Worth The Wait

| June/July 2001

12234 Harris Carleton, Michigan 48117

This story really starts back in 1995. For some reason the looks of upright engines had caught my eye. I don't know why, but they did. I had seen a Scott Ewing at the Findlay, Ohio, show. I really liked that steam engine type look. So I started thinking about a Bates & Edmonds. A Bates has that same look, plus I like the history behind the company, the Bates and Olds connection.

So I started asking all my engine buddies about Bates & Edmonds engines. They all said that they had seen them for sale at shows now and then, at a fair price. When talking to Bates collectors, I would ask if I could stop by to look over their engines and take some pictures. When the day came for me to buy a Bates I hoped to know what the engine should have on it.

Every month when GEM would arrive, I would go right to the classifieds hoping to find my Bates, but that would be too easy, wouldn't it? To raise money I sold a couple of engines, motorcycle and an ATV. I thought I had all the cash I would ever need.

The first year went by with no engine. The second year went by; the only Bates I found was a 5 HP, but that was just too large for me. I went to one auction that advertised a Bates, but it turned out to be a Bull Dog (not an upright) had a good time anyway. It's not like I didn't have anything to work on. It was a good time to restore my Grand Haven tractor that I had been putting off for about five years. I also picked up a nice Ideal upright, at a price I just could not pass up.

With no luck at all finding a Bates, I had decided I wanted a metal lathe. One of the club members had a nice 12 x 36 Clausing. When I paid him for it, something in the back of my mind told me the phone would ring the next day and someone would have a Bates engine for sale. After buying the lathe and some needed tooling, about half my engine money was gone.


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