Rolling Restoration

Still in its ''Work Clothes,'' this 4 HP Waterloo Boy is Back in the Old Iron Fold

4 HP 1910 Waterloo Boy

Bob Naske's 4 HP 1910 Waterloo Boy, resplendent in its preserved state

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Just before the big snows hit the Northeast U.S. in December 2002, I brought home this Waterloo Boy as something to keep me busy during the long winter season. I'm afraid there's no amazing story about its acquisition, but anytime a somewhat rare engine surfaces, it's certainly noteworthy.

This particular engine sat in the back of a storage garage for many years. There were, not surprisingly, various items that needed attention, including a broken exhaust rocker arm, a rusted gas tank, a bent fuel pipe, a bent mixer pipe, rotten wood, a bent igniter trip - and it had low compression. Showing serial no. 17784, this 1910 engine was certainly worth getting back to operating condition, but I wanted to leave its external appearance as found.

Keeping it Original

Fortunately, we have another 4 HP Waterloo Boy in our family collection of engines, and I borrowed the exhaust rocker arm from it to have a new one cast. I straightened all the bent parts - without anything breaking.

I took the Witry mixer completely apart for cleaning and inspection, and I found some crushed threads on the short fuel supply pipe that extends into the air intake. I made a new supply pipe from brass pipe, and I matched the fuel feed holes, of which there were only two on this mixer. There were evidently several variations of this mixer made, as I have seen Witry mixers with more holes in the fuel feed pipe. The gas tank is a replica of the original, which was too far-gone to repair and reuse.

I brought the compression back to normal by lapping the valves and unsticking the rings. I did not remove the cylinder head to lap the valves, as I wanted to leave the engine as undisturbed and original as possible. Instead, I removed them once the piston was out of the way, which was actually quite easy. In keeping with the used/original theme of the engine, I made the battery/coil box from old apple crate wood, and some generous fellow engine collectors who share my love of old iron supplied the hickory skids and trucks.

The result? A 93-year-old Waterloo Boy is back in operating condition, for the enjoyment of all old engine enthusiasts - especially lovers of Waterloos!

Contact engine enthusiast Bob Naske at: 2059 State Hwy. 29, Johnstown, NY 12095, or e-mail: