Reflections

A BRIEF WORD

John Deere Archives

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20/1/10

Robert H. Donald, 25514 Hickory Valley, Spring, TX 77373 sends us a group of photographs showing old engines in various stages of decay. Included with these nostalgic scenes, an example of which is seen, here, Mr. Donald waxed poetic as follows:

THE IRON MAN

His armor is cold
His wheels are still
His heartbeat stopped
Years hold his chill

Yet with the years
This Iron Man must hold
Stories of hard labor
By him to be told

We let him rest
He gave his part
Beneath the ground
With a cold cold heart.

20/1/11

Q. I need help with 6 HP Fairbanks-Morse 'Z' engine, such as a parts list, magneto information, etc. Walt Payne, Box 206, Hailesboro, NY 13645.

A. Several firms advertising in GEM offer specific data on the Fairbanks-Morse engines, including catalogs, instruction manuals, etc.

20/1/12

From Jack Bellm, 170-E Poplar Ridge, Alexandria, KY 41001 comes a response to Mr. Durig's letter to Smoke Rings, as noted in the July-August, 1984 issue. In this connection, Mr. Bellm notes that The Gas Engine, formerly published at Cincinnati, Ohio was intended to cover the many applications of the gas engine. To further elucidate on this subject, The Gas Engine was one of the first magazines devoted to gas power as a viable competitor for steam engines. Publication began in 1898, and continued into the early 1920's. Eventually this journal became almost solely oriented to oilwell supplies and oil production, thus losing its identity as a magazine intended primarily for the gas and diesel engine industry. Beginning in 1902, Gas Power appeared. It was published at St. Joseph, Michigan by the same people who prepared Thresherman's Review. This one continued until about 1917. B. B. Clarke, publisher of American Thresherman magazine initiated Gas Review in 1908, later changing the title to Tractor & Gas Engine Review. This paper remained on the market until the mid-1920's.

10/1/13

Among our personal correspondence we note a most interesting letter from R.D. Gillett, 3 Lade Crt., Ringwood, Victoria, Australia 3134. Mr. Gillett is seeking any information on the St. Mary's Oil Engine Company, and in particular their 'Super-Diesel' series. He notes that A. H. McDonald (Australia?) built these Hvid-style diesels from 1918 to about 1950, using the same basic design. Mr. Gillett also alludes to an unusual engine of the Hvid style that started on gasoline, using a carburetor and magneto (a la McCormick-Deering WD-40) and then was switched over to compression ignition. Now here is one we would like to see! He asks if any American builders had an engine like this. Well, we never heard of one, so if anyone out there has information on such an engine, come forward and say so. Mr. Gillett also is trying to research the connection between the original Brons patents of Holland and their connection with the R. M. Hvid patents in America. There seems to be no doubt of the connection, but the particulars might be very interesting. St. Mary's was but one of the many companies using the Hvid fuel system for oil engines during the 1920's and following. Others included Hercules, (and this of course, includes the Thermoil), along with Burnoil, Evinrude, and many others. Since Mr. Gillett raises some important points regarding Hvid ignition systems for oil engines, perhaps with enough resonse from GEM readers, a series of articles on this interesting design might be developed.

20/1/14

Q. I am now restoring 1 HP United States Engine Works engine which is identical to the Temple Horizontal model shown on page 507 of American Gas Engines. What is the flat plate on top of the water hopper, and how can 1 secure a diagram of the decal shown in this illustration? Hal Dunbar, 2390 Sunset Lane, Adrian, Michigan 49221.

A. We are not sure what the flat plate might be on top of the engine, except that perhaps the photographer forgot to remove a protective cover when making the original negative. A handy art student should be able to copy the logo and make an enlarged sketch without any problem. Checking the American Gas Engines index on page 578-79 indicates that several companies labored under the United States Engine Works moniker, including the Chicago, Illinois firm noted above. To further add to the confusion, it now appears that the inverted vertical style of Temple was concurrently built by one of the East Coast companies-or did they buy them from Temple and put their own nameplate over the paint? Mr. Dunbar's lucky find now seems to corroborate the notion that the Chicago-based United States people were the successors to Temple Pump Company of the same city.

20/1/16

Q. Can anyone identify this engine? Except for a 'PAT APPLIED FOR' plate, it has no identifying marks. It is four-cycle, automatic intake valve, cam operated exhaust valve, and has what appear to be two auxiliary exhaust ports just above bottom center. It has a very unique gas-air mixer-see diagram. Also has what appears to be s/n 243. Alvin Sanda, RR 2, Box A-58, Williston, ND 58801.

A. A check of American Gas Engines doesn't give a clue so far. As we noted at the outset, answers to some of these questions is very elusive, but perhaps someone can enlighten us regarding what appears to be a very unusual design.

20/1/17

Q. Has anyone heard of a John Deere motorcycle?

A. A call to the John Deere Archives indicates that IF Deere ever built this outfit, the Archives is unaware of the project. We reserve judgment on this one!

20/1/18

Mr. Osborne Beckett, Flat 2,62 Shirley Road, Acocks Green, Birmingham, B27 7NA England, sends a very interesting letter and several photographs of his engines. His letter notes a letter of thanks from the Kohler Company for their help regarding some early Kohler models.

20/1/19

Q. Can anyone identify these two different two-cycle vertical engines? Also would appreciate any data on a Leader 2 HP engine, s/n 6091 from Field Force Pump Co., Elmira, New York.

A. Perhaps one of our readers can identify these engines or provide some data on the Leader.

20/1/20

Several people have asked the Reflector how to form mica tubing. We have never heard an answer, but in perusing a 1941 General Electric Co. Catalog we note that this firm manufactured 'moulding mica plate,' bonded with either shellac or glyptal. In this type of mica plate the binder is only partially cured while in flat sheets. When heated to about 140 degrees Centigrade it becomes flexible and pliable, and can readily be moulded into shape without cracking or flaking. Upon cooling it once again becomes rigid and firm. Perhaps some of our readers can shed more light on the process or tell us where to obtain 'moulding mica'.

(Editor's note: In order to make future references to specific letters and items easier, Mr. Wendel is using a numbering system which gives the volume and issue number of GEM first and then a number for the letter. Thus, the above item is the 20th in the first issue-January-February-of Volume 10 of GEM.)

Larry A. Dalton of 407 Chanticler Drive, Commerce, Georgia 30529 sent us this photo of a homemade tractor he and his father (Avery C. Dalton) built in 1964. The tractor has a 9 HP Briggs and Stratton engine coupled to a 1941 Pontiac 3 speed transmission with 1950 Ford rear end and axles chopped off short. The engine also has gear reduction, 2-belt drive. With this tractor, Avery Dalton also built a complete set of implements, and a wooden trailer.

TRACTOR SCRAMBLE

by David L Baas

TRACTOR SCRAMBLE

by David L Baas

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Can you find the thirty tractor names (some common and some not-so-common) in this find-a-word puzzle? They can be found vertically, horizontally, and backward). For the solution, see page 65.

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