TETON ANTIQUE Steam & Gas Show

By Staff
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1919 16-30 OilPull, and 1938 Field Marshall belong to Bill Baughman. 22 Caterpillar is Bob Facklam's.
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1938 RC Case, Herb Tangen, Choteau, Montana.

3208A 9th Avenue North, Great Falls, Montana 59401

The Teton Antique Steam and Gas Threshing Association held its
5th annual threshing bee and show at the Ove Larson farm northeast
of Choteau, Montana, on September 10 and 11, 1988. Uncooperative
weather held attendance down, but those present thoroughly enjoyed
them selves and the activities which took place.

Both days began with a sourdough pancake breakfast hosted by
members Gordon and Paula Larson and prepared and served by various
members of the association.

Following breakfast, the show was on. A cold biting northwest
wind and intermittent showers failed to dampen spirits in light of
the extended drought which had plagued north central Montana this
past year.

Association member Carl Mehmke of Great Falls, MT was present
with two extremely rare tractors from his collection . One was his
1916 18-30 Square Turn, one of only two Square Turn tractors known
to exist. The other was a 1917 10-20 Russell. Both units sported
fresh paint jobs and putted briskly around the show grounds.

Bill Baughmann of Cut Bank, MT again brought three units to the
show: a 1917 Waterloo Boy R, a 1919 16-30 Rumely Oil Pull, and his
favorite, a 1938 one-cylinder diesel Field Mar shall. This unique
tractor is started by firing a charge much like a shotgun shell. I
had the opportunity to drive it at another show this year and can
honestly say that it’s a neat little unit.

Host Ove Larson had both of his 60 HP Case steam engines fired
up. The 1912 was belted to his sawmill where several members kept
busy creating planks and timbers which will be used to construct
new buildings at the Association’s new show grounds in Choteau.
The 1910 engine powered a separator for threshing demonstrations.
Both were ably handled by engineers Ove Larson, Clyde Corley,
Charles Spivak and Dave Vanek, who at age 22 is the youngest
licensed engineer in the state of Montana.

For many, the highlight of the show was starting the 150 HP two
cylinder Fairbanks-Morse/Continental Diesel given to the
association in 1987. This engine came from the oil fields near
Mosby, MT and was restored by several members. Special credit goes
to member Ed Sever and his son Duane who is an accomplished
machinist. Duane painstakingly manufactured new piston rings as we
have been unable to locate 14 inch rings any where. The engine was
originally started with a charge of compressed air. Lacking this
capability at present, Ed belts his Super WD9 McCormick Deering to
the engine’s flywheel and spins it over. Due to its size,
preheating the glow plugs is a must; even then it usually takes
between 30 and 45 minutes to get the engine running.

Several members of the Treasure State Flywheelers from Great
Falls were in attendance with some of their one lungers. One
‘Flywheeler’, Bud Witte, is a distant relative of the
founder of the Witte Engine Works. Bud proudly displays his two
Witte engines along with his ‘guard buzzards’.

Although north central Montana is primarily wheat and barley
country, there was an abundance of row crop tractors on display,
including John Deere A’s and B’s, a couple of F20 Farmalls,
a WD 45 Allis Chalmers, and three RC Cases, two 1938’s and a
1939 (styled). This writer had never seen an RC until he first
attended the Teton show in 1985. Now he is the proud owner of a
1938 RC with a small loader.

Wheatland units were also in evidence as befitting wheat
country. Among those on display were John Deere D’s and an R;
IHC 10-20, 15-30, 22-36, and WK40; Case L and LA; and a Twin
City.

Three crawlers were on display, although the Lindeman and the
Cat 22 owned by member Bob Faclam refused to start. The IHC TD-40
of Herb Tangen’s provided yeoman ser vice on Sunday morning as
about 3 inches of snow preceded by rain turned the grounds into a
quagmire. The TD-40 was pressed into service to extricate the
vehicles of several departing exhibitors. Due to the messy grounds,
outside activities were cancelled and members put away those items
that had to be secured immediately and then adjourned to Ove’s
machine shed for the annual church service presided over by Rae
Ginther.

New to the show in 1988 was the ‘Teton Tots Tractor
Tug’. This event for children featured a pulling sled made by
member Greg Alzheimer and four pedal tractors loaned by various
members. All participants received ribbons.

The Association is already preparing for the 1989 show which
will be held at the new show site, a plot of land on the southeast
edge of Choteau, the weekend of September 9-10. Members have
recently fenced the grounds and are beginning to plot where
different activities will take place. Future plans include
restoration of a 100 HP Corliss Steam Engine obtained from the old
Great Falls Brewery and moving and restoring the old Great Northern
RR depot from Choteau. For further information, contact Association
President Rick Corey, Box 7020, Dutton, MT, (406) 466-5409, or Ove
Larson, Rt. 2, Box 6890, Dutton, MT (406) 466-2609.

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