Readers' Engine Questions

Hoover potato digger

37/10/1: Cushman 4 HP and what looks like a Hoover potato digger.

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A Brief Word

We're very happy to report that C. H. Wendel's recovery continues unabated, and the way things are going we're hoping to welcome him back to these pages by the end of the year.

This issue's installment is fairly brief, a normal state of affairs for this time of year. As old iron collectors get out and about to the multitude of shows being held around the country, queries to Charles fall off every summer. But as the show season ends and old iron collectors head back home with their latest finds, we expect things to return to normal as the next round of queries comes rolling in.

We begin this issue with a request for information on a Cushman CHP4:

37/10/1: Cushman CHP4 Q: I would like to know if anyone has any information on a Cushman engine Model CHP4, 800 rpm, Model 38667, Patent Nov. 14, 1911. Enclosed is a picture of the engine and unit. The attached unit looks like a Hoover potato digger, which we would also like information on. Don Faldet, N7649 Highway 49, Iola, WI 54945.

A: Cushman's 4 HP vertical was a mainstay for the company, especially noted for its use on binders. Unfortunately, we don't have much information on these engines, so we hope one of our readers might be of help. Page 289 of Wendel's Encyclopedia of American Farm Implements shows a Hoover that looks much like yours, but without an identifying nameplate it's hard to be sure.

If anyone knows more, please contact Don at the address listed.

37/10/2: Marvel Draw Cut Saw I need help with the following. I have a Marvel Draw Cut Saw #1 made by Armstrong-Blum Manufacturing, Chicago, Ill., patent date July 16, 1912. This is a reciprocating hacksaw and it is fairly complete. However, I can see that some parts are missing. Can anyone out there help me with pictures or an instruction manual? Thanks, Robert Farrenkopf, 33 Thomas Road, South Weymouth, MA 02190.

37/10/3: Fairbanks Z Q: I have a 1- HP Model Z Fairbanks-Morse with solid fly-wheels, s/n 525473, and I need to know when it was built and the correct paint number. I know that the battery-ignition equipped engines came in red. Bob Dunn, P.O. Box 376, Rushville, NE 69360.

A: According to Wendel's Notebook, your 1 - HP FM was built in 1922. As for the paint, Wendel's Notebook lists DuPont RS910 for all battery-ignition equipped Fairbanks-Morse Type Z engines.

37/10/4: Corn Planter I thought someone out there might know the brand name of this corn planter. The small box had a chain to the big wheel and is for fertilizer. The big box is for seed and has a shaft from the big wheel. Any help would sure be appreciated. Wayne Hart, 8005 Highway N, Mountain Grove, MO 65711.

A: Your planter looks very similar to a unit built by Columbia Drill Co., Liberty, Ind. According to Wendel's Encyclopedia of American Farm Implements, Columbia introduced its single-row style around 1894. Hoosier Drill Co., Richmond, Ind., also produced a very similar unit around the same time.

37/10/5: Frisco 'Standard' Ships Hoist John Marshall e-mailed requesting information on an engine he's come across. As the accompanying photos show, it's clearly a 'Standard' single-cylinder ships hoist as made by the Standard Gas Engine Co., San Francisco, Calif. John says it's missing the original mixer, the ignition system and some other miscellaneous pieces. He'd like to get it running, and he's looking for help in acquiring the pieces the engine is missing.

John's e-mail suggested the engine to be a 14 HP single, but available information suggests single-cylinder versions of these engines were made only in 5 HP and 9 HP sizes, with a two-cylinder engine rated at 16 HP also available. These were hefty units. The 5 HP engine carried a shipping weight of 3,210 pounds, the 9 HP a shipping weight of 4,955 pounds, and the 16 HP a shipping weight of 6,760 pounds. If anyone can help, e-mail John at:

C.H. Wendel is a noted authority on antique engines and tractors. His books constitute a vital reference resource for collectors and hobbyists. If you have a query for C.H. Wendel, send it along to Gas Engine Magazine, 1503 SW 42nd St., Topeka, KS 66609-1265.