2203 Montague Road Rockford, Illinois 61102
The 16-30 H was my first Oil Pull. I bought it from the Larson estate at Rio, Wisconsin, in 1967. It is in real good condition and required only the usual for a tractor which had been outside for twelve years. W. Larson, whose brother had owned the 16-30, located the K 12-20 for me. I went up in the morning and bought it from Gust Nelson, Rio, Wisconsin, and went to the Oscar Rude estate auction at Sun Prairie in the afternoon and bought the F 15-30 one cylinder Oil Pull. Oscar Rude, at one time, had five one-cylinder Oil Pulls. My F 15-30 is in real good condition and is one of two in Illinois. The K 12-20 runs, but needs reboring and new pistons. Both the 12-20 and the 16-30 had not been run for 12 years, yet the Bosch magnetos with platinum points fired a good spark on the first click.
My other Oil Pull is a Type E 30-60 which is the largest one ever built. It was built in 1912 and is number 766. There are no other type E Oil Pulls in Illinois and only four I know of east of the Mississippi. Collins Construction Co. of Lacota, North Dakota, bought No. 766 new in 1912 and used it until 1919 when Albert Skoglund, Argyle, Minnesota, bought it for farming and road building. It was completely overhauled in the 1930's, including reboring, new pistons, and rebabbiting engine and transmission bearings. Skoglund pulled a 10 bottom engine gang plough with a three bottom plough behind that. The tractor narrowly missed getting scrapped during WW II and the plough did get scrapped. This tractor built roads, ploughed, broke virgin sod and threshed in Minnesota and North Dakota. If could talk it could tell us all a few stories, but since it can't talk, the wear on its huge master gears tells us that it owes nothing, has done its share to make the world a better place and deserves to take it a little easy in show business. The 'E' weighed 30,000 lbs. on the truck but the 1912 catalogue shows 28,000 lbs. It has two 10 inch bore, 12 inch stroke cylinders with exhaust ports at the bottom of the stroke, a 48 inch 1300 lb. flywheel which turns 375 rpm maximum. It has low tension igniters and magneto. The overall height is 11.5 ft. and the width is 9 ft. 10 in. The rear wheels are 80 in. dia. and 36 in. wide. I hope to replace its 8 spoke master gears.
I knew about the 'E' two years before I had the money to buy it so I just kept quiet, hoping it would still be there; it was!
F 15-30, H 16-30, K 12-20 Oil Pulls and Distributor's sign at Kings, Illinois. The 1912 'E' 30-60 Rumely Oil Pull No. 766.
I went up there to look at it in July 1969. With the help of Elmer Larson, a fine machinist and Don Ames, a concrete contractor, I had a real wonderful weekend. The drive from Moorhead to Argyle, Minn., through the Red River Valley was beautiful. After looking at, and buying, the 'E' and visiting with Skoglunds awhile, I came back to Moorhead, Minn., and went with Elmer to the Rollag showgrounds of the Western Minnesota Steam Threshers. While the directors had a meeting I walked and climbed through the engine sheds and looked at tractors and steam engines to my heart's content. With those nice grounds and all those machines, they must put on a real show! They are a swell bunch of guys too.
The truckers didn't get the 'E' hauled in time for our show so I showed it at the Rock River Thresheree at Janesville, Wis., and they hauled it from there home. Theirs is another fine show.
I have four one lungers and a 1927 Farmall which was the first tractor I ever drove; all to be rebuilt, plus a shed to build and Oil Pulls to paint so I have my work laid out.