Beginner's Luck

New Collector's First Engine Happens to be a 2 HP Sandwich

| April/May 2004

Sandwich MFG Nameplate

Showing serial no. A242999, this remarkably original Sandwich (except for the muffler and fuel tank) dates to 1924. It only took two hours to get it back in running condition. We should all be so lucky!

A few years ago, I got permission to hunt on the property of a gentleman who is sort of a hermit. After a couple years passed by, I began repairing things for him around his cranberry bogs. Out of curiosity, my dad, who was just getting interested in old engines, asked me to inquire if he had any hit-and-miss engines.

On my next visit, I relayed my father's question, and the man replied that he did indeed have an engine. I asked if he wanted to sell it, and he said, 'no.' I didn't give the engine much thought after that, but about six months later the gentleman asked me if my dad still wanted an engine. I said, 'yes.'

I told him I'd be back later with someone to help me put it in my truck, but he insisted that if I wanted it, I had to take right then. About an hour later I had the engine in my truck, and I asked him how much he wanted for it. He didn't want money. Instead, he asked me if I could get him a few Massachusetts license plates from 1900 to 1920, since that's what he collects.

Before I left, he told me the engine had always been kept inside and was originally used to run the shakers and the conveyor belts for the cranberry operation, and that it hadn't been started in years. It's a Sandwich 2 HP with a tulip-top hopper, and it appears to have all the original pin striping and labeling on it. The gentleman told me the only thing not original to the engine was the gas tank and the muffler.

I drove straight to my dad's house, walked in and told him, 'you owe me big time.' He asked what I meant, and I told him I had a one-lunger in my truck for him. His eyes lit up, and he rushed right out to see it. My father was like a little kid at Christmas time. My mom said he couldn't sleep that night, because he kept thinking of the engine.