Barney Kedrowski’s Baker Monitor

Gas engine restorer learns to cast with a 1909 4 hp Baker Monitor.

| August/September 2017

1909 4 hp Baker Monitor

Manufacturer: Baker Mfg. Co., Evansville, WI
Year: 1909
Serial Number: 3742
Horsepower: 4 hp @ 400rpm
Bore & stroke: 5in x 7in
Flywheel dia: 28in x 2-1/2in
Weight: 850lb
Cooling Capacity: 7-1/2 gallon
Ignition: Jump spark
Governing: Hit-and-miss

I’ve restored many engines over the last 12 years, so when I bought a 4 hp Monitor that was missing a water hopper and muffler, I knew it was going to be difficult, but I wanted a new challenge. You know the saying, “Be careful what you wish for, because you just might get it”? I truly understand that saying now!

The 4 hp Monitor is a relatively scarce engine, so I knew that parts for this engine would be hard to find. However, I already had a 4 hp Monitor in my collection that I would be able to use to make duplicate parts. It was time for me to take on a new skill – sand casting!


Sand casting is a process of making parts by duplicating the original parts, using sand as the mold to form the liquid metal. I had heard of sand casting, but had never done it. But I knew if I learned how to sand cast, I could make parts for this engine as well as others as long as I had an original part to copy. Parts are difficult to obtain for 100-plus-year-old engines, so I knew this skill could come in handy in the future!

I decided to learn this new skill working from library books, and I also purchased two books from ads in the back of Gas Engine Magazine (Metal Casting: A Sand Casting Manual for the Small Foundry, Volume 1 and 2). The books were great for reference, but YouTube videos were what really taught me the process! Videos give you almost hands on education, and I’m a visual learner. If school were as good as YouTube, I would have gone to college!