A Reader Responds: MORE INFORMATION ON LAUSON & BUCHI


| July/August 1989



Mac Sine, 9025 Phoebe Court, Annan dale, Virginia 22003, recently wrote to GEM, saying, 'During 1988, among the many topics that appeared in the 'Reflections' column were Lauson engines and Dr. Alfred Buchi and Turbocharging. I would like to make the following comments regarding these subjects.

Lauson engines are represented by the following photographs: 23/5/23 and 23/8/21. I have had a special interest in Lauson engines of all ages and models from the beginning of my interest in engines and over the years have managed to compile a fairly complete collection of Lauson literature spanning from approximately 1910 through the 1950's. I also have number of actual Lausons from the various model groups built through the 1950's.

Over the years I have had good rapport with people at Tecumseh Products Company (Lauson's parent since 1956); as far as anyone knows, pre-Tecumseh serial number lists or production records no longer exist. I can provide approximate manufacturing dates by comparison with some of my dated literature. Key points on the spoke flywheel models are the model or casting letter(s) along with the horsepower rating, the ignition sys tem, style of carburetor and whether or not the engine has a cast full-length crankcase cover. Key points on the disc flywheel models are the type of ignition, location of spark plug, type of crankcase cover and type of teeth on timing gears. All other air and water cooled models are fairly easy to approximately date.

Another dating clue is how the company name is listed on the name-plate. Prior to approximately 1932, the name was John Lauson Manufacturing Company. From about 1932 through 1936 the name was Lauson Corporation, and from approximately 1936 through 1941 the name was Lauson Company.

There seems to have been some sort of transitional phase with some of the earliest high speed air and water cooled models receiving John Lauson nameplates. Engines produced during Hart-Carter Company's ownership of Lauson (1941-1956) still said Lauson Company on the nameplate and, excluding inboard marine engines and outboard motors, continued to end model designations with the letter C. Following Tecumseh's purchase of the company and subsequent updating of the product line the ending model letter was changed to an H.

The March/April 1975 issue of GEM carried my article 'Lauson Engines, Their History and Development', in which I reviewed Lauson engines produced until Tecumseh's acquisition of the company. Since then I have not uncovered any additional information which would war rant revision of my original 'guesstimates' of production dates.