| January/February 1977


I thought G.E.M. readers might be interested in Power Plants of the Past which is a project that began about 3 years ago when my brother, Kenneth, agreed to restore a truckload of engines for display in my old Reo truck. It was supposed to take about a year but wasn't actually ready for display until the third summer after we started. Even now there is more to do but, at last, we can enjoy showing our engines. Our first showing was at the Antique Power land Annual Steam-up near Brooks, Oregon. We fit 24 engines into our display and can run each one without moving it although the air gets a little blue if too many are run without outside exhaust connections. We tried to select a variety but found the choices difficult because Kenneth's main collection at Engine Haven in Vale, Oregon, includes about 200 engines.

When on display, the back of our truck opens up to form a platform with reception area and a stairway. Another stairway at the right side near the front of the truck provides an exit so that visitors can enter, tour the display, and exit without backtracking or being crowded. The truck body is about 8' by 16' with 6'6' of headroom. I insulated and panelled the inside, so it is quite comfortable even on hot days. We used fluorescent lights and carry a little light plant in case no outside source of electricity is available. The truck is John Deere green with John Deere yellow trim and lettering and makes quite an impressive sight. It is home at California Avenue School in Riverbank, California, because I am principal of the school and live on the grounds.

Lloyd Jones

The Riverbank News authorizes Gas Engine Magazine to reprint the article, 'Old Engines Restored, Make Comeback as Collectors' Items,' from the November 26, 1975 issue.

In an era when the term 'power plant' generally calls forth images of PG&E generating plants or nuclear reactors, much simpler power plants, old engines, are becoming collectors' items.