I bought this HD Hudson Mfg. Co., Chicago IL, Catalog #570, model B 13.5w, 115v fount heater about 5 years ago at a swap.
It died on me.
Unlike my "Farm Innovation" founts that need to be replace every 13 months, this thing will darn near boil water. It is an adjustable thermostat (rheostat?) unit.
Just stopped on me this week (so did my car, but that is another story).
So I start searching around for parts like any of us would for an incubator or brooder. "It must be the element". No, that looks complete. "It must be the thermostat". So I by-pass it. Still no heat. "Hmmm. Time to get a multimeter out." I check the posts at the element. Nothing. Check the connections to the power cord (it's still by-passed at this time). Still nothing. "Do you think it could be the cord?" Sure was! The wires has broken off in the male side of the plug.
Why am I writing this? (other than I am still feeling lazy after the holidays)
Don't assume anything and start ordering parts. Carefully test the components and trace the problem. I was about to start ordering element wire and a modern thermostat when all I needed to do was replace the cord. In fact, I could have just re-stripped the wire and reattached the wires. But the Tim Taylor in me decided to up-grade to a 12 gauge cord rather than trust this lord knows how old lamp cord.
I know everyone like pics, so here are a couple more from when I took it apart: