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| December/January 2000

  • Hank, Eric and Jim Jonker with the Sandow'
    Hank, Eric and Jim Jonker with the Sandow at the Plymouth County Fair.
  • 1 HP Wilson
    My dad's 1 HP Wilson.

  • Hank, Eric and Jim Jonker with the Sandow'
  • 1 HP Wilson

1209 Albany PI. S.E. Orange City, Iowa 51041

I first saw this 6 HP Sandow over a dozen years ago in a grove near Remsen, Iowa. It was buried in trees, having last run in 1946. For 10 years, I was after its owner, Gary Larson, to sell it to me or do something with it, but he wouldn't part with it. I just wanted to hear that thing run. Finally we made a deal: he paid for all the parts, I did the labor for free, and when he dies it will go to me, my son Jim, or grandson Eric who is ten.

It took us an hour to get the engine out of the field with a tractor. Trees had grown through the tires and the wheels were rusted tight.

Jim, Eric and I worked on it for two years. I did the woodwork, built the seat, put the gas engine on and made the tongue. Eric enjoyed polishing the brass. Jim did the paint job. A number of friends lent their expertise, too. We picked up a lot of stuffy swap meets. The rings came out of Georgia, and the igniter was repaired in Ortonville, Minnesota.

We completed the Sandow in time to show it at the Orange City Tulip Festival in May, 2000, and at the Plymouth County Fair in Le Mars, Iowa, in July.

I've restored six engines over the last five to six years, but this is the biggest one I've ever done. One of the first ones I restored, (see picture), was this rare 1? HP Wilson that was my dad's. We're currently working on a 1 ? HP Hercules and a 1? to 2? HP International.


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