Christmas Crank-Up: Hit-and-Miss Engines

35 hit-and-miss engines in motion add to the holiday cheer for Texas collectors

| April/May 2011

Ronnie Kleypas with hia 2 HP Baker Ball Hopper Monitor short neck

Ronnie Kleypas of Westphalia, TX, kneels with the pride and joy of his gas engine collection, a 2 HP Baker "Ball Hopper" Monitor short neck. Ronnie and Larry brothers of Marlin, TX, organized a "Christmas Crank-Up" at Ronnie's home with 25 area collectors displaying 35 engines.

The 2nd Annual Christmas Crank-Up was held Dec. 11, 2010, at the home of Ronnie Kleypas in Westphalia, TX. Kleypas and Larry Brothers of Marlin hosted the event. They began collecting and restoring hit-and-miss engines in 1990, and have discovered a lot of common interest for hit-and-miss engines in the surrounding rural communities.

Great engines, great time 

The event drew 25 collectors from the Westphalia, Bremond, Marlin, Temple and Waco area to view 35 hit-and-miss engines. Twenty-six of the hit-and-miss engines are owned by Kleypas, who was hooked after purchasing and restoring his first, a 1924 2 HP Witte engine. He thought it was a hit-and-miss engine when he made the purchase, but after getting it home discovered he had a throttle-governed engine instead. Since then he has become more knowledgeable after restoring approximately 50 engines. His pride and joy is a 2 HP Baker “Ball Hopper” Monitor short neck. 

Brothers displayed favorites from his collection including a 1-1/2 HP Foos Jr. engine and a 1-1/2- 3 HP Ellis two-cycle engine. Butch Andreski of Bremond brought his favorites including a 1916 7 HP Baker “Ball Hopper” Monitor on its original cart, a 1909 3 HP International Famous upright, and a 1900 4 HP Ohio sideshaft, s/n 4. Neighbors Edwin Green and Jim Whaley also displayed.

It was a beautiful, clear Texas day and a lot of good food, conversation, and fellowship were shared by all. For more information on the engines displayed, contact Ronnie Kleypas at