T. H. Krueger shares information and illustrations of gas engine and tractor ad reprints from Gas Engine Magazine issues.
Farm Implement News, Feb. 13, 1919. Illustration courtesy of T. H. Krueger, San Antonio, Texas.
Gas Engine Magazine information and illustrations of gas engine and tractor ad reprints.
Some interesting gas engine and tractor ad reprints are available from previous Gas Engine Magazines. There is published in this issue of G.E.M., three copies of advertising pertaining to the early Port Huron farm tractor and one copy of a tractor attachment for automobiles showing the attachment on a Ford car. These copied sections each have a double-lined circle with a number in it. These are reference numbers which I will use in this letter.
I saw Lewis H. Cline's inquiry for information on the Port Huron tractor which is printed on page 31 of the January-February 1967 issue of G.E.M. I'll admit Port Huron didn't advertise their gas tractor much, for this is all that I could find in quite a lot of material. But, it appears to be correct that Port Huron announced their gas tractor in 1919. Mobil oil lubrication charts for the years 1920-1921-1922 all indicate 1919 as the first year for the Port Huron "gasser".
The reprints I've furnished for this issue of G.E.M. are quite self-explanatory. As I find it, the 1919 Port Huron had a 4 by 6 motor, but I don't know what make. It could have been a Waukesha, as they made a 4 foot bore motor at that time. Photo-copy No. 1 gives the 1919 specs which are worth quite a bit. Neither does this No. 1 illustration and specs mention the make of motor. Photo-copy No. 2 shows the other side of the tractor, still the 1919 tractor, and a fitting size thresher for the Port Huron.
As I find it, the Port Huron tractor was the last tractor tested in 1920 at the University of Nebraska. That was test No. 69. In that test report the motor size is given as 43/4 by 6 inch cylinders and motor make as "Chief". My Photo-copy No. 3 is the June 1920 advertisement by Chief Motors Corporation Port Huron, Michigan, in the same city the tractor factory was located, regarding a letter Chief Motors got from Port Huron Engine & Threshers Company, as they wrote their satisfaction from the 43/4 by 6 Chief motor. No. 3 also gives us cross-section of the Chief motor, and also the only view I saw of the Port Huron in the field plowing, or any field or belt-work views.
Since1851, for sixty-seven consecutive years, the Port Huron Engine & Thresher Co. has been building farm power machinery.
This fact means close and continuous contact with the farmer and his requirements during all these years-and a thorough knowledge of machinery necessary to meet such requirements.
When changing conditions have called for different machines, or sizes of machines-or for improvements — these have been made.
The latest addition to the Port Huron Line are the Port Huron Farm Tractor and the Individual or Community Grain Thresher.
Farmers and dealers alike cannot fail to be interested in learning full particulars regarding these machines — the most complete and up-to-date in their line.
Space will not permit us to cover here the many good points of these machines — but complete illustrated descriptions and specifications will gladly be sent to anyone upon request. Send for yours today.
See us at the Wichita Demonstration. Port Huron Engine & Thresher Company, Port Huron, Michigan.
So, I will have to conclude, from what material I have, that the Port Huron was a 4-year tractor, 1919 with the 4 inch bore motor and 1920-1921-1922 with the 'Chief' motor, which was 43/4 by 6 inches. This I gathered from the 1923 Chilton Tractor & Implement Index.
Well, friend Lewis Cline, I hope this Port Huron stuff I raked up will be helpful in your memories of it. I sure enjoyed your big write-up "Let's Talk Tractors" in the July-August issue of 1966 G.E.M., starting on page 10. You had an awful lot of experience with various engines and tractors. Many of your experiences and opinions are very much like my own. It sure was interesting to read your article. Write us some more!
Now, the illustration in this issue numbered 4 is quite something for you fellows in the eastern part of the United States who are familiar with the "Olin" gas engines. It shows the "Olin" tractor attachment for Ford and other cars. The Ford in the view No. 4 looks like a 1913 Ford, one like my dad's which he bought new in Beloit, Wisconsin, in 1913. We left Wisconsin in 1915, driving down to the lower tip of Texas in the 1913 touring-car, moved onto a farm. Soon after, about winter of 1916-1917, dad bought a new tractor attachment for our 1913 Ford and used it for plowing, disking and dragging roads. But it was called the "20th Century Farm Horse", made in Fond du lac, Wisconsin. We liked it quite well. With it I got my first tractor experience.
This illustration, No. 4, was taken from the December 1916 issue of "Gas Power". Here is the write-up that went with the picture in "Gas Power". Quote — "Auto Tractor Attachment — The utilization of an automobile for other than pleasure purposes has always been a subject of interest, especially to farmers who have invested in a motor car. The Olin Gasoline Engine Company, Buffalo, New York has placed on the market an attachment which will enable an automobile to be used for plowing purposes and also for other farm work, heretofore accomplished by a small tractor. The attachment consists of two steel drive-wheels, 54 inches in diameter, 10 inch face; front wheels 33 inches in diameter, 6 inch face. When the engine is running at 21 miles per hour, the car with tractor attachment moves a 21/4 miles speed; and, for average plowing, exerts an average drawbar pull of 800 pounds. The weight on the driver is over 2000 pounds and the manufacturer figures that this weight, with the large diameter of wheels, makes it secure in most any soil without sinking or slipping. It is said that this device will not injure the car, as the tractor strains go only on the tractor attachment, which can be attached or taken off a Ford car in an hour's time." — Unquote.
Well, fellows, dad found out that it takes more than an hour to make the change back and forth properly; so, he bought a used "T" Ford and put the attachment on permanently. Then either the car or the tractor was ready to go when they were needed. Dad pulled a 2-disk P & O plow and for disking a 71/2 foot tandem Clark cut-away disk-harrow with notched-out disk-blades. That size disk-harrow was a pretty good load for our "Bull Dog", as I called it those days.
A few more comments on the current G.E.M., January-February 1967, such as — page 3, Mr. Orr and his 30-60 A-T tractor. I'd say it is a 1910 machine. The A-T Company states in their 1923 catalog: "Since 1909 the A & T Machine Company has been building Gaso-Kero. tractors of the highest quality." Therefore, 1905 or 1906 would not be right for their 30-60. Another comment, page 7, I feel certain that the Rock Island engines were built by Alamo. If a 1911 Alamo engine has a Webster magneto like shown on the top engine on page 5, the magneto did not come out with the new Alamo in 1911. Webster oscillators first came out about 1913. The Rock Island engine on page 20 in September-October G.E.M. 1966, most likely has a "Wizard" oscillator magneto which Alamo also used. The Hercules Electric Company, Indianapolis, Indiana, make the "Wizard". Another comment, the engine on page 33 is a 1 hp, not 2 hp. "Tom Thumb" applies only to the horizontal 1 hp air-cooled I.H.C. engines. The engine shown is an I.H.C. all right, called the 1 hp. Famous, not made in 2 hp size. Thank you all for writing. (HOLD IT — there's more — I received a later letter from Mr. Krueger and he asked me to please add it right on to this one so here goes.—Anna Mae.)
Port Huron Farm Tractor Sieverkropp Gas Engine — courtesy of T. H. Krueger, San Antonio, Texas — Supplement to my 1-19-67 article.
Just four days later, I found my misplaced copy of the "Tractor and Gas Engine Review", August 1918, in which is a photo of the 12-25 Port Huron Farm Tractor on a plowing demonstration, with a bunch of men watching the tractor. This photo is a rear-view, also, much like picture 3 in my said article. The point I am stressing is for you, Lewis H. Cline, that the tractor surely was built and out on demonstrations, as you wrote in G.E.M. January-February 1967, on page 31 — you remembered seeing one being demonstrated in 1918. In my major write-up, on the Port Huron Farm Tractor, I found nothing earlier than 1919, but this Aug. 1918 magazine proves, by that photo being published therein, that the tractor was well along on demonstrations, etc. by August 1918. I am happy I found the extra bit of assurance; it shows you were right; and this more or less completes my meager findings on that Port Huron.
This, my second comment, is in reference to the engine pictured on page 31 of September-October 1966 G.E.M. The name of the engine shown is not correct; it should be "Sieverkropp" The engine shown, on page 31, is a 1/2 hp single cylinder gas engine. I have a 1913 catalog on Sieverkropp engines, which states they are built by the Sieverkropp Engine Co., Racine, Wisconsin. They built three sizes of engines, all of which are two-stroke cycle. Two of their engines are vertical, two cylinders each, one connecting-rod each; 2 in. bore and 2 in. stroke, for all three. The sizes are: 11/2 hp; 1 hp.; and 1/2 hp. The 11/2 hp is tank-cooled and has two flywheels. The 1 hp is hopper-cooled and has only one flywheel. Both vertical engines are the same in cylinder-size and stroke. The 11/2 hp is governed at 900 rpm., the 1 hp at 650 rpm. The vertical engines have 10 inch flywheels; the 1/2 hp has 81/2 inch flywheel. The 1/2 hp has only one piston 2 by 2, and has to be governed at 1000 rpm to deliver 1/2 hp. The Sieverkropp engines are odd in that the connecting-rod is on the outside of the cylinder, on the 1-cyl., 1/2 hp size; and only one connecting-rod is used on the 2-cyl. sizes, which is placed between the two pistons. Both pistons are tied together with one long piston-pin.