practical issue is that washing machines move their water (and soap and clothes) around by agitiation of the center doomahicky (I know it's not called a turnstile, but can't recall off-hand what it is called) A washing machine that didn't spin would have water pour in the top and then sit in the bottom. Dishes left therein would not get clean.

Another practical issue is the volume. Washing machines have a much smaller internal volume for their size than an equivalent dishwasher; even the more expensive front-loading kind like we have would hold maybe half the dishes of an equivalent-sized dishwasher, if that.

But really, my main beef with one of these machines would be that I wish neither to wash my dishes in my laundry room nor my laundry in my kitchen.

James

James (shades)
...and as a aside - our dishwasher sees use pretty much every day, often twice on Fridays and Sundays when we tend to feed crowds of people. Our washing machine also sees use, not every day, but (counting each load as a use) at least 6 or 7 times a week. Much more in the summer when we're adding camping laundry and garb to the laundry pile.

Your hypothetical device would also break down roughly three times as fast, from use. I don't know that Maytag would give it the same 25 year warantee that our stuff has right now...

James

AttackOfTheSpam
I think it's called an agitator... the word 'turnstile' just popped into my head, and now I feel silly, because I remembered that a turnstile is that annoying round thing with sticks poking out of it that you have to go through to get to fairs. That wasn't clear at all, was it?

James is right - you'd have to have the poury-jets on the top (yes, that *is* a technical term) for washing clothes and the shooty-jets on the bottom (yet another technical term) for washing dishes, plus various different soap holes - you wouldn't want to eat off of anything that still had bleach residue on it, would you?

Also, there *are* some washing machines without agitators, but they're these odd sideways ones that spin like dryers - I didn't learn that until a few hours ago. That was one of the many things I learned at my best friend's house, along with "never leave a pot you cooked Hamburger Helper with in the sink for a week because it'll start twitching" (dead serious) and "people will always become infinitely more stupid if you let them within ten feet of a trampoline" and, of course, "if you let an overweight person jump on said trampoline, you'd better make sure you Shi Tzu isn't down there, because squeaking and pooping will be involved."

Isn't adolescence wonderful?

AttackOfTheSpam
^---- click my name

On an unrelated note, this is undoubtedly the coolest site I have EVER seen. And I do mean EVER. With capitals.

RavenBlack
There was a washing machine a while ago that used subsonics to agitate the water instead of any direct force - that method would probably work quite well for a combo device.

I realise it wouldn't be for everyone (James being a case in point; anyone with a family-like home), but there are plenty of bachelors or childless couples for whom the three devices are rarely used.

AttackOfTheSpam
Colleges might find them useful - lots cheaper for the campus, so they might buy more, let's say, than FIVE WASHERS PER DORM HOUSE. Grr. Damn Duke University.

jeanette
So I'm thinking about all the icky bits of food that are left at the bottom of my dishwasher -- I sure wouldn't want to wash my clothes in water with that junk in it. Other than that though, it's an interesting idea.

tedwud
adding on from all that......... maybe they could add microwave capabilities to the said washer/dryer/dishwasher....and u could wang your dinner in to be warmed too ????????

RavenBlack
Yes, but that would be stupid, wouldn't it, because a microwave doesn't share any functionality at all with the other devices. It doesn't use water, it doesn't use a heating element, it doesn't already have clothes or dishes in it. The only thing it has in common is a shell, and microwave shells are made of different materials, and, as a rule, specifically don't want to be able to drain things out.

bill
Excellent idea and obviously feasible. Table top washer is already available. Ditto table top dishwasher. Easiest solution would be two separate machines about the height of a fridge freezer or less. It will come very soon as I am looking for one and I always find what I want.
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