Three Generations of Cushman Men

| February/March 1998

  • Cushman Husky Model M70

    Jim Brown

  • Cushman Husky Model M70

7309 Baldwin Avenue, Lincoln, Nebraska 68507

This is a picture of my 3 year old grandson Jacob (Jake) Eppenbach with his Cushman Husky Model M70, serial #A69400; my son-in-law Stacey Eppenbach with a 1928 Cushman 1-2 HP Cub Model R9, serial #60102; and me with my 1908 Cushman 3 HP serial #99F, all engines on Cushman trucks.

After all my years of restoring old cars, my wife convinced me to find something 'smaller' as a hobby. (She didn't say lighter!) I had gone to a few threshing shows, mostly to see the old cars that always showed up, but I was always intrigued by the gas engines. Finally I found and bought an Associated engine, and soon had several engines of different kinds, including Jaeger, IH, John Deere and others.

Being a Lincoln native, I knew about the Cushman scooters, but I didn't know that Cushman made stationary engines long before the scooters. Once I found that out, I became a 'purist' and decided to collect and restore only Cushmans. I sold my other engines and bought my first Cushman (a Cub) in 1986. Well, that one Cub has grown to 52 Cushman engines, from the early two-cycle marine engines up to the two cylinder 15 HP, and about everything in between. My hobby has also grown to three generations as my grandson and son-in-law are also now into the hobby.

Jake always liked to be in the garage with Grandpa from about the time he could walk. He didn't always use the tools I gave him for the right things (I have a couple of 'love dings' in a freshly painted engine as a reminder!), but he definitely enjoyed the grease and rust! It seemed only natural for him to have an engine his size, so I first located a 1945 Maytag Model 82 which he took to shows along with me and ran it. But it also seemed only natural for him to have a Cushman, so he now has the Model M70 air-cooled.

Over the past few years, sons-in-law Stacey and Mitch have helped me a lot on projects that required another pair of hands or more muscle than I had. During my recovery from cancer, Stacey became my 'starter' when I didn't even have the strength to start an engine. Now he likes the Cushmans, too! It is a real thrill to have three generations with gas engines at shows, and working together in the garage.