SOOT IN THE FLUES

PICKERING BALL RANGER GOVERNOR

Governor

Content Tools

Well, Hi to all you wonderful folks, here it is the May/June issue already. Of course, we do have to get it out early, and I always try and remember that when writing, and with Spring coming up, some of you will enjoy this poem.

Can't Resist

I look at a book, But I see a brook
Where colored flies are scudding;
I can scan the news, But in ones
and twos
I see the cowslips budding.
Desire with a pat,
Says 'Grab your hat!'
So I won't sit here wishing.
The day is fine My hook and line!
Hurray! I'm going fishing!

I suppose that hits a soft spot with many of you who love that activity. And of course some of you can do that anytime of year, but not we in the cold areas. And by the way, we are having much more of the 'white stuff this year than we have had for quite awhile. It is pretty and does supply more water, and I hate to admit this. I have a lovely little home; there isn't anything I would change EXCEPT when it snows. My driveway is on a hill up to our house and I am not allowed to shovel and I go somewhere every day in the car. Off to the post office, stop at the Doughnut Shop, go shopping, etc. It had to be shoveled three times this year, none last year and once the year before that, but I managed the one day I had to stay indoors completely. My good neighbor shoveled one time, my granddaughter, Kortni once and my daughter, Keli did it the other time. So thanks to them, I survived!

I have a short story to print. It may affect many folks. You'll see what I mean.

'Because of a little piece of paper, today is a very special day. This world suddenly belongs to me in a way it never did before. I also belong to it in a new way.

'That child pedaling his bicycle along the road I see the years of love and sacrifice that brought him to this place. I realize the incalculable heartbreak if some accident should befall this child.

'The man approaching me in the pickup truck is a very ordinary looking man. But doubtless he is the heart and mainstay of some nearby home.

'The old lady glancing about hesitantly before crossing the street is elderly and slightly stooped, walking with studied care. How precious these late September days must be to her.

'God, make me alert that no action of mine may darken or shorten the life of one of Your people.

'Today is a very special day for me. I hold in my hand a little piece of paper that is a passport to a broader world of freedom and discovery. God, grant that I use it only for good.

'Today I received my driver's license.'

This was taken from the Guideposts Treasury of Faith, Julia C. Mahon, North Grosvenor Dale, Connecticut. I thought this was a good writing and should be passed along. Remember when you got your license!!

I came across this Easter story and just couldn't pass it up. I think you will be glad I included it. It is something maybe we all should try.

'Three-Day-Pause: It was a beautiful spring day, and a sense of peace stayed with me as I left the cathedral on the Monday morning after Easter. I paused for a moment on top of the steps leading to the avenue, now crowded with people rushing to their jobs. Sitting in her usual place inside a small archway was the old flower lady. At her feet corsages and boutonnieres were spread out on a newspaper.

'The flower lady was smiling, her wrinkled face alive with joy. I started down the stairs, then on an impulse turned and picked out a flower.

'As I put it in my lapel, I said, 'You look happy this morning.'

'Why not? Everything is good.'

'She was dressed so shabbily and seemed so very old that her reply startled me. 'No trouble?' I responded.

'You can't reach my age and not have troubles,' she replied. 'Only it's like Jesus and Good Friday.' She paused for a moment.

'Yes?' I prompted.

'Well, when Jesus was crucified on Good Friday, that was the worst day for the whole world. And when I get troubles, I remember that. And then I think what happened only three days later Easter and our Lord arising. So when I get troubles, I've learned to wait three days, and some how everything gets all right again.'

'And she smiled goodbye. Her thoughts still follow me whenever I think I have troubles: Give God a chance to help. Wait three days. (This story by Patt Barnes came from Guideposts Treasury of Hope.)

'It's about time to write a line instead of just sending in my dues. I can't help but remember that just 40 years ago I ran a steam engine, a 50 HP Case. It was a lifelong dream fulfilled.

'When I was growing up during the '20s and '30s, they were still in style. I was inoculated at an early age with 'steam fever.' Even though my dad was a shareholder with a Rumely Oil Pull rig, there was steam all around usĀ  Case, Russell, Minneapolis and Reeves, to name a few. I used to sneak away on my pony every chance I got in order to watch.

'The quietness of the whole operation was certainly different, especially when they 'shut down' for some reason. Eventually, one by one, smaller runs and combines took over and the countryside was littered with these mechanical marvels left to rust away. I wanted to purchase one, but for a very good reason could not NO MONEY!

'Then, when I became a farmer for myself and heard about collectors, I decided to find an engine. I located this Case about 30 miles from home. It needed new flues, so that was no problem. I ran this engine at the Eshelman Show, threshing for 16 falls. When that show ended, I brought this engine home and only fired up once since then.

'So, that's my story of steam. Some of the tractors and machinery at the shows now were new when I first attended shows. I call that 'full circle.' I also notice that history is repeating itself. The huge old gas tractors that beat steam out in the first place now sell for more than the steam engines. I like old tractors, but steam is still a memory trip with me. It reminds me of what the old neighborhood was like when I was growing up my roots if you please!'

This writing of many memories comes from QUENTIN W. SHULTZ, Box 48, Griswold, Iowa 51535.

'I thought the readers of Iron Men Album might like to read about the Prairie Farm here in Michigan, which is located about 10 miles southwest of Saginaw, Michigan,' writes CARLTON JOHNSON, 2256 W. Wilson Road, Clio, Michigan 48420.

'Around 1890, three Saginaw men bought up 10,000 acres and started to reclaim the land, using the large steam ditchers. They proceeded to cut a large ditch from the northern part of this land to the Flint River, which was about two miles.

'When they had 400 acres in shape to plant, they started to farm. After a few years, and they had improved more land, they sold out to others in Saginaw, one buyer being William Wickes, one of the brothers of Wickes Boiler Company, Saginaw, Michigan.

'These new owners continued to extend and develop the land, modernizing the tools and placing the operations on a more economic basis.

'The photos show a steam ditcher, a double cylinder Nichols & Shepard engine pulling a 12 bottom plow. The other photo shows them cutting grain with binders and threshing with a Port Huron rig and one is a dredge building dykes.

'In 1903 the owners from Saginaw sold out to some Pittsburgh capitalists who owned a controlling interest in the Owasso Sugar Company. They finished digging the canals and building dykes. In 1917, the Prairie Farm was the largest east of the Mississippi River.'

LOYD CREED, R.R. 3, Box 381, Danville, Illinois 61832 has a question as he writes: 'I was wondering if anyone out in Engine Land had answers for any of the following questions?

'1. Are there any George W. Morris steam engines in existence? This company had some close ties with J.I. Case Company. 2. How many 150 HP Russell road locomotives were built? (Look at Floyd Clymer's Album, page 54). 3. Are there any return Nichols & Shepard engines in existence? If anyone has pictures or any information regarding these questions, please forward to Soot in the Flues for Anna Mae to publish.

'On page 14 of May/June 1992 IMA a picture was published of a Woods Brothers separator and a steam engine of unidentified make. The person (Scott Thompson, Tremont, Illinois) who contributed the pix asked if anyone can identify the engine. I, at first, thought that it was an Eastern make because of its stance, such as a Frick, Peerless or Geiser. Upon closer examination, I found that it very much resembles an early M Rumely. I compared the pix to one in Floyd Clymer's Album (page 59). The flange on top of the smokestack, the coupling pole from the front axle to the bottom of the boiler barrel and the piping from the steam dome to the steam cylinder helped me reach my conclusion. One thing about the pix that is confusing is the object located between the rear wheel and the boiler. Could this be a water tank or perhaps the divider board for the feeder of the separator? As I am a greenhorn, if anybody else has any ideas about the make of this engine, please let everybody know.'

This writing comes from LLOYD ORRELL, 420 South First Street, Clearwater, Kansas 67026: 'In regards to the Nichols & Shepard steam traction engine: in 1915 my grandfather purchased one of these steam traction engines. It was a double cylinder, 35 HP each cylinder. The drive wheels were 89' tall and 26' wide, weighing 48,000 pounds.

'In 1936, me being only 17 years old, I ran this engine on a threshing rig for 28 days. The separator was a 42' x 70' Avery, all wooden frame machine.

'My grandfather was an operator of large equipment for those days, farming 3000 acres of wheat and feeding 700 to 900 head of cattle each winter. The purpose of threshing the wheat was the huge straw pile for the cattle to munch on in the winter. The straw, two pounds of cotton seed meal and 35-40 pounds of ensilage and they would winter very good. The next summer of Bluestem (?) pasture and then it was placed in the feed lot. Lots of corn, cotton seed meal and T.L.C. they would reach the weight of 1100 to 1300 fat cattle. He required 50 to 60 men to haul bundles, scoop the wheat, haul water for the engine, separator man, and six to eight spike pitchers.

'Several of the men said I, being only 17, would blow up the engine and kill everyone, but we all survived. My grandfather told them I was a very level-headed kid.

'I lived only two miles from my grandfather, but I had to rise at 4:00 a.m. and clean the clinkers out of the grates. He wanted 140 pounds of steam by 6:00 a.m. unless it was raining. In Kansas in July there is not much danger of this.

'The engine would consume 2000-2500 pounds of coal a day and 10,000 gallons of water. We would thresh in the neighborhood of 2500 bushels of wheat each day.

'After the first day with my grand father's supervision, he said: 'It is yours.' Not bragging and needless to say, I had not an ounce of trouble.

'I could tell of several interesting incidents, such as men bathing with soap in our supply of water. Anyone ever having to survive this had a unique experience.'

PHYLLIS J. THOMAS, 107 S. Howard Avenue, Crosswell, Michigan 48422 writes and is getting two subscriptions for her sons. She says the last issue she had is from 1988, and she was wondering if I was still with IMA. (Yes, Phyllis, I am still trying to do my little bit for IMA, and I'm sorry to hear of your husband's death. I, too, lost my husband in January 1991. We had both been ill and in and out of the hospital several times. I can feel for you and it isn't a very nice experience, but it is all part of our lives. I miss Ed terribly, but would not wish him back as he was very sick. God bless you and yours. Keep hanging on!)

'My sons are both very interested in all types of engines. I guess it's born in them. My late husband, Jim Thomas, was a boy of eight years when he attended the shows with his father, Carl A. Thomas, and two uncles, Vern and Charlie Thomas. The first of the gathering of steam men was held at the Blaker farm at Alvordton, Ohio in 1944. The Thomas men all worked around Macon, from Bridgewater and Saline to all around Tecumseh and Britton.

'I have many pictures of the threshing outfits, but as most aren't labeled, I don't know what they areall the men who worked with them are now gone. (A hint to others: LABEL your pix with model, size, year, name, people etc.) The only engine I'm familiar with is 'Old Nick,' the Nichols & Shepard sold when Frank Thomas disbanded the Thomas Threshers Outfit just before his death in 1927. Henry Ford bought the engine to use on his Ford Farms in the Macon area. It was used on the farms until Mr. Ford retired the engine to the Ford Museum in Dearborn. Old Nick is the second largest engine in the collection. The name of Edgar Clark is on the engine as he was the manager of the Macon Ford Farms.

'Over the years we have all enjoyed attending the Reunions at Alvordton, Montpelier and Wauseon. In 1982 Jim and I pulled up generations of roots and moved to the Upper Peninsula. As Jim was in very poor heath, heart and diabetes, his wish to live where he could see the ships on the St. Mary's River was granted. Instead of the 10 years maximum the surgeons gave in 1974, he lived 14so, peace of mind does prolong life in some cases.

'I wrote an article for Jim in 1981 and it was published in IMA. We heard from a Captain Leonard on the ship 'Chicago Tribune' after we moved and saw his ship several times. He also was a 'steam nut.'

'A year ago I was with my son, John, in the Mall in Port Huron where they had displays of antiques in the corridors. Spotting post cards with engines on them, we stopped; one dealer gave me the Christmas greeting card that Leroy Blaker gave out in 1956his picture with his family in front of one of his engines.

'My husband could not throw out any of his IMA magazines, and as I live with my son John and his family, they all enjoy rereading the old magazines.

'My elder son, Jim II, and his family are living in the Thomas house in Macon, the fifth and sixth generations to live in that home. He has his grandfather Carl Thomas' collection of IMA too.' (If anyone in the Michigan Thumb area could help Phyllis label her pictures mentioned, she would really appreciate it.)

Optioned Equipment

MITRE GEARS.If desired, we can furnish 1' and 1' Governors to run at 525, 1'and 2' size at 475, and 2' Governors at 430 revolutions per minute, by using Mitre Gears instead of Bevel, when the Pulley on Engine Shaft is so large that it would require a more liberal Pulley than advisable on Governor to drive at speed given in table on Page 5.

VALVE CHAMBERS. Here are shown the various forms commonly used and furnished optionally when called for. Designate any substitutions by using the Code Words beneath each cut.

'PLAIN' GOVERNORS have Balls, Cap and edges of flanges turned but not polished.

'FINISHED' GOVERNORS are no longer supplied, except on special order and at advanced prices.

ALL Governors regularly include the 'Ball Ranger' form of Engine Speed changer, without any additional charge.

The accompanying view shows its interior construction which still avoids any joints and because of simplicity is readily understood in operation. Nothing to become disarranged. Winged nut included, to lock desired adjustment.

Being located midway in the Governor's height and for the most part facing the operator, it is convenient for manipulation.

Any normal range of Engine Speed adjustment is available through this 'Ball Ranger' device. An increase of 50% over slow running speed can be attained by simply turning small Hand Wheel and this may be done at any time in the Governor's operation.

'In the January/February issue of IMA there is a picture of a Canton monster engine, a very interesting picture. I have a book from the Minnesota Steam Thresher's Reunion from about the middle 1950s, and in that book there is a good picture of another Canton monster rig, with a J. I. Case agitator separator. According to the article and the picture, it turns back the pages of time to about 75 years ago. C. C. Nelson is shown on the engine. The Nelson Bros, continued their partnership until 1914, mostly around the Rollag, Minnesota vicinity. I'm sending you the information about the picture for what it is worth.

'I could write more, but I am 89 years old and my scribbling is not very good. I started firing a 30 HP Minneapolis steamer in 1920, when I was 16 years old, I spent ten seasons with that engine! Have been reading the ALBUM since the late 1940s. It's so interesting for us old time steam threshers. Hope you can keep it up for quite a few years yet.' This came from EDMAR TANGEN, 305 Sinclair St., Bottineau, North Dakota 58318.

D. B. WHITT, R.R. 4, Box 321, Lewisburg, West Virginia 24901 writes: 'In the November/December '92 issue of Iron Men Album, page 11, there is a listing of specifications for Nagle Portables. Enclosed is a photostat of the English version. Apparently, Nagle offered an extensive line. This copy is from a 140-page catalogue that runs from the industrial to the small utility steam engines and boilers of dozens of configurations.

'Also enclosed are copies of price sheets for Pickering governors parts, circa 1947/48, and an illustration of throttle chambers from the Pickering Pocket Manual. Assuming these parts are no longer readily available, my question is: What is the formula or method for determination of the spring rate and the weight of the flyballs for a given application?

Order Parts by Number and give Serial Number of Governor that will be found stamped on , lower brass band of Governor Head.

PRICE LIST OF PARTS

No.

Name of Part

1

l

1

2

2

3

3

4

1B

Valve Chamber

$6 00

$7 50

$9 00

$11 00

$14 00

$17 00

$25 00

$32 00

$40 00

2B

Bracket

4 00

4 50

5 00

6 00

7 00

8 50

12 00

15 00

18 00

3B

Spindle

2 00

2 00

2 10

2 30

2 60

3 30

4 00

4 50

5 00

4B

Springs (set for one Governor)

2 50

2 60

3 50

5 00

6 50

9 00

9 70

11 40

13 00

5B

Balls (3) and Guards

2 00

2 80

3 00

3 60

4 10

4 50

5 30

5 80

7 00

6B

Upper Flange and Brass Ring

1 50

1 80

2 00

2 50

3 00

5 00

6 00

8 00

10 00

7B

Lower Flange and Brass Ring

1 50

1 80

2 00

2 50

3 00

5 00

6 00

8 00

10 00

8B

Cap

80

1 00

1 20

1 30

1 40

1 50

1 70

2 00

2 50

9B

9AE

Gears (2) and Screws

1 30

1 50

1 50

1 80

2 00

3 00

4 00

5 00

6 00

10B

Driving Shaft

80

1 00

1 20

1 50

1 80

2 00

2 50

2 90

3 20

11B

Stuffing Box (complete)

1 20

1 60

180

190

2 00

2 50

3 20

3 50

3 60

12B

Valve (steam metal)

1 30

1 70

2 00

2 50

3 20

5 00

6 00

7 50

10 00

13AB

Top Rod Washers }

14B

1 50

1 70

2 00

2 50

2 90

3 60

4 00

4 50

5 00

16B

Bracket Bolts (set for Governor)

30

40

40

1 00

1 00

1 30

1 60

1 60

2 00

17B

Spring. Shaft

30

40

40

60

60

90

1 20

1 50

2 00

18B

Coil Spring

30

40

40

60

60

80

1 00

1 00

1 30

19B

Toe Piece

40

60

60

70

80

1 00

1 30

1 50

1 80

23B

Sawyer's Lever

30

40

40

60

60

90

1 20

1 60

2 00

25B

Spindle Collar

40

60

60

60

60

80

1 00

1 00

1 30

26B

Ratchet

50

70

70

90

90

1 20

1 30

1 50

2 00

27B

Pawl

40

40

40

60

50

70

90

90

1 60

30B

Ranger Sleeve

1 00

1 20

1 20

1 60

1 60

2 00

2 50

2 60

3 20

31B

Ranger Balls (set)

20

30

30

30

30

40

50

50

60

32B

Ranger Collar

30

40

40

50

50

60

70

70

90

33B

Ranger Lock

30

40

40

50

50

60

70

70

90

34B

Ranger Stem

40

60

60

60

60

70

90

90

1 00

35B

Ranger Wheel

30

40

40

50

50

60

70

70

90

40B

Stop Motion Bolt

60

90

90

1 20

1 60

2 20

2 50

3 20

3 60

41B

Idler Sleeve

80

1 00

1 20

1 30

1 60

2 20

2 50

3 00

3 20

42B

Idler Shaft

60

80

1 00

1 20

1 50

2 00

2 30

3 00

3 20

43B

Cam

60

80

1 00

1 20

1 50

2 00

2 30

2 60

2 80

44B

Idler Pulley

60

80

80

1 20

1 40

1 80

2 00

2 50

2 60

45B

Stop Motion Spring

40

50

60

80

1 20

1 60

1 70

2 00

2 10

46B

Stop Motion Stud

30

400

40

60

80

1 00

1 20

1 20

1 60

48B

Automatic Lock

50

60

60

80

1 00

1 40

1 80

2 00

2 40

Prices of Parts for Larger Size Governors Are Not Listed But Procurable Upon Request

IMPORTANT

Owing to the fact of our having constructed Governors of the same size but different In parts for various engine builders, and also on account of the Improvements which we have made from time to time during our long business career, It is absolutely necessary that all orders for parts should be accompanied with the MANUFACTURER'S SERIAL NUMBER of the Governor for which said parts are required.

This number will be found stamped on the lower bran ring of the head of every Governor made by us.

As we manufacture every part to guage and have a complete record of each Governor made by us, we can send correct duplicate pieces on receipt of above Information. Without this number, we cannot duplicate parts with certainty.

When valves need reseating our usual practice is to rebore seats in chamber and fit valve of new size.

If chamber is sent to us, we will do the work quickly and at a reasonable cost, or we can send valve finished oversize, so chamber may be rebored to suit in a local shop.

The Pickering Governor Co., Portland, Conn., U. S. A.

'For example, if one knows the crankshaft speed and crank and governor pulley ratios, the travel of the top rod to work the throttle in the chamber, how can one arrive at these values or weights mathematically? This is particularly required when these parts are missing from an otherwise complete assembly.

'I have worked this out by trial and error, but that is a long protracted process. Somewhere, a set of formulae exists for this problem. Perhaps some of our Iron-Men experts can address this in your column.'

'My name is JAMES C. RICE, and even though we have never met, I feel as though I know you, as I have been a subscriber to the ALBUM since 1954.

'As for the talk of you quitting the ALBUM, please don't, it wouldn't be the same without you at the helm of 'Soot in the Flues' by Anna Mae.

'I am sending you a picture of a young friend of mine by the name of Chris Wheeler, at the controls of a rig that I built a few years ago. It is a 1/5 size Case 65 engine and a 1/5 size Case threshing machine. The picture was taken at the annual club show of the Kentuckiana Pioneer Power Association.

'The rig now belongs to Mr. Melvin Bearwolf of Pigeon, Michigan. I also built a 1/5 size sawmill that really did saw small lumber. I ran the engine, thresher and sawmill for almost 16 years before I sold them.

'A friend of mine by the name of Les Matherly bought a set of blueprints and castings from Tom Terning of Valley Center, Kansas and built a size Case engine; I got excited about it and had to have one for myself. I went out to Tom's and got some castings, and with the help of good friends, Tom Phillips and Les Matherly, I had it completed in about six months. It was just about ready to fire up when Mr. Bearwolf came to pick up the fifth size, so I wasn't without an engine for any length of time at all.

'I am 72 years old and a steam lover. My dad owned steam engines all the time that I was growing up, so it was only natural for me to love steam as I do. But, that's another story! I'm not much of a writer but will try to get some of our early days of steam in a letter to you one of these days.'

CARL LATHROP, 108 Garfield Avenue, Madison, New Jersey 07940 sends this writing, 'Seems to me that your column is the clearing house for those with questions. I've answered a few where I had some background. Now it's time for a turn around. I've got a problem. In a way it is a footnote to history.

'On a clear day I can see the World Trade Center buildings in lower Manhattan from my home here in Madison. So, it is difficult to imagine that another few miles brings one to a bucolic setting among the horse farms of what I call 'the highly varnished set' who ride to the hounds (my wife cheers for the fox) and is the locale of my question.

'It was a surprise for me to find that in the little nearby town of Chester was the home of Van Doren threshing machines.

'This sparked my interest, and I have done a bit of research on the subject. It seems that John and Abraham Van Doren began the manufacture of rather simplistic threshing machines here but by 1850 sold the business to William E. Osborne & Company, a former employee. Their advertisement in the May 30, 1850 Jerseyman newspaper advised the public that they were in a position to supply, from stock, a separator of the latest design complete with double horsepower for $200. These would be fitted with the improved drum separator and fanning mill. It was said to be rated at 200 bushels of wheat per day (maybe those were longer days). The company seems to have gone out of business by 1861.

'Things are different in Chester today, what with so many of the historic buildings being converted into boutiques or Ye Olde Gift Shoppe. Out on the lawn in front of one such establishment I found a machine whose both heritage and use were beyond me. That is my question. Can anyone recognize the portable machine in the attached picture?

'The hand crank is missing and so is what appears to have been a pitman between the small gear wheel and the angle attachment in the middle of the picture. I reasoned that this was to shake the box which is suspended by the strap irons, also discernible. Maybe the only function of this machine was to separate the grain from the chaff. Or, could it have been a small separator? This will give your readers food for thought.

A newcomer to the IMA family! We welcome a letter from K. S. HEAD, JR., 2907 Avenue H, Snyder, Texas 79549. Phone 915-573-8749. 'I only subscribed to IMA the early part of 1992, and I always look forward to its arrival. I enjoy every page and both covers. I especially enjoy Soot in the Flues, and hope you will be able to continue it for a long time to come. I placed an ad in the November/December issue for wheels and axles for my 1909 32 x 54 J. I. Case thresher that I use for demonstrations and had a response before my magazine was delivered.

'I understand that you lost your husband not so long ago. This brings to mind another gracious lady who went through the same experience early this year. She is Helen Case Brigham, Secretary-Treasurer of International J. I. Case Heritage Foundation, Inc., and helps to keep their magazine, The Heritage Eagle, first class. It is women like you two ladies that convince me that women can be stronger than men under certain circumstances.

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