Take a quick glance at the exhibitors and attendees at gas engine shows, and it’s easy to think that this is an older person’s hobby. But take a closer look and you’ll find a growing number of younger enthusiasts. You'll meet them in Young Iron.
Name: John Ridings
Location: Darlington, PA
Q: How long have you been collecting gas engines?
A: About 10 years.
Q: How many engines do you have in your collection?
A: I have four engines: a 6 HP IHC M, 2 HP Ohio Engine Co., 1-1/2 HP Ideal and a 6 HP vertical Bessemer.
Q: Who else in your family collects engines?
A: My dad.
Q: What attracted you to the hobby?
A: I think engines are interesting and I had lot of friends who collected engines.
Q: What’s your favorite engine in your collection?
A: The 2 HP Ohio Engine Co.
Q: Are you working on any restoration projects?
A: I just finished restoring a 6 HP IHC M that my wife painted.
Q: Which shows do you normally attend each year? Which shows haven’t you been to yet that you’d like to see one day?
A: I attend a lot of local Pennsylvania shows such as Coolspring, Ashtabula, Portersville and others. I’ve never been to the Western Minnesota Steam Threshers show in Rollag and I would like to go there someday.
Q: As a young collector, what are some obstacles you’ve come across in the hobby?
A: Mostly prices. Young collectors can’t spend a lot of money on engines. I think some engines are really over priced, and a lot of people get upset when you offer them what you can afford.
Q: If money weren’t an issue, what is your dream engine to own?
A: I would like to own a New Era. I’ve always liked watching them run.