Rt 1, Box 13, Steinauer, NE 68441
After reading the History of the Aermotor Windmill Corporation (GEM, November 1989), I felt I should jot down a few notes of my experience.
Well, my father bought an Aermotor windmill around 1905. It was an open gear that needed oiling very often if it was operated regularly. It had a 28 foot 4 leg tower and he and the neighbors always said it would run with less wind than any other make.
They also sold 3 leg towers and the ladder was brackets on one leg. I still use a 3 leg 20 foot today. With an Aermotor head the 4 leg tower had the ladder on one leg.
I helped set up many mills. We always assembled them laying down-the tallest one that I had experience with was a 60 foot with 8 foot wheel.
There were many makes sold in our area. Dempster, Baker Eli, Fairbanks Morse, Samson, Eclipse direct stroke with 10 foot wheel. The others were usually 8 foot wheels.
My father built many wood towers 16 to 24 foot with No. 1 clear 4 x 4. He did that with the tower laying down-he gave the legs a curve and when they were set up as we referred to it when standing, they were always plumb and lined up with the center of the well. He did one tower a 32 foot with a 16 x 20 foot 4 x 4 with a lap joint. This was for a friend who thought a 24 foot tower was too short.
Yet today with modern electricity, a windmill will pump water cheaper than any other method and there's an automatic regulator to keep stock tanks full except in freezing weather.
There were other makes than I just remember, being past 80.