Reffering to Vol. 4, No. 1 Gem

| March/April 1969

  • 5 horse Superior mill model
    This shot of the 35 horsepower Superior mill model shows her installed in her new home on the Rough and Tumble showgrounds at Kinzers, Pa., where she has been performing for visitors this fall. This jewel was found in a decrepit flour mill in Reedy, W.Va., where it had served since 1914. A new exhaust valve and spring had to be made, but otherwise it was in very nice condition. She was built for natural gas, but we are running on propane with excellent results. Ignition is dual high tension, with both Wico RI mag and timer for vibrator coil at end of the side shaft. The throttling governor works very well on this model — she rarely speaks above a whisper. Built by the Superior Gas Engine Co., Springfield, Ohio, no. 35013, 12 x 18, 210 rpm. See her in operation May 10, 1969, at the R&T Spring Opening. Collection of John P. Wilcox.
    Courtesy John P. Wilcox

  • 5 horse Superior mill model

1615 San Francisco St., San Antonio, Texas 78201

It seems to me some simple method, selected by the individual GEM reader, for marking or indexing somehow, the location of the different engines and tractors on the pages of GEM, as found in the various stories in the issues of GEM, would be helpful. I see very similar questions coming up again and again, about a certain make of engine, which some contributors have already answered; even I have answered some of these later-duplicated questions in some of my earlier contributions. It is wonderful for just anyone of our readers to actually write in for anything they feel they would like to write about; and GEM may need the material. So let's not discourage anyone in the least. But I notice it is hard to get some of my 'Observations' published, probably because so much other material getting in ahead of mine, or GEM is getting a deluge of material, to where my long-winded replies are not desirable. And I suppose another demerit brought on by myself is: I was so sure my . . . CRABB vs. 'CRAFF' .'.'.'story would be published in Vol. 4 No. 1, that I went ahead and referred to that story (G vs. G) in the now-published 'OBSERVATIONS' in Vol. 4 No. 1, page 3. In other words, I was really banking on my two separate articles being published in the one Vol. 4, No. 1, Well, my dear GEM staff, I'm sorry I seemingly got too over-bearing and made it look like I plain expected you to get it all printed in Vol. 4, No. I thereby losing the opportunity to get all my material in as I had hoped for, after all. Nevertheless, the big article (C vs. C is in response to about a dozen projects; really belonged in Vol. 3, No. 6; therefore it's urgent! I just want to let you readers know my point of view; still, as is, I may be quality of pushing some of your treasured stories out of print, or being delayed; and I don't want to do that! Now back to marking the spots in GEM so it will be easier to relocate data, etc., on certain engines and tractors, it might aid, as a subscriber reads thru his fresh copy of GEM, if he could take red ink and under-line the names of the engines, having questions or data of interest, or mark the spot beside the name on the margin of the page data is found on. Then, anytime later in looking for reference, just page thru the copies of GEM and note the red markings. A reader could work up his own card filing-system, a method I have started with; or, he might like to try Roger L. Eshelman's index advertised in GEM, an index for each volume of GEM. I'd like to add here that I, for one, don't like the language of the news-paper writers who sometimes cover our hobby; their photos of the shows, etc., are good and should be used. I'd say, let the experienced old-timer, whether a power-farmer of the past, or an old engine-operator in the days of old, let him write the story and tell him please don't be self-conscious about the wording or grammar, because you know the so-called 'uneducated old-timers' are real GEMS, and they can tell us a lot from their first-hand experiences, that reads much more down-to-earth than any educated pro-news-writer can write it, especially with something he isn't experienced in. Let's encourage all readers, tho they hesitate a little, to send in their experiences of their early-days in power-farming operations for publication in GEM.

Referring to Vol. 4, No. 1 in GEM, let's start with page 3 on which is pictured a so-called GIBRALTAR engine. Some purchaser or Company painted that name on the engine, but they didn't build it. I agree with George T. Martin, R.R.2, Wyaconda, Mo., 63474, that the engine is an OTTAWA, 1-? or 2 hp. I have no early OTTAWA catalog or early OTTAWA specifications, but George writes me that he has an engine exactly like the one page 3. Incidentally, at first I didn't know just which GEM page 3 referred to, because it was two days after I got his letter that my Vol. 4 No. I arrived. He goes on in his letter, stating his OTTAWA has an auxiliary-exhaust on the pulley-side, which is not shown in the picture on page 3. I have a few user-testimonial-sheets, with poor pictures, tho, but I can see that both the 1-? hp., and the 2 hp. OTTAWA engines had auxiliary-exhausts once, even some 5 hp. sizes had it, and the engines look the one on page 3, which could be a 1910-12 engine. OTTAWA also built two horizontal air-cooled engines, sizes 1-? hp. and 2 hp. Geo. E. Long, who was President of the Company 60 or more years ago, states that he perfected his first gas engine in 1903; and organized the OTTAWA MFG. GO., Ottawa, Kansas, in 1904, and sold direct-to-user I ever since. OTTAWA engines were sold on the 90-day money-back trial-period, and the engines were guaranteed for 10 years. I noticed the 1916 engines didn't have the auxiliary-exhaust anymore. They were built in sizes 1-? to 22 hp. in 1916. I wish Ruben Michelson, and Geo. T. Martin, each would send me, or in to GEM, the bore and stroke, and flywheel diameter, for my files, of their OTTAWA engines. Also, I would like both men to check and let me know if their OTTAWA engines have off-set cylinders like OTTAWA literature states they have; which means the axis of the cylinder is about ? inch higher than the axis of the crankshaft, giving the piston less down-ward thrust (horizontal engines) on the power-stroke. Only a few engines were built with this feature; without checking further, I know that OTTAWA engines, and several OILPULL tractor motors, like the models K - H - G - L -M-R-S-W-X-Y-Z have this feature incorporated in their design. Must say don't think 1 ever saw an OTTAWA engine. And, in answer to Geo. T. Martin's question, 1 never heard of a CAMPBELL IRON WORKS, St. Louis, Mo., gas-engine. Geo. writes he has one, about 3 hp., and I'd like to see a picture of it! Never heard of a GIBRALTAR engine either!

On page 6, Bob Hughes' 18-36 HART-PARR tractor No. 26907 is shown as he hauled it home. I'd say it was built in latter part of 1926, or the early part of 1927; and it is a 2-speed tractor. HART-PARR 18-36 No. 28851 and up are 3-speed tractors, probably coming out in latter part of 1927. I believe the fore-runner of the 18-36 HART-PARR was put on the market in 1916 as the 'New Hart-Parr', or, 'Hart-Parr 30', with a twin-cylinder horizontal, 6-? by 7 inch motor at 750 rpm. Bob's 18-36 has a 6-? by 7 motor 800 rpm. 6?- in. std. bore took affect with tractor No. 26001.

The Frank Tybush engine, shown on pages 9 and 17, and the 1-? hp. BULL DOG, Frank wrote about in his story on page 17, all these engines were built by the BATES & EDMONDS MOTOR CO., Lansing, Mich., and were only jobbed by the FAIRBANKS CO. The B.&E.M. Co. were building the verticals before they brought out the horizontal H. - C. BULL DOG engines. When my sidetracked story, mentioned earlier in this writing, is published, you will find more particulars about the FAIRBANKS CO.

Thank You, Anna Mae, for suggest-to J. Gordon Thomson, on page 28 in your SMOKE RINGS column, that I may be able to help Mr. Thomson in identifying his small gas engine. Of all the hundreds of gas engines built, I've actually only seen a very few of them; and there are so many I haven't heard of. I sure would like, very much, to help him; I seem to recall quite strongly that I had some engine parts on which the part numbers were prefixed with 'AA'. Last summer I built myself a 16 x 28 foot addition on to my engine shop. In order to make sufficient room to build, I had to stack lots of my loose parts in a pile. Now I don't know whether it is worthwhile to go thru this pile and hope to find some 'AA' parts! If I had a good picture of Mr. Thomson's engine, there is a possibility I could help him.


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