New Collectors, Old Collections

By Staff

Just when it starts feeling like the pool of young aspirants to the old iron hobby is drying up, along comes budding engine restoration hobbyist Dana Kehoe. Currently studying automotive technology at the University of Northwestern Ohio, 20-year-old Dana stands as a refreshing reminder that with some encouragement, there are plenty of young enthusiasts out there waiting to be pulled into the old engine hobby.

In fact, Dana’s been involved with engines for some time. Mentored by his uncle Jim Faith, Dana first got a 1-1/2hp John Deere E running, followed by his first full restoration when he was just 15, a 1908 2-1/4hp hopper-cooled Galloway, the story of which we featured in the February/March 2016 issue. Recently, Dana finished his second restoration, a 1910 1-3/4hp air-cooled Galloway, a bookend if you will to the 1908 hopper-cooled Galloway he restored in 2015. And like many an engine man he found himself in the shop working with more than just his engine to fettle, taking on the challenge of simultaneously restoring family friend Todd Hasse’s almost identical air-cooled Galloway. The results speak for themselves, as you can see reading the story of Dana’s restorations.

Dana’s abiding interest in vintage engines would never have reached its current level without encouragement and dedicated interest from an experienced engine man like his uncle. And Jim Faith’s interest in mentoring doesn’t stop with nephew Dana, as he recently helped 15-year-old Emma Riese restore a 2hp Waterloo Boy as a 4-H project. Emma’s father, Brian Riese, had bought the engine as a project for his wife, but after Brian passed away Jim got Emma involved in restoring the engine. We’ll share the results of Emma’s excellent restoration in the next issue; the finished Waterloo Boy is simply beautiful.

Most of us keep an eye out for interesting engine auctions, and Nov. 6, 2019, kicks off what’s certain to be the engine sale of the year, if not the decade, with the first of two auctions of the 200-plus engine collection of Kenny and Wendy Wolf. Famous in the vintage engine circle, Kenny and Wendy are no ordinary collectors. For years, the husband and wife team has focused on finding and owning some of the finest, rarest engines in the world, a fact amply illustrated in the collection going to auction, which includes engines from Brown & Cochran, Goold, Shapley & Muir, Springfield, Otto, Lambert, Geiser and more.

Truly extraordinary, the Wolf collection represents the fruits of some 50 years of engine collecting and trading. The Wolfs have never been slow to sell or trade an engine so they might acquire one they’ve never owned or that simply caught their eye.

“If I still had every engine that I ever sold, it would cover 50 acres,” Kenny said in an article that ran in the June 2009 issue of Farm Collector. The first auction will be held Nov. 6, 2019, in Peru, Indiana, with a second scheduled for the spring of 2020. Turn to the inside front cover for auction details.

– Richard Backus

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Preserving the History of Internal Combustion Engines