Gas Engine News and Remembering Homer G. Prudom

Anna Mae delivers the latest gas engine news and writes a memorial to Gas Engine Magazine reader Homer G. Prudom.

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The latest gas engine news. Well, here it is — the January-February issue of Gas Engine Magazine which heralds the beginning of the second year — may it be a Happy One for all of you folks and not to be selfish, but I hope it will be a better one for the staff of the Gas Engine Magazine for as you know, I've been in the hospital twice — and Earl Snell (Kitty's husband) has just been in over a week and then Elmer met with an automobile accident which hospitalized him for about 11 days, then he was home about five days and had to be taken back for another lengthy stay — but right now, everyone is looking for the best to come this new year of 1967.

One of the bright notes in this year for us was the birth of a granddaughter — our first grandchild born December 2 at Allentown Ostepathic Hospital (Eddie and Kathleen now live in Bangor, Pennsylvania and I understand it was quite a trip to the hospital as it takes about an hour to get there, but Grandma and Grandpa Cascioli got them there safe and sound, this is the Cascioli's first grandchild too. The new parents named the little one Stacy Jo and she weighed in at 5 lb. 14 oz. We understand she is doing fine but we at this end of the line are all awaiting anxiously for the first visit that we can make to see our new little member — although they only have one niece she inherits two Aunts from our immediate family and two Uncles all at once — that's a pretty good beginning! Perhaps next time I'll have more to tell about the little angel.

A short letter from F. Hal Higgins of Davis, California offers us two corrections on errors made in our Nov-Dec. magazine. He writes, "Page 20, item under the International Motor Cultivator, top right, has LeRoy — change Y to I and you have it right. Page 23, that four-wheel Massey-Harris would be helped by inserting the word (drive) after wheel. There weren't many 4-wheel drive tractors at that date, and a lot of gas tractor followers like to know which ones were of that type." Our apologies and thanks for constructive criticism.

This is my two horse power International Tom Thumb with hit or miss governor and make and break ignition-battery. I found this engine in Hodes Junk Yard, Pleasant Gap, PA. Everything was rusted fast but as most of the parts were there I bought it, paying five cents per pound. The fellow who helped me load it in my station wagon said "I don't see what you want this thing for, you'll never get it running."

I do not know where it came from but apparently it had been out in the weather for years as all of the grease was gone and most of the. paint. I spent hours taking it apart, cleaning rust, painting and putting it back together. The only part that I broke was the exhaust valve. I had one, almost the same size, so that was no problem. As this engine has a brass connecting rod, I equipped it with brass grease cups.

George Kempler, Emporium, PA made new springs for me and now I have it completed and I must say it is a nice running engine.

That's about all I have for this time, but I believe I'll leave with a New Year's Meditation by Mrs. Merrel Thompson that goes:

Dear Lord, as I close the door on this year,- I ponder on the things I've done . . . On the things I've said and the joys I've had . . . Then I wonder, have I lost or won? 

I've thought of the new friends I have made, And of the old one staunch and true . . . The path of the old year was made easier Lord, Because I have walked it with You. 

I think of all the many times, When my burdens were so heavy to bear, And how my faith slipped away from me . . . But somehow You were always standing there. 

Now as I open the door to this New Year, And carefully peep inside, I wonder what it holds for me . . . But I'll throw the door open wide. 

And whatever it brings to me and mine, I'll meet it with a heart so true . . . I know that, Lord whate'er it may be — you'll be there to carry me through. 

Pictured here is an engine, owned by Carrington Hide and Fur Co., Carrington, North Dakota being used daily to drive a steel shear metal cutter. They said this engine was originally used for oil well work and is a Fairbanks-Morse 7 hp gas engine. The unusual feature of this engine is the cooling system. It seems that water is filled to not quite full in the square compartment above the cylinder, and more or less, sealed with a plug. The radiator is sealed completely to the engine without any opening at all, and considering the size of pulley used to drive the fan, it must be running at a high rate of speed. The steam or hot water must need to evaporate upwards in the radiator and after cooling drop back down again — this way it must require the temperature of the water to rise to a certain degree before this system can start cooling.

This is a closed crankshaft model and is self-oiling by either a pump or splash system. It uses a Fairbanks-Morse high tension magneto, and will work all day on five gallons of gas.

Our 18-36 hp Hart Parr gas tractor getting ready to thresh some oats on a little 22-inch separator.

Homer G. Prudom, Fairport, N.Y., passed away on Oct. 17, 1966 at the age of 76 after an illness of several months. He began work as a steam crane operator for the Luddington Construction Co. about 1910 in relocating the Barge Canal from downtown Rochester to several miles south of the city. He then went with the company to New York City in 1918 to work on bridge construction, again as a steam crane operator. He later worked at the New York Central car shops in East Rochester until his retirement about 10 years ago.

He was born on a farm in West Shelby, and as a boy worked with steam powered threshers and tractors. Through most of his years, he used steam-powered machinery. About nine years ago, he and several others decided to form the New York Steam Association to preserve this type of Engine machinery. Later on in 1964, he was one of the charted members and one of the first Directors of the Pioneer Gas Engine Association, Inc.

His knowledge of the steam and gas powered equipment seemed to be endless. He will indeed be greatly missed by all who knew him.

He is survived by his wife, Alice; a daughter, Mrs. Bertha Bellinger of Arlington, VA; two sons, Alan and Homer of Pittsford; 12 grandchildren and 13 great grandchildren.