Gas Engine Magazine


By Staff

While browsing through our copy of Motor Vehicles & Motors
by Beaumont, we noted a discussion of various engine styles, and in
particular the development of the ‘double-inclined cylinder
engine’ which we now refer to as the V-type. It was invented by
Daimler in Germany, and the original patent shows the air intake
valve in the piston, as Daimler had done with his early single
cylinder designs. The V-type engine was apparently not built under
this design but originally was equipped with poppet valves. These
were operated by a most unusual mechanism with a sliding piece in
the cam grooves. The double-tracked cam was arranged so that the
slider would alternately follow two different paths. Because of
this arrangement the exhaust valve was operated only on alternate

N. A. Otto, the inventor of the four-cycle engine seems to have
concentrated most of his efforts on stationary design, while
Daimler was preoccupied with fitting internal combustion engines to
automotive purposes. In this he excelled, and was eminently
successful in building small, lightweight, and high speed

Gottlieb Daimler was born at Schorndorf, Germany in 1834 and
died March 6, 1900.

This month’s questions begin with:

22/10/1 Q. I need information on a David
Bradley Tri-trac tractor made by Sears-Roebuck in the
mid-1950’s. Especially needed are belt sizes, but any other
information will be appreciated. Harold R. Peabody, RFD 1, Box
112, 859 Riverside Drive, Augusta ME 04330.

A. We have limited data on the David Bradley
line but nothing on this particular model. Anyone with this
information, kindly contact Mr. Peabody.

22/10/2 Myron Patrick, RFD 4, Box 379, Miles
Patrick Road, Winder, GA 30680 writes that he has a good sized
collection of David Bradley and Planet Jr. garden tractors and
implements. He would like to correspond with other collectors of
these two product lines in particular.

22/10/3 Karl Johnson, 1807 Arthur Street,
Minneapolis, MN 55418 would like to hear from someone having
service information on the John Deere Type R-2 magneto.

22/10/4 Q. See the photos given below of a Gray
engine, Model G,3? x 5 inch bore and stroke, 17 inch flywheels.
There is no data plate. Also, there is no serial number. What is
the horsepower? Is there an acid that will bring out stamped
numbers in the casting? The measurements and specs are identical to
the Model J engines of the Gray stationary line. So far I can find
nothing which shows ‘Model G’ cast into the hopper. Can
anyone help me? Raymond L. Gray, No. 1, Honeymoon Hill,
Gatlinburg, TN 37738.

A. Your engine is probably about 1? horsepower,
but we have no documentation that would be of help regarding the
various model designations. Perhaps one of our readers might have
some early advertising material that would be of help.

22/10/5 Q. Can you identify this engine? (see
photo). I believe it to be a Rawleigh-Schryer. It is mustard yellow
with black striping. The inside of the splash guard and pan was
dark red. All castings begin with a ‘B’ prefix. Under the
water hopper is cast 11-27-12. The missing nameplate was located on
the upper left hand comer of the water hopper. In American Gas
Engines the picture of the Rawleigh-Schryer on page 408 is
identical to that of the Consolidated engine on page 106. Any
information will be appreciated, Tom Crozier, RR 1, Ailsa
Craig, Ontario N0M 1A0 Canada.

A. We would suggest that you are probably
correct in crediting Rawleigh with this engine, although the
casting date would tend to indicate that it was Rawleigh Mfg. Co.
and not Rawleigh-Schryer, since the dates do not match (see pages
408 and 409 of American Gas Engines). Also of interest to us is the
fact that the Rawleigh-Consolidated comparison you refer to
indicates some heretofore unknown connection between the firms.

22/10/6 Robert Booth Jr., 6501 Ravenna Road,
Painesville, Ohio 44077 sends some advertising material regarding
the ‘rebirth’ of ‘the New Hercules’ engine

Hercules Engine Company, organized in 1915 at Canton, Ohio had a
long and illustrious career as a builder of multiple cylinder
engines. During the 1960’s and 1970’s the company had three
different owners, and in 1976 the name was changed to White
engines. Recently, the company’s new Chairman and CEO Donald C.
Stewart changed the name back to Hercules, because ‘it
represents what we do best-design and manufacture quality

22/10/7 Q. What year is a McCormick-Deering
engine, 1? HP, s/n 25049? I have a Farmall F-2o, s/n FA67297. When
consulting the serial number listings I noticed the FA prefix was
used on tractors built from 1932 to mid-1934, and a ‘TA’
prefix was used from late 1934 and beyond. Since my serial number
is higher than any of those listed with the FA prefix, I am not
sure of the year built. Can anyone supply the year built for a
Nichols & Shepard Red River Special separator, s/n 50719
manufactured by Oliver Farm Equipment Company? Ira Krupp Jr.,
13894-168th, Apt. 2, Grand Haven, MI 49417.

A. Your McCormick-Deering engine was built in 1926. It seems
entirely possible that the prefix confusion on your F-20 might only
be the result of a typographical error when the plate was stamped,
rather than indicating anything of major proportions. Using this
parameter then, your tractor is of 1936 vintage. We have no
information on the Nichols &. Shepard line.

22/10/8 Q. I’ve collected Sandwich engines
for many years. From other collectors, and from my own research it
appears that the first two digits of the serial number indicate the
year built, i.e., A26446 was built in 1926. The letter prefixes
(according to the parts book) indicate the horsepower-A,1? HP; B,
2? HP; C, 4 HP; E, 6 HP; F, 8 HP; R, 10 HP. These designations are
from catalogs of the early 1920’s. The 1934 catalog lists the
designators differently-A, 2 HP; B, 3 HP; C, 4? HP and Light 6; D,
Light 6; E, Big 6 and Light 6; F, 8 HP; R, 10 HP.

Having checked dozens, if not hundreds of Sandwich engines,
I’m convinced that this method of dating is correct. It checks
with Webster equipped engines and puts the transition to the Wico
EK magneto at the proper time. Robert P. Weis, PO Box 668, Mt.
Hermon, MA 01354.

A. Your patient research should be very helpful
to owners of Sandwich engines. Despite all the new information
coming to light on various companies and their activities, the
truth is that we have yet barely scratched the surface.

22/10/9 Q. What is the year built for a
Fairbanks-Morse 1? HP headless model, s/n 339784? Is there any
information available that might assist me in building a set of
portable trucks for this engine? Would also like the proper color
for a jaeger 2 HP engine (Hercules type)-casting date on water
hopper is 4/5/27. Myron Compton, RR 1 , Pekin, IN

A. Your engine is of 1918 vintage. Several
excellent catalog reprints are available on this engine, including
some published by GEM. Contact them for further details and

22/10/10 Q. What is the year built for an
Associated air-cooled engine, s/n 83302, also the proper color.
Roger Boise, RD, Box 12, New Haven, VT 05472.

A. The Associated corresponds to DuPont Dulux
1434 Mohawk Red, except of course that the air-cooled cylinder is
painted with aluminum, preferably a high-heat type. All air cooled
engine cylinders are always painted aluminum for maximum heat
transfer to the air. Although no specific data has been located,
the air cooled model was probably discontinued by 1915 or

22/10/11 Q. I have just acquired a Jaeger
3′ HP engine, s/n 273422 and would like any information
regarding its age. Jesse Spangler, 6184 Lanman, Drayton Plains,
MI 48020.

A. We have no method of dating Jaeger engines,
but those familiar with this line might be able to guesstimate its
age using the age of known examples as a guide.

22/10/12 Q. We have a ‘Johnny’ engine
as sold by Omega Machine Company, and illustrated on page 361 of
American Gas Engines. We need to know how to get it to run. We know
of one of these engines where some gasoline was put in and it blew
up. Another collector claims he smashed another Johnny engine to
pieces trying to determine what made it run. Can anyone help us
out? Frank G. Wilson, The Wilson Collection, 40 Basketville,
Putney, VT 05346.

A. You have an oil engine which operated on the
Hvid principles developed by R. M. Hvid Co. of Chicago. Although
this self-igniting engine was very efficient it was rather
complicated and could be very recalcitrant if everything was not in
prime condition. What you need is a photocopy of a Thermoil
instruction manual, and quite possibly one of our readers might be
able to supply same. If you use gasoline for starting, use only a
few drops! Otherwise you will likely experience the results noted
above, plus you will have the unforgettable ordeal of having pieces
of cast iron flying about with no regard for life or limb. Having
worked somewhat with engines of this type, we hope that someone
will be able to furnish an instruction book that will lay out the
principles of operation for you. To do so within this column would
require considerable space. Engines of this type run very nicely
when properly adjusted-they also start with relative ease, and
directly on diesel fuel when the ambient temperature is 60 degrees
F. or higher.

22/10/13 Q. Donavon W. Anderson, 5627 S.E. 10th
St., Topeka, KS 66605 poses the following questions: 1) What is the
date built and color scheme of a Little Monitor Pumping Engine, 1?
HP, s/n 18771? 2) Did the implements for the F-12 change from gray
to red in 1936 like the tractors, or were they always red? 3) Will
Farmall ‘C’ and F-12 rod and main bearings interchange? 4)
What is the year built for a Fairbanks-Morse ‘Z’ engine,
s/n 550340? Any help will be appreciated.

A. In answer: 1) We presume you mean the
Monitor built by Baker Mfg. Co., Evansville, Wisconsin. There are
no known serial number listings for this engine. It is finished
comparable to DuPont 57704 gray and trimmed in deep red. 2) We
believe that the F-12 implements were always red. 3) We don’t
have a master parts book for IH, so we can’t tell you whether
the bearings will interchange. 4) Our FBM serial lists put the
above number as a 1923 model.

22/10/14 Q. I am restoring a Foos 6 HP engine,
s/n 40735 and would like to know the year built and correct color.
Robert L. Willis, 4103 Quapaw CR, Springdale, AR

A. See the August, 1987 GEM, page 23 for an
accurate color match for the Foos engine. We know of no serial
number listings.

22/10/15 Here’s a picture of an engine
I’m restoring. I’m not sure of the make, although I know it
is a form of an Economy. It resembles the drawing on page 233 of
American Gas Engines of Holm’s engine. Can anyone help me
identify this engine? Also I would like the age of a
Fairbanks-Morse engine, 383320, and a Stover Type D-600, s/n
VG225133. All letters will be answered. Mike Nebasis, RR2, Box
167, New York Mills, MN 56567.

A. We can’t shed much additional light on
the engine in question, but we can tell you that the FBM engine is
a 1918 model, and the Stover engine was built for DeLaval in early

22/10/16 Q. I would like to correspond with
anyone having a 12-inch two-cylinder bean threshing machine built
by J. L. Owens Co., Minneapolis, Minnesota. Any information will be
appreciated. William Spoerl, 5531 Fond du Lac, Dubuque, IA

22/10/17 Q. I have recently acquired a Maytag
Toy Racer with engine serial number 650896. The car has been
repainted and I would like to know the correct color shades, also
the linkage that controls the clutch and brake is missing and any
information on this would be appreciated. I would like to
correspond with other owners of these toy racers. Ronald
O’Kray, 1636 N. Burgundy Lane, Stevens Point, Wl

A. Our files have no information whatever on
the Maytag Toy Racers, but hopefully some of our readers are
familiar with them.

22/10/18 Several readers have written in again
this month asking for serial number information on Witte engines.
This information is available directly from (and only from) the
successors to Witte, now a division of Oil Well Supply. Their full
address has been noted in several recent issues.

22/10/19 Q. I have a 1923 Fairbanks-Morse 15 HP
‘Z’ engine. In the July GEM, page 27 is a picture of a 15
HP engine with everything reversed, including the magneto etc. all
on the wrong side of the engine. Can you explain this? Philip
E. Mullen, 1702 North McKay Avenue, Alexandria, MN 56308.

A. The photograph was printed from the wrong
side of the negative, which of course reverses everything.

22/10/20 Q. Can you tell me the year built for
a Caterpillar 20 tractor, s/n PL2444? Any other information on this
tractor will also be appreciated. Stephen Dodge, 44 Foxhill
Lane, Enfield, CT 06082.

A. Our serial number listings on Caterpillar
don’t reach back that far, but we are certain that some of our
readers might have such a list. In fact, the Reflector will be most
happy to add this information to the early files. Likewise, we
would guess that some of our readers and/or advertisers might have
the instruction manuals and service information you need, either as
originals or as photocopies of same.

22/10/21 Q. Thomas Davidson, Ryttarstigen 72,
S-430 80 Hovas, Sweden writes: Thank you for a very interesting
magazine. I am a Swedish collector who has some unknown engines.
(See photos) The twin-cylinder engine (22/10/21 A and 22/10/21 B)
has an open crankcase. It was converted in 1920 and got magneto and
new carb from a car. Can anyone tell me the make? The single
cylinder engine is of two-stroke design with a single-weight
governor. Can you tell me the make?

In addition to these I have one 2 HP and one 4 HP
Fairbanks-Morse Jack-of-All-Trades engines which have been imported
to Sweden and sold here by Goteborgs Maskin Affar (Gothenburg
Engine Shop). The serial no. on the Swedish brassplate is 102887
for the 2 HP engine and 69161 for the other one, which has been
equipped with both hot tube and low tension ignition. What are the
ages of these two engines?

The restored engine (22/10/21D) is a Swedish-built 6 HP,
4-stroke kerosene engine called ‘Hercules.’ It is of
hit-and-miss design and governed on the exhaust push rod. It uses a
low tension oscillating magneto and is made by Sandbackens
Verkstader in Katrineholm, Sweden. This type is not so common here.
In Sweden the two-stroke hot bulb type is the most common.

A. The 2 HP FBM engine is of about 1911
vintage, and the other engine is somewhat older-we do not have the
very early serial number listings for Fairbanks-Morse. This
company’s own advertising seems to indicate that the dual
ignition system (hot tube and electric) was intended to obviate the
difficulties encountered with both systems. In other words, if it
wouldn’t run on the hot tube, maybe it would run on the
igniter. Conversely, if the batteries were dead, then maybe the
engine would run on the hot tube.

We would suggest that perhaps the engine of 22/10/21C might be a
Detroit engine as illustrated on page 130 of American Gas Engines.
To our knowledge, these engines did not have a nameplate, but
depended on a stencilled identification instead. Regarding an
identification for the two-cylinder engine, we don’t have a
clue, but perhaps other collectors somewhere in this world might be
of help.

22/10/22 Mr. Al Wilhelm, Box 181, Princeton, MN
55371 sends a photo of his Avery Model #5 tractor.

We believe this to be an accurate representation of the late
model Avery so far as color scheme is concerned (Reflector).

22/10/23 Q. James P. Paquette, 6o A High St.,
Uxbridge, MA 01569 would like the proper paint color for the Lauson
engine made by John Lauson Co., New Holstein, Wisconsin. Any
information would be appreciated on the Kinner Engine Company. We
have a horizontal air cooled engine built by this company.

A. We’re not definitely sure on the color
match for the Lauson, but hopefully some of the many engine
collectors in Wisconsin, (some of whom are very familiar with
Lauson) will respond. The General Index of American Gas Engines
lists a W. A. Kinne, New Britain, Connecticut as an engine builder,
but we have no listing or information on Kinner Engine Company.

22/10/24 Charles C. Lynde, PO Box 3, Churchton,
MD 20733 sends a photocopy from page 117 of the July, 1928 issue of
National Geographic magazine for our identification. As is often
the case with photocopies, it is sufficiently indistinct that
identification of the engine in the copy is not possible. However,
those collectors looking for early engine photos in magazines might
try to locate this issue of National Geographic.

22/10/25 Q. I have a Sta-Rite engine, 1? HP. Is
there another reader who has one? If so, I would like to hear from
him. Is there a standard method of timing this engine? There is a
mark on the cam gear, but not on the crankshaft gear. There is no
place to crank on the side most engines are cranked. Does this one
crank counter-clockwise from the other side? How is the ignition
set up? John Pribbenow, RR2, Box 209, Vemdale, MN 56481.

A. Many, many questions regarding engine timing
and ignition schematics are answered in a little book published by
GEM and entitled, Gas Engine Guide. Very briefly though, valve
timing is the first order-the exhaust valve should begin to open a
few degrees before it reaches its outer center. Upon completing the
exhaust stroke, it should close a few degrees AFTER reaching the
inside center. The cam design will usually dictate this, so that by
timing for the moment of exhaust valve opening, the time of closing
will be reasonably correct. After this, time for ignition-on
stationary engines used for display purposes we recommend firing
right on dead center or just a few degrees after. Timing the engine
too late will make the engine overheat, but of course, timing too
early will make it kick like the proverbial mule! Whether the valve
operating mechanism is on the right or left side makes no
difference in engine rotation. Almost all engines are designed to
‘run with the sun’ an old colloquialism which translates to
clockwise rotation. Occasionally an engine was designed to run
against the sun, and in some engines with symmetrical tear-drop
cams the engine can be reversed with little difficulty.

22/10/26 Q. What is the proper color for a
Fuller & Johnson engine? Also its age-it is s/n 168742.
Darryl Wondra, Rt. 28, Box 150A, LeCenter, MN 56057.

A. We understand the Fuller & Johnson to
closely match standard ‘New Idea Green.’ For serial number
information and other data on F & J engines contact: Verne W.
Kindschi, S9008B U.S. Hwy 12, Prairie duSac, WI 53578-9723. We
assume that readers will also forward their stamped and
self-addressed envelope, plus perhaps a buck or so to cover the
expense of looking up the information.

22/10/27 Q. I have a Stover-Economy 3? HP
kerosene engine, s/n TC271540. It is in very good shape, but has
cracked flywheels, which I have learned are very hard to find.
Also, it has a tapered water jacket instead of the rounded style
used on Economy engines. P.S. I am 14. Norman Gay, 851 Black Horse
Hill, Coatesville, PA 19320.

A. Your engine was built September 19, 1940.
Stover built these engines under contract with Sears-Roebuck. The
only major modification was that compared to Stover’s own
‘CT’ series built at the same time, these ‘Economy’
engines used a different frame casting with the rounded water
hopper. Otherwise it was virtually identical to the
‘coffin-type’ water hopper that Stover used. The
rectangular hopper to which you refer was that built by Hercules
Engine Co. for Sears-Roebuck. Your engine will also have a flywheel
different than the Stover, in that the latter used round holes in
the flywheel, while those built for Sears used teardrop shaped
weight holes.

22/10/28 Q. See the photos of my 2 HP Bessemer
engine. We have the fuel/water tank stand for it, but have no
carburetor, nor do we know just how the tank hooks up to the
carburetor. We are also not completely sure of the timing
mechanism. No one I have talked to has ever seen a 2 HP Bessemer.
As we would like to restore the engine, we would appreciate hearing
from anyone with information that would help us achieve this goal.
Carl F. Lueg, PO Box 2888, McAllen, TX 78502.

A. We suspect there might be some Bessemer
engines lurking about, and hopefully some of our readers might be
able to share some information with you in this regard. From the
looks of the photos (22/10/28 A and B) we think you will have a
very nice engine when it is completed.

22/10/29 Q. What year is a Cletrac BGS, s/n
3C740? L. E. Gray, 2203 Gordon St., Hopewell, VA 23860.

A. Your tractor was built between 1939 and
1944, probably in the early part of that period, since very few
tractors were produced outside of military requirements during the
1941-44 period.


Pond Tractors

On page 26 of the August, 1987 GEM the Pond tractor is
discussed. It was made at Ravenna, Ohio. As I recall an
infringement suit was fought in court with the Ford Motor Co. But
Pond was using used parts and rebuilt motors, not new material from
Ford, so, as I heard they settled the case before due process in

A man from Alliance, Ohio made an identical duplicate of the
Pond, but no action was taken against him. His last name was
Dennis, and there are some of these tractors still in use.

A man from Damascus, Ohio also built a unit similar to the

On page 27 a picture of the garden cultivator (22/8/27B) made by
S. L. Allen &. Co. appears. I have two of these cultivators and
a seeder unit, plus a small garden tractor and two Flexible Flyer
sleds also.

I need help in restoring a Shaw 2-wheel garden tractor, First
the paint color-I think green on the frame, with the wheels and
handles of a different shade. The motor mount is missing; perhaps
someone can send a description of this. Perry Willis, RD 3, 9238
Columbus Road NE, Louisville, OH 44641.

22/7/16 Fairbanks-Morse Eclipse

I have the remains of a FBM No. 1 Eclipse bought new in 1916.
The office for it was Toronto, Ontario. It always had a crankcase
breather directly under the drain plug for the water jacket. There
is a hole drilled and tapped into the cylinder wall where it starts
to slope out to the crankcase. The breather consists of a ?’
street elbow with a brass fitting holding a steel ball and retained
by a pin across and above it. It works like a poppet valve. This
brass fitting screws into the female end of the street ell and
faces up. We had to put a piece of metal under the drain plug for
the hopper to keep water from getting into the breather when
draining water out. There was a drain plug in the crankcase so oil
could be drained off to keep it at the proper level. Wallace
Shannon, Lansing, Michigan.

Sheppard Tractors

Per a letter from Peter Sheppard, President of R. H. Sheppard
Co., Hanover, PA we obtained the following information:

Sherwin-Williams OPEX Production Lacquer L61EQ3 was the original
color for these tractors. This was changed to a modern
Sherwin-Williams number as follows: S-W Acrylic Enamel
F79XLE0240-1974 (L61EQ3 Orange).

Another reader sent me this number: #3117 Orange force-dry
enamel; Sprayon Products Inc., Cleveland, Ohio. (Mfg. expressly for
R. H. Sheppard Co. Inc., Hanover, PA).

The following NAPA part numbers apply to the Sheppard

NAPA Oil filter 1047 fits SD2, 3, and 4 NAPA fuel filter 3110
fits SD4 (fuel)

NAPA fuel filter 3104 fits SD2 and SD3 (fuel)

22/8/15 John Deere Engine Serial

Several readers noted that the information on John Deere engine
serial numbers was previously included in the September, 1985 GEM,
page 7.

F-12 Tractors with Waukesha ‘L’ Head Engines’

Several readers responded to this question, and all were in
general agreement as follows:

IHC built 2,527 F-12 tractors with the Waukesha L-head engines.
These have the serial numbers 501-3035 except s/n 601 to 608 which
had the IHC 3 x 4 inch engine, probably as prototypes for later

22/8/23 Letz Burr Mills

We have a No. 9 Letz burr mill manufactured at Crown Point,
Indiana. It appears to be an older and lighter built model than the
picture in 22/8/23. The color is an orange hopper about like
Allis-Chalmers orange. Everything else is a medium blue color. This
includes all lettering, support legs, etc. The pulley is
leather-faced. The sheet metal of the hopper has ‘Letz No.
9’ plus the patent dates of October, 1911; May, 1916;
September, 1916; April, 1917; and October, 1917. Lloyd Conrad,
105090 W. Carpenter, Greenfield, WI 53228.

Note: Mr. Conrad wrote a rather extensive letter about his
experiences with the Letz mills over the years. From the
Reflector’s own observations, there must have been Letz burr
mills by the tens of thousands in the Midwest, plus who knows how
many more in other sections of the country. As a youngster, we
never had a burr mill on our farm, since all of our grinding was
done with an old Bearcat hammermill built by Western Land Roller
Company. It was belted to our old John Deere D tractor, and boy
could you make it’ talk! About the only problem we ever had was
that the ball bearing on the belt pulley side went bad one time,
and getting the, remains of the old one off without a cutting torch
or similar instrument made this quite a challenge indeed!


We have nothing to report in the Modelmaker’s Corner this


Stop to think for a moment! In an engine operating at 1,000 RPM,
there are 2000 strokes of the piston every sixty seconds. The
entire time for each of these strokes is 3/ 100ths of a second. Now
assume that the maximum lift of the valve is ? inch plus the 1/32
inch clearance between the stem and rocker arm. Now if this wear be
permitted to increase to 1/16th of an inch, then the valve can only
lift 7/32 of an inch for a reduction in the opening of 12.5%.
Obviously a change in valve opening of this magnitude is going to
affect engine performance. Even stationary engines operating at 300
RPM will be affected. The point is this-by taking some time with
your engines you can improve their performance considerably.

To minimize the problem of rapid filling and emptying of the
cylinders certain Twin City tractor models used two intake and two
exhaust valves for each cylinder, or a total of sixteen valves in a
four-cylinder engine. Each cylinder was 4? inches in diameter, and
each one carried four valves that were 1? inches in diameter. While
costly to build, this design was one of the most innovative tractor
engine developments of the 1930’s.

  • Published on Oct 1, 1987
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