It's What?


| September/October 1996



Single cylinder gasoline engine

170 Waterford Avenue, Penticton, British Columbia, Canada V2A 3T7

The first times I walked past it at Derenzy Lake, I didn't even know it was an engine. Then, last August of 1995, I happened to have two friends with me; Dave Morgenstern and Bob Laycock, both of them seasoned mechanics. They informed me that 'thing' was an old single cylinder gasoline engine. It was partially hurled, and to me, an engine was the last thing it resembled! When they explained a little bit about the history of these engines and how old this one could be, I immediately wondered about the possibility of getting something like this running. 'You can pretty well fix anything,' was the response.

A closer examination found the bottom of the water jacket to be cracked from one end to the other and it looked like the bearings were melted. After checking around we found evidence of a fire that had gone through the area perhaps 70 years earlier. Whatever the engine had been mounted on was also long gone. It appeared that it had been used to pump water out of the lake for irrigation purposes further down the mountain.

At this point:, we were only half serious about the whole deal. The biggest problem would be getting it out. To get to the site requires a one hour drive into the mountains, then a one hour hike to the lake. Any equipment needed would have to be packed.

The next brainwave we had was to use a helicopter. Even though the cost would be high, Dave and I decided to talk to the owner of a company called 'Eclipse Helicopters' of Penticton, British Columbia. Over lunch we explained what we wanted to do and asked what costs could be involved in flying the engine out.

Well, the answer just about knocked us off our seats. It turned out the owner was as much into this as we were! He said he would fly it out on a weekend for nothing! Needless to say, things suddenly went into high gear.