Electric! Hit & Miss Model Builder Has the Old Iron Bug

Electric Engine

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226 N. Morrison, Centralia, Illinois 62801

A friend of mine, Les Altenbaumer, who is a locomotive electrician for the Illinois Central Railroad, and my neighbor, has caught the old iron bug. I gave Les a copy of an article from a 1996 GEM on how to build an electric hit and miss engine using a starter solenoid.

Engine #1, yellow, used a car solenoid and other parts turned on a lathe.

Engine #2 is all homemade. It has a hand-wound coil, light switch for points in head which operate by the exhaust valve. The piston is a 15/8 12-pt. socket; the rod is out of an air compressor; the piston sleeve is copper tubing. My 3 HP Sattley was used as a pattern somewhat.

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Engine # 3 is a green engine and is also all homemade, but the flywheels are steel wheels. The crankshafts are cut and welded steel rod.

Engines number two and three were built with 3-inch pipe and flat steel, cut and welded about 22 pieces for each one. Each looks as if they were all cast.

Les has now added engine # 4, but I have no photos of it as yet. Les also has a very loving wife, Genean.

If you'd like to correspond with Les, write to: Leslie Altenbaumer, 101 Breese St., Centralia, IL 62801.