My Summer of Engine Activity


| March/April 1975



1926 Fairbanks-Morse 80 HP, 300 rpm'

A. L. McGowen

Scout Troop Visit on April 27, 1974 - the scouts are posed around the 1926 Fairbanks-Morse 80 HP, 300 rpm.

Courtesy of A. L. McGowen, Route 4, Box 379, Easley, South Carolina 29640

Down here in South Carolina around the last of March and the first of April, spring really begins to blossom. This is also the time an old engine enthusiast begins to start getting the fever to attend an engine show and display the engines he has restored during the winter and also renew acquaintance with old friends.

My summer of engine activity usually starts with dewinterization of the large Fairbanks-Morse diesels, by draining all the sumps where water has collected due to condensation, and refilling the cooling systems. Almost any day after the weather turns warm I can expect someone to stop by for a visit, and his first interest is to see the large F. M. diesel fired up. On April 13, Mr. Lloyd G. Hallead and wife from Michigan stopped by for a visit and demonstration on their way to Florida.

The first engine show in our area is held in Dillon, South Carolina which is a good four (4) hours drive for me. It was beginning to look as if the traveling for pleasure would be very restricted due to the gas shortage, but at about this time of the year things begin to get better. I knew with a light load I could make the distance one way on a tank of gas and had been assured of an equal amount for the return trip home.

I had been working all winter on a 1924, 5 H.P. throttle governor Hercules on a 1914, 6 H.P. Fair banks-Morse. These engines had really been a challenge to restore because of their rusty condition, but after many hours of work and worry I was proud and anxious to show them off. So on April 20 my local engine friends and I started to go to our first 1974 engine show with three (3) truck loads of engines. The weather was perfect and as for any engine show the renewal of old friendship and engine discussion was great. My Dad and brother, whom I hadn't seen since New Year's, met me there and that is always enjoyable. They don't have any engines, but as both have been mechanics most of their lives, really know how to appreciate a good running and well restored engine.