Are Victor Appleton's Tom Swift books considered on topic? They're very outdated and inconsistent. Are books with no internal rules and outdated sci-fi concepts acceptable, considering that any question may not have a good answer?
Yes, of course Tom Swift is on topic. The science fiction is pretty dated and often quite pedestrian, even by the standards of the time. (The series started out with Tom Swift and His Motor Cycle, hardly a stunning piece of technology even in the first decade of the twentieth century.) However, there is no requirement that the fantasy and science fiction we discuss here be well-written or particularly original.
Over the course of decades, the SF aspects of the stories advanced (eventually reaching the "Caves of Nuclear Fire"), but all of the tales should be on topic.