Old Iron Found in Central African Republic

| November/December 1996

P.O. Box 17054 Fayetteville, North Carolina 28314

Above is a picture of an engine used to power an air compressor located in Bombari, CAR. It is a C. L. Conord, Model F112C with a serial number of E143960-004. It was manufactured by S. A. Bernard Moteurs, La Boursidiere RN 186-92350, Le Plessis, Robinson, France. The engine was a complete mess although it ran satisfactorily. Since replacement parts are either unavailable or extremely expensive (an engine oil filter that costs $2.50 at Walmart goes for $80.00 here in CAR), generic parts are grafted on for repairs or a human element is substituted. This engine had a set of reworked automotive points and the throttle and choke were no more than the operator's right hand over the appropriate holes on a gutted Solex carb while the left hand held a modified two liter bottle filled with 'Super carburant' (gasoline) which incidentally costs well over $4.00 a gallon.

Top is a picture of Mohammed Bocha who is the owner and mechanic of a small engine repair shop in a mining town named Sansucci. At the time of this picture he was involved in the rebuilding of a Honda power plant used on a water pump. A majority of the engines found on new equipment are Honda or Robin manufacture.