One of the best – if not the best – aspects of collecting old engines is the people. When I was first introduced to the vintage engine hobby, I was completely out of my element. I had a solid background in car and motorcycle engines, but hit-and-miss engines? Not so much. Yet as soon as I was introduced to the old engine crowd, I discovered what an incredible resource of people of passion and capacity it contained, and I’m constantly reminded of my fortune in being a part of the community.
It’s likely that most of you know little about our parent company, Ogden Publications. In addition to Gas Engine Magazine, we produce a number of enthusiast publications, covering subjects ranging from vintage farm engines to vintage farm tractors, classic motorcycles, self-sufficient living and homesteading, fermentation, and heirloom plants. All of our titles are defined and motivated by that same recognition and embrace of community, and we’re committed to being active, positive members of those communities. Take Hank Will, our editorial director; when he’s not commuting to work on his old Honda XL500, you’ll find him cruising the fence lines on his rural farm where he practices small scale, alternative agricultural strategies, a driving passion in his life for as long as motorcycling has been in mine.
Publishing GEM and being a part of the old iron community is a unique opportunity that we don’t take for granted. Moving forward, we’re going to embrace our communities in a new way to better serve those audiences and make us more sustainable as a business in the process. Beginning sometime this year, we’ll embark on a new mission where we no longer look at ourselves as just a magazine and events business (you probably didn’t know we produce the Mother Earth News Fairs held across the country every year), but as a truly community-inspiring wellspring that feeds and is fed by an enthusiastic and engaged community of individuals.
Moving forward with us, you won’t simply subscribe to GEM or one of our sister publications, you’ll also get to choose membership in one or more of our communities. You’ll still receive GEM in the mail just as you always have, so don’t worry, nothing changes there. But for the same price of your subscription you’ll also have full access to our soon-to-be-gated websites including exclusive member-only premium material such as fixed discounts on books and products in our online store, videos and podcasts, reduced entry fees to certain events and museums, and more, as we’re still building the benefits list.
None of this happens without you, and the fact that we’re here and moving forward with new models to build our communities is only because of your interest in being a part of the vintage engine scene. We’ll have more details to share soon, but feel free to drop me a line with any thoughts or questions about the magazine or our future.