The Stubborn Stover

Harvey Rechnitzer

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7028 Mustang Dr. Shepherd, Montana 59079

This is the story of special men with a common special interest and how their lives affected mine.

It all started about three years ago when I, 30 years old at the time, met a neighbor who introduced me to Hit & Miss engines through the California Early Day Gas & Steam Engine Club. He, being in his 70's, had a lot of golden information that lit a fire in me. I began searching for an affordable engine.

My first was to be found in a junk yard, completely frozen up and covered in rust. A Stover CT-3 was what began to emerge as I began restoration. A year later the engine was perfect cosmetically, although I couldn't get it to run with the Hit & Miss sound I needed to hear. Through a blacksmith friend of mine named Phil Ewing, I was directed to a man who can only be called an 'IRON WIZARD.' His name is Harvey Rechnitzer. Just one call and he was ready to help me, not really even knowing me at all. This brings me to reflect on the amazing friendships we enthusiasts seem to possess for each other. We couldn't get the timing right no matter what we did!!

As our friendship grew, and time went on, I found out that a new job was going to force me to move 200 miles away from Harvey. I was sad not to be able to drop by Harvey's house for some 'tinkering' and good snacks from his wife Mickey's kitchen. It was then that Harvey suggested that I leave the Stover with him so he could see what he could do with it. Away I went, missing both Harvey and my engine. Well, I came to find out that he practically turned that thing inside out to find the problem. The cam gear had some chipped and even missing teeth! Harvey made tin templates of the gear and took it to another friend of his and rebuilt the gears altogether!! With that done the timing was perfect! She was hittin' and missin' with the best of  'em. Here are some before and after pictures with the 'IRON WIZARD' at work. Well, I wrote this letter to show my appreciation for Harvey, his talents and his help. A way to thank him in a way he wouldn't forget!!! So, I hope you have been reading this, Harvey my friend, and you know how much I miss you!!