Concrete Mixer Story

By Staff
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Two views of the mixer 'before.'

6613 State Route 158, Millstadt, Illinois 62260-1741

I have a concrete mixer sold by Sears Roebuck & Company, to
my father and his brother in the early 1920s. It had an Economy
engine, with a Wico mag.

I remember this outfit at about the age of 10 and thereafter.
From the age of about 16, 1 mixed many a load of concrete on the
home place, as well as when it was loaned out to several farmers to
pour foundations for chicken houses. My father would send me along
with the mixer as I had a knack for keeping the engine running, and
my help shoveling in the aggregate was always welcome. The mixer
stayed in the family greenhouse business until 1987, when it passed
on to the new owner. After seven years, I was able to purchase it
back in October of 1994.

It was very well worn, and the last seven years, really much
abused. I must have removed 65 pounds of concrete in and out of it.
The lower half of the mixing drum was worn very thin and was rusted
out badly, so the three sections were replaced with new 14 gauge
material. Four new drum rollers and shafts were turned in my South
Bend lathe to replace the old worn ones. About six welds were made
to repair cracks in the cast iron parts. Also a bronze bearing for
the main drive shaft was made to replace the worn out Babbitt
bearing.

The restoration process was finished June 1995. If my memory
serves me correctly, the original Economy engine, another Economy
(used) like it, a 5 HP B & S, a ? HP electric motor, plus some
tractor power by belt, furnished power for this mixer in the
past.

I now have a Hercules 1 HP engine on it as of September 1997.
The serial number is 304676. The engine looks identical to the
Economy, except that it has a crank guard, which the Economy did
not. The mounting bolt pattern on the Economy was 5 x 16 inches,
while the Hercules is 5 x 20 inches. All cast iron parts of the
mixer have an AM prefix. The large round main frame that supports
the four rollers has A M 1 E on it. The rest of the cast iron parts
are A M 2-3-4-5-6-7-8-9-10-11-12-13-14.

I wrote to Sears Archives for information on the mixer and the
engine. They sent me two copies from their 1928 Concrete Machinery
Catalog, as well as a copy from their main catalog showing the
earliest Economy 1 HP engine with Wico mag, in the 1924 issue. The
mixer as seen on the copies is very much like mine, however: (1) My
main frame channel is 4′. (2) My mixer never did have grease
cups anywhere, only oil holes. (3) Never had a manufacturers name
plate. (4) Mine had a Babbitt bearing on the main drive shaft. (5)
Mine has cast iron rims and hub with steel spokes for wheels.

I would like to know where this mixer was made, as well as the
years. On the bottom of the trailer model copy, it says,
‘shipped from factory in Ohio.’

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