Reflections

A BRIEF WORD


| December/January 1993



Ariel motorcycle

28/12/1B

Timothy Lowe

With this issue, GEM closes out 28 years of publication. This writer well remembers that first issue ... a rather thin little journal which approached the gas engine and tractor hobby. In the 1960s it was still quite possible to buy a John Deere engine for $20 or less... a nice sideshaft engine of almost any make could be bought for under $100 with a bit of shopping! Tractors were likewise relatively inexpensive ... ye olde Reflector bought a 30-60 Ault-man-Taylor for $1,000! Ah, how times have changed!

It was during the 1960s that this writer began collecting literature on old engines and tractors. We recall buying two large boxes of old engine and tractor catalogs, along with a lot of good magazines for $150, and that took a lot of thinking. After all, that was a fair amount of money, and we wondered whether we could ever recoup our money. 'Over the years, this purchase has served as a core of our literature collection, and has many times provided the information we needed when researching a particular subject.

It is also significant that in the 1960s the so-called engine and tractor shows were relatively scarce by today's standards. Most of those that were in operation confined the major emphasis on steam power, with tractors and engines being distinctly in the background. There have been a lot of changes in the past 28 years!

Oh, and if it isn't already too late ... have you drained your engines and tractors for the winter?

Our first query this month begins with:

28/12/1 Ariel Motorcycle Q. See the photos of an old Ariel motorcycle. It is mostly complete but some engine parts and the control cables are gone. Can anyone supply any information? Timothy Lowe, l7357TaftRd., Riverside, CA92508.