Author Photo
By C. H. Wendel | May 1, 1997

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Tractor Train moving lumber in the 'Modern Manner.' Suffield, Alberta, Canada,1915. Courtesy of Ken Wardlow
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Thompson Acme Engine 2 to 8 H. P.
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Tiger 4 H. P., Hopper Cooled, Bore 5 in., Stroke 7 in., Speed 390, Weight 900 lbs.
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So we told you last month that we’d be taking a sabbatical this issue, since we’d be in Australia! However, most of this column is being finished just a couple days before the February 24 departure, and God willing, we’ll have enjoyed three weeks of sun and fun in Australia, be recuperated from the long plane trip, and be back at the usual things before this copy is in your hands!

At present, our desk, various tables, the floor, and wherever else we can find, is littered, or at least roughly sorted, with pictures of farm implements. Everything from butter churns to threshing machines, and lots of things between. Along the way we encountered some interesting engines, one example being the 1903 offering from Par sons Rich & Co., Newton, Iowa. Our book, Gas Engine Trademarks, makes no mention of this company, but obviously they offered horizontal sideshaft engines from 2 to 30 horsepower, along with upright two-cycle engines from 1 to 4 horsepower. In all our years with GEM, we’ve never heard of any Parsons Rich & Co. engines still existing.

Another interesting item is the series of Thompson engines shown on the next page. All these illustrations are from 1912. The Thompson Tiger air-cooled 2 HP is shown, as is the Tiger hopper cooled model. Note that the 4 HP model shown here weighed in at a hefty 900 pounds. In addition, Thompson also built the Thompson Acme engine in sizes from 2 to 8 HP. This style is of somewhat heavier design than the Tiger. Thompson advertising of 1912 indicated that the engines were built in six different sizes and several different varieties of Thompson engines.

Unfortunately a portion of the Waterloo Gasoline Engine advertisement of 1896 was cut off when taking the photograph . . . sometimes when trying to get a photo out of a bound volume of magazines, it’s simply impossible to get all of the illustration. Anyway, this ad shows a 1 HP Waterloo pumping engine, and here’s another one that we’ve never heard of until this photo.

Our Horizontal Four = Cycle Engines are from two to thirty horse-power. For heavy work, this is the engine you will need. It gives satisfaction in every sense of the word.

Our Upright Two = Cycle Engines are from one to four horse-power and arc very desirable engines for light work.

1903 Parsons Rich & Co. illustration.

Finally, a 1909 advertisement shows a Perkins vertical air-cooled sideshaft design. A very few of these still exist we believe, but they are very scarce indeed. Our American Farm Implements book won’t have but a few engines, since we’ve got far too many other things to cover than we’ll have in available space. However, we ran across quite a number of nice engines in our searching, and thought you’d enjoy seeing them. As time and circumstances permit, we’ll share more of these findings right here in the Reflections column.

The three Thompson illustrations.

We’re pleased to announce that ye olde Reflector can now be reached via e-mail at reflctr9@netins.net. While we would prefer that your queries be sent directly to GEM as in the past, any queries we receive will be handled in the next column we write. Also, if your query has an e-mail address, we’ll include it with your question, along with the regular address. Perhaps this will be helpful to those who have taken advantage of this new technology. With the e-mail address of someone perhaps in England, Australia, or anywhere else in the world, it is now possible to communicate to them almost instantly.

Our first query this month is:

ONE=HORSE PUMPING ENGINE, Waterloo illustration.

32/5/1 From Australia Q. In the process of researching, compiling and writing the 500-plus pages on Australian-produced engines and tractors, I came across mention of the Peerless Marine Engine Co., Detroit, Michigan. American Gas Engines indicates that this company’s advertising closed in 1908, but I have evidence that a 4 HP Peerless marine was still being sold in Australia at least until 1913. Also, I would like to thank the individuals who responded to my plea for assistance in the March 1996 GEM. While I still need some assistance, particularly on the ignition system for a I HP Olds engine, your help was greatly appreciated. Alien Barlow, University of Western Sydney, Nepean, PO Box 10, Kingswood, NSW, 2747, Australia.

A. Regarding the Peerless, the sources we were using at the time, particularly Gas Power, Gas Review, and The Gas Engine, showed no advertising after that time. However, the company may have opted for marine magazines such as The Rudder to which we had no access at that time. It’s entirely possible that the Peerless marine was sold for some years after the cessation of advertising from our research sources.

32/5/2 RE: Associated Q. Regarding32/2/2 in the February 1997 issue, the engine in question is a Chore Boy, a late and final version with base-mounted gas tank and higher output… in 1923 this model was rerated upwards from 1 to 2 HP. During the first six months of 1924, the four smaller engines in the range (Chore Boy and Hired Man in air and water cooled forms) were modified by repositioning the gas tank from the normal front mounted position to inside the engine base. David Krueger’s engine falls into this category , probably being built ca. 1925-6.

Regarding the query of 32/2/14 from D.

A. Kaetler, asking for the date of manufacture on yet another Chore Boy, this will be the earlier 1 HP version built ca. 1920/21.

I have gathered Associated engine serial numbers and collected factory literature on the subject for over twenty years and the results of my research are published in my book, Amanco Engines; The Story of Associated Manufacturers’ Company Ltd., available in the United States from GEM. David W. Edgington, Lodge Wood Farm, Hawkeridge, Westbury, Wilts., BA134LA England.

32/5/3 B. F. Avery Q. Gregg Phillips, RR1, Box 68, Paxton, IL 60957 recently sent us a copy of the B. F. Avery Newsletter, a very interesting piece on the B. F. Avery Company and its products. It is nicely designed and printed; the club has well over 300 members at present. For further information, contact Gregg at the address above.

32/5/4 Ferro Engine Q. I have a Ferro marine engine made in Cleveland, Ohio. It is a two-cylinder, 8 HP mode! with a reversing lever. It is missing the carburetor, but otherwise seems complete. I would like to complete the engine, plus find any operator’s information or other literature that would be of help. Bill Kessler, 16551 Bennett Rood, N. Royalton, OH 44133.

32/5/5 Olds & Massey-Harris Q. Compton Playground, Rt. 147, Compton, Quebec JOB 3E0 Canada sends along a 1909 advertisement showing that Massey-Harris was selling the Olds engines one year before they bought Deyo-Macey. How many years did M-H sell the Olds engine in Canada, and did M-H sell the Olds engine in the U.S.?

32/5/6 Climax Engines Q. I acquired a large Climax engine made by Climax Engineering Co., Clinton, Iowa. It is Type 37, Unit No. 596, and engine no. 8726. Does anyone have any information on this engine or on the company? Harold Rossow, PO Box 15, Weston, ID 83286.

A. Climax engines were used in a few tractors, but by far their greatest success was in the industrial field. Thousands were used for pumping outfits, electrical generators, and the like. In the past we’ve seen big Climax engines having dual ignition, two carburetors, etc., so as to be as fail-safe as possible. Since they weren’t widely used for tractors and other agricultural purposes, as for instance the Beaver and others, we seldom see them now, except for one that was in an industrial application of some sort.

32/5/7 Ideal Type C Frederick B. Hard Jr., PO Box 145, Wardsboro, VT 05355 sends along a copy of a letter responding to 32/2/25 and a Type C Ideal engine. Mr. Hard notes that his engine had enough original color left to work from, and matched the old color very closely by using ‘/4 pint of Rustoleum Gloss Black (7779) to pint of Rustoleum Hunter Green. The engine originally had crimson striping.

32/5/8 RE: Conversion Calculators Regarding the Reflector’s recent comments about conversion calculators, Peter Nuskey, 1552 Bristol Road, Southampton, PA 18966 writes:

What most people do not know is that any calculator can be used to convert fractions into decimals. Fractions by themselves are division problems, just divide the top number by the bottom number and the result is the decimal. Thus,

= 1 divided by 2 = 0.500, 5/47 = 5 divided by 47 = .106383. Try this with a simple kid’s calculator to get the decimal answer.

32/5/9 Unidentified Parts Q. See the photo of some parts that I believe are for an IHC T/TD-18 or 20: track idler, about 8′ o.d. x 8′ long; plus seals, seal cover, and gasket with the following IHC numbers:3078476Rl, 321292R91, 324191R91. These parts are free to anyone willing to pay the shipping costs. Earl Hughes Jr., 407 N. Dimmel Rd., Woodstock, 1L 60098.

32/5/10 IHC LA Engine Q. I have an International LA 1’/2-2’a model, s/n 381, and would like to know when it was made. The casting date is 9-13-34- I am also trying to find the original color; there is some colored area underneath that suggests it was gray. Robert L. Knipschield, 1527 Sugar Cree/c Rd W., Charlotte, NC 28262.

A. While the casting date might be 1934, the s/n list shows the engine sold in 1935. Earliest versions apparently were IHC Gray, with a bit of red trim.

32/5/11 Sawmill Q. See the photos of a small sawmill made by Gilraph Mach. & Eng. Corp., Norwood, Mass. It is s/n 1000-45-010 and carries a 40-inch blade. Any information on this mill would be appreciated.

Also, I think you had a small article about a Quaker Mule garden tractor some time ago, and 1 would like to know the colors. Carl Mays, PO Box 188, Rogers, OH 44455.

32/5/12 Frick & Graham-Bradley Q. I have a friend who has a Frick tractor and would like to know how many still exist. He would also like to know where to find the s/n on a Graham Bradley tractor. The Frick is Type 158, Model No. 100, s/n 415. Any information would be appreciated. Kurt Seachrist, 45534 Riffle Road, Lisbon, OH 44432.

32/5/13 Myrick Eclipse Q. I recently purchased a 4 HP Myrick Eclipse, s/n 1458, vertical hot tube engine. Would like to correspond with anyone Having one of these engines, literature on same, or anyone who is familiar with these engines. I will gladly reimburse the cost of copying and postage. Paul Gray, 3437 Blue Ball Road, North East, MD 21901.

32/5/14 RE: Myers Bulldozer Pump In reply to 32/2/15 on the Myers Bulldozer, I believe the make to be a Blake pump, Model OC, made in England. The capacity is 250 gph, with a maximum pressure of 130 psi. There still is a source for parts at Allspeeds Pumps Ltd., Clayton Le Moors, NR Accrington, Lancashire, England. Kevin Mander, 97 Potton Road, Biggleswade, Beds, SG18 0EB England.

32/5/15 Thanks to Ron Haskell, mentioned in an earlier column, for sending along a photocopy of the instruction manual for the early Witte sideshaft engine. This came compliments of Malcolm Hill, Box 3614, Boles Acres, Alamagordo, NM 88310. It came with his engine, which is s/n 806.

32/5/16 Sheppard Diesels Thanks to Lynn Klingaman, Sheppard Diesel Club, 6775 N. Etna Rd., Columbia City, IN 46725. He sent us a recent copy of their newsletter, along with other information regarding the Sheppard diesels. Mr. Klingaman owns several pieces of Sheppard equipment and has done considerable research on the company. Sheppard equipment owners should contact him at the above address for further information on club membership and activities.

32/5/17 Bessemer Engine Q. See photo 17A of a 2 HP Bessemer to be rebuilt. Any information on this engine would be greatly appreciated, especially the fuel system.

Also note in 17B is the Reflector refilling the water tank on our motorhome. We stopped by Amana, Iowa, on our way through last summer. Dean S. Axtell, 1924 SW G St., Grants Pass, OR 97526.

32/5/18 Ancient Electric Motor Q. I have an open end motor, two-pole, 32 volt d.c, made by Robbins & Myers of Springfield, Ohio. It is HP, compound wound. Also have another rare motor made by Western Electric Co., 32 volts d.c, 1/6 HP. Any information on these motors would be appreciated. Murray M. Brown, Quarry Road, W-184, Warwick, MA 01378.

32/5/19 Witte Serial List Q. I am putting together a serial number list of sideshaft Witte engines. Anyone who owns one or knows of one can send the serial number, HP, and if possible date, to me. Bill Hazzard, 577 ‘A’ Street, Swede-land, PA 19406-2736.

A. Good luck with your project, and let us know what you find.

32/5/20 Utilitor Q. I recently acquired a Utilitor tractor that had been sitting outside in the same place for the past 30 years. Engine made by the Wisconsin Motor Corp. in Milwaukee. The serial number is 33L48 and it says it’s type AC4. The numbers 25/8 x 3 also appear on the plate. I wonder if anyone has any information or manual on this model. See photograph. Murray R. Vashaw, 86 Bunker Hill St., Lancaster, NH 03584.

A. Utilitor enthusiasts, please help!

32/5/21 Ronaldson & Tippett Noel Trengove, c/o The Ballarat Engine and Machinery Preservation Society Inc., P.O. Box 1139 Ballarat Mail Centre, Victoria, Australia 3354, in correspondence regarding an article by Neil Wright on the history of Ronald-son &. Tippett, Australian engine manufacturers, noted that he would very much like to hear from any readers outside Australia who have R&T equipment or information. He also encourages anyone interested in purchasing the club programs from which the article was reprinted, or R&T mugs, to contact him.

32/5/22 Burr Mill Q. Where can I find parts for a small burr mill made by Quaker City Mill, Philadelphia, PA, USA Model #4-E? I need the burrs, or maybe this company is still in business! Mark D. Anderson, HC1 Box 59, Jacobson, MN 55752-9520.

A. This question was apparently lost in the mail the first time it was sent in. Maybe someone in the Philadelphia area can help you out.

32/5/23 Mystery engine Q. I recently bought the engine shown in pictures A and B, and I have no idea what it is. There are no markings of any kind. The engine is very well built, being machined from castings. It looks as though the base had at one time been nickel plated. It has a l inch bore and two inch stroke. Flywheel is 8 diameter with 7/8 face. I put on pressure gauge and muffler, and I run it with a flow control valve.

The engine is 16 inches overall in length and five inches tall at the cylinder. I was wondering if anybody would know what this engine was used for. Was it used for a special purpose, or was it a demonstrator for a larger engine? Or was it just an expensive toy? Clyde Alexander, Star Rt. 2 Box 80, Leopold, IN 47551.

A. We’ll have to rely on our readers for an answer to this one.

32/5/24 Sears Handi Man Q. I have a Sears Roebuck Handi Man tractor, model #917-5154, serial #113 and motor type 95266, model ZH, serial #17075. I would like to have any information on this tractor. I also have a Grand Haven garden tractor with no model or serial numbers. The tractor could be a model CC it has a Briggs & Stratton model 23. Any information for these two tractors would be very much appreciated. Horace L. Young, 307 W. Washington St., Fayetteville, TN 37334.

A. We know there are more garden tractor collectors all the time, so we hope someone will have more information for you.


32/2/15 Murray Coulson of Box 4, St. Williams, Ontario N0E 1P0 writes to say he has a pump just like the one in 32/2/15 and is restoring it. However, it’s made by McDougall, and parts are still available for it at his local plumbing store.

Lining up pulleys

Sam Nixon, 1951 Rialto Way, Alva, FL 33920 wrote to say:

I congratulate you for your article about lining up pulleys.

It is a good time to recall that a flat belt tends to stay on the crown of a pulley. An older thresherman wrote me over 20 years ago that he had seen the belt driving his thresher stay on even when the pulleys were feet out of line!

Why does the belt ride on the crown? It has nothing to do with the speed. I have turned pulleys slowly with my hands and seen the belts climb right up there. It has to do with the way the belt approaches and fits on the pulley. If the belt slips it does not climb up on the crown.

It is easier to observe a belt half the width of the pulley. A good demonstration happens when you bandage a forearm with gauze bandage. Start anywhere (even at the wrist) below the elbow. As you roll the bandage on it just goes up to the elbow. When it goes above the elbow it finds that area is smaller and it heads right back down to the biggest part (crown) of the area. You see the same tendency when you apply tape to a pipe of varying diameter. Some flat pulleys have had to be replaced when they wore down so that their edges became higher than the middle. I once saw a flat belt climb up and stay on the flange at the edge of a pulley. This flange was put there to keep the belt on! In June 1980 I chanced on ‘Hudson Belting Co.’ in Brooklyn, NY. I was pleased that they handled flat belts. They made me a double ply leather belt, endless 10′ 11′ by 4′ for $110.00. I use it to run the saw on my Sears custom saw rig with Thermoil engine. I suspect other large cities may have similar sources for flat belts.

Modelmakers Corner

Richard E. Shelly, 2835 Camp Rd., Manheim, PA 17545 sends along some nice photos as follows:

MM1 is a photo of Pierre Decrouez, 1121 Muhlenberg Ave., Swarthmore, PA 19081. He’s holding his 1/6 scale of a horsepower New Holland engine. It has a 7/16 inch bore and two-inch fly wheels. The model was made of bronze castings using the lost wax process. He is often seen walking around with the model running, just as seen in the photo.

MM2 is a ? scale model of a Rider-Ericsson hot air pumping engine recently completed by Alan and Mr. Shelly. It is a casting kit by Dean Myers, PO Box 2363, Whitehouse, OH 43571.

MM3 is a push-rod model of a Domestic made by Herm Klein, 4421 Old Carriage Rd., Flint, MI 48507. He used parts of a model kit and scaled from his full-sized engine for the balance of the measurements needed to fabricate the rest of the model. (Note the full-sized version to the back, with the beautiful model in the foreground.

A Closing Word

(From Linda Weidman)

Since Mr. Wendel left the country before the end of the column, he asked me to ‘close’ it for him. So, there are two more letters from readers that I’m going to use to do that.

The first comes with a photograph and was sent in by Ken Wardlow of Drayton Valley, Alberta T7A 1S5, who writes:

‘Suffield is located in the southeast corner of Alberta, and as can be seen in the photo, is a very flat, treeless part of the Canadian prairie.

In 1915, there were no roads or rail lines in this part of Canada, so this would be the most economical method of moving large amounts of lumber over long distances.

The five wagons would likely carry about 2000 to 2500 board feet of lumber each, for a total of 10000 to 12500 F.B.M.

Bed rolls and tents can be seen on the lead wagon, and the rear wagon would carry fuel and other necessities for the trip. Tied to the rear wagon can be seen some emergency equipment in the form of a saddle horse; in case of mechanical failure one could ride for help.

The train appears to be drawn by a 22-45 Hart-Parr tractor.

As added interest, the area around Suffield is now used as a NATO weapons range.’

The second letter is a brief note from Teun de Jong, Repelweg 4, 4758 SR Noordhoek, Holland. He writes, ‘From May 25 to June 15, 1997, we will make a trip around California, Arizona, Nevada, and southern Utah. As a stationary engine man (I have two, a Wolseley WD 9 and a Lister D type), I want to visit one or more events or museums on this particular subject, but I have no dates and addresses. Can you help me with dates and addresses of what I have to see? Thanks very much for your efforts.’

We were able to make a few suggestions, but if any of you know places or events he should include on his itinerary, quickly drop him a line!

And speaking of world travelers, we look forward to tales of engine collecting in contemporary Australia next month when Mr. Wendel returns!

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 17608-0328.

This photo was taken June 3, 1996, at the farm of Cliff and Corabell Reubers, just west of Winslow, Illinois. My son Mitchel, age 1 years old, is shown here playing with Cliff’s recently restored water pump at a thresheree/pot luck dinner he had.

We had approximately 12 gas engines, one Rumely OilPull replica, and of course Cliff Klenke and his ice cream maker on display.

We had lunch, got our hands greasy, and exchanged ideas with one another. The day ended with a hay ride by Cliff with his trusty 1952 John Deere A. Cliff was in his glory when he was driving the tractor.

Cliff is a retired farmer and now spends his time restoring anything and everything. This is how everyone should be able to enjoy their retirement. Thanks, Cliff and Corabel! Courtesy of Todd Hasse, 1114 23rd Avenue, Monroe, WI 53566.

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