Another Engine Saved

By Staff
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1921 5 HP Model F Economy.

2621 West400hl Warsaw, Indiana46580

Early May brings on spring crops and planning for the Waukee
Swap Meet. In the past, my son, Larry Holder-man and I had attended
without making prior arrangements for motel rooms. 1993 was better,
as accommodations were obtained in early January.

After over twenty-five years in law enforcement, I am now a
criminal investigator for the Kosciusko County Prosecutor’s
Office, and my son is a deputy sheriff with the Kosciusko County
Sheriff Department. We arranged our work schedules so we could
leave our homes in northern Indiana at noon on Thursday, with plans
to be in Waukee that night, and attend the meet early Friday
morning. Approximately eight hours of driving brought us to our
motel, about seven miles from the show, where we stopped for the

The following morning, arising early, we were at the grounds
before 8:00 a.m. Evidence of prior rains were found, with extremely
threatening weather. The darkening skies held for less than an
hour, when everything opened up. The sponsors of the meet should be
commended for opening their buildings for shelter from the storm.
Between showers, we checked much of the display, finally choosing a
5 HP Economy Model F on trucks. The engine was owned by a gentleman
from Missouri, who stated it ‘ran last year.’ A price was
agreed on, and after getting lunch and checking more of the
grounds, we went back to the parking lot, which by then had turned
into a mud bog. Thanks again to the operator of the F-series
Far-mall tractor for pulling our pickup and trailer from the sea of

Loading was accomplished by rolling the engine off the former
owner’s trailer and winching it onto our tilt-bed trailer. As
we were blocking the drive for others, a quick tie-down was done
and we pulled out onto I-80 a short distance to a rest area where
the engine was secured for the long drive home. More rain was then
encountered, along with many construction delays. Hours later,
coming through Chicago, our trailer and tie-downs were
‘tested’ by the spring chuck holes that had not been

The following morning, after arriving home, the always needed
‘before’ pictures were taken and the new purchase was taken
into our shop. An attempt was made to start the engine, and a few
feeble pops were obtained, so we felt it could be

After complete disassembly and sandblasting, valve guides were
installed, valves replaced, the cylinder honed and new rings were
installed. All worn parts were rebuilt to take up any wear and the
engine was primed and the first color coat applied. It was found
the mounting wood had rotted and the entire cart was rebuilt. After
completely finishing the cart, it was covered with a thin film of
plastic, and the engine base was bolted in place over the

This was done for ease of handling the engine during final
assembly, and keeping the paint off the cart. The remainder of the
engine was assembled and the final coats of color applied. The thin
plastic was then pulled from around the mounting bolts and the
magneto that had been reworked by my son was installed. Initial
starting was not satisfactory, until we realized the tape on the
mixer adjusting needle was not correct. With this taken care of, we
now have an engine that is ready for next year’s shows.

Engine collecting and restoring is a hobby in which the whole
family can participate in. My sons, Larry and Bryan Holderman, also
have antique tractors that we have restored. Discovering storage
space was going fast, we started restoring the old engines, finding
it equally fascinating, and not requiring as much room for storage.
Every engine we work on finds us gaining more knowledge of our
hobby. As we are eager to learn more, we are always looking for the
next engine.

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