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Re: Massey-Harris Company Limited - Toronto, Ontario, Canada From the notes supplied by Ray Miller of 2815 Niagara Boulevard, Fort Erie, Ontario, Canada. L2A 5M4.

One of Canada's successful farm machinery manufacturers in the first half of the nineteenth century started building implements in 1847. Daniel Massey (1798 to 1856) of Newcastle was responsible for some of the earliest farm tools to be manufactured in Canada.

Massey's Agricultural Works, as it was first known, was comprised of a machine shop, a wood working shop and a foundry and blacksmith shop. From this small beginning, Daniel Massey began building plows, harrows and a horse driven sweep power. Later a number of other types of equipment were added to the line; such as threshing machines, windmills, washing machines and gasoline engines.

In 1891 Alanson Harris entered the company as a partner. Mr. Harris was a skilled mechanic, and a competitor, who brought much to the organization. Then, in 1953, Harry Ferguson of England, who had his own well known line of Ferguson Equipment, aligned himself with the company and the name was changed to Massey-Harris Ferguson Limited, and later changed to Massey-Ferguson, its present name, in 1957. The company headquarters has been located in Toronto since 1879.

Many improvements were added to the growing list of equipment in the development of agricultural machinery from this firm. The combined reaper and mower was a great help to the wheat farmers in the plains. Massey's mower supplied the farmer with a suitable means of haying, as did the Sharp's rakes. Many other inventions were added to the equipment making it more efficient for the farmer to harvest his crops.

Through the years, this fast growing corporation added many Canadian manufacturers to the parent company. The first American company acquired was the Johnston Harvester Company of Batavia, New York. This firm was incorporated in 1871. In 1912, looking forward to the needs of the Canadian farmer, Massey Harris purchased the successful and well established Deyo-Macey Engine plant in Binghampton, New York, in order to establish their own gasoline engine production facilities in Canada. Some Massey-Harris engines were built as early as 1914 in Binghampton, New York. The plant and equipment of the Deyo-Macey Company was moved to the Weston (Toronto), Ontario, works of Massey-Harris in 1916. Company records indicate these facts and they are also borne out by a search of the Binghampton, New York, directories which last list Deyo-Macey in 1916. The Deyo firm was first listed in 1901 under the name Davis and Deyo.

The Deyo engine and the Type 1 Massey-Harris engine, in a number of respects, would remind a collector of the Olds engines. It should be noted that prior to building their own line of engines, Massey-Harris sold the well known Olds engines in Canada.

The first engine to carry the Massey-Harris name, the Type 1, was built about 1914. This was a single cylinder, horizontal unit, with water hopper cooling; larger units could be tank cooled. It was of the open crankcase type with heavy cast iron fender and was battery, spark plug, and coil type ignition. The engines were built of component parts which consisted of the major cast iron sub-base, on which was mounted the main bearings. The power end and water jacket are bolted to the base by studs around the neck of the cylinder. The crankshaft is laid in the bearing journals and is set at an angle of 30 degrees. Thrust of the crankshaft comes against the frame and the wear is easily taken up by adjustment of the main bearings. Governor systems were of the hit and miss type.

The 1-1/2 H.P., Type 1, engine was patterned after the small Deyo engine. In design and operation it is very similar to the well known Fairbanks-Morse 1-1/2 H.P., hit and miss, side valve, or headless engine. The governor weight was in the flywheel and a detent blade held open the horizontal exhaust valve.

All the larger engines governed the valve stem by a replaceable, hardened, governor button on the end of a long, horizontal, exhaust lever which is pivoted on the base and is driven by a cam and a small wheel that does away with the wear on the cam and valve lever. On the Type 1 old style engines, with battery and spark plug ignition, a timer blade is mounted on top of the exhaust valve lever and makes contact with the cam on the timing gear. The carburetor is suspended under the intake ventura tube and it consists of an air throttle valve and a needle valve to control the fuel. It fastens to the intake ventura by two stub bolts. The Type 1 engines were built from 1914 to 1922, inclusive.

The Type 1 engine had a single governor weight mounted on a bolt which was fastened thrugh one of the spokes of the flywheel. The 1-1/2 H.P. and the later 2 H.P. Did not have a removable water hopper. On the larger sizes, the water hopper was separate and bolted to the top of the cylinder. The cylinder was closed at the valve end and a frost breaking plate was bolted to the underside of the cylinder. An outstanding: feature of the cylinder is the vertical valve arrangement patterned after the Deyo design, with the top automatic intake connected to the mixing valve. The mechanical exhaust valve was operated from a long lever, at the end of which was the governor mounted in the flywheel. This design eliminated the push rod and other necessary features on the. usual type of valve mechanism. In some respects this cylinder design is comparable to the 'Olds' gasoline engine. On the Type 1, old style, both exhaust and intake valves were mounted in removable cages.

Witte Drag Saw - serial number 98709

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Portable engines could be bought mounted on cast iron trucks, which were equipped with a vertical cooling tank. The engine body and skid were painted red; the flywheels were green, striping was yellow. Yellow striping and fancy scroll design with the words Massey-Harris were on each side of the water hopper. On the headless end, above the intake valve on the water hopper, was a decal depicting both views of the globe, or atlas, with the words 'Highest Class Farm Implements in the British Empire'. It should be noted that Massey-Harris equipment was sold in South Africa and Australia, as well as other countries of the British Commonwealth. However, Massey-Harris engines built in Canada were much different from those of the same name built in the U.S.

The specification for the O.S. (Old Style), Type 1, Massey-Harris engines were as follows:

H.P. R.P.M.Flywheels In,.
1-1/250016 x 2-1/4
347524 x 2-1/4
4-1/245029 x 2-3/8
642533 x 2-5/8
840036 x 3
1238038 x 3-1/4
1538040 x 3-1/2
2038042 x 4

These were shipped skidded, with a set of accessories, (extra spark plug, oil can, etc.), including a battery and battery box. 3 to 20 HP engines had a removable water hopper and these sizes were also available with closed cooling jacket employing a separate tank with centrifugal circulating Dump for stationary applications.

On the Type 1, old style, with battery and spark plug ignition, the timing gears were located outside of the crankcase. These engines were but at Binghampton, New York, at the former Deyo-Macey works between. 1914 and 1916.

This type was followed by the Type 1, O.R. (Old Rating). These were the first of the Type 1 with the exhaust valves seated in the cylinder; the intake valves were still mounted in removable cages directly above the exhaust valve. This design would permit removal of the exhaust valve for service. On the 'old rating' the timing gears were placed inside the crankcase. The horsepower ratings were the same as the Type 1, old style, (see above). Production of these commenced at the Toronto works. The specifications for the N.R. (New Rating) Type 1, Massey-Harris engines were as follows:

H.P. R.P.M.Flywheels In,.
250019-3/4 x 2-1/4
1038038 x 3-1/4
1238040 x 3-1/2

First production of the Type 1, N.R., 2 H.P., was equipped with battery and spark plug ignition. The 2 H.P. was first equipped with a Webster magneto in 1919.

Company records seem to indicate that reduced horsepower ratings had some relation to exhaust valve location.

Portable truck mounted horse-drawn saw rigs powered by the Type 1 engines were available. They were made in the following sizes: No. 1, No. 2, No. 3, with 4-1/2 H.P. engines; No. 4 and No. 5 with 6 H.P. engines. In addition, fruit sprayers were built in various sizes using 1-1/2 H.P. engines. Contractor units included pumps and hoists.

In 1923, Massey - Harris engineers designed a new engine, the Massey-Harris Type 2. This was a throttling governor engine with a combination, two chamber carburetor that permitted gasoline or kerosene to be used for fuel. The carburetor was mounted beneath the cylinder head and in some respects resembled the carburetor on a Fairbanks-Morse, Type ZA, engine. No fuel pump was used, but at the outlet of the fuel tank, a check valve was used in the fuel line. This engine had a one piece cylinder and water hopper casting. The valves were located in the removable cylinder head. The governor weights were mounted in the flywheel.

The Type 2 engines were built in ratings of 1-1/2, 3, 4-1/2 and 6 HP. These engines were simple and straight forward in appearance and the full-rated horsepowers were available from either gasoline or kerosene. On the larger sizes water could be introduced into the combustion chamber to prevent pounding under load.

Specifications for Massey-Harris Type 2 engines:







Net Wht.



17 x 1-3/4







21 x 2







24 x 2-1/4







28 x 2-1/2





Engines were painted all red except for the magneto; striping was yellow. The Type 2 engines were built from 1923 through 1932 inclusive.

In 1933, Massey-Harris engineers again brought out a new design, the Massey-Harris Type 3 engine. Specifications for the Massey Harris Type 3 engines are as follows:


 These had throttling governors designed to use gasoline or kerosene. Provision was provided for introducing water into the combustion chamber on the 6 H.P. Former Massey-Harris employees have stated that they doubt any 6 H.P., Type 3, engines were ever really built. The Type 3 engines are rather uncommon. A number of 3 H.P., Type 3, engines apparently were shipped to British Columbia on orchard sprayers. These engines were equipped with a diaphragm type fuel pump; semi self-oiling, single flywheel, and used a rotary high tension Wico magneto. The Type 3 engines were offered for sale from 1933 through 1935.

These were the last engines actually built by Massey-Harris at their Toronto works. From 1936 to 1952, Massey-Harris sold the well known 'R' model engines built by Cushman Motor Works of Lincoln, Nebraska, who are still in business. Cushman Motor Works have no serial number lists available as to what year any 'R' model engines were built.

These were self oiling, water cooled, two disc type flywheels, with Wico EK magneto and throttling governor, and could be equipped to burn kerosene. They were the result of years of advancement in the style of small farm type gasoline engines. Modern foundry practices were adhered to for the advanced designs. On a suitable cast iron sub-base was mounted the one piece casting for the horizontal enclosed crankcase with open water hopper. Through the side opening was mounted the heavy drop forged crankshaft and the adjustable Timken tapered roller bearings and the timing gear. An inspection hole provided access to the connecting rod bearing.

The engine governor is of the Flyball type to give regulation for all speeds. The special Wico high tension magneto and spark plugs furnished the ignition system. The mixing valve is a simple design and it is provided with a special bowl to adapt the engine to burn kerosene. A 5 - 6 H.P. single cylinder engine and a 10 - 12 H.P. twin cylinder engine were also available. These were vertical cylinder engines, 'L' head design, and used high tension Wico rotary magnetos. These were also self oiling and water-cooled. The vertical engines were also built by Cushman. Radiator or tank cooling systems were used and a throw out clutch was available. A Tillotson type automotive carburetor was used. Power plants using the Continental 'Red Seal' engines were also available: 4 cylinder at 24 HP; 6 cylinder at 37 HP, and 6 cylinder at 50 HP.

Specifications for the Massey-Harris (Cushman built) engines are as follows:



RPM Variable

Bore & strokeWater Gals.Shipp. Wgt.



400 -800

3-1/4 x 4-1/22-1/2225



3-1/2 x 4-1/23265 



450-9003-3/4 x 4-1/24-1/2285

The 4 H.P. used an extra high (extended) water hopper. The 5 - 6 H.P. vertical, single cylinder engine had the folio wine specifications:

H.P.Piston Displ. Cubic In. R.P.M.Bore & StrokeWater Gals.Shipo. Wgt.
5 - 650.25460 - 14004x41 (Rad cooled;305

Other specifications:


Valve Port

Pist. Pins






1-3/8' X 1-1/2'

12' x 2'




1-3/8' X 1-1/2'

14' x 2'




1-3/8' X 1-1/2'

14' x 2'

5 -6



1-3/8' X 7/8'

14' x 2''

Bringing the modern type of gasoline engine, which Massey-Harris Company Ltd., distributed to this date, you will find the Model 'S' engine built for Massey-Harris by the D. R. Clarke Engine Company Limited of Toronto, Ontario. The Canadian Trade Index lists the Clarke firm for the first time in 1939. They are listed as makers of air-cooled gasoline engines for marine and shore use, up until 1958; after which time they built pressure water systems and pumps until they went bankrupt in 1967. The Model 'S' engine was sold by Massey-Harris from 1946 until 1951. These same engines were also sold by the DeLaval Cream Separator Company in Canada.

From 1951 to 1956 Massey-Harris, and latterly Massey-Harris Ferguson, sold the 'Weather King', Model 18, engines. Company records indicate that the sale of gas engines by Massey-Harris Ferguson was concluded in 1956. No definite information exists as to who built the 'Weather King' engines, but it is stated that Massey-Harris did not make an air-cooled engine and bought these from other manufacturers. Both Model 'S' and 'Weather King' are air-cooled engines of the variable speed type.

Model 'S' Specifications:
R.P.M. Max. PowerBore & Stroke
15001.4 H.P.2-1/2' x 2-1/2'
30003.2 H.P.2-1/2' x 2-1/2'

'Weather King', Model 18, Specifications:

R.P.M. Max. PowerBore & Stroke
15001.8 H.P.3' x 2-1/2'
30005.0 H.P. 3' x 2-1/2'

'Weather King' available in 2 sizes; 2-3 H.P. and 5 H.P.

The Model 'S' stationery engine is a vertical, totally enclosed unit, with splash lubrication, and a metering tray located in the crankcase to regulate the amount of oil. A lightweight, durable, high quality, piston of aluminum alloy was used on these engines. Valves are a special high quality steel. The 'I' type connecting rod, of aluminum, has a strong bearing enclosure. Supported on two sturdy Timken tapered roller bearings is the 1-3/16' crankshaft of quality steel. Not usually found in engines of this type is the Timken tapered roller bearing camshaft. Another feature of these engines is the automotive type carburetor that requires no adjustments. The float level is adjusted by adding or removing gaskets or shims between the top and bottom halves of the carburetor. The ignition is supplied from a flywheel type magneto. The Model 'S' engine has a compression ratio of 5 to 1. The displacement is 12-1/4 cubic inches. Weight is 82 pounds. Its continuous operation rating is 1 to 2-1/2 H.P.

The Massey-Harris 'Weather King' is a larger engine even though it weighs only 60 pounds. The displacement is 18 cubic inches. It has the general design and most of the features of the Model 'S'. The 'Weather King' had a continuous operation rating of 1-1/2 H.P. at 1500 R.P.M. to 3 H.P. at 2200 R.P.M.

The trade mark of Massey-Ferguson Limited is the triple triangle with the three corners superimposed. The initial 'M' is placed in the lower left hand triangle and the 'F' is placed in the lower right hand triangle. Blue background supports the initials, with white initials and edges.

The Massey-Harris plant at Weston (Toronto) was converted to aircraft wing production during the Second World War. Apparently sometime after this date all the records of engine serial numbers and dates of manufacture were either lost or destroyed. Many collectors are interested in the date when engines were made. Not having serial number records by the date, the following information may establish the possible year these were made.

The Type 2 engine was only equipped with an all brass mixer and a Webster magneto in 1923, the first year the Type 2 was built. In 1924, the ignition was changed to the Wico magneto and this type was used until 1932, when Type 2 engines were discontinued. In 1926 a Wico SK magneto and mounting bracket was made available to convert the 1923 Webster magneto equipped engines to spark plug ignition. The 1923 Type 2 engines used a slightly different design of governor weight pins to those used in 1924 and later years. The sight glass gauge was first used on the gas tank on the 1924 engine.

On Type 1 engines, grease cups were used on main bearings. From 1923 through 1925, a rectangular type oil well with wicking was used on Type 2 engines. Syphon type oilers were used on the main bearings on the Type 2 engines in 1926 to 1932.

On some models of the Type 1 engine, ignition was accomplished by locating the Webster magneto and a specially designed ignitor directly at the end of the cylinder in the headless engine. The magneto was 'tripped' by a vertical lever connected to the long exhaust rocker arm. On this system, the magneto was only operated when ignition was required. On other models, the Webster magneto and ignitor were located between the intake and exhaust valves and in this case, the magneto was tripped on every 'compression' stroke even though the hit and miss engine could be 'idle' or 'coasting' with the exhaust valve held open by the governor.

On Type 1 and Type 2 engines, casting numbers had the prefix 'AA' followed by several numbers. On Type 3 engines, casting numbers had several prefixes, such as 'AA', 'AC', etc.

On Type 3 engines, a drip feed sight oiler was used to lubricate the cylinder and an oil dip stick was used to check the level of oil in the sump. On the Type 3 engines, the splash type lubrication system was used.

Thank you for the many letters I received during the year, and I am anxious to answer your questions, mostly about Fairbanks, Morse engines. I am behind with my correspondence but hope to catch up in the near future; also it will help me if you can send me a self addressed and stamped envelope.