Letters to the Editor


Left: Two John Deere pump jacks, but with different main housings. The jack at left has “John Deere Tractor Company” cast on the driving disc; the jack at right has “John Deere” cast on the driving disc.Above: A bird’s eye view of the engine and pump jack, coupled.Above: This driving disc is cast only with “John Deere.”

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Waterloo pump jacks and engines, continued

I really enjoy the Farm Collector. It is amazing all the things that were made and invented to make life easier. Some were amazing for the times they were made; some are even revived and improved for use today.

I am writing in regards to an article in the April 2005 issue of Farm Collector on the Waterloo pump jack. I am a collector of old stationary engines and machines as well as anything from the past, including bottles and license plates, to name a few. I also have a couple of John Deere GP tractors, one of which (a wide-tread) was my dad's. I grew up on that tractor and have many fond memories of it and my dad.

Back to the pump jack: I was fortunate to come across an engine and pump jack coupled together. As you can see from the photos, this is what the pair looks like when hooked together. I have taken it to a few shows, and many people have never seen one like it. I have also been to the big John Deere show in Waterloo, Iowa, and have never seen a set-up like it.

The article in the April issue showed a photo of a pump jack-driving disc with "Waterloo Gasoline Engine Co. Waterloo, Iowa" cast into it. I have pump jacks cast with "John Deere," "John Deere Tractor Company, Waterloo Iowa USA," and "Dain Mfg. Co., Ottumwa, Iowa USA." I have others stashed someplace, but I don't know what the castings on those are.

I know John Deere took over the Dain Manufacturing Co. Dain made an overshot hay stacker that was bought out by them, so I assume they did the same with the pump jack. The parts book I have is dated January 1927, so I'm assuming they took it over shortly before that. In fact, my parts book has a hand-written notation on the page pertaining to the pump jack: "See Dain price list." Also, notice the change in the main housing. I don't know when they did this, but it looks like a good improvement.

- Norman Osnes
541 N. Green St.
Valentine, NE 69201-1622

New Zealander looking for info on shearing equipment

First, can I say greetings to you and your readers from the North Island of New Zealand, and say how much we enjoy Farm Collector magazine each month, and all the information it contains. Can I compliment you on the editorial in the April 2005 issue? You have a wonderful knowledge of what collecting is all about.

My main interest in collecting is sheep shearing machinery. I have machinery dating from 1900 to the present day, mostly all restored to its original condition. As I gather information from several countries, I would like a contact in your country with a view to gaining some information on the Stewart Sheep Shearing Co., and hopefully pass on some of the information that I have on other makers.

In my younger days as a professional shearer, I shore 35,000 each season, but now run a cattle farm with three Ferguson tractors.

- Tony Lock
Makirikiri Road
Marton, New Zealand 6450

Pumping both ways

This is a pump that will pump both ways. It will pump 5 gallons in 10-15 seconds with the handle that sticks up in the air. It can also be run with a gas engine, as I have tried it. There is no name on it. Do any readers know where it was manufactured and what it was used for?

- Leroy J. Pearson
3718 W. St. Road 18
Delphi, IN 46923
(574) 967-3326

Putting hay hooks back to work

Here is a good use for those old hay hooks hanging in the barn. Mount them to a 6-foot-by-6-foot pole and paint a jumbo-size mailbox like a bale of straw, and voilá! You have the most unique mailbox in the neighborhood. That's what I did, and let me tell you, it gets a lot of looks!

I love to bring the old John Deere tractors back to life and show them to the kids at parades, but have found out that the ones that get more excited about them are the old timers who remember using them when they were kids and the tractors were new.

I love the magazine; keep up the good work and God bless!

- Mark Grimes
Valley Center, Kan.
e-mail: mg4119@cox.net

Neighbors remember the Dain tractor

In reference to the letter (Farm Collector, June 2005, page 4) by Dale H. Brumm. That John Deere Dain tractor used to set across the fence on the Timm farm adjoining the farm my brother, Elmer Walters, rented from his father-in-law, Andrew Schlink, near Altura, Minn. It's the only one in the world that I know of. I'm from Dover, Minn., 20 miles from Altura. My wife, Eileen, and I have seen the John Deere Dain in parades in this area. It is very interesting to us since my brother Elmer and his wife Cindy remember seeing it across the fence from their farm. I have a toy replica of it. I enjoy Farm Collector.

- Glenn Walters
16001 Quincy Road N.E.
Dover, MN 55929-1207

Unknown tractor purchased at sale

I own this tractor, which I bought at a sale. There are no plates or identification on the tractor. Can anyone help?

- Irvin Smith Sr.
5185 Old Harrisburg Road
York Springs, PA 17372

Searching for horse-drawn equipment paint colors

I have just started collecting antique horse-drawn farm equipment. I am especially interested in sickle mowers, dump rakes, cultivators and discs. I would like to restore and paint these pieces of equipment to their original colors. I am wondering if any readers know of the original colors of these pieces.

- Gary Mason
655 Mason Lane
Gladys, VA 24554

Check out this twin set

After seeing several pictures over the years of "twinning" tractors, I thought I might try something I hadn't seen before. So, I put two Farmall Model H tractors together. They can be operated from either seat. You can also power it by one engine or both: It is up to the operator. There is a clutch and transmission for each one. If you are using one power train and you come to a hill and start to lose momentum, you can simply engage the second power train, and double the power and away you go. I wanted to keep the two tricycle front ends, so I fastened the two together and linked the steering together so you can steer from either seat. The rear tires are only 7-1/2 feet apart from the outer edge. There is enough rear axle to make it a dually if you want.

My two great-granddaughters like to imagine that they are driving through the fields and having fun.

- David Evans
York County, Pa.
e-mail: evans5227@suscom.net

Combine harvester info sought by reader

I am looking for information on old pull-type combine harvesters like Caterpillar, Holt, John Deere 36, International Harvester 51, Harris - what were they like in the 1930s and 1940s?

- D. Bowman
8292 Liberty Road S.
Salem, OR 93706

Case gets a second wind

This Case VAC tractor was purchase new in 1952 by Truman and Chelsea Mullins, my wife's parents, Jackson, Ohio. The tractor was built on Sept. 7, 1950. It was used on the Mullins farm to bale hay and clear land. The tractor has about 16.98 HP on the belt and 12.54 on the drawbar, and weighs 3,199 pounds.

The VAC was built from 1942-1956. Production stopped in 1943-44 during World War II. The VAC is a dual wheel tricycle-front row crop tractor. The Case VA Series was the first to use the new Eagle hitch system introduced by Case in 1949. The Case VAC was built as a means of competing with Ford and Ferguson tractors. Nearly 150,000 VAC tractors were built in a 14-year production run. Cost of a VAC in 1942 was about $710; by 1952 it had risen to about $1,380. We are the current owners.

- Ron and Debbie Kanouse
South Webster, Ohio


Stories to share? Whether reminiscing about a tractor, a piece of equipment or early farm practices - or maybe just showing off a restoration - your stories are important to Farm Collector! Submissions are always welcome. Compliments or suggestions? Ideas? Comments? Memories? Questions? We'll print 'em all, as space allows.

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