With this issue, Volume 21 of GEM comes to an end, and likewise,
1986 is rapidly drawing to a close. From the viewpoint of
enthusiasm for our hobby, we believe it has increased dramatically,
especially as witnessed by the number of letters from those who are
just beginning the hobby of collecting and restoring old engines
and tractors. Those of us who have been collectors for some time
often become jaded, and perhaps it is human nature to become rather
uncaring about the new members of our fraternity. However, all
that’s necessary is for any of us to look back at our early
days of engine collecting and think back of some of the great
boners we’ve pulled to see that we were neophytes too. The
moral of the story is this even the neophyte might know something
we do not know, so helping newcomers to our hobby might well have
an eventual reward.
Surprisingly, our comments a while back about including a
section on model making has drawn virtually no comment from the
readers. Either there aren’t any model makers (which we know is
not the case), or there simply isn’t the enthusiasm for model
making that we first imagined. We’ll not give up on the issue
though from time to time we hope to bring you bits and pieces that
might be of help to model makers.
One thing we learned about model-making is to use graph paper
when making a reduction of the engine you wish to model. Graph
paper is available at most office supply stores. Using say, inch
grids, then it is rather easy to sketch all the parts.
The Reflector was especially pleased to have an unexpected visit
from Mr. Don Macmillan, Whiterig, Etchilhampton, Devizes, Wilts.,
England recently. Mr. Macmillan is a well known collector in
England, and visits the United States occasionally.
A couple of articles in the November, 1986 GEM piqued the
interest of the Reflector. ‘Made from Scratch’ on page 10
illustrates several hand made items, and the article by John Rex on
‘How Often do Magnetos need Recharging’ contains a lot of
excellent information on this subject. We agree completely with
John in his comment, ‘Don’t attempt to recharge magnetos by
methods which produce inadequate energy to fully recharge
them.’ For years the Reflector has heard of a good many ways to
recharge magnets, but the fact is, that it can only be done one way
the right way! The majority of battery-powered magneto chargers are
designed for something in the area of 1500 ampere-turns, while the
big chargers intended to charge iron or Alnico magnets approach a
size of 3,000 ampere-turns, or even more.
21/12/1 Q. John Kendall, 262-01 Francis Lewis
Blvd., Rosedale Qns., NY 11422 asks for the paint scheme on the
Massey-Harris No. 1 engines. John writes that he has read that the
flywheels were green and the base was red on the original, but how
about the rest of the engine, and what Dulux number applies?
A. We do not as yet have any color pix of the
Massey-Harris No. 1, nor can we locate any information in this
regard. As soon as we hear from some of our readers we will notify
you or include the information within this column.
21/12/2From Bernie Barber, RR 1, Box 332,
Hamlet, IN 46532 we get a letter noting that he received some
information on the Falk kerosene engines as requested through this
column earlier. Mr. Barber kindly forwarded a photocopy of this
data for our files.
21/12/3 Q. I have just purchased a two-wheel
garden tractor. It is an Iron Horse made by Johnston Tractor Co. of
Redlands, California, and uses a Cushman Cub 3 HP engine. I enjoy
your column, but it seems to me that all those letter writers are
old hands at engine restoration. I have a fair amount of knowledge
of modem air-cooled engines, but I’m just starting on antiques.
Can you recommend a book or books for beginners? Something that
explains terms such as ‘hit-and-miss’, ‘hot tube’
and other terminology. Marvin Lowe, 5095 Central Ave., Riverside,
A. You are absolutely correct, Marvin, ye olde
Reflector often waxes prolific on technical aspects of engine and
tractor design! Beyond that, as we pointed out in the preface to
this column, it is easy for a seasoned collector to become jaded
toward the more simple aspects, completely ignoring those without
the blessing of experience. Several reprints are available that are
very helpful in regard to early engines. We especially recommend
‘Gas Engine Guide,’ available from GEM, or a new reprint
titled ‘Gas Engine Construction.’ This reprint from the
early 1900’s details the design of a small home-built engine
and in so doing explains many details of early engine design.
21/12/4 Q. Jacob E. Schmidt, 2986 Rigerd, West
Bend, WI 53095 relates that he recently contacted F. E. Myers Co.
regarding a Model V Myers water pump he was restoring. The Myers
people soon responded to his letter, and noted that in 1980 they
sold manufacturing, sales, and service rights to these pumps to T
& T Machine Co., Inc., Route 8, Box 343, Fairmont, WV
A. The above information is well worth having,
and we thank Mr. Schmidt for sending this letter into GEM, since we
have had occasional inquiries in regard to the Myers pumps.
21/12/5 Q. Can you give me the proper colors
etc. on a Fairmont railway engine? When were the following engines
built: International LB, s/n LBA 92551; Fairbanks-Morse Model Z,
s/n 679623. Ray Scott, 851 Third St. NW, Valley City, ND 58072.
A. No one has forwarded information regarding
the proper Fairmont colors, but possibly this information might be
secured directly from the Fairmont people at Fairmont, Minnesota.
They likewise might be able to supply instructions and parts
information. The LB engine was built in 1945; the Model Z was built
21/12/6 Q. Lloyd Hallead, 3194 Main St.,
Marlette, MI 48453 sends two photos of an engine that appears to be
a Hercules, but also has some signs of being an Economy. He writes
in part:’ ‘The brass nameplate reads 2 HP, while 2 is
stamped on the head. The water hopper is Hercules style, as is the
head. The kerosene mixer is identical to the Sears Economy on page
458 of American Gasoline Engines. It has two needle valves, one for
fuel and one for water. There is a two way valve in the fuel line
gasoline for starting and kerosene for running. The Hercules owners
manual shows a mixer like this except that it has three needle
valves and separate lines for kerosene and gasoline. The connecting
rod has the mark ‘E’ inside a diamond with the number 256.
Hercules uses ’56’ as their part number for a connecting
rod, so ‘256’ refers to a 2 HP engine. There are no numbers
on any other parts. The engine was originally painted green with
red striping, and the decal looks like Hercules, except that the
engine on the decal is definitely an Economy, red with black
striping, squared water hopper, etc. Can anyone tell me whether
this engine is Hercules, Economy, or something else.
A. Mr. Hallead presents a puzzle some question
indeed! There is of course no doubt that this engine emerged from
the Hercules factories, but whether it was shipped as a Hercules,
or sent to Sears for shipment as an Economy is tough to answer at
this point. One possibility, especially in light of your
description of the decal, is that Hercules might have entertained
thoughts of shipping the ‘Hercules’ to Sears rather than
modifying it into an ‘Economy.’ Very possibly this was one
such engine. It seems entirely possible that Hercules might have
worked up a few such engines for shipment to Sears, and subject to
their approval. After looking them over, Sears probably sold the
sample engines. Perhaps some of our readers might have some ideas
on this subject.
21/12/7 Q. Thomas Sederstromme, 3872 Dolomite
Dr., Eagan, MN 55122 comments regarding the ‘Engine Getter’
illustrated several months ago in GEM: ‘I built an ‘engine
getter’ after reading about it, and it works quite well for
small engines, but not for large ones. After loading my 5 HP New
Holland and moving it into my shop for restoration, I was unable to
slide it off the engine getter. After many futile attempts to slide
it off, I decided to put a chain through both flywheels and around
a large tree. I then hooked onto the engine getter with my pickup
to pull the unit out from under the engine. As I was watching out
the rear window, my foot slipped off the clutch causing the pickup
to suddenly lunge for ward. Needless to say, my engine was
immediately unloaded and the engine getter came crashing into the
pickup. The sudden jerk caused by the chain resulted in a broken
flywheel on the New Holland.
A. ‘Engine getter’ aside, this letter
points out what we have stated repeatedlyDon’t try to pick up
an engine by its flywheels, and perhaps we should restate it as
‘Don’t ever put a chain on the flywheel rims for any
reason.’ If you must pick up the flywheels, pick them up around
the hub and not by the rim! Flywheels aren’t designed for any
sort of sidestrain.
21/12/8 Q. What is the year built of a Stover
K, 1 HP, s/n K 51859. Is there an instruction manual available for
this engine? B. L. Brown, 3797 Pine Grove Dr., Rhinelander, WI
A. Your engine was built in June, 1913. The
Reflector has in the office, all the Stover engine production
records, along with a fairly complete series of Stover Instructions
and Parts Books. These were given to the Reflector some years ago
by the late Lester L. Roos, Geneseo, Illinois. During the last
fifteen years of his life, Lester became the country’s leading
expert on Stover engines.
21/12/9 Q. Can you identify the engines in the
two adjacent photos? I would like to know the make, and then I
might know the proper paint color etc. Photo 21/12/9a shows an
engine with a 3 x 4 inch bore and stroke; flywheels are 16 inches
in diameter with a 1 inch face. It uses a Webster M40 magneto. The
base is painted green. Photo 21/12/9b appears to have been made by
Nelson Bros., although the nameplate reads: MacLeod’s, 1 hp,
500 rpm, s/n 4787 MacLeod’s is a chain of hardware stores in
Canada. W. Eichorst, 1116 Ashley Drive, Swift Current, Sask. S9H
A. We tend to believe that this engine was
built by Gilson. Although you give the Webster magneto number, you
do not give the number of the igniter bracket. This number should
provide the information you need, since almost every bracket was
designed for a specific engine. Likewise, we tend to agree that the
MacLeod engine was likely built by Nelson Bros.
21/12/10 Q. Can you give us the proper colors
for a McCormick-Deering Model M hay press. It was built from 1919
to 1948. Our particular press was built in 1932 or 1933. We know
that the main frame and gears were red, but beyond that we are
unable to determine the color details. Richard Pingel, RR 1, Box
153, Pittsboro, IN 46167.
A. The Reflector’s copy of IHC Catalog 20
is out on loan right now, but GEM’s new reprint of this catalog
should provide the proper color scheme, since it includes quite a
number of color plates.
21/12/11 Q. Can you give the age and paint
information on a Stover CT-2 engine, s/n TB267155. Geo. V. Titus,
1709 W. 241 St., Lomita, CA 90717.
A. Your engine was built in January, 1940 so it
is one of the last that was built. The color is a deep Brewster
green which we derive by taking DuPont Dulux 24166 Brewster green,
and adding 1 part DuPont Super Black and 1 part 93-036 brown to 6
parts of the green.
21/12/12 Q. Dick Hamp, 1772 Conrad Ave., San
Jose, CA 95124 is looking for information on the Webster HT
A. We have never seen a particle of printed
data on the Webster High Tension oscillating magneto, although a
great many were used on Witte engines, and possibly some others as
well. Mr. Hamp also enclosed several magneto data sheets, but of
particular interest is one on fitting the high tension oscillator
to the Witte engines, see pages 27 and 28.
21/12/13 Q. Can you identify this engine? It
has a brass tag which states: 1 hp, 550 rpm. William S. Peterson,
1126 Cooper St., Beverly, NJ 08010.
A. It looks like a Hercules.
21/12/14 Q. What is the year of my
McCormick-Deering 6 HP engine, s/n CW5288. Also what is the correct
decal for the water hopper? J. V. Turner, 3330 Park Avenue,
Richmond, VA 23221.
A. Your engine is a 1919 model. The water
hopper on the pulley side takes a decal
‘McCormick-Deering’. This is a rectangular decal about 3 x
10 inches. The magneto side takes an IHC double globe decal. These
are available from several GEM advertisers.
21/12/15 Q. John Thumma, RR 2, Laurens, IA
50554 writes that he has finished the restoration of his Thieman
tractor (see below photo). It is finished with 1985 Chrysler
Mexican Red. Mr. Thumma also reports that in his travels he has
learned that the Thieman records were destroyed in a fire some
years ago, so no production records now exist.
21/12/16 Q. Tim Ranisate, RR 1, Box 508,
Shevlin, MN 56676 is looking for information on an Aermotor pump
jack engine (see below photo).
A. A reprint of the Aermotor catalog is
available through the GEM office.
21/12/17 Q. I have a Maytag motor with the
following information: Main case number S-233, Type FY-4; flywheel
case, American Bosch Magneto Corp’n; Pat Pending FYED 4 7 0 W.
Thank you for any information you can supply on this engine. I have
about all the reprints I have been able to find on Maytag motors.
Joe L. Killess, Box 668, Niceville, FL 32578.
A. We have little more than the reprints you
mention above, but we know that there are several GEM advertisers
who specialize in Maytag parts, and hopefully they will be able to
21/12/18 Q. I was advised that you may be able
to advise a parts supplier or dealer in Witte generators. Any
assistance will be appreciated. Orville Hicks, HCR 32, Box 122, Ft.
Pierre, SD 57532.
A. Try Witte Engines, Lister Diesel, Inc., 555
E. 56 Hwy., Olathe, KS 66061.
21/12/19 Q. I am 7 years old and I have a
Lauson. It is my first engine. What year is it? Serial 80578, Model
93LC5130E, 5/8 hp. Thank you. Wesley Bondy, 1220 Birch, Cody, WY
A. We would think your engine was built
sometime between 1936 and 1941.
21/12/20 Q. I have a post drill, model 203,
from the Champion Blower & Forge Co. which is missing the
self-feed mechanism and perhaps a small flywheel. Would appreciate
any information on this so as to put it back together again. Also
have an ‘air engine’ rescued from a Nevada mountain which I
understand drove a ventilating fan. The engine is about 5 feet
tall, and is a Type A, by American Blower Co., Detroit, Michigan
and patented Nov. 21, 1905. It was driven by a large compressor
located topside. Would like to hear from anyone with information
about this unit.
21/12/21 Q. I recently obtained a Farmall F-14,
s/n FS148059. What is the year built? What are the differences
between this tractor and the earlier F-12? Where can I obtain parts
for this tractor? It uses 9-40 rear tires, and I understand this is
an odd size. Where might I look for these? Bob Ciaccio, 70 Fireside
Lane, East Setauket, NY 11733.
A. The F-14 was built in 1938 and 1939yours is
of the last year. The F-14 does not exhibit profound design changes
over the earlier F-12, but there are indeed differences between the
two. These are extensively addressed in the book 150 Years of
International Harvester. Several parts suppliers regularly
advertise in GEM, and of these, several specialize in Farmall and
IHC parts. They should be able to help you in the restoration, and
also might be able to provide some leads to tire distributors that
might carry the 9-40 tires.
21/12/22 Q. Does anyone know where I can get
old tractor steering wheels rebuilt. The hard rubber has cracked
and begun to fall off. Is there anyone that rebuilds old steering
wheels? T. A. Roberts, 1709 Old Dicey Road, Weatherford, TX
A. We don’t know of anyone, but if there is
anyone doing this sort of work, kindly step forward and identify
21/12/23 Q. I am a newcomer to old gas engines.
I’ve become interested in old engines because I am in the
process of designing a building for an old-time machine shop,
utilizing line-shaft driven equipment. Now I am in need of advice
on a proper engine for driving the line shaft. It will be about 40
feet long. Also need information on a belt-driven generator to be
used in this connection. It should generate 100 amperes or more
with 220 volt electricity. Three phase power is not necessary, but
would be nice. Any advice will be appreciated. E. Dean Butler, 4325
Drake Road, Cincinnati, OH 45243.
A. Original information on setting up
lineshafting is now difficult to obtain. The best title we have
seen is Rogers Erecting & Operating for Engineers, Machinists,
and Millwrights. This title by William Rogers was published by
Theo. Audel & Co. in 1907. You might try finding it from an
antiquarian book dealer in your area. Many of these dealers will
initiate a book search for a very modest charge. Generally, the
smaller shops using electric motor drives were equipped with
several different lineshafts, but in your case a single prime mover
of 10 to 15 horsepower would probably be required. Not only is the
power needed for driving machinery there is a considerable power
loss due to the many bearings over forty feet of shafting.
Lineshafts are usually set up to run at 300 rpm, and pulley sizes
are altered to get the required speed for individual machines. We
also suggest that life will be much easier if you use two or three
separate shafts, each connected by belts and pulleys, rather than
using a single shaft the full length of the building. Any settling
or shifting of the forty foot building will throw the shaft out of
alignment. The Reflector also suggests you use a throttle governed
engine, since it will run somewhat more smoothly than a
hit-and-miss style, thus eliminating some strain on both the
belting and shafting. We’re almost a sure bet to catch some
static on this belief, but maintain that this would be the
preferable method, at least in our eyes. Although not a classy
engine from the standpoint of exterior appearance, the 10 or 15 HP
Fairbanks-Morse Type Z engine would, we believe, be an excellent
choice if we were to set up the system you propose. These engines
are easier to obtain than Otto and some others, and have the added
advantage that repair parts might be around when and if needed. If
you are adding a generator that will put out 100-plus amps on 220
volts, and plan to use it in conjunction with the lineshaft,
that’s another issue entirely15 horsepower won’t begin to
handle a load of this size. One other notewe would suggest that the
first one-third of your shaft be of 1 13/16 or 2 3/16 inch size to
handle the load. The remaining two-thirds could be of 1 13/16 size
or you could get by okay with 1 7/16 inch line shafting. Keep us
informed of your project!
21/12/24 Q. I have just finished restoring this
engine (see below photo). Now I need to know what decals to use. I
think the engine is an Economy. I bought it from the grandson of
the original owner, and he said it was bought new from Sears &
Roebuck. He said it could have been bought as far back as 1910 but
he wasn’t sure. There is no nameplate on the engine, but some
castings are marked with an ‘S’ inside a circle. I think
the engine is a 4 HP, and the red paint on the engine is very close
to the original color. Any help will be appreciated. Fred Marineau,
RR 1, Box 180, Wallace, MI 49893.
A. We beg to differ the engine is a Sandow
built at Waterloo, Iowa. These engines were marketed by Sandy
McManus Inc. at that city, as well as by a number of other firms,
possibly including Sears & Roebuck for a time. We would
guesstimate your engine was built in the 1910-1912 period. So far
as decals and striping, we are unsure.
21/12/25 Q. We bought a Sandwich engine and the
metal plate is missing. After some measuring we have determined
this engine has a 4 inch bore and 6 or 6 inch stroke; flywheels are
25 inch diameter. After studying American Gas Engines Since 1872 we
think it is a 3 HP model. We want to get a nameplate made, so
wondered if you had any idea of the rpm for this engine. Bill
Palmer, RD 2, Box 2101, Middlebury, VT 05753.
A. Your engine is a 2 HP model, with a 4 x 6
inch bore and stroke and a rated speed of 400 rpm.
21/12/26John D. Miller III, RR 1, Box 18,
Fishersville, VA 22939 has just bought a Kohler Power-Light engine,
Model K, No. 669 that is missing some parts. He needs to hear from
someone with a manual for this engine so that he can determine the
parts needed and then try to obtain them (hopefully) from a GEM
reader. If anyone has this information, kindly communicate with Mr.
Ingeco engine ownersReed S. Benton, RD 1, Box 116,
Wassaic, NY 12592 reports that due to his ad in the August, 1986
GEM, he has catalogued about 20 engines for the register which will
be shared with all contributors in late 1986. Mr. Benton continues
by noting that ‘I suspect however, that there are still quite a
few engines out there still unaccounted for.’ If you have an
Ingeco engine, kindly contact Mr. Benton so that it can be included
in the register.
Thrall marine engineEd Thrall, 145 Chamberlain Road,
Broad Brook, CT 06016 writes that he has had letters from Canada
and from Indiana on this engine, and in both cases these owners had
the engine without the nameplate. Mr. Thrall asks where he might
get duplicate plates made.
Cast brass nameplates could probably be best made by someone
using the lost wax process, also called investment casting.
Possibly a good moulder could make these up in sand molds as well.
Since there are a sizeable number of amateur foundry men in our
fraternity, along with a number of foundry professionals, perhaps
one or more of these individuals might be of help to you. Ordinary
etched nameplates could probably be procured from someone
specializing in this process, and in fact, there are some GEM
advertisers who make brass nameplates. Hopefully these individuals
will be in touch with you.
International Director of Collectors of Vintage
Machinery From M. J. Laflin, The Warrens, Hartest, Bury St.
Edmonds, Suffolk, IP29 4 EB England comes a letter noting that his
company is already involved in producing a computerized list of
collectors all over the world, with details of their collections.
Mr. Laflin also hopes to include a listing of parts suppliers, new
or used, along with other helpful information. Because of the
enormous amount of work and the attendant costs, Mr. Laflin is
making a very modest charge of $1.50 U.S. for each entry.
Reo enginesErv Troyer, RR 1, Box 258, LaGrange, IN
46761 writes that he already has a great deal of information on
these engines (see August issue of GEM and the article by Andrew
Mackey). However, since he worked for Motor Wheel Corporation, the
last company to build the Reo 45-degree engines, he has a great
deal of material on them, and plans’ to put it into an article
on the subject. To do so however, Mr. Troyer would appreciate
hearing from anyone with information on the Reo engines, especially
former employees, former dealers, etc. Mr. Troyer also writes that
he will be more than happy to send a copy of any parts list to
anyone who will send the model number of an engine or mower, plus a
self-addressed and stamped long envelope. (The Reflector urges
readers taking advantage of this gracious offer to also include a
nominal amount to cover Erv’s cost of photocopying etc.)
TIP OF THE MONTH
From Power’s Practical Handbook of 1929 we glean
some information regarding the freeing up of stuck piston rings.
Their writers comment that a strong lye solution is recommended by
some, but they oppose this process because strong lye is dangerous
to use, and can cause embitterment of the rings. The so-called
carbon removers use either carbon disulphide or acetone to do the
job, but their recommendation is to use commercial benzol, toluol,
or xylol, noting that these solvents will dissolve the tar and free
the ring. Stover Engine Works, in their instruction manual for the
Stover Diesel engines recommends that owners periodically put a
couple of teaspoons of denatured alcohol in the cylinder after
shutting the engine down. By leaving it to settle down over the
rings overnight, the rings will be kept free of tar. The Stover
people also warned of the danger of trying to start the engine
while the alcohol was still present in the cylinder! Please note
that the above solvents are explosive in nature, so be careful.
Perhaps some of our readers will share their favorite method of
freeing stuck piston rings short of prying them out in small
We recently saw a brief article in an old magazine that
attempted to describe the molding of mica tubes. The process
apparently consists of soaking the piece of mica plate in boiling
water. Just before commencing to wrap the tube, take the mandrel
you will be using, and also soak it to bring it up to temperature.
Using gloves, wrap the mica around the mandrel and secure it with
cord until it is cool We haven’t tried this yet, so we have no
idea of the problems you might encounter. However, if you need a
mica tube of a size you cannot obtain anywhere, perhaps this idea
is worth trying.
The purpose of the Reflections column is to provide a forum for
the exchange of all useful information among subscribers to GEM,
Inquiries or responses should be addressed to REFLECTIONS, Gas
Engine Magazine P.O. Box 328, Lancaster, PA 17603.