Letters & miscellanies

By Staff
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Early catalog illustration and specification sheet for Termaat & Monahan engine.
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Four-cylinder engine as used in REO Speed wagon trucks.
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It’s a REO

I’d like to respond to John Popovich’s query concerning
his unidentified engine (query 38/6/3, June 2003, page 4).
John’s engine was originally a four-cylinder engine and is from
a late teens or early 1920s REO Speed wagon truck. It has been cut
in half and has a flywheel from a stationary engine mounted on

I’ve enclosed a picture of the engine in my unrestored 1920
Model F REO Speed wagon. The engine and truck serial number should
be stamped on the crankcase casting just above the left front, or
in his case, left engine mount. The fan is not mounted on my engine
in the photo, but it is identical to his. My engine number is

Alan New 5389 W. 900 S.Pendleton, IN 46064

Termaat & Monahan

I was looking through the September 2002 issue of GEM
and noticed the question (query 37/9/1, page 4) about a Battery
engine belonging to Chris Jowett.

I don’t know what information you might have received, but
this sure looks like a Termaat & Monahan as made in Oshkosh,
Wis. The flywheel governor is a giveaway, but the water-cooled
muffler is the real key as T&M had a patent on this. Detroit
also sold marine engines like this, and I believe these were built
by T&M or from T&M supplied castings.

I also think that R.J. Duckwall’s engine (query 38/6/4, June
2003, page 4) is a Termaat & Monahan. For one, it doesn’t
have the name ‘Gray’ cast into the hopper. Also, Gray used
a governor on the cam, and while I can’t tell from the photo, I
imagine R.J.’s has a throw weight on the flywheel. Gray also
used four-bolt main caps.

Termaat & Monahan became the Universal Motor Co. marine
division in 1914, while still manufacturing the T&M four cycle
farm engine, until declaring bankruptcy in 1917 and changing the
farm engine line to the Wiscona Pep. These were dropped around
1920, and Universal continued to make marine engines in Oshkosh
until 1961 when the engine division was sold to Westerbeke.

The company continued as Universal Foundry until 1985 when they
closed. Universal was a large foundry and sold castings of all
types, including aluminum pipe connecters for my father’s

Chad Johnson Omro, Wis. weaseltronius@msn.com

Fordson Attachments

I ran across an article from the long-defunct Ford Life
that I thought might be of interest to GEM
readers. Of note are the special attachments to aide in starting
Fordson tractors. Were they really that hard to start? Also, in
response to Neil Harvey’s query in the April 2003 issue (query
38/4/2, page 4), you can get water-slide decal paper for inkjet and
laser printers that works very well. If you can trace an old
pattern you could make a good decal yourself.

Ken Caris

1241 Clinton St. Fremont, OH 43420

Various aftermarket devices were available for Fordson owners to
help start stubborn engines, as these old illustrations show. In
all fairness, these were designed to help with starting brand new
or freshly rebuilt engines, and were not intended for daily
starting chores.

Elto Outboard

During the World War II era, my father had an Elto outboard. It
was an opposed two-cylinder, two-stroke with simultaneous firing.
It had a nickel-plated flywheel exposed on top, and there was a
little knob on the flywheel. To start the engine you pulled the
little knob up, grabbed it and gave it a flip. The knob would then
snap back with a sharp ‘ding.’ After any number of these
flip-ding moves, it might start. It would either start going
forward or backward, or oscillating back and forth, unsure of which
way it wanted to go.

The power head did not swivel, it had a rudder, and there was no
neutral. The practical way to reverse the boat was with the oars,
with the motor off. I was too little to go fishing with dad, but my
older brother got acquainted with the Elto in a rented wooden
rowboat. The last time my dad took my brother fishing with the Elto
my brother rowed the boat while dad flip-dinged the motor. After
the day’s fishing, dad did get it started, running forward, and
then it refused to stop. They did circles at the end of the dock,
with the battery disconnected and the cables off the plugs, until
it ran out of gas. The Elto sat in the cellar for years, and I have
no idea where it went.

John L. Ditman

Adamstown, Md. wygelia@erols.com

Onan Engine

In regards to the Onan generator in the June 2003 issue of GEM
(query 38/6/8, page 6), the engine in question is indeed an Onan.
That engine was also made in a V-4 configuration, which used the
same engine block, heads and pistons as the two-cylinder shown. The
two-cylinder version is fairly common, while the V-4 is quite rare.
The generator shown is minus its control panel and is also missing
its electric starter and 12-volt battery.

As to Bamford diesel engines made in England -some time back
C.H. Wendel mentioned acquiring one. Besides the one I have, his is
the only other one I have heard of among collectors. Mine is a Type
Z-3, 7 HP, rated at 600 rpm. I have never been able to find any
information in relation to that engine, even from the Canadians who
come down to Lynden, Wash., to watch it run.

One other thing: During World War II, I repaired and operated
Southern Cross diesel units for the Australian Army Engineers. I
have never seen or heard of one among collectors in the United

Wayne Leffler

7924 Soper Hill Road Everett, WA 98205 (425)

Send letters to: Gas Engine Magazine, 1503 S.W. 42nd St.,
Topeka, KS 66609-1265; rbackus@ogdenpubs.com

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