With this issue we close out 32 years of GEM! It doesn’t
seem that long ago that the late Elmer Ritzman came out with the
first issue of Gas Engine Magazine. At the time it was a thin
little thing, but it concentrated on gas engines and tractors, and
was the first such magazine to do so exclusively. Things have
changed a lot since then; we well remember that in those days one
could buy a real nice sideshaft engine of say, 6 or 8 horsepower,
for $200 or less, even though at the time that seemed like quite a
lot of money. About that time ye olde Reflector bought a very nice
9 HP Galloway engine for $32 on an auction, and worried all the way
home of having paid too much!!!
Per the last issue of GEM, see our ad for the 1998
Germany-Austria-Holland tour. We’ve already gotten quite a few
reservations, and as noted previously, we’re taking a maximum
of two coaches, or about 80 people. For those who were on our 1995
European tour, the 1998 tour will have few similarities. We’ll
fly into Zurich and make our way to the Rhine Falls area, namely
the little town of Sthlingen where we’ll be guests of Roland
Porten and his wonderful engine and tractor collection. On the
latter part of the tour we may be visiting Wim van Schayik’s
wonderful tractor and engine museum at Langen-boom in the
Netherlands. Aside from these two stops the 1998 tour will be
entirely different. We’re already at work building some
surprise stops into the itinerary, and in many ways, we think this
is the best tour we’ve ever organized. The HMT, at the final
leg of the tour, is Europe’s premiere engine and tractor show,
and will close out our journeys on a high note. If you’re so
inclined, kindly contact us at the address shown in our
advertisement from the last issue of GEM.
We’re pleased to tell you that our new book, Encyclopedia of
American Farm Implements, is now on the market. Due to delays at
the printer it did not arrive in early September as hoped, and when
it did, a technical problem with bar coding on the back of the book
necessitated the printing and affixing of a new bar code label for
each and every book. This further slowed the process, but in the
last few days of September our first shipment arrived.
Advance orders for our new implement book have vindicated our
contention that collecting and restoring farm implements will be
our next collecting wave. Farm tractors are pretty well bought up
by collectors at this point, as are most of the gas engines. In
many instances engines and tractors have become pretty pricey,
leaving many enthusiasts in the cold. As yet, most implements have
not become terribly expensive to buy and restore. Many seasoned
collectors are now looking for implements to match their tractor,
or small belt-powered machines to go with their engines.
Public thanks is long overdue to Richard Sabol, 1 Piscataqua
Road, Dover, NH 03820. His advertisements have appeared in GEM. Mr.
Sabol is an illustrator, and many of his beautiful drawings have
appeared on t-shirts and other items. Some time ago, Mr. Sabol
favored us with some of his pencil drawings depicting various farm
scenes . . . they now occupy a place of prominence on the walls of
Many thanks to the thousands of folks who stopped by our booth
at the recent Midwest Old Threshers Reunion! It’s always a
pleasure to meet everyone, and hopefully, we can respond to
everyone who leaves a question with us.
However, you folks have the advantage because there’s just
one of me and thousands of you. If we forget your question or lose
any of those notes we have written, it’s not that we don’t
care . . . the ol’ cranium is already stuffed full of bits and
pieces … we sometimes wonder if hardening of the arteries
doen’t lead to hardening of the brain cells! Sometimes we
can’t remember something long enough to get it done!
Our first query this month comes from:
32/12/1 Lister Engine M. D. Wasemiller, 30 W.
Hilton, Redlands, CA 92373 has a Lister ball hopper engine, similar
to that shown on page 285 of American Gas Engines. He needs
restoration information, especially concerning the fuel and
lubrication systems. He would appreciate any information.
32/12/2 Superior Mills Thanks! To Al Diamond,
9345 Lemon Ave., LaMesa, CA 91941 for sending along some 1912
advertising concerning the Superior Mfg. & Mill Co.,
Springfield, Ohio. The letterhead shows their vertical gasoline
engines of the time, but does not indicate the sizes that were
available. In the next few months we plan to add some computerized
scanning equipment and will be able to digitize the letterhead and
include it within our column.
32/12/3 Taylor Vacuum Engine Q. I recently
purchased a 2 HP Taylor Vacuum Engine in very good condition. Can
anyone tell me anything more about it than is shown in the book
American Gas Engines? Also, I have a 10 HP Lauson engine for which
I would like more information, including when it was built. Finally
, are there any plans for a revision of the book, American Gas
Engines? Mac Macomber, 410 Plain Hill Road, Norwich, CT 06368.
A. If anyone can be of help on the two engines
above, kindly do so. Regarding our gas engine book, we’ve
considered several alternatives, and indeed, we would like to do
something additional, something different, or perhaps a revised
edition. However, due to several considerations, among them being
the technical and legal aspects, we’ve had to shelve the idea
for the time. Perhaps in a year or two we’ll be able to provide
our readers with an entirely new book on gas engines.
32/12/4 Unidentified Engine Q. See the photos
of an unidentified engine. It has John Deere decah, but I don’t
believe it is a John Deere. The engine is water cooled and has a
Tillotson carburetor with a patent date of 1928. It uses a Bosch
high intensity spark system. All parts are cast iron. Any
information would be appreciated. Roger Suhr, 321 Mears St.,
Chadron, NE 69337.
32/12/5 Trench & Marine Pump Co. Ted C.
Rayner at Chesapeake Shipbuilding Corp., 710 Fitzwater St.,
Salisbury, MD 21801 writes that he has a pump from Trench &.
Marine Pump Co. of New York City. It is Type SD, 2 HP, Size 3, and
Shop # 3156. Any information would be appreciated.
32/12/6 Hines Traktor Q. Can anyone provide any
information on a Hines Traktor with a 16 HP Kohler engine.’
These tractors also used a Lornbardie diesel. These two engines
were likewise used in the Tuff-Bill line of tractors made by Tri
Traktor Co., Cumming, Georgia. Both tractors were similar to the
Allis-Chalmers Model G tractor. Michael D.Morrell, 17290 NE 28 St.,
Williston, FL 32696.
32/12/7 Information Needed Q. Can anyone
provide further information on the following: Alpha DeLava!
upright, Model VW, s/n 73287; need year and horsepower.
IHC 1 HP Type M kerosene engine, s/n 53398; need year and paint
Woolery Model P, 5 HP railcar engine, s/n 3123; need year and
owners manual. Also, would the gentleman from Louisville, Kentucky,
who sent me pictures of Woolery engines for sale please send his
name and address or phone number? Thanks. David Krueger, Rt 1, Box
35, Black Duck, MN 56630.
A. The IHC engine was made in 1920; the color is Adirondack
Green, DuPont 84155.
32/12/8 Information Needed Q. I have an
JHC vertical Nonpareil/Famous 2 HP, s/nKGl233; what is the year
built? Also looking for some parts for this engine.
I also have a Root & Vandervoort vertical 6 HP, s/n S5038,
and would like to know the year, correct color, and location of an
instruction manual. What is the year built of a Waterloo Boy 2 HP
engine, sin 72688? Richard Hunt, 10870 Mooney Rd., Elk Grove, CA
A. The Nonpareil is of 1913 and is different in
some respects from the Famous of that period. We have DuPont 5316
Green listed for the R & V. We have no numbers for Waterloo Boy
and/or John Deere engines prior to 1923.
32/12/9 Alamo-Moline Connection? Q. What is the
connection between the Alamo Blue Line engines and the Moline from
Moline Plow Co.? Some of the parts look to be interchangeable. Art
England, 204 -216th SW, Bothell, WA 98021.
A. Alamo built the Blue Line engines, and also
built the Moline engines, as sold by Moline Plow Co. In addition,
virtually the same engine was sold by Rock Island Plow Co. as the
Rock Island engine. The Blue Line is blue, similar to DuPont 24160
or 67060; the Rock Island is brown, similar to 24590 DuPont, and
the Moline is maroon, similar to DuPont 143. No s/n information is
32/12/10 Unusual Steam Engine Q. See the photos
of an unusual two cylinder opposed steam engine. It has no numbers,
and uses brass rotary valves. Any information would be appreciated.
William Rees, RR I, Box 24, Franklin, IL 62638-9512.
32/12/11 Unidentified Engine Q. See the photo
of an engine having a 4 x 6 inch bore and stroke, with 22-inch
flywheels. It also has traces of red or tan paint with black and
white striping. Any information on this engine would be
appreciated. Edgar & Kristie Powell, 114 Elm St., Dyer, TN
32/12/12 Mead Crawler Q. Can anyone supply
information on a small Mead crawler loader, powered by a Briggs
& Stratton engine of 7 or 8 horsepower? It has real final
drives, real steel pads and tracks, and real hydraulics. We believe
it was built in the late 1940s or early 1950s. Any information
would be appreciated. Michael D. Branigan, Box 244. Tuscan Road,
Worcester, NY 12147.
32/12/13 John Deere G Rich Howard, Hysham, MT
59038 sends along a photo of his John Deere G. It has the block
bored out 90 thousandths, new pistons, rebuilt head, along with
transmission and final drives.
32/12/14 Novo Engine Q. I have a Novo
engine, 4 HP, s/n 91923, and would like further information on it,
as I want to pull a small corn mill with it. Dwight Robinson, 103
Lemuel Lane, Easky, SC 29642.
A. Your engine began life on July 10, 1925, and
was shipped to Ransome Concrete Mixer Co., Dunellen, New Jersey.
Some years ago we reprinted an operators manual for these engines
but currently they are out of print.
32/12/15 Delco-Remy Starters Q. I am looking
for information on the 12 volt Delco-Remy starter/generator that
was used on the Cub Cadet line (and others) in the 1960s;
specifically, I’m looking for troubleshooting, parts, diagrams,
sources, etc. on these units. Les Hutchison, 73 Decorah Dr., St.
Louis, MO 63146.
32/12/16 Superior and Witte Q. I recently
acquired a couple of oil field pump jack engines and would like to
know the proper color, when built, and other information on
Superior Gas Engine Co., Springfield, Ohio 5 HP, s/n 5004
Witte Engine Works, Kansas City, Missouri 6 HP, 98475K
P. Brown, 134 Wexford, Belleville, Ml 48111.
A. The Witte was made in 1952, but we have no
information on the Superior.
32/12/17 IHC LA Engine Q. I have an IHC LA
engine, s/n LA7608. It does not have a speed control, and I
understand it was made in 1935. What is the correct color scheme?
Dal Don-ner, 5208 Firewood Drive, Arlington, TX 76016.
A. We’ve always assumed that when IHC
changed over from gray to red in 1936 that the color for the LA
engines changed likewise at that time, but we’ve never been
completely sure about this. Can anyone verify this?
32/12/18 Unidentified Engine Q. See the two
photos of an unidentified engine. I have been told that it was
built by Hercules, also chat it is a Rock Island . . . no serial
numbers are visible. Any opinions appreciated. Rich Howard, Hysham,
A. Per our Notebook, refer to the Webster magneto bracket number
for an identification. Alamo will likely be 303K18A, while Hercules
might be 303K30.
32/12/19 Unidentified Engine Q. See the photos
of an unidentified engine. It has the serial number of DR57840, and
uses a 5 3/8 x 9 inch bore and stroke. The
flywheels are 3 inches wide and 34 inches in diameter. The engine
uses a 2 1/8 inch crank. Any information
would be appreciated. John Kilichowski, 5490 – 155 Ave. NE, Ardoch,
32/12/20 Magnet Chargers Harold L. Mathieu, RR
2, Box 279, Chassell, MI 49916 would like information on the magnet
chargers as made by H. L. Makelim Co., San Francisco, CA, Model No.
32/12/21 Buffalo Engine Q. See the photo of a
Buffalo engine we are restoring, It is a Type RA4, s/n 169, four
cylinder, 4 x 5 7/8 inch bore and stroke, 118
HP @1170 rpm. Any information on this engine that would aid in its
restoration would be greatly appreciated. Duane E. Caldwell,
Owensville Threshers Association, 512 W. Madison, Owensville, MO
32/12/22 Huber Crossmotor Q. We have a Huber
cross-motor tractor, #2161, and have been told it is a 1918 model.
The engine is a Waukesha with a non-detachable head; also the
original carburetor is missing. What is the correct one for this
tractor? Steve Davis, 654 US Hwy 20, West Winfield, NY 13491.
A. You are correct that it is a 1918. model,
but we do not know the type of carburetor that was used. Can anyone
32/12/23 Information Needed Q. Can anyone tell
me anything about a Lennox Kitty Trak with a mower deck and snow
Also I collect Bolens tractors and attachments. I currently have
a 1050 and a 610 (1055). What attachments are available? Service
and parts information is also needed for the 610 as it has no
working brakes, which makes it very scary to drive. Paul Curtis,
4409 N 128 Ct., Omaha, ME 68164-1976.
32/12/24 R & V Info Needed Q. I have a Root
& Vandervoort 4 HP hopper cooled sideshaft engine, but need the
layout of the fuel lines and dimensions of the coil and battery
box. Any information would be appreciated. Kevin A. Behnke, 3325 N.
65th St., Wausau, WI 54403.
32/12/25 Unidentified Engine Q. See the two
photos of an unidentified engine. There is no nameplate or serial
numbers. It gets gas and has a good spark, but will not fire, so I
need some information on the engine. James R. Bishop, 17050 -200th
St E., Hastings, MN 55033-8701.
A. It sounds simplistic, but the rule is: If
there’s compression and fuel and fire all at the right time, it
HAS to fire. Perhaps the magneto is weak, and under compression
there isn’t enough fire to jump the gap. Perhaps the plug is
too short or is otherwise defective. Sometimes however, the
solution is not easy, because despite all our efforts we can’t
get an engine to run. Usually though when we find the problem, the
solution is one that always stays in our memory. From a distance,
it’s impossible to diagnose your problem, but by keeping the
three basic requirements of fuel, compression, and fire in mind, it
then becomes a matter of eliminating the possibilities to find the
A Closing Word
Recently we ran into a friend in the construction business.
After a brief visit, he informed us that the maintenance man had
quit, and that he would sure like ye olde Reflector to come and
work for them on machine maintenance and various other duties.
After looking things over, we were somewhat intrigued by the idea,
and now spend many of our days repairing and servicing various
kinds of construction machinery. It’s very enjoyable,
especially since the tasks at hand are always different. It’s
also a nice diversion that keeps us out on the cutting edge of
what’s happening in the construction business.
An example is just on the point of lubricants. After a lot of
study and consultation with manufacturers, oil companies and the
like, we’ve been able to standardize our lubricants, oil,
grease, etc. and have established definite standards for oil and
filter changes, etc. The point is, that we’ve learned a lot
about lubricants in general, and how they have been improved over
the years. For instance, it hasn’t been that many years ago
that No. 3 or No. 4 cup grease was the accepted standard. Now there
are EP (extreme pressure) greases that do a much better job of
keeping parts lubricated, despite heavier bearing loads. It simply
reiterates what we’ve been saying for years, namely that we
have no problem at all in using these high grade lubricants in
vintage engines and machinery. We firmly believe that anything that
will do a better job is what we should use, so for ye olde
Reflector, the No. 4 cup grease of the past has acquired obsolete
status … we’re going to use the best lubricants we can
In closing . . . there’s perhaps yet a chance . . . have you
drained your engines and tractors or would you rather go out next
spring and find some pieces of cast iron on the ground that once
belonged to the water jacket?
Vintage 1920’s South Bend Catalog
Pages from a 1920’s vintage South Bend catalog give instructions for mounting con-rods in a lathe and boring the bearing.
Low-Tension Ignition System
Bringing some understanding in a nontechnical way as to how the simple battery and coil and the low-tension rotary magneto ignition systems work.
Weidenhoff Model 818 Magnet Charger
David Cave creates his own documentation through this internal and external examination of his Weidenhoff model 818 magnet charger.