My Education

| April/May 1999

135 Harmon Street, North Tazewell, Virginia 24630

Several years ago, when I was young and innocent, I saw my first hit and miss gasoline engine. It was a marvel to me how the engine would seemingly run at times and coast at other times. Being blessed with better than average mechanical ability, I soon saw that the exhaust valve and the magneto were disabled during the coasting times. I immediately set a goal for myself to own one of this type of engine.

Later I saw an advertisement for a book with the plans to build a hit and miss engine from scratch. I purchased the book, looked at it, studied it, and put it up for another day. That day has never arrived.

Last spring a friend of mine brought to work an auction flyer with a Fairbanks-Morse one and one-half horsepower hit and miss engine listed. He informed me that he planned to attend the auction. I asked him to buy it for me if he could stay within my budget. The following Monday he showed up at work with a truckload of goodies and one engine in very dirty shape.

After studying the engine I saw that it was a Fairbanks-Morse Model Z one and one-half horsepower engine that ran at 500 rpm. The engine had a set of points rigged to work from a post on the timing gear and what I assumed to be a coil.

Later that day, I loaded the engine and hauled it to a steam cleaner for a thorough cleaning. Then I waited for the 'cheap time' to phone my cousin in Washington who is an expert on and a connoisseur of antique engines. I proudly informed him of my acquisition and he broke the news to me that it was not a hit and miss engine but a throttle governed engine. He told me that he would send me copies of Gas Engine Magazine advertisements so I could order reprints of manuals.


Gas Engine Magazine A_M 16Gas Engine Magazine is your best source for tractor and stationary gas engine information.  Subscribe and connect with more than 23,000 other gas engine collectors and build your knowledge, share your passion and search for parts, in the publication written by and for gas engine enthusiasts! Gas Engine Magazine brings you: restoration stories, company histories, and technical advice. Plus our Flywheel Forum column helps answer your engine inquiries!

Be sure to take advantage of the Square Deal Subscription Program.

  • No Missed Issues.

  • No Renewal Notices.

  • No Additional Cost.

The Square Deal Subscription Program is designed as a paperless transaction with automatic renewals at a preferred low rate.   With advanced electronic notification, a 100% satisfaction guarantee and an easy opt-out plan, the Square Deal Subscription Program is the best value, risk free, eco-friendliest way to subscribe.

Facebook YouTube


Copyright 2018, All Rights Reserved
Ogden Publications, Inc., 1503 SW 42nd St., Topeka, Kansas 66609-1265