A Brief Word

Old and rusty machine


Bazil Rogers

Content Tools

24/4/30 Unidentified spader Q. The old and rusty machine shown in the photo has part numbers on the castings, but there is no name or logo to be found. So far I don't have a clue as to the manufacturer, and would appreciate hearing from anyone who can help. Frank Hunt, 8205 N. Middle Road, Morris, IL 60450.

24/4/31 Bowsher grinders Q. Recently we acquired a grinder with the following data: N. P. Bowsher Co., South Bend, Indiana, Pat. 8 December 1903, No. 30. Any information will be appreciated. Mike Mikel, RR 1, Bynum, TX 76631.

A. Bowsher was a well-known manufacturer of feed grinders and other equipment. The patent referred to is 746,275 issued to Jay P. Bowsher of South Bend. This patent, however, covers a mill having a vertical shaft with the burrs situated at the bottom and receiving grain from a cone -hopper above them.

24/4/32 Associated pump engine Q. I recently acquired an old pump engine built by Associated Mfrs., Waterloo, Iowa, s/n 413,175, 4 HP. The flywheels are 26 ? inches across. Any , information will be appreciated. Barry Bysterveld, Box 343, Delburne, Alberta T0M 0V0 Canada.

A. We weren't aware of an Associated pumping engine of that size, so if you could forward a photo, we'll be glad to include it in a future column.

24/4/33 Harry Lowther tractors Q. In reading your Encyclopedia of American Farm Tractors, I was wondering if you could tell me the connection between the Custom built by Harry Lowther Co. of Shelbyville, Indiana and the Jumbo built by Jumbo Steel Products, Azusa, California. They bear many similarities to the Ward's tractor sold by Montgomery Ward. Were these tractors built by the same company?

Do you have any information on the Lehr and David Bradley tractors? I have been told that these two and perhaps the Wards were built by the same people.

How about the Empire State tractor built in New York state? I believe it was built on a jeep frame with a Jeep engine and transmission. Any information will be appreciated. Virgil Gordon, 1114 S. McKinley, Freeport, IL 61032.

A. You raise some interesting questions, none of which we have ever resolved completely. Particularly regarding the Lowther tractor, perhaps someone can supply additional information.

24/4/34 WD-45 Diesels Q. See the photo of my restored WD-45 6 cylinder diesel tractor. The serial listings I have seen on the WD-45 do not seem to separate the diesels from the gasoline models, and I would like to know how many of the diesels were built. Any information will be appreciated. My diesel is s/n 202618. Charles Kezar, RR 1, Box 2, North Berwick, ME 03906.

A. Unfortunately, we have no separate serial number listing for the WD-45 diesels. Perhaps one of our readers might have this information.

24/4/35 Leader tractors Q. My main field of interest is Leader tractors. At the present I have two of them. They were manufactured at Chagrin Falls, Ohio in the late 1940's. The original color was red. There seems to be a great shortage of parts and information on these tractors, so if anyone knows where I might find same I would appreciate hearing from them. Thomas R. Howard, RR 1, Box 70, Advance, NC 27006

24/4/36 Advance Thresher Co. David W. Kemler, 1151 Deja Rd. NE, Stanton, MI 48888 is compiling a commemorative history of Advance Thresher Co. for their 1989 engine show. Send any useful information to Mr. Kemler at the above address.

24/4/37 Oliver 70 Q. What is the year built of an Oliver 70 tractor, s/n 262042. It has iron rear wheels and rubber front wheels. Would also like to correspond with anyone who can tell me how to replace the 12 volt battery system with the original 6 volt system. Glenn Burroughs, 317 Hunting Lane, Goode, VA 24556.

A. Your tractor was built in 1947.

24/4/38 Holm's Governor Patent Q. Regarding the Holm patent of American Gas Engines, I was wondering why so many different engines used this governor if it was covered under the Holm patent of 1910. Would this mean that all the gas engines equipped with this kind of governor could not have been made prior to this date, about 1911? Rolland Lapine, 61 Rte 143 North, Hatley, Quebec J0B 2C0 Canada.

A. You pose an interesting question, but one that can be answered, albeit perhaps with some difficulty. Having studied many different U.S. Patents over the years, it becomes evident that many designs were so similar in exterior appearance as to give one the impression that they were in fact the same. In the case here, Holm patented certain elements of an overall design, or to put it another way, patented improvements on a design that perhaps might already have been in existence. It does not mean that this type of governor system did not exist prior to 1911, that patent only means that this . very specific design was granted Letters Patent on a specific date. It is entirely possible that someone else may have made a similar design but either did not know of the Holm patent or did not care to challenge it by filing an interference. A great many early inventors held the patent system in low regard and refused to have anything to do with it. Unfortunately, these same people were sometimes challenged by entrepreneurs who seized on the same idea, got a patent, and actually forced the original designer to cease and desist from further activity. The role of the patents in relation to certain technological developments is one that is very rich in history, and from them one can often derive a good deal of information about people, companies, and designs. For instance, from the application date one can infer the earliest date that a product might have been built, at least to some degree. The date the patent was granted is less relative, since several years sometimes ensued between application and granting dates.

24/4/39 Scripps Marine Engines Contrary to the comment in American Gas Engines that Scripps Motor Company is out of business, I have the following to offer: The company is not dead. The Scripps Motor Company started both the Scripps-Booth Car Company and the Scripps Marine Engine Co. in 1907. The last engines were built in the late 1950's. I bought the company in 1962 and have been rebuilding and selling parts since that time for the Scripps, along with other obsolete marine engines. Peter Henkel, Inc., 7650 South Channel Drive, Harsens Island, Ml 48028.

We're happy to hear that Scripps is still in operation, and hope that Mr. Henkel might favor us with photos and history of the company at his convenience.

Planet Jr. Questions. These are now owned and made by Powell/Cole. Address questions to Powell Manufacturing Company Inc., P.O. Drawer 707, Bennettsville, SC 29512-0707.

24/1/64 Letz Mfg. Co. Letz was sold to a liquidator and not to John Deere. Mr. A. Elmer Criley worked for Letz beginning in 1927 and is most knowledgeable on Letz mills. His address is Box 181, Green wood, NE 68366.


24/1/29 Reeves engine. Clark Colby of Coolspring Power Museum, Coolspring, PA 15730 writes: 'Mr. Hardman is encouraged to visit our museum to study our similar 2 cylinder Reeves engine, learn about its history, and see it run.'

Mr. Colby also responds to:

24/1/61B engine. The engine in this picture appears to be an unusual, probably late model of a Witte Diesel electric plant.

A third response from Mr. Colby:

24/1/61 Stover Acro System. Isn't the recessed-in piston precombustion chamber of the John Deere 'R' similar to the Acro system you describe in the Stover Diesel?

The Reflector answers: Lang's Acro system for diesels used the piston head as a precombustion chamber in a much different manner. In the case of Stover diesels, the piston head is funnel-shaped, and has a hole of about ? inch diameter in the center. This hole reaches into a hollow chamber which in cross-section looks about like a 'Figure 8'. The Deere piston is simply recessed and, although we have not studied the rest of the cylinder and head design, we presume it was intended to provide the necessary turbulence. By the way, the Acro system gave way by 1940 to the vastly improved Lanova system which remained on the market for many years. Last but not least, thanks to Mr. Colby for his several responses.

24/1/13 Sears & Roebuck tractors. The color was similar to Massey-Harris, but not quite as bright as IHC red. It came out in 1938 and was also available in 1939. It was marketed through Sears Farm Stores and through the Sears catalog. It was also available through a Graham auto dealer that had the Graham-Bradley tractor franchise. To the best of my knowledge it gained its name by being powered by Graham and assembled by the Sears Farm Division at Bradley, Illinois (home of David Bradley implements). The four-speed transmission gave a selection of 2.4, 4.5,' 6.0, and 20.0 mph, plus a reverse. The unique part of the tractor was a lever under the seat that disengaged the rear end and produced four speeds plus reverse on the belt pulley. The theory was that on certain machines such as a silo filler, you could run it in reverse to unplug it. Another big feature was the cast iron grille with which you were supposed to be able to push a wagon from the rear, or similar duties. It was available in tricycle and standard tread design, rated at 32 HP, and used a 6 volt electric system. The 3? x 4 3/8 inch L-head engine was rated at 1500 rpm. The last Graham car was built in 1941 and Graham-Paige became a part of Kaiser-Frazer after the was.

Sears also did market a tractor called the Economy during this same time period. It was a tricycle type and from a distance it would pass for an F-12 Farmall. The Economy had a channel frame and large 10 x 36 or 10 x 38 wheels. Numerous attachments were available from Sears. Everything was supplied but the engine and transmission. You were to supply your own Ford Model A engine for a cheap lightweight tractor.

Sears also supplied an attachment in the mid-1930's called a Thrifty Farmer. It attached to a Model T or Model A Ford car frame. This had a small open pinion gear which mounted on the ends of a car axle which drove a large open ring gear. It sold for $79.50 and weighed 1,000 pounds. Lloyd C. Conrad, 10500 W. Carpenter Ave., Greenfield, WI 53228.

Whitman Tread Power. Back in the Spring I wrote you about my treadmill that appeared in the April 1988 GEM. So far I haven't gotten any response on it, but here is a picture of it in operation (see RW-1). Paul Reno, 3254 Kansas St., Oakland, CA 94602.

On Making Head Gaskets. The article 'Making Cylinder Head Gaskets' by Max Homfeld in the February 1989 GEM should not have been published. Inhaled particles of asbestos are extremely dangerous to your health. Drilling and sawing asbestos material as written in this article will certainly produce airborne particles of asbestos. Mechanics unknowingly will assume this procedure is okay after reading this article, not only endangering themselves but their families and anyone entering their shop or work place.

An article should be published as soon as possible on the danger of airborne particles of asbestos, including the cleaning of flange faces of cylinder heads, manifolds and cylinder blocks that were in contact with asbestos. Otto Olson, 9955 Logren Road, Bainbridge Isl., WA 98110.

24/2/19 Deering mower. IHC bought or merged with Deering. Many models of the machinery planned were carried over, produced, and made for repair parts. IHC took over Milwaukee also.

On another point, I have been helped by many who have forwarded information to me. Also, I have helped many who have asked for information but never got a thank you for helping. My point is that a person gets nowhere without friends, and who knows when they will need information?

As an example, the late George Neal was a personal friend, and his passing will be felt by many. He was a good provider of information, and it was men like him who helped the hobby. Perry C. Willis, RD 3, Columbus Rd NE, Louisville, OH 44641.

For further information on IHC and its development, readers are invited to consult the book 150 Years of International Harvester. It contains much of the historical information on the formation of the company and illustrates many of the earlier machines. We also encourage readers who receive a response to a query to please be so kind as to send a 'thank you' for helping out. We couldn't agree more regarding George Neal. The Reflector never met Mr. Neal personally, but visited with him by phone many, many times. Through the years George Neal helped this writer time and again, and his efforts will be long remembered!

24/2/3 Buffalo engine. Per this query, we enclose a photo of our 1908 3 HP Buffalo engine. It is' 4 cycle, s/n 133, and is now installed in an 1887 launch that my wife and I restored (see RW-2). John H. Wells, RR 4, Box 422, Canton, NY 13617.

Cork Float Replacement. For Ensign and International carburetors as used on McCormick-Deering 10-20, 15-30, 22-36, and Farmall Regular, use a Briggs & Stratton Part No. 99333 for larger carburetors and 299707 for smaller ones. The original cork float arm or lever can be easily soldered on these Briggs floats to fit nicely. The B & S float lever assembly can be melted off. W. G. Deweese, 2206 Mecca Dr., Nashville, TN 37214.

24/1/61 Yukon Territory. In answer to Ralph Najarian's inquiry, I can only comment on the Standard Gas Engine Co. at Jakes Corners, Y. T. On page 477 of American Gas Engines is an engine that looks very much like the one in 24/1/61 A.

I can give exact information on 24/1/61B. The 'little complex' at Boundary, Alaska, better known locally as Boundary Lodge, at the time Mr. Najarian was there, was owned by Al Gartz and David Glover, both of Delta Junction, Alaska. The engine/generator unit is a 9 kw Witte and never missed a beat all summer except to change oil. Due to lack of business after the road to Dawson, Y.T. closes for the winter, the lodge has now reverted to the original owner and the Witte is in Delta Junction at David Glover's place. David ,has several of these units. In case anyone is interested, contact David Glover, Box 402, Delta Junction, Alaska 99737. Hope this information is of help. Leigh B. Dennison, Box 873, Delta Junction, Alaska 99737.

24/1/28 Dressing Stone Buhrs. In reference to this question, I have a Meadows mill made by Meadows Mill Company Inc., North Wilkesboro, NC, nd have been fortunate enough to receive operating instructions that include a section on dressing stones. David Honbarger Jr., RR 7, Box 287D, Salisbury, NC 28144.

24/1/42 Monitor engine. The engine in question here is a Little Monitor one horsepower engine. Donald Richardson, 2511 4th Drive SW, Austin, MN 55912.

24/1/55 and 22/1/15 Fairbanks-Morse. See RW-3 and RW-4 for the type of decal used on the Fairbanks-Morse 'Z' Type C engines.

The above three responses were sent in by Sam Morrison, P.O. Box 12-224, Denver, CO 80212.

Reproduction nameplates. Several letters came in on this matter, and so far we have the following list of people who have reproduction nameplates. We don't claim this list includes everyone, so if you make plates and your name isn't listed, please don't get all upset about, but send along the information, and we'll be glad to include it in the column. Here's what we have so far:

Kinsinger Engine Service, Meyersdale, PA 15552, offers about all the nameplates for McCormick-Deering engines and tractors, and can get others made if a pattern is supplied.

D.T. Kedinger, Waupun Depot, W9494 Hwy 103, Waupun, WI 53963, supplies nameplates to order.

Starbolt Engine Supplies, 3403 Buckeystown Pike, Adamstown, MD 20710.

Junkers Diesel Engines. As noted earlier in the column, we are still getting letters on the Junkers Diesel engine. So far we haven't heard of anyone who has a one-cylinder model, but several people have sent along photos and information on the multi-cylinder styles that were widely, used in German aircraft, especially the 'Jumo' design. Some were said to have been used in trucks during the 1920's. One writer noted that these two-cylinder diesels with multiple cylinders made a 'godawful noise' when used in a plane.

Mr. M. Hooijberg, Westdijk 12, 1463 PA Beemster, Holland forwarded a most interesting letter in regard to the Junkers design, and a cross-sectional view is shown in RW-5. He comments that in his searching about for old engines, he does not know of and has never seen one of these engines.

Mr. Hooijberg is also looking for a wiring diagram and instructions on a Homelite electric generator of WW II vintage, and rated at 30 volts and 50 amps. Since it was made for the U.S. military, Homelite has no information on it.

A.  Zuiger
B.  Zuiger
C.  Drijfstang
D.  Verstuiver
E.  Uitlaatpoort
F.  Spoelpoort
G.  Spoelpompruiger
H. Ruimte
K. Zuigklep
L. Persklep


Ken Hollerbeck, whose name is previously noted in the column, sends along a suggestion that someone develop a spring kit suitable for the modelmaker. This might include a variety of the small springs needed for model work, and which are not usually available at hardware stores.

In answer to the above letter, and for the benefit of our readers, we include herewith a design for a small spring-winding device. The original article appeared in the April 15, 1926 edition of Machinery Magazine, not the usual American version, but the English version as published in London.

The winding part of the device is shown in Fig. 1. It consists of a bearing frame made of flat bar that is bent to a U-shape as shown. The spindle is a piece of 5/8 inch cold rolled and it is held in position by the hand wheel and collar as indicated. A 3/16 inch hole is bored in the end to take the largest arbor required. The arbor is clamped directly in the hole in the spindle, but the resulting wobble causes no problem. Smaller arbors, down to 0.020', are held in the clamping bushings detailed in the drawing. When using very small arbors, clamp the end of the spring wire under the nut as shown in Fig. 1, but for larger sizes drill a hole in the arbor as shown in Fig. 2. Putting the end of the wire through the hole is sufficient to drive it.

The tensioning device in Fig. 2 consists of a flat piece of steel with a v-shape cut into the end. Near the vee are tension discs that are dished out with a round-end punch and afterwards made dead hard. The tension disc screw is 1/8 inch diameter and has a 3/64 inch hole drilled through it as shown in Fig. 2. The hole must be positioned so as to clear, disc 'a' as shown, and with this setup the largest wire that can be wound is 1/32 inch.

The tension is best determined by trial. The outfit shown here is capable of handling springs of 0.006 diameter wire and a spring of 0.035 outside diameter, up to a spring using 0.032 inch wire and outside diameter of 0.240 inches.

We should think there would be no problem in scaling up this device to wind somewhat larger springs if so desired. Likewise, the tension device is so simple that even if the tension washers were not casehardened, we suspect they would handle a considerable number of springs before being worn out.

Another tip we discovered in a November 1925 issue of Machinery Magazine illustrates an extension spout for an oil can. This simple little device can be made by pushing a wire into a cork and then sliding the cork over the spout as shown. The oil will follow the wire directly to the spot desired, and it is possible to place just the right amount of oil exactly where it is wanted. This incredibly simple method can also be made up as a wire soldered to the spout as illustrated.

A Closing Word

Having completed our latest title, The Allis-Chalmers Story, last year, we are now gathering information and data for a similar book on J. I. Case. We have already gained the support of several individuals and organizations for this project, and already have accumulated an impressive number of catalogs and other historical information on J. I. Case Company. Since we propose a rather extensive history of this firm, we also are in need of materials on acquired firms like Emerson-Brantingham and Rock Island Plow Co. If you have any material that we can use for this project, kindly drop a line to the Reflector, in care of Stem gas Publishing Company.