| July/August 1993

Readers Write

28/5/2 Minneapolis-Moline RE

Older M-M tractors have an engine serial plate and the tractor serial plate is on the side of the transmission. RE engines power the Z-Series tractors up to about 1950. EE engines are used on the Model R, and KEF engines are for the Model U. Len Hoops, 3210 Tabora Dr., Antioch, CA 94509.

28/5/26 Sears Tractor

This is a Sears Handiman. Briggs 6k Stratton made the complete transaxle for this tractor. It was made by B & S in 1939 and 1940. (Model No. 917-5154.) Also the engine is a Model Z B & S uprated from 4 to 5 horsepower in 1939. Probably the rest of the tractor was assembled by Bradley Mfg. Co. B & S didn't make transmissions and transaxles for garden and lawn equipment after 1940.  Undoubtedly the Handiman 4-wheel tractor was still being sold in 1941, but if any were made after WW2, either a different transaxle was used, or someone else was making this transaxle.

The 6 x 22 tires had been an option on Sears walking tractors since 1935. Also, Montgomery, Ward 6k Co. and others used this size tire. In GEM 22/11, page 25 is a short article and picture of a similar Handiman. The transmissions of these two tractors are identical except for the shift lever and axle shafts. Both of these transmission variations were near identical to the walking garden tractors introduced by Sears in 1938. Dave Baas' 'Vintage Garden Tractors' 2nd Edition has a 2-page spread of this tractor on pages 40 and 41. Also a nice picture of a 4-wheel Handiman on page 44. Also another picture of the 4-wheel Handiman is in GEM 27/9/31.

Of the Walking Garden Tractors, Briggs 6k Stratton made all of the large models for Sears from 1933 through 1940 except for the handlebars and wheels, these being furnished by an outside supplier. Kenneth Scales, 2601 Shadynook Way, Oklahoma City, OK 73141.