McIntosh & Seymour Gas Engine Steals the Show

Massive 575 HP McIntosh & Seymour gas engine stars at Le Sueur County Pioneer Power Show.

| August/September 2013

  • McIntosh & Seymour Diesel Engine
    A side view of the 545 HP McIntosh & Seymour diesel engine at home at the Le Sueur County (Minn.) Pioneer Power Show grounds. The generator unit is shown at front, with the engine at back. Inside the generator an armature spins, creating the magnetic field around the outside, which creates electricity.
    Photo Courtesy Dave Preuhs
  • McIntosh and Seymour Engine
    Quite a sight: The McIntosh & Seymour gas engine on its way to the Le Seuer grounds in 1986.
    Photo Courtesy Dave Preuhs
  • McIntosh and Seymour Gas Engine 2
    The engine sits beside the 5-foot-deep concrete pad where it will spend the remainder of its life.
    Photo Courtesy Dave Preuhs
  • 1930 McIntosh and Seymour Engine at Pioneer Power Grounds
    All the pieces of the 1930 McIntosh & Seymour engine at the Pioneer Power grounds.
    Photo Courtesy Dave Preuhs
  • Building a Home for the Gas Engine
    Erecting a building to house the McIntosh & Seymour.
    Photo Courtesy Dave Preuhs
  • Air Compressor
    The top of the air compressor.
    Photo Courtesy Dave Preuhs
  • Three Cylinders
    A side view of the three cylinders of the McIntosh & Seymour engine.
    Photo Courtesy Dave Preuhs
  • Rocker Arms
    This close-up shows the rocker arms on the top of one of the cylinders. 
    Photo Courtesy Dave Preuhs
  • Vossler & McIntosh
    The trio of rocker arms on the McIntosh & Seymour engine. Left is on the intake, right is on the exhaust, and the center arm opens the injector to spray fuel into the cylinders at the correct time. The canister above the center rocker arm is used to adjust a big spring that changes the pressure for the fuel. The need for pressure adjustment can be determined by putting a pressure gauge in line, or else by listening to how the engine is running.
    Photo Courtesy Dave Preuhs
  • McIntosh & Seymour Engine
    The three items at the bottom of the big tank alongside of the engine are used to bleed air off individual cylinders in the engine. 
    Photo Courtesy Dave Preuhs
  • McIntosh & Seymour Corp
    The governor housing is shown here. The red wheel at the top center is cranked left or right to speed up the engine or slow it down.
    Photo Courtesy Dave Preuhs
  • John Klaseus
    The late John Klaseus, who did a great deal of work on the engine, working outside the building housing the McIntosh & Seymour engine.
    Photo Courtesy Dave Preuhs
  • Water Tank
    The brown tower is the 1,000-gallon water tank used to cool the engine, while the McIntosh & Seymour exhaust pipe comes out alongside it.
    Photo Courtesy Dave Preuhs
  • Drain Valves
    These drain valves on the bottom of the cylinders are used to drain the water in the fall. 
    Photo Courtesy Dave Preuhs
  • Crankshaft
    The end of the crankshaft area, including the exciter. 
    Photo Courtesy Dave Preuhs

  • McIntosh & Seymour Diesel Engine
  • McIntosh and Seymour Engine
  • McIntosh and Seymour Gas Engine 2
  • 1930 McIntosh and Seymour Engine at Pioneer Power Grounds
  • Building a Home for the Gas Engine
  • Air Compressor
  • Three Cylinders
  • Rocker Arms
  • Vossler & McIntosh
  • McIntosh & Seymour Engine
  • McIntosh & Seymour Corp
  • John Klaseus
  • Water Tank
  • Drain Valves
  • Crankshaft

The 575 HP McIntosh & Seymour Corp. diesel engine on the grounds of the Le Sueur County (Minn.) Pioneer Power Show may just be set in its ways: It has stayed within a 10-mile radius of where it was originally placed after its birth in 1929. “The city of Le Sueur bought that engine brand new in 1929 to be used in their power house to supply electricity to the town,” says Dave Preuhs, the founder of the Pioneer Power Show, which is celebrating its 40th anniversary in August 2013. “It was retired when they bought newer engines, and this old one was put on as a backup unit until the city got electricity from an outside source, probably in the 1960s.”

After that, all the engines sat idle until the early 1980s, when they were scrapped out. All except the McIntosh & Seymour, serial number 2147.

“This big one,” Dave says, “was donated to Pioneer Power, and of course we had to pay the moving and the trucking expenses to get it to the show grounds.” That was 1986.

Big mama 

The cost of moving a 64-ton monster (128,000 pounds) proved to be considerable — $28,500 ($60,570 today). “We hired local guys who had dealt with bigger stuff like that,” Dave says.



Nick Klaseus, the custodian/main worker with the McIntosh & Seymour during the Pioneer Power Days show, says when the engine was prepared for its move out to the show grounds, some pieces had to come off. “The flywheel, which weighs 13 tons, had to come off in two pieces. We took the main cylinders off, and then the block was split from the base, where the crankshaft is sitting, so we could get to the crankshaft and take it out.”

The generator at the end of the crankshaft was also taken off in pieces when the engine was moved.



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