Jack-Of-All-Trades Engine

| January/February 1999

10400 Witt Lane La Vale, Maryland 21502

As some of you GEM readers might remember, the gas engine bug had bitten me with the restoration of my first 'one lunger,' a Hercules 3 HP that I wrote about in the December 1996 issue. This engine obviously led to the search for others.

This is the story about finding and restoring my F-M 2 HP 'Jack-Of-All-Trades.' I started asking everybody and anybody I could about the whereabouts of a 'one lunger' that might be around the Cumberland area. I found out that nobody I had talked to even knew what a 'one lunger' gas engine was, let alone know where one might be. Right away I realized that to find another engine to restore was not going to be very easy!

I started to just drive around the outskirts of town stopping along the way at almost every farm to ask the owners about the whereabouts of a one lunger. At first, my wife and two little boys, four and six years old, were more than eager to go along for a ride in the country. But after a couple of months of riding around, my wife decided that shopping or doing whatever she does when the boys and I are not home was much more fun than sitting in the truck while I talked for hours with farmers looking for the 'needle in the haystack,' as she was referring to the search for a one lunger. The boys and I were having a great time though. We were meeting some very nice people on our search. The boys even got to feed chickens, watch cows being milked, search around the barns, but their favorite event so far was one friendly person gave them a pony ride, while he and I talked engines. The friendliness and the eagerness of the people I talked to, to help me find a one lunger, really impressed me about the people in our area.

A couple of months went by and I had not even found one little lead about the whereabouts of a one lunger. Then! One evening I stopped by a farm and was talking to the owners, when I asked the question that I had asked so many times I practically had the lines memorized. The farmer's answer practically threw me into shock. Within spitting distance of Interstate 68 he knew of an elderly gentleman whose family owned the big farm where Rocky Gap State Park is now. The two brothers back in the '40s, '50s and '60s used to clean grain for everybody in the area, with a big double flywheel one lunger as the power source. Also I was told that in the same building where the big one lunger was, there were some smaller double flywheel one lungers.

The boys and I were really excited! The boys couldn't wait to get home and tell their mommy that we might have a good lead on the 'needle in the haystack.' The farmer who told me this information gave me directions to the home of Mr. John Raines, who is one of, the two brothers who ran the big engine used to power the grain-cleaning machine.


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