R.D.1, Box 78, Troy New York 12180
Having just gotten interested in collecting old gas engines only
last summer (1967), we have been very lucky in what we have found
We first located, in a tractor dealer’s backshed, a 1/4 hp.
Fairbanks Bulldog and our last find was an 8 Hp. Otto (pat’d
1893), on wheels. In between are a 6 Hp. Foos, all finished and on
wheels. Also a small Hp. Detroit vertical, a 2 Hp. Taylor Vacuum, a
4 Hp. Waterloo Boy, a 5 Hp. Fairbanks-Morse Style B, a 5 Hp.
Satterly on wheels with buzz saw, an 8 Hp. horizontal ‘What is
it?’ and two Fairbanks (not F-M) vertical engines, both 7
Fairbanks Vertical – junior model.
THE MIGHTY MILLER
Here are two views of 125 Hp. Miller No. 1419 as we found her
last year after following a lead kindly supplied by Mr. Howard
Yoder. She is a side-by-side twin with on flywheel in the center,
and one of the few four cycle engines to use crossheads. She runs
on natural gas and uses Watts pressure-balanced exhaust valves,
Bosch high tension rotary mag, Massey-Jahns throttling governor
head, and White Star oil filter. Power cylinders are 15 x 23,
flywheel 82 diameter by 20 inch face. A 16 inch leather belt ran on
its rim. This engine was built in 1914 by the Miller Improved Gas
Engine Co. of Springfield, Ohio, and powered the Ziegler Milling
Co. in Bucyrus. Everything was five feet below ground level, so it
took lots of winching as well as five truck loads to get her home.
All major parts have now been moved to the Kinzer show grounds, and
we plan to begin erection this summer. Ellis Wellman and I each
have a 50 horse single cylinder Miller too. Collection of John P.
Wilcox, 47 Deland Ave, Columbus, Ohio 43214.
We will write later about some of the other engines, but thought
you might be interested in the Fairbanks verticals. Neither engine
had nameplates on them and we never knew what make they were till
we spoke with Wes Hammond at the Fairville Reunion this summer. Wes
identified the one which we brought with us and later sent us a
copy of Directions for Installing and Maintaining Fairbanks
Gasoline Engines – number 425. This manual illustrates both
engines. We are enclosing a photo of the Junior Model and think you
will find it quite similar to the engine on page 22 of your
Sept-Oct. 1968 issue.
I received my GEM recently and while reading it, I came across
the article written by Harry Bonnema about the old corn planter. I
have one that was made in 1878 that operates the same way. Also
have a corn harvester and a one horse grain drill, along with other
horse drawn equipment that I have restored. One in particular is a
hay tedder that is 125 years old.
I also have a total of 14 – 1 cyl. engines, 3 McCormick tractors
– and 8 X 16, a 10 X 20 and also a 9 X 16 Heider.
The above pictures were taken at our local Firemen’s Fair
where I displayed the machinery and pumped water with a pump jack
powered with a Tom Thumb I H C engine, shelled corn with a Sandwich
corn sheller, powered with a Stover Engine. Ground corn on the
grist mill powered with a Fairbanks-Morse.
An excellent threshing scene taken on the M. Burns farm located
8 miles west of Hecla, South Dakota. The tractor is a 25-45 1911
Model B Oilpull and is pulling a 36-60 Rumely separator. Ed Burns
is standing in front of the tractor. The picture was taken in 1912
by F. Marquardt of Hecla, South Dakota, which is located 50 miles
northeast of Aberdeen, South Dakota.
We located this first vertical close to our home, being used as
a lawn ornament with Morning Glorys growing up and around it on
strings. It hadn’t been used or even turned over in twenty
years and was just one solid piece of rust. We worked on it all
last winter and by May had it all repainted and running again. We
had to take it completely apart, making some new parts to replace
those rusted beyond repair. The water pump was o.k. but the rest of
the cooling system is new. We forgot to put safety ‘keeps’
on the new valves and when one of the lock pins came out while
running, we ‘lost’ the valve down in on top of the
Luckily, the valve bent and only chipped a piece our of the edge
of the pis-‘ton without scoring or otherwise hurting anything.
A little brazing of the piston, some lathe work, a new valve with
safeguards and we were back running and off to Fairville.
The other Fairbanks vertical, we found late in the Spring. The
first thing we looked for was the nameplate, but no luck. This
engine has a different carburetor and someone has replaced the
igniter with a spark plug and worked up a timing ‘wiper’ on
the cam gear.
We believe from the manual that this is a Type A engine. The
fuel pump arrangement on the Type A is identical to Mr.
Ginnow’s picture, where as the Junior model has its’ pump
under the main bearing on the drive pulley side. The water pump on
the Junior model is run by a leather belt over a drive pulley on
the main shaft. The water tank and screen are not original, but
work fine. We take the cap off the exhaust pipe when running. Both
engines have 32′ OD flywheels, 6? bore and 6?’ stroke.
There are no names or numbers cast or stamped any where on these
There is quite a bit of cleaning, repairing and work to be done
of the second engine, but it will have to wait its’ turn. We
are working on our ‘unknown’ now and the Otto will be next.
We would like to bring one of these to Fairville next year.
My 22-45 Aultman-Taylor that I bought from Mrs. John Gustafson
at Palco, Kansas several years back. Mr. Gustafson bought this
engine new and it is in fine shape. Harold Ottaway of Wichita
hauled it home for me. Harold is the best hauler in the business
and he also made the top for the A & T.
My first tractor, a 1931 model. This is a GP John Deere wide
tread. Most were GP and took three rows.
Our late son, Duane Norman. Picture taken in 1936.
John Deere D 1935. International Gas Engine, 1 Hp. and Gerald.
Gerald pictured with 1919 Oil Pull.