By Staff
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Ruben Michelson
Courtesy of Ruben Michelson, Anamoose, North Dakota 58710

Lynnville, Indiana 47619

After reading things written by other men and enjoying them, I thought that someone may enjoy a few things I have done. First, I will list some of the tractors that I have owned.

The first one was a IHC 8-16, sloping hood, four cylinder Dixie Mag. with impulse, chain drive and it ran on kerosene. I could sometimes have one half a days work done while some of my neighbors were getting their Fordsons started. We used this tractor on the farm, pulled road grader and corn shredder and we never had any trouble starting it. We bought this tractor new.

Then I bought a used Avery 18-36 to pull a grader. We rebuilt it, but it never had the power that it should have had for a tractor its size.

Got a new 15-30 spade lug McDeering and did a lot of corn shredding with it. Sometimes it was so cold, it could hardly turn the engine over, but it would always start. Later I got another used one and it was on rubber. We put a loader on it and dug some basements with it.

Then I had a 49 Ford, used it three years and traded it for a 52 Ford which I still have. I also have a M-IHC. That is my farm tractors and as I am 71 years old 1 will not need a tractor much longer.

My hobby has been rebuilding old gas engines and as it has been very hard to get Mags repaired for them, I have taken up Mag repairing. Got a Mag charging outfit and was having very good luck with them, but now my eyes have gone bad on me.

Oh yes–I worked at the Hercules Gas Engine Works at Evansville, Indiana the first year that I was married (51 years ago) testing engines. I do not see much about the Thermo which the company made while I worked. It started and ran on Kerosene, fired on comm. similar to todays Diesel, but you cranked it by hand.

Well, I lost a little daughter named Anna Mae, when she was about five years old. She was very dear to me, and that is the reason that I have followed writings of you and your family, Anna Mae – which I enjoy very much.

I have several gas engines, some running and some that need rebuilding.

One, a John Deere 1? that I found in a junk yard, runs like new. One is a Hercules that is rebuilt, same size and runs like new. One Stover needs some work on it and a Fairbanks Morse that needs rings on and a paint job.

This line up here is mostly the I.H.C. line of gas engines, restored, cleaned and painted. The one in ‘front’ of the car is the 3 H.P. type M. and its mate the VA H. P. type M.

At the left in the front row is the 3 to 5 H.P. BA model, in the middle is the 1? to 2? H.P. LB model.

Proudly holding up its own in the front row is the 2 H.P. model Z Fairbanks Morse engine.

In the past three years of the Gas Engine Magazine, we have seen a magazine grow so fast that in a short time it had more material than it could print. That’s a very health sign.

It has given the gas engine and tractor hobbyist’s an outlet for swapping information, to advertise our wants and needs, to have a magazine that speaks our language, and most of all a magazine we can call our own. We are fortunate in having some well informed people write regular articles of facts on engines, for this we say – Thank you fellow collector’s.

I love to go and see the old engines running and some of them sure do run better now than when they were new. I am a member of the Boonville Steam and Gas Engine Club. This year I felt too bad to enjoy it very much, as my health has not been good.

I am very glad to see so many of our young boys taking such an interest in the old engines and I am always glad to tell them anything that they may want to know, if I can.

I am also a steam man, as I have fired on the railroad and taken care of the engines at the mines. I truly love steam, but have never owned a steam engine.

You can work awful hard on a hobby–but is it work??

I had steam heat in our home, but last March I was very sick and the stoker went bad so we had oil put in. We like it very well, but it is not like steam heat. My wife was glad to see the steam leave as she was always afraid of it and did not like the radiators taking up so much room. So-now she is happy and I have to be.

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