A Brief Word

| July/August 2000

  • Self-Powered Ignitor
  • Lathe

  • Self-Powered Ignitor
  • Mowing Machine
  • Liddel-Tompkins  Engine
  • Unidentified Six-cylinder T-head Engine
  • Heat Houser
  • Unidentified Six-cylinder T-head Engine
  • Primm Diesel Type EV 45 HP Engine
  • Unidentified Engine
  • Unidentified Six-cylinder T-head Engine

  • Self-Powered Ignitor
  • Lathe
  • Self-Powered Ignitor
  • Mowing Machine
  • Liddel-Tompkins  Engine
  • Unidentified Six-cylinder T-head Engine
  • Heat Houser
  • Unidentified Six-cylinder T-head Engine
  • Primm Diesel Type EV 45 HP Engine
  • Unidentified Engine
  • Unidentified Six-cylinder T-head Engine

In last month's issue we ran an ad for our upcoming Australian Tour in February/March 2001. Due to the very favorable exchange rate of the US$ compared to the AU$ right now, we have come up with a very attractive price. We also have a very nice itinerary, and the chance to see lots of nice old iron as well as lots of beautiful and interesting sites.

There probably will never be as good an opportunity to see lots of Australia, Tasmania, and even the optional extension to New Zealand as in the next year or so. Given international monetary things (which we know little about) the tables can turn, and all of a sudden, costs go up tremendously.

It is interesting to note also, that Australia has some fairly stringent export rules pertaining to old engines and tractors, among other things. Lots of their historic treasures cannot be exported, but must remain as national treasures. All in all, we think they are a lot more historically minded than here in the U.S., where almost anything can be exported.

As you receive this copy in mid-June, we are again reminded that the show season will be in full bloom, and as usual, we do our bit of preaching about working and playing safely. There are always a few accidents every year (at least that we hear about) and we wish those numbers would drop all the way to zero! You folks have been hearing this same sermon preached from this column for over 15 years now, and we suppose you are tired of it. But like the venerable pulpiteers of old, we'll keep pounding home the message about safety, all the while hoping you receive the message in the spirit it is intended

Keep in mind folks, that safety seems to be a far more important issue in foreign countries than here. Our Australian Rally of 1997 was within fenced cubicles, and in some of the European countries there are two strings of rope around each exhibitor. If we try to police ourselves, maybe we can avoid some of these extra things. We also hear rumors that some of the environmental folks would like to promote pollution control equipment on our vintage equipment. Now wouldn't that just be the berries!

Our first query this month is:

35/7/1 IHC LA & LB Engines Q. I have an IHC LA engine made in 1938 and an LB made in 1944. These were painted red, but four different DuPont reds are shown. What is the appropriate color? Also, it appears that these engines had decals on both sides of the hopper. The location of the McCormick-Deering decal on the pulley side is not difficult. On the flywheel side, reference is often made to the double globe decal, but I have found no reference or original illustrations for its location. Thanks for your assistance. Kenneth W. Andersen, Ph.D., CPC, Associate Professor, North Dakota State University, Dept. of Civil Engineering, Construction Management & Engineering, Fargo, ND 58105. email :http://hardhat. cme. ndsu. nodak. edu

A.Our information is that IH #50 Red (DuPont 7410) was used approximately from the beginning of the Farmall up to the late 1940s or early 1950s. Many years ago when the IH Archives was intact at 401 North Michigan in Chicago, we attempted to pinpoint much of this information, but with no success. The double globe was not used on ALL LA and LB engines. However, it is again a problem to know when it was used, off and on, during production. We learned from some of the old timers though, that this decal was toward the top of the hopper and just ahead of the flywheel. I suppose that would classify as hearsay, but that is the best we have.

35/7/2 Ford Tractor Company

Sometime back you had an article concerning the Ford tractors of Minneapolis. One thing that was not mentioned in the article was the fact that they were in no way related to the Ford Motor Company (or the Fordson tractor). In fact, one of the reasons they used the name 'Ford' was to capitalize on the good name of Ford Motor Company. The owner of the Minneapolis name registered the name 'Ford' for tractors, preventing Henry Ford from using the name FORD on his tractors, thus the name Fordson on those from Ford Motor Company. When the Ford trademark registration ran out, Ford Motor Co. was able to call their tractors FORD. There were supposedly about 100 of these Minneapolis-built tractors produced, and it is said that three exist. One was at the Oscar's Dreamland auction, one is at a historical museum in Thermopolis, Wyoming, and I do not know the location of the third one. Jim Beauchamp, 164 Tolman Rd., Clark, WY 82435. email:

35/7/3 Stover Engines

Replying to 35/5/3 (May issue), I have a 1913 Stover Type W, 2? HP engine with lots of good original paint, pin striping and remnants of the old-style Stover decal. The best I can tell it has a silver/gray background with gold lettering and a gold edge around the decal. My engine is red. A few years ago a fellow wrote to me and sent along a picture of a green 4 HP, Type W engine. He said the decal on his engine was yellow with red lettering, and did not mention any edging. I hope this information is helpful. Randy Ackley, 21321 County Rd X, Cadott, WI 54727. email:

35/7/4 Atlas Lanova Diesel Q. I have a 5 HP Atlas Lanova Diesel, made by Atlas Imperial at Mattoon, Illinois in the 1930s. It is equipped with a generator. I would like some help with the engine, such as photos, specs, wiring diagrams, or any information such as fuel tank, gauges, and instrument panel. Dale Kenworthy, 12390 Pleasant View Ln, Foley, AL 36535.

35/7/5 Self-Powered Ignitor

In reference to Mr. McDuffee's story on page 31 of the June 1999 GEM, I got the following idea. I thought the plastic body of a barbecue grille ignitor would not take the continuous 700 rpm pounding of my Fairbanks-Morse Z. I needed a magneto but that was over $200. I built a self-powered ignitor for my engine with one moving part and no wires. It is the same size as the original ignitor.

If you take the barbecue ignitor apart, you find a certamic chip ? inch in diameter and 5/8 inch long. If you hit it on the end with a hammer, it will knock your socks off! I took a ? inch rod and drilled it to hold a mica tube with a ? inch i.d. to insulate the chip so it is grounded on one end, and completes the circuit through the lever to the spark gap. I have a ? inch rod connecting the chip to the lever. It is sealed in the ? inch rod with silicone caulk. The lever will make it 'fire' each time it is tripped by the engine, like the original ignitor. A setscrew that contacts the grounded end of the chip adjusts the lever clearance. The magnitude of the spark is controlled by the spring tension. The spring bracket/lever pivot combination is insulated from the mounting plate and forms half the spark gap on the inside of the mounting plate.

It must be positioned to prevent arcing to the engine where it enters. I use a #10 machine screw for the other half of the cap. It is easily bent to adjust the gap, and is replaceable. The spark gap is limited by the amount of mica insulation used. The spark will be wherever the gap is the closest.

I am surprised at how easily the engine starts and runs. This looks a lot better than battery, coil, wires and ignitor if the magneto is missing.

Roger Stonner, 38677 W. 112th St., Richmond, MO 64085.

35/7/6 Power Products

In regard to the piece on Power Products I submitted earlier (see February 2000 issue,) the two-cylinder models were designated by a 'B' prefix, BH and BV horizontal and vertical shaft, in the 60 and 60 Series (6.0 ci and 6.9 ci). The 'A' didn't necessarily mean aluminum engine (though they were) but designated a single cylinder and the 'B' a twin.

I had to go through my old manuals to get this information, for you can't rely on memory of something you worked on thirty years ago.

As for the Clinton engines, many of the parts are very similar to Tecumseh and some will interchange directly. I have not seen any Clinton dealerships or any new equipment about these parts with Clinton engines in the twenty years. That doesn't mean they are not sold elsewhere. (I stand to be corrected). Give me two licks with a dirty shop rag! T. J. Shipman, R 2, Box 371-13, Buckhannon, WV 26201.

35/7/7 Heat Houser

Thanks to Robert T. Stevens, 25 Canton Point Rd., Canton, ME 04221 for sending along a 1951 clipping of the Heat Houser: We had pretty much forgotten about this one. My father bought his first one in the autumn of 1952. This was prompted by a neighbor buying one that fall for his D-6 Caterpillar (which I now own). Suddenly my dad could do fall field work without freezing to death. As we all know, Heat Houser wasn't the only one to make this helpful device, but then we moved on to tractor cabs, and now they are sound-insulated, air conditioned, and have a finely made, comfortable seat better than the one next to the fireplace.

35/7/8 Information Needed Q. Bones Perry, 408 Apple Ridge Rd,#1, Dawsonville, GA 30534 sends along a photo of a Liddel-Tompkins (steam) engine made by Liddel Company, Charlotte, North Carolina, It is an 8? x 10 engine with a Gardner 2' governor.

Also see photos 8B, 8C, and 8D of an unidentified six-cylinder T-head engine. It was once used by the phone company in Cairo, Georgia, for a backup generator. There is no nameplate, and the only number is the s/n of 350355 6 No. 39542. The firing order is 153624- Spark plugs are on intake side in valve access cap, and are ? inch NPT. Ignition is an American Bosch DU6-5A. The engine has a bore and stroke of 4? x 7 for a 596 cid. Any information on this engine would be appreciated.

35/7/9 Achtung! Attention!

John A. Enney, W3441 160 Ave., Maiden Rock, WI54750 suggests we get the reaction from readers about a computer screen saver that uses old engines/tractors. We would also add, that mouse pads be available with favorite engines or tractors. Drop us a line with your reaction.

35/7/10 Information Needed

Doug Crabtree, 15 Lynnolen Ln, Chattanooga, TN 37415 would like information on a 2? HP Empire from Empire Cream Separator Co. of Canada, s/n 92911 on the nameplate. The engine is painted blue. He would also like information on a 5 HP Plessissville made in Quebec. If you can be of help, please contact Mr. Crabtree.

35/7/11 Cushman History

Thanks to Eddie R. Ferguson, 605 Placid Drive, Sequin, TX 78155 for sending along some photocopy material on the history of Cushman Motor Works. It was published in the March/April 2000 issue of the Cushman Club of America Magazine. Those interested might wish to contact this group at 1630 St. Louis St., Springfield, MO 65802, or Mr. Ferguson, whose address appears above. CCOA is dedicated to the restoration and preservation of Cushman Motor Scooters.

35/7/12 Fairbanks-Morse Fire Pumper

Stan Williams, 465 Francis St., Pembroke, ONT K8A4X9 Canada writes: I am responding to the forest fire pump article in the March 2000 GEM, (35/3/23). From a 1921 catalog of Canadian Fairbanks-Morse, I have the same engine shown, and contrary to what F-M said, I have had oldtimers who have worked with them tell me that they should all have been left in the bush to burn. Perhaps that is why there are so few of them today. Mine has a F-M builder's plate, but comparing this engine to the Semmelhaack-Dick-son engine on page 460 of American Gas Engines, I would take it that they might have built the engine.

35/7/13 Primm Engine Q. See the photo of a Primm diesel, Type EV, 45 HP engine. It has a 13x16 inch bore and stroke. I would like to find information such as the original color and the starting procedure. Any information at all on this engine would be greatly appreciated. Wally George, 1056 Grears Corner Road, Townsend, DE 19734.

35/7/14 Unidentified Engine Q. See the photograph of an unidentified engine. We found the photo in an antique shop, and have shown it to some very knowledgeable collectors. No one has been able to identify it. There is some raised lettering below the oiler, but we can't make it out. Any help in identifying this engine would be appreciated. Randy Ackley, 21321 County X, Cadott, WI 54727. email:

35/7/15 Novo EngineQ. Can you provide any information on a Novo 6 HP engine, s/n 70014? John J. Wohlfeil, 190 HCR 1, Marquette, MI 49855.

A. Your engine was shipped to Lake Shore Engine Works, Marquette, Michigan in November 1920.

35/7/16 Mowing Machine

Every so often we come across a truly unique machine. This one isn't even gas powered, it is steam powered, but we thought it worthwhile for our column.

Thanks to Cordis L. Bean, 240 Spring St., Florence, MA 01062 for the following:

Pictured is Ruthven (Rooster) Packard of Packard Brothers, steam wizards of Goshen, Mass. This steam-powered mower has a Stanley Steamer body & chassis coupled to a horsedrawn mowing machine. The front axle is Cadillac, the rear chain drive is from a Thomas Flyer, and the steering gear is from a Locomobile. The picture was taken about 1940.

Packard Brothers (Ruthven and Waldemar) used this machine to mow and rake hay at their farm and mill in Goshen, Mass. The neighbors told me it was the best mowing machine they had seen, as Rooster could mow right up to an apple tree, touch the reverse pedal and go backwards without stopping.

Although both brothers are deceased, Ruthven's son Lawrence has this machine stored in the chicken house at the farm.

A Closing Word

Continuing our series on lathes, we had an interesting letter from Paul F. Brien, 4312 Lone Oak Road, Nashville, TN 37215. Paul sends along a photo of a 16-inch Hamilton lathe, much like the one shown in the May 2000 GEM. Paul has his machine set up with a 2 horsepower motor and an overhead drive.

This lathe came from a small machine shop at Shelbyville, Tennessee, where work was done for many area pencil factories. At one time, Shelbyville was the pencil making capital of the world. Nowadays the old Hamilton gets used for facing off the ends of boiler barrels on 1 ?-inch scale locomotives as well as turning locomotive drivers and model gas engine flywheels. Paul says the old lathe is still in pretty good shape for its age (at least 80 years) and that he enjoys working on it. More on lathes next month.


Gas Engine Magazine A_M 16Gas Engine Magazine is your best source for tractor and stationary gas engine information.  Subscribe and connect with more than 23,000 other gas engine collectors and build your knowledge, share your passion and search for parts, in the publication written by and for gas engine enthusiasts! Gas Engine Magazine brings you: restoration stories, company histories, and technical advice. Plus our Flywheel Forum column helps answer your engine inquiries!

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