How Your Hobby Started Part XVII

Waterloo Boy Tractor

Courtesy of Roger L. Eshelman, Box 63, College Springs, Iowa 51637.

Roger L. Eshelman

Content Tools

390447th Avenue, S., Seattle, Washington 98118

Now that the annual Reunions--Gas-Ups--and Pioneer Day Shows are over and the collectors who were the actors and participants in these exhibitions are basking in the memories of the many visits and renewed acquaintances they encountered, and while reflecting upon the success of their endeavors, an attempt will be made to give you more engine history to encourage you to find additional machines for next years shows.

It seems many rare old engines are setting around in obscure places waiting for some collector to uncover the dusty one lungers and to bring them back to life again. It requires a lot of visiting with people who remember when a neighbor quit using an engine, so you can look up the prospect and see if the story you heard is true or false. It is difficult to figure out how some collectors just have the knack of finding all of those old goodies. There is no limit to what some collectors will do to get the engine they have been dreaming about owning. Distance is no barrier, and like the postman, the collector will get there despite 'snow nor rain nor heat nor gloom of night.'

It would be interesting to learn from those who attended many of the shows this year, what unusual and rare antique engines were exhibited for the first time. Hoping to read interesting reports in G. E. M. from those who found such engines at the shows they attended in 1971.

Readers of G. E. M. have been very thoughtful to send me catalogs and programs of the many shows and reunions, all of these are very much appreciated. I wish I were able to attend these shows and get personally acquainted with so many pen pals of mine.

From the library of Claude Knudson of Gully, Minnesota, and his collection of engine literature, I have a fine colored catalog of the Rock Island gasoline engines made by the Rock Island Plow Company at Rock Island, Illinois.

This catalog shows the engines in detail and many pictures of installations of their equipment operating irrigation pumps, feed mills, hay balers and wood saw outfits. These engines were well made and designed for heavy duty. They were of the horizontal single cylinder four cycle type. The cast-iron sub-base was extended half way under the overhung cylinder, which was bolted on by a horizontal flange with cap screws along both sides of the cylinder. The water-cooling hopper was large and with a filling ridge around the top opening. The exhaust valve was operated by a pushrod along side of the engine and a hit and miss governor was used. The governor on the smaller ratings was of the flywheel type which was connected to a sleeve on the crankshaft and to a cam lever actuating the pushrod for the exhaust valve and igniter. Larger ratings were equipped with flyball governors, gear driven from the timing gear.

The fuel is pumped from a gas tank in the sub-base to the mixing valve. The siderod was actuated by an eccentric on the cam gear. Larger size engines had a hand operated fuel pump to prime the mixing valve.

Crankshafts were forged from solid steel billets, turned and ground to size. Connecting rods were cast 'I' beam sections with babbitt bearings.

The igniters were of the usual movable electrode style which were fitted into the cylinder wall. The ignition system consisted of a battery and coil. A Wizard magneto could be supplied at extra charge that was mounted on the engine.

Small sized engines were arranged on wooden skids that carried the gas tank and battery ignition box in front of the units. They could also be had with iron wheel hand trucks for portability. Larger rated machines were offered on steel wheel trucks both for hand and horse-drawn transportation.

These Rock Island gasoline engines were painted a brown color that had a bronze cast. Wood saw outfits were finished in the same color with the steel truck frames painted red. The specifications of the Rock Island Gasoline Engines were as follows:

(SEE CHART A)

Chart A

HP

RPM

CRANKSHAFT DIA. IN.

EXHAUST PIPE INCHES

WEIGHT

1

600

1?

1

260

2

500

1 and 3/8

1?

450

3

400

1?

1?

675

5

385

1?

2

985

7

300

2

2?

1350

10

300

2?

2?

2400

12

280

3

2?

3100

16

280

3

3

3300

20

250

3?

3

4600

On the water hopper of these engines was the Rock Island decal. It was elliptic in shape with gold colored scrolls around the top and bottom edge and with the name in gold letters on a red background.

Also from Claude Knudson's fine Associated Manufacturers Catalog dated about 1914 is the following report: 'This Company claimed to be the world's largest builder of gasoline engines at this time. As mentioned in a previous installment, the company was founded by W. W. Marsh. He was President and Treasurer. H. B. Plumb was Vice-president and Secretary. The first product of the company was the famous 'Iowa' cream separator that was built in three capacities of 500-650 and 850 pounds of milk per hour.

Associated gasoline engines were of the single cylinder, horizontal, four cycle type. They were built on a cast-iron sub-base on which was mounted an open crankcase with the main bearing shells. The cylinder was bolted to the crankcase by a vertical flange on each side of the cylinder. Two heavy ribs were constructed from the bolting flange to the main bearings, which were set at an angle inclined towards the cylinder to take the forward thrust.

Ben Wilson on his Waterloo Boy Tractor belted to the rock crusher at A. C. Eshelman's Threshing Show. Eshelman is standing on the crusher.

This Oil Pull Tractor was setting in a junk yard at Shelby, Michigan. Last August, we had it running at our Show in Buckley, Michigan.

The cylinder and water jacket were cast in one piece with a flange for mounting to the crankcase. After bolting together the mains and cylinder were machined at one time to have perfect alignment. The igniter was located in the side of the cylinder. The cylinder head was water-cooled and the automatic intake and mechanical exhaust valve were located in the head.

Pistons were long and fitted with three rings. Crankshafts were drop forged, turned and ground. The connecting rods were 'I' beam design with bronze wrist pin bearing. A steel pinion on the crankshaft drove the cast-iron cam gear. The governor was hit and miss type with flywheel weights operating on a sleeve to actuate the hook-up of the exhaust valve allowing fresh air to be drawn into the combustion chamber on the idle stroke. The rpm. could be changed by adjusting the governor spring when the engine was shut down.

Standard ignition furnished with these engines was of the battery and coil style with an igniter. Magneto could be furnished and mounted on the engine at extra price.

A simple mixing valve with an air intake around the bottom and a needle valve to adjust the amount of fuel required was standard equipment.

On the larger engines there was a support built under the large overhung cylinder.

Associated Gasoline Engines were backed by a factory guarantee of five years. The engines were given names in their catalog and the air-cooled small 1? hp. was labeled 'Busy Boy' and it sold for $28.00. The air-cooled 1? hp. was called the 'Chore Boy' and sold for $40.00 and when mounted on a two wheel truck, sold for $43.50. The water-cooled 1? HP. Chore Boy sold for $40.00 and when mounted on a wheel barrow style truck sold for $46.00. The 'Hired Man' was a water-cooled 2? hp. on skids and sold for $52.00 and mounted on a wheel barrow truck sold for $55.00.

The 4 hp. Farm Hand on skids was priced at $105.00. They built a 6 hp. but no name was available for this size. The 8 hp. Foreman on a wagon truck was sold at $250.00. 12 hp. Twelve Mule Team on skids was $340.00 while the same engine on wagon truck was $395.00.

There were various equipment combinations available such as three sizes of cord wood saw outfits, concrete mixer, power fruit sprayer with a piston type pump, potato sorter, silo filler, pump jacks, washing machines and electric light plants.'

The Associated Engine specifications in the 1914 catalog were as follows:

(SEE CHART B)

CHART B

HP

BORE & STROKE INCHES

R. P. M.

FLYWHEEL DIA. IN.

CRANKSHAFTS DIA. IN.

WEIGHT

COLOR

1? A.C.

3 and 5/8 x 3?

550

16

1 and 1/8

260

red

1 and ?A.C.

3? x 5

450

17

1 and 3/8

300

red & black

1? A.C.

3? x 5

450

17

1 and 3/8

335

red & black

(Truck)

      

1? A.C.

3? x 5

450

17

1 and 3/8

345

red & black

2?

4x5

450

17

1 and 3/8

370

red & black

4

4? x 8

400

27

1?

900

red

6

 

 

 

 

 

 

8

6? x 10

275

42

2?

1200

red

128 x 13250482?2900red

From Eldon Bryant of the Broken Kettle Book Service a very nice catalog of the Rawliegh Manufacturing Co. at Freeport, Illinois supplies the information for a report on this make of gasoline engine.

About 1910 W. F. Rawliegh started to build gasoline engines. At the beginning of his business he established jobbers to distribute his products, however the volume did not meet with his expectations, so he changed the policy of the company and arranged a big advertising program to sell the user direct from the factory. He cut his prices to meet the competition of the other direct sale companies like Sears, Montgomery-Ward, Ottawa and Dan Patch.

Freeport, Illinois was a manufacturing city. Such companies as Stover Mfg. Co. and other companies building windmills, buggies, carriages, agricultural machinery, livestock remedies and poultry supplies, put Rawliegh right in the middle of a lot of competition in his own vicinity. This advertising campaign of selling direct to the consumer placed him in close contact with the engine users and with good repair service the company prospered and enjoyed a good volume of business.

Rawliegh gasoline engines were of the horizontal single cylinder, four cycle water hopper-cooled machines. These engines like many others were of the accepted style and were arranged with a cast-iron sub-base which they called a 'saddle type construction.' This term was coined for the method used to mount the crankcase, which carried the main bearings on the sub-base. The cylinder was bolted to the crankcase flange along each side. On the larger rated units the base was of sufficient height to allow the flywheels to clear the floor.

The cylinder heads were water-cooled with the exception of the two small sizes, the 154 and 254 hp. Valves were located in the cylinder head and the intake was automatic while the exhaust valve was operated by the side pushrod.

The crankshafts were forged from a solid billet of steel, turned and ground and the connecting rod was made of malleable iron.

Governors of the flywheel style with weights that spread as the centrifugal force caused them to move outward, actuated the arm on the sleeve around the crankshaft to function, by holding up the detent spring which in turn would cause the exhaust valve to be held open. This relieved the compression in the combustion chamber and the loss of power strokes reduced the rpm. No fuel was admitted at this point and the spark was also cut off. This hit and miss governor could also be controlled by a speed change lever.

The side pushrod operating from the cam on the timing gear operated the exhaust valve and igniter. The intake valve was automatic. Mixing valve of the simplest type made up of a 'V' shaped fitting with a needle valve controlled the amount of fuel required. Fuel tank was located in the sub-base of the engine.

Rawliegh engines were painted a dark chocolate brown with a wide deep blue stripe around the side of the water hopper and a decal with the word 'The Rawliegh' on the side of the engine. There were red stripes on the flywheel spokes about one half inch wide and also around the side of the flywheel rim. Crankshaft and pushrod were painted blue. This same deep blue was used on the engines of the horsedrawn portable rigs, while the steel trucks were painted orange red with black wheels. Specifications of Rawliegh engines are as follows:

(SEE CHART C)

CHART C

HP

ACTUAL HP.

RPM

BORE & STROKE

FLYWHEEL DIA. IN.

FUEL TANK GALLONS

1?

1.8

600

3?x4

16?

1

2?

3.6

500

4?x5

22

2

3?

4.02

450

4 and 3/8 x 6

26

3

4?

4.8

400

4? x 7

28

454

7

8.8

350

6 x 9

38

6

9

10.35

325

654 x 10

40

7

These engines could be adapted to operate on kerosene and there was an additional charge for the special mixing valve.

Cord wood saw rigs were built in sizes ranging from the 4? hp. to 9 hp. Washing machines and pump jacks were made up in package units.

On approved credit, the Rawliegh engines and equipment could be purchased with one third down payment and the balance in one year on contract.

Also from the Broken Kettle Book Service, a nice catalog on the Gilson Manufacturing Company of Port Washington, Wisconsin gives the details of their gasoline engines. This company was founded in 1850 with their main factory in Wisconsin and later another plant in Ontario, Canada. The early products of the company was agricultural tools which were changed and modernized and development of a gasoline engine was put on the market. Various styles of engines were built in a large number of ratings. Both gasoline and alcohol could be used as fuel in certain models.

This engine was built by the Weber Gas and Gasoline Engine Company, Kansas City. Patented 1891, No. 6903. It is a cross over cam type. I have not had it running yet. It needs a gas tank and a cooling tank. I need to make a coil for the make-and break ignition system. I would appreciate someone giving me information about how this coil is made.

Vertical and horizontal modifications were built in the four cycle design with either air or water-cooled. Gilson engines were known in the catalog by styles A-E-D-F-G and K. They advertised a slogan--'Goes Like Sixty.'

Air-cooled machines were sold under the style 'E'. These were rated J hp. 1? hp. and 2? hp. while a larger 5 hp. air-cooled machine carried the style of 'F'. These open crankcase horizontal engines were single cylinder which was bolted to the crank end by a flange along each side of the cylinder. The air-cooling radiating fins were arranged a-round the cylinder and on the larger size units a belt driven fan was mounted on the side of the cylinder to force air through and around the cylinder cooling fins. No fan was furnished on the one horse power engine.

Bearings were babbitt and the main bearing shells were tilted at 45° towards the cylinder to take the thrust load. Crankshafts were forged from an open hearth steel, turned and ground to size. Connecting rods were of the 'I' section

style on the smaller rated machines and were forged steel with separate connecting rod and wrist pin box bearings.

Governors were of the hit and miss type with flywheel weights connected to a sleeve on the crankshaft to operate the siderod that held open the exhaust valve to control the rpm. of the engine. The suction valve was automatic.

Mixing valve was under the cylinder head and was a simple fitting with a needle valve to control the amount of fuel. Ignition of the spark plug or high tension type was used with a battery and coil. The battery box and the gasoline tank were placed on an extended engine skids ahead of the engine.

A horsedrawn portable 5 hp. air-cooled unit was assembled for application in cold climates, where freezing was a problem. There were 1 hp. and 1? hp. air-cooled portable units mounted on iron wheel hand trucks. Other auxiliary equipment combinations such as pump jacks, cream separator drives, electric light plants and engine driven pressure pumps outfits.

(SEE CHART D)

CHART D

HP

RPM

FLYWHEEL DIA. IN.

CRANKSHAFT DIA. IN.

WEIGHT

1

500

15?

1?

300

1?

475

16?

1?

330

2?

450

22?

1?

500

Style 'F' Air-Cooled specifications were 5 hp., 300 rpm., 36 in. flywheel diameter, 2 1/8' dia. crankshaft and weighted 1300 pounds.

Style 'D' horizontal hopper water-cooled model has the same general design as the Style 'F' but is water-cooled. These engines can be fitted to burn gas. They were skid-mounted and the specifications were as follows:

(SEE CHART E)

CHART E

HP

RPM

FLYWHEEL DIA. IN.

CRANKSHAFT DIA. IN.

WEIGHT

2

475

16?

1?

400

3?

450

22?

1?

600

6

300

36

2 and 1/8

1300

The Gilson Style 'A' is a vertical single cylinder with open crankcase. The cylinder is cast separately and bolted to the flange at the top of the crankcase. The cylinder and head are cast in one piece. The crankshaft and main bearings are assembled through the side opening of the crankcase. Double flywheels were mounted on extended crankshaft. The timing gear and cam shaft were assembled to operate from the pinion on the crankshaft and to operate the exhaust pushrod which was controlled by the hit and miss governor and was assembled inside the flywheel.

Valves were arranged in the valve cages. The automatic intake was located in the cylinder head and the mechanical exhaust valve was in a valve port on the side of the cylinder. Style 'A' ratings operated at a normal speed of 425 rpm and delivered 4? hp. The flywheels were 24' in diameter and the crank shaft was 1 5/8', the weight was 850 pounds.

The larger style 'K' was a horizontal four cycle, closed single cylinder, water-cooled machine. The cast-iron sub-base housed the main fuel tank. The crankcase was open with a cover over the crank for safety protection. The cylinder was bolted to the crank-case by a horizontal flange along the side. The cylinder head was water-cooled, with the automatic intake valve and mechanical exhaust valve assembled in the head. Double flywheels were used with the governor weights on the flywheel and which operated the side rod on the hit and miss system. The rod also operated the igniter of these larger ratings. A magneto could be supplied at extra cost. Specifications of the Gilson Style 'K' gasoline engines were as follows:

(SEE CHART F)

CHART F

HP

RPM

FLYWHEEL DIA. IN.

CRANKSHAFT DIA. IN.

WEIGHT

7

325

38

2?

2150

9

300

42

2?

2500

12

300

44

2?

3100

16

275

48

2?

3600

The catalog did not list the bore and stroke of the Gilson engines.

Style 'G' is a duplicate of the 'K' only with water hopper cooling, which was made in ratings of 7 and 9 hp.

Combination equipment units were offered in complete saw rigs, portable pump outfits and other accessories such as magnetos, friction clutch pullies and trucks.

As 1 write this November-December installment in the middle of August there is little to inspire the holiday season spirit-except maybe the old saying--'Do your Christmas shopping early.' It would be wise to take heed to this saying at this time as the stores are not crowded or even busy.

To further take heed of this saying, 1 will apply it in sending my best wishes for the Holidays and the Happy New Year to all our readers, and to close this chapter with a thought for next year by a quotation--'There is no way to Peace--Peace is the way'

I have what I believe to be a Gilson engine, one cylinder, double flywheel pulley drive that is over sixty years old to my knowledge and still in good running condition. In those years, if I remember right, Gilson had a motto that went: 'Goes like Sixty.' I think it is either a half or one horsepower.

Back in those days we had a summer home on one of the nearby lakes and this engine was used to pump lake water up to a tank on a hill in back of our house. It was used until electric current became available. It was also loaned to the Milwaukee Post Office to run their canceling machine during the Electric Power Company strike. Anyone interested in this same type of engine, I would be glad to hear from them.