One of three known surviving Rumely trucks, 1918 half ton four cylinder model.
Rumely Collector's News 12109 Mennonite Church Road Tremont, Illinois 61568
One thing I've learned through years of attending antique farm machinery shows, is that the folks there tend to look at the bright side of things. The people who attended Rumely Collector's EXPO II in Canandaigua, New York, were no exception. Standing in the exhibitor's tent during one of the frequent downpours, packed elbow to elbow with other soggy show-goers, one fella summed up the general mood when he said, 'Well, at least there ain't no dust!'
Dust was one scarce commodity alright, but the show was no rainout either. There were enough breaks in the drizzle for Expo-goers to take in what might be a once in a lifetime collection of some of the rarest pieces of Rumely machinery in one place! On Friday, the one rainless day, a 15-30 model F OilPull kicked things off with a plowing demonstration. How many times have you seen that? And a walk around machinery row encircling the big Expo tent was like the feeling archaeologists must have had when they opened King Tut's tomb!
Some of the treasures included one of the two surviving (of only two manufactured) Rumely Line Drive tractors. The experimental Line Drive was Rumely's brief entry into the 'woo-'em away from horses by sellin' a tractor that drives with reins' business, and it sure wowed the crowd by backing up, snaking around OilPulls and turning on a dime. The Rumely 8-16 Ideal-Pull All-Purpose tractor also got its share of stares. This odd looking three-wheeler sported a swiveling driver's seat and gear lever so it could be driven from either direction! One of three known Rumely trucks, a 1918 1 ton model, navigated the muddy roads, reminding the old timers of trips down the wagon-rutted lanes to town on Saturday morning with a load of egg crates and milk cans.
A 12-20 OilPull with chain drive was another rare bird thought to be the result of an after-the-sale factory add-on. Perhaps the rarest of all was the 15-30 Model F OilPull road roller! This tractor was specially converted with a roller attachment to do work in the LaPorte factory yards. A 20 HP Rumely-Falk engine and 18 HP Rumely-Olds engine harkened back to Rumely's attempt to expand their line ala International Harvester. A rare Rumely Gas Pull, a former Advance-Thresher Co. product, drove over the grounds at a stately two MPH.
A bit more common, but rare pieces in their own right, were almost 50 Rumely OilPulls, '6's and Do-Alls that crowded the grounds! On hand were seven 25-40 Xs; three 30-50 Ys; two 40-60 Zs; two 20-40 Gs; six 20-30 Ws; two 15-25 Ls; three 25-45 Rs; one 30-60 S; one 20-35 M; two Rumely 6s; two Rumely Do-Alls; one 14-28 H; six 16-30 Hs; one 25-45 B; one 30-60 E; one 15-30 F; one 18-35 F; one 15-30 F Roller; three 12-20s; one 12-20 chain drive; and one 25-40 Oil Turn skid engine.
In the implement category were a rare Advance-Rumely silo filler and a Rumely 5-bottom plow. An Advance-Rumely 22-inch threshing machine put on a good threshing display, matching up with various OilPulls and the occasional steam engine. The old girl was rigged with a bagging attachment, giving the crowd a rare view of 'sack threshing.'
The Canandaigua Show is located in the beautiful Finger Lakes region of western New York state. A banquet Saturday evening was held at a beautiful 'Inn on the Lake' resort supper club on Lake Canandaigua. Besides some interesting speakers and the traditional auctioning of the Rumely Expo Show banner, more than 100 Rumely fans were on hand for the creation of the Rumely Products Collector's Association. This organization has been created to help support the yearly Expos and generally promote the preservation of Rumely machines and history. Family memberships are available at $15.00. More information may be obtained by writing George Bronson at 6406 West Q Avenue, Kalamazoo, Michigan 49009.
It rained enough Sunday to make loading up a real adventure, as the loading ramps slicked up and OilPulls were pressed into service to push their brothers up the muddy inclines. The Case steam engine incline looked almost friendly after watching a couple of these boys slop around onto their trucks!
A king's ransom of rare catalogs, books, dealer signs and posters, fobs, photos and memorabilia were displayed at the exhibitors tent. In all, it was 'One mess o' Rumely,' as someone put it!
Rumely Collector's Expo III will be held in Georgetown, Ohio, on August 10-13, 1995. They have quite an act to follow, but claim they are up to it! Some of the rare pieces expected include several 30-60 E OilPulls, 25-45 B OilPull, 8-16 AllPurpose, Gas Pull, 30-60 Aultman-Taylor, Rumely corn sheller, clover huller, ensilage cutter and threshers, and much, much more!
Please remember, the Rumely Collector's Expos welcome collectors of all related companies associated with the Rumely Empire, including Advance Thresher Company, Aultman-Taylor, Gaar-Scott, Northwest Thresher, Falk and Olds Engines, etc. We extend a warm welcome to all our friends who are fans of these companies! For more information on Expo III '95, please contact Ed Fiscus, 2466 Bethel Maple Pike, Bethel, Ohio 45106, (513) 734-2791.
For more information on the Rumely Expo Series and available videos, please contact the official Expo magazine, Rumely Collector's News, c/o Scott Thompson, 12109 Mennonite Church Road, Tremont, Illinois 61568.