Gas Engine Magazine

Washington State-Wide Gas-Up & Swap Meet

By Staff

(‘Chili Cook Harry’) P. O. Box 735 Yakima, Washington

Harry thanks his wife Carole for her able assistance with this
project and the article.

We did it! After hearing lots of talk along the West Coast about
a possible state-wide gas-up, we decided to try it. Washington
state had their gas-up for collectors May 19, 20, & 21. It was
worth all the effort everyone put out and then some.

All collectors were welcome whether club affiliated or not. Some
brought exhibits, some brought items to sell or trade and others
brought themselves just to get acquainted, gossip and have a good
time. Some came early Friday, or on Saturday but all had plenty of
time to get home Sunday evening. Our furthest traveler was less
than 250 miles. With-out the public, everyone was relaxed and felt
like they had a weekend off.

One display was a Foos engine that had been retrieved from back
in the Cascade mountains. Don Monroe had it flown out (fifty miles)
by helicopter and went to great lengths to restore it. ‘Hot Air
Al’ brought, of course, his hot air engines. All those
collectors in one spot provides more hot air than his engines. We
ended up with five rope makers and twisted lots of rope from binder
twine. All five were the same patent and I’ll bet you won’t
see that happen again. Every ropemaker I’ve found has been a
different type. Unbelievable that they all were the same. Lots of
really nice gas engines and even a small steam engine and boiler
hooked to a small generator to display light bulbs.

This show was planned as a tailgate gas-up so we didn’t have
any heavy items to unload. Lots of machines were swapped but even
more tall tales were swapped around.

Of course with all the cooking that everyone helped with, we all
ate too much.

The topper of the show was, as we were discussing how clean and
orderly the group was, a bunch of guys decided to jazz-up their
‘exhaust cannon’, a PVC pipe that shoots tennis balls. If
you get it in the exhaust pipe at just the right time, boy, those
tennis balls really get up high with a big engine! At any rate,
after you burn the fu z z off, they don’t fly very well. John
Nietzel decided to put some wadding around the ball and they had
paper blowing all around right quick. Maybe, since it was pitch
dark, he was only trying to keep track of his balls. If you knew
John and his cronies this ‘high’ display of talent would be
appreciated. Since John works for the Bremerton Shipyards he
usually has to be very contained, but he does know how to make up
for lost time.

Have you tried a state-wide meet for collectors only? Try it
sometime. You would be surprised at the number of helping hands
that pitch in on those days. The relaxed atmosphere seems to bring
out the best in everyone.

We are already looking forward to next year. Hope to increasee
from the 121 ticket buyers this year. Are also planning to have
horse-drawn covered wagon rides available to well-padded rears.

  • Published on Oct 1, 1989
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