Letters & Miscellanies

Ingersoll-Rand Saved, Thoughts on Ford and Rumely Tractor Engines

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206 E. 19th St. N. Newton, IA 50208

Ingersoll-Rand Engine Saved

Last issue we told readers about the 1939 Ingersoll-Rand 8PLVG needing a new home. Located in Beaumont, Texas, the engine was finally being retired after 63 years of service pumping water for the Lower Neches Valley Authority (LNVA) in east Texas. The engine was being offered to any interested club or organization that could secure the funding for its move.

Good news comes from readers Mac and Betty Sine, who alerted us to the engine's availability, that the necessary funding to move the engine has been secured, and it will be shipped to the Shenandoah Valley Steam and Gas Engine Association grounds in Berryville, Va. Mac says he received numerous calls for the engine, which was scheduled for delivery to its new home by January 18, 2003.

This is good news, especially following on the heals of the scrapping of the Bessie 7. Mac says he'll give us a blow-by-blow account of the whole episode in a future issue of GEM.

Ford Tractor Engines

I'm more into hit-and-miss engines than tractors, probably because I have no farming in my background - my only real acquaintance with them has been an old Ford 2N that I used for plowing my driveway.

However, I do also have an interest in old cars, and one that I own is a 1953 Ford sedan with the six-cylinder engine. I'm only the second owner and it has covered less than 40,000 miles, which is probably why I was invited to display it at last year's Motor Muster at the Henry Ford Museum & Greenfield Village in Dearborn, Mich.

The Ingersoll-Rand 8PLVG being readied for shipping. One of only six made, the engine has been adopted by the Shenandoah Valley Steam and Gas Engine Association.

An older gentleman, who appeared to be around 90, spent quite a bit of time looking at my car. We talked for a while, and he mentioned he was retired from Ford engineering. He told me that the 215 cubic-inch OHV six in my car (which was introduced by Ford on the 1952 models) was also the basis for the four-cylinder OHV engine that was introduced on the 1953 Jubilee, the new Ford tractor that replaced the four-cylinder flathead 8N. I'd never known or thought about this, but the resulting 215 x 4/6 = 143 cubic inches, which would seem to make sense. This same gentleman also said Ford had a four-cylinder engine of this same displacement in a number of engineering test cars in either 1952 or 1953, and was planning on introducing it as its low-cost power plant on the Mainline sedans.

He said those plans were abandoned at the last moment and the decision was made to go instead with a smaller-displacement (and smoother) six that was ultimately used in the Ford Falcon about five years later. Does any of this ring a bell with anyone who knows about Ford tractors?

Roy R. Nagel 620 Fox River Dr. Bloomfield Hills, MI 48304

We don't have a firm answer, but it makes sense since manufacturers are always trying to find ways to combine manufacturing and design efficiencies. While your math giving a four-cylinder of 143 cubic inches is correct, the four-cylinder as introduced in the Ford Golden Jubilee displaced 134 cubic inches. This discrepancy could be explained by any number of minor changes to the engine, however. - Editor

Economy Reunion

I'm enclosing a picture of three 12 HP and one 9 HP Economy engines that were exhibited at the November 2, 2002, Ed Hollier show near Hot Springs, Ark. At the next North Arkansas Rusty Wheels Spring Show, located approximately 10 miles south of Harrison, Arkansas, on June 6-7, 2003, the Economy engine will be the feature engine. Five 12 HP Economys have committed to attend, and we're calling for all other Economys of any size to come and join us for a great reunion. If you want to know more, call Charles House at (870) 743-1511 or you can call me at (870) 448-2789.

Rick Horton HC79 Box 103B Marshall, AR 72650 rdhorton@agfc.state.ar.us

There's Still Gold (Iron) in Them Hills

In October, I watched a trailer being loaded with engines and drag saws. In fact, I watched that trailed get loaded twice with old iron. Most of the engines were stuck and missing parts, but by now many of the engines have found new homes and are being restored.

I got a 3 HP International Model M that was missing the fuel pump and tank, but I now have it all apart and necessary repairs made. It's nice to see these engines saved, hopefully to be running again some day soon.

John M. Edgerton 27 Loon Lake Rd. Bigfork, MT 59911

OilPull Engines

I'd like to reply to 'Dave,' who made comments about Rumely OilPull engines in the SmokStak column in the January 2003 issue GEM.

Your statement about oil rings in Rumely OilPulls tells me you do not understand a Rumely engine. My father was a Rumely dealer when Allis-Chalmers took over, and he had us boys running Rumelys from our teens on. I am 79 now, and have had a 16-39, 14-28, 20-40 and 30-69S. I have restored several OilPulls, and have never installed oil rings in a Rumely engine. They were not designed that way, and if you do succeed with an oil ring, which I doubt, you would not be helping the operator, because he would have to drain the crankcase to the proper operating level daily. These engines were designed to burn the excess oil, and the top ring had a scraper effect to do this.

A picture from a Rumely instruction book shows that with the proper level of oil the bottom nut on the connecting rod should just touch the oil, which is usually half an inch in the sight glass. As to the slobbering and spits, this is caused by people trying to burn gasoline in an engine that is designed to run hot and burn kerosene. My mixture was usually 15 gallons of gasoline with five gallons of diesel. With proper fuel and engine timing they will run smoothly at any speed as they all have a variable speed governor. Since these old tractors do not have an idle jet in the carburetor, it is necessary to use about one- third choke. This done, they will run smoothly from idle to top speed.

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