A Brief Word

| September/October 1995

  • 3 HP International engine
    Chris Madeley
  • Old road grader
    Lisa Frohmader
  • Fairbanks-Morse engine
    Bob Mellin
  • Old road grader
    Lisa Frohmader

  • 3 HP International engine
  • Old road grader
  • Fairbanks-Morse engine
  • Old road grader

The first Ageless Iron Expo is now history. Held at Ankeny, Iowa, from July 1 to July 4, the preliminary figures come up with a paid attendance of about 55,000. These folks came to see nearly 1,300 tractors! There were many notable exhibits, including what was probably the largest assemblage of the relatively scarce Co-op tractors ever since the time of production. There were OilPulls, a Peoria, a Minneapolis-built Ford, plus many other rare and one-of-a-kind tractors. Within the various tractor makes were notable and rare models of Deere, IH, Allis-Chalmers, Ford, Massey-Harris, Caterpillar, Case, and many others.

While not a highly publicized part of the show, there was an excellent display of gas engines, along with a wonderful exhibit of model engines, tractors, and farm equipment. The tractors pulls were incredible, with two tracks running simultaneously; this part of the show attracted thousands of spectators.

Perhaps one of the most notable, but unseen parts of the Expo was the spirit of cooperation between the various tractor clubs and other organizations. The Expo depended heavily on volunteer help, and the exhibitors in particular gave of themselves to help make the show a roaring success.

Those who attended gave the Expo a great 'thumbs up' and for those who didn't, it'll be a couple of years before there's a repeat performance. Already we're hearing things like, 'Boy, I sure wish I had brought my tractor,' or 'I'll be at the next one!'

One of the comments heard most often could be summed up as, 'I sure hope some of the people that run 'my show' were here to take notes.' The point to their conversation was that the Expo introduced a lot of new and innovative ideas as to how a show should be run. Most of the people at the cutting edge had never set up a show of this kind before, but came up with their own ideas. From some of the many conversations we had, it's probable that a lot of fresh new ideas will be incorporated into other engine and tractor shows.

Another great plus was that the gathering of all these tractors into one place permitted us to acquire numerous color samples for our continuing list of paint color information. We picked up several color matches using our DuPont Spectra Master book, while the PPG people were on hand doing the same thing; the PPG people even brought their paint color computer. The tractor restoration clinics and the demostration for pouring new babbitt bearings added extra zest as well.

Ye olde Reflector was delighted to be on hand. We met a great many folks with whom we've corresponded for years, even though our paths never seemed to cross. Notable among these was Alan King who is a regular advertiser in GEM. Alan and I have a friendship going back a quarter century, and it was a delight for both of us to finally meet face-to-face. Judy Whiteside was on hand from GEM, along with husband Ken, and these folks, along with Patrick Ertel and wife, the Richard Hains, and Kurt and Jane Aumann made our publications tent a delightful abode for a few days.

On behalf of myself, Sheila, and Allyssa, our thanks to all who stopped by while at the Expo.

We've got a lot of material to cover this month, so we'll begin with:

30/9/1 IHC Engine and Witte Q. What is the year built of a 3 HP International engine, s/n B48252? This engine was imported into Japan by Taimei Shokai Company Ltd. of Tokyo, and was used to power machinery in a tea factory in Kumamoto. It is now owned by Mr. Nishida of Kumamoto. What type of magneto was fitted to this engine? Where might I locate one, as the original is missing? Also, what is the year built for a Witte 2 HP engine, s/n B14152? Chris Madeley, 207 Park Heim Yoga Itchome, 1-19-19 Yoga Seta-gay a-ku, Tokyo 158, Japan.

A Your engine was made in 1922. It used an International Type L rotary low tension magneto. The Witte was built in July 1924.

30/9/2 Fairbanks Compressor Q. See the photo of a 3 HP Fairbanks-Morse engine, s/n 539321 with an attached F-M compressor. Can you tell me when this engine was sold, and to whom? Bob Mellin, Balboa Publishing Corporation, 11 Library Place, San Anselmo, CA 94960.

A The engine is of 1923 vintage, so we would assume the entire unit to have been built at that time.

30/9/3 Gilson Q.. I recently purchased a 1 HP Gibon Style U, 60-speed engine. Do you have any information on this model? It is s/n 22953. I would like to correspond with other owners of Gilson engines like mine. Zach Nagel, 91765 S CR 380 W., Rensselaer, IN 47978.

A We've never come across anything more than a magazine advert of this engine. Is there someone out there with something more?

30/9/4 Road Grader Q. See the two pictures of an old road grader we are restoring. We would like to know the make, when it was built, or other information. Lisa Frohmader, W9945 30th St West, Camp Douglas ,W154618.

A We've not seen a grader like this one. Can anyone be of help?

30/9/5 Information Needed Q. Can anyone supply information on a Witte 3 HP, s/n 58021? 1 also have a 3 HP Sandwich, s/n B25390, and would like to know its age. Any other information on this engine would also be appreciated. Jon Hodgdon, 16 Louise St., Gorham, ME 04038.

AYour Witte was built in 1922. No serial number information exists for the Sandwich; however it was likely built in the 1916-25 period.

30/9/6 Kohler Light Plant Q. What is the proper paint color for a 1926 Kohler four-cylinder light plant? I would also like to find a source for parts. My e-mail address on the Internet is Ron Thompson, PO Box 96, Panacea, FL 32346.

A We haven't yet found a color match for the Kohler engine line. Can anyone advise so that we can include this information for future use?



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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