A Brief Word

| December/January 2000

It hardly seems possible that this is the last issue for Volume 35 of GEM. We're not sure where the year has gone, but with each passing rotation of the seasons, it seems that the years go by more quickly! We mentioned it last month, and we'll mention it one more time . . . are your engines dry? We just acquired one that has a good-sized crack in the head (easily repairable) because the water space around the sides and bottom of the cylinder was completely loaded with rust, lime and other debris. This did not permit the engine to drain completely. There are probably few things in the engine and tractor world more disheartening than filling'er up in the spring, only to find that water streams forth from the cracks that nature made over the winter!

Looking back over the past year, we're quite happy that our Standard Catalog of Farm Tractors is now in print, we're happy for good health, and we are looking forward to spending a few weeks in Australia and New Zealand!

During the next few months we'll be working on our Handbook of Antique Tools & Machinery. This book will be different than anything you have seen. There aren't many books of this kind on the market, and oftentimes they include a horde of ancient tools from the 1700s. That's all well and good, but we've found that most folks interested in old tools and equipment are looking for information on relatively new things from the late 1800s onward. Right now we have about 70 different categories.

Thanks also for those who have provided us with some additional printer's engravings relating to vintage tools and machinery. One of our friends was at a swap meet during the Mt. Pleasant show, and picked up a couple of nice copper electros for us. We enjoy antique letterpress printing, but making repro proofs of these old engravings is a job for the winter months-sometimes it takes a lot of patience to coax a good image from an ancient electro. When we do, you will see them here in GEM.

Our first query this month is:

35/12/1 LeRoi Crawler Q. I recently purchased a LeRoi crawler tractor in Belgium. It has LeRoi on the front and sides of the radiator, but also has a plaque on the instrument panel, TOBIAS TRACTOR MODEL G-140. LeRoi was in Milwaukee and Tobias was at Oakland, California.