2475 Crumb Road, Walled Lake, Michigan 48390
I would like to share some photos of my first hit & miss engine and restoration project, a 1915 Wonder cement mixer built by Construction Machinery Company of Waterloo, Iowa, shop #7866.
The drum is 36' in diameter ID at drive gear. It is mounted on steel wheels. This mixer is driven by a 2 HP gas engine at 550 RPM built by United Engine Company of Lansing, Michigan, serial #201004. I am not sure of the size of the mixer as far as bags or yards. Perhaps you readers can help me with the correct year of this unit. I know that the cylinder head of this engine is water cooled, and according to C.H. Wendel's American Gasoline Engines book United Engine Company first started this in 1915 and stopped making the 2 HP engine in 1917. If you can help with this information or any other I would appreciate the help. This is a two piece housing unit with the fuel tank inside the lower housing. It has a Webster mag, water cooled hopper, and brass fuel mixer.
The first time I heard a hit and miss engine run was at a nearby tractor show; I was hooked. I found this mixer a half mile from home and saved it from going to the scrap yard (the place my wife and many of my friends said it should be). Sound familiar? I talked to the owner, who said his father bought the mixer new and was not sure of its year. It took eight years to complete this project, working when time allowed, replacing both axles which rusted away, finding good wheels that matched, welding the cylinder head up, making new intake and exhaust valves, welding up the connecting rod, and a new gas tank.
Sure seems like a lot of work, but it was all worth it when I turned the crank and it took off and ran. A couple of adjustments and I was done. I always liked things that can do something, not just an engine on the floor. I guess that is why I took the mixer to my brother's to pour a slab for his new dog kennel. It was fun!
After a complete repaint, this unit will only be used for shows, allowing people to see how things were done in the past. It's amazing how many people have never seen anything like this before and for others the good memories it brings back.
I have enjoyed this magazine for many years and it was great help in this project.