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Model BP-1
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Great Uncle Ivy Haneline
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The Devil's Rope Museum
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Mystery tool

Recently, I came across a rather interesting old chainsaw. It is a McCulloch, Model BP-1, with a 20′ bar and auto-sharp chain. The original owner’s manual is marked ‘January 1962’ on the front cover.

There are several decals. One decal on the right-hand side of the saw, reads ‘McCulloch BP-1, McCulloch Corp., Los Angeles, Calif.’ Below this is a decal with starting instructions and fuel mix. Next to the on/off switch is a small round ‘patent-applied-for’ decal.

If my tachometer is correct, the saw turns about 15,500 rpm.

I have been told that this model was built in the early 1960s, and was supposedly recalled and destroyed by McCulloch Corp.

If anyone has any information about these saws, I would appreciate hearing from you.

Alan Easley, 8300 E. Turner Farm Rd., Columbia, MO 65201.


I would like help from your readers on two items: My friend has a 6 hp stationary steam engine, serial no. 2434, built by Porter Mfg. Co., Syracuse, N.Y., and I have an ensilage and fodder cutter manufactured by the Appleton Mfg. Co., Batavia, III.

Any history or information on these items would be greatly appreciated.

Andy Mack, 3908 Birchmont Dr., N.E., Bemidji, MN 56601;e-mail: quilts@paulbunyan.net.


On D. June & Company, Jack Norbeck wrote extensively of this firm in his ‘Encyclopedia of American Steam Traction Engines.’ Published by Crestline/MBI, this book is out of print but might be found at a library.

Regarding the Titan, the IHC 10-20 Titan was first built in 1915; the serial number should be stamped on the top of the frame channel up by the cooling tank.

Once you have the s/n, the tractor can be dated from page 36 of ‘Wendel’s Notebook,’ available from Farm Collector Books. The 10-20 has a ‘TV’ prefix on the serial number.

The Granite State trade name on the corn Sheller might date to a reaper and/or mowing machine business back in the 1850s.C.H. Wendel, P.O. Box 257, Amana, IA 52203.


I am enclosing two photos of my Great Uncle Ivy Haneline taken many years ago in southern Illinois, where he farmed. I was curious as to whether you could identify the age of the tractors and their makes.

I subscribed to your magazine for my father, who still lives in the Grantsburg area of southern Illinois. Dad has an F-30 Farmall that he thinks he will start restoring next year, and if he doesn’t, I will. I learned how to rake hay driving an F-20 and love the old equipment.

David Oliver, 10006 Falcon Court, LaVale, MD 21502; (301) 724-1425.


Regarding Clarence Champlin’s inquiry in the October 2001 ‘Letters’ column, these items are parts of a fence weaver or fence wire twister, patented May 15, 1906, by Harry E. Bush of Seattle, Wash. It was Patent No. 820,909. The left object in the picture is a wire tightener or grip. One is used on each set of wires in the making of the fence. The object sitting on the bucket is one of the twisters on the fence weaver.

Also, Harold Prosch’s ‘what’s-it’ tool in the November 2001 ‘Letters’ column is a blacksmith’s caliper. Found in most old blacksmith shops, this tool was used mostly to transfer measurements from one piece of iron to another, often when the iron was red hot.

Lastly, on the cotton scale inquiry in December 2001: If you look at the cotton scale, note the big hook on one end. Place the scale so that the hook points up. Note that near the center there are two small hooks (or ‘eyes’).

In the cotton field, a three-legged pole tripod was set up and the upper hook (or eye) was attached to the top of this tripod. The cotton sack was then attached to the lower hook. Because the sack might be up to 15 feet long (12 was most common), it was doubled when weighed.

When you got a new cotton sack, you put a ring on one corner at the bottom; the cotton was then weighed by placing the weight (called a ‘pea’) upon the long arm of the scale. Depending on the weight of the ‘pea,’ the value shown on the scale was a multiple of the true weight. Of course, this weight was for the ‘sack and all,’ and so from 2 to 4 pounds had to be deducted for the weight of the sack.

When I was 14 years old – 56 years ago – I regularly weighed out 900 to 1,000 pounds of cotton a day. This is pulling bolls, not picking cotton.

Onie Sims, 10801 S. Pounds Ave., Whittier, CA 90603; (562) 947-1452; e-mail: oniedot@aol.com.


In the December 2001 issue of the ‘Letters’ column, Judy Gibson asks about a cotton scale.

I think she is referring to a steelyard scale. It is a balance beam scale with a graduated beam a yard long. With a 1-pound weight, mine will weigh 100 pounds; with a 3-pound weight, 300 pounds.

As for the blacksmith using fir limbs in the old days – here on the farm we built our fire on the ground using corn cobs. Lots of heat in a cob fire.

I enjoy Farm Collector magazine. I have a 1926 McCormick-Deering 10-20 and a few pieces of machinery to go with it.

Stephen D. Wait, Topwave Farm, Greenville, III.


I have an idea of what the two unidentified tools are in November 2001 ‘Letters.’

The top one may be a gauging or inspection caliper, used for sorting out a lot of items that were nearly the same diameter. I believe it is upside down as pictured, the handle being at the bottom.

The other tool, below the gauging caliper, is a pair of pulpwood or firewood tongs. These tongs have handholds and could easily be slipped over pulpwood or firewood of maybe 4 to 8 inches in diameter.

One reason for the red paint and no wear: New Old Stock (NOS). There are always a few items of anything manufactured that are never sold or used. I don’t see how this tool could be used to lift round cannon balls as someone else suggested because for something round, I would think, you would need at least a pair of three-pronged tongs.

I also was able to send photo copies to Eugene Sanders on his Letz feed grinder. Let’s keep those pictures of mystery tools coming.

Don Robbins, 3645 St. Rt. 718W, Troy, OH 45373.


I bought this ‘something’ at a sale but don’t know what it is. It has jaws like a shaving horse, but it isn’t a shaving horse. Any ideas? Robert Miller 409 S. Center St., Delta, IA 52550.


The story on making sorghum molasses in the October 2001 issue was a hit with me.

When I was a kid, we lived on a farm near Ralston, Okla., on the Arkansas River. My father always planted a small patch of sorghum cane. The making of the molasses was when the fun got good.

A sorghum maker came with his equipment, which was not very sophisticated. The juice was boiled in a big kettle. The skimmings were ladled off into holes dug in the sandy ground. When one hole was full, they dug another.

We kids then sifted a fine layer of dust over the holes until they looked like the rest of the ground. When neighbors stopped by to chat and learn how soon the maker could come to their place, a youngster or two usually came along, and soon a game of tag got started.

We knew where the holes were and we’d dodge a zigzag in the chase, but the chaser usually took the short cut.

I think, looking back over the years since 1922-23, the chasers were willing prey when they stepped into one of those holes, for then, it was off to the creek for all of us to wash up. And then, it was playing in the creek.

I enjoy Farm Collector; much of the equipment was young when I was, and some hadn’t been invented yet.-Toni Thomas, Gates, Ore.


I had a canvas cab with wind shield for my John Deere Model ‘M’ tractor. This was in the 1960s. Heat Houser was one manufacturer, I think. Are these canvas cabs still being made?

Donald Dinges, Box 33, Somers, Wl 53171; (262) 859-2483.


I own a 1969-70 Wheel Horse Charger 12, 5-1422, Model 1-7251, serial no. 639098. I am wondering whether any of your readers has a sales brochure for that year? My tractor was bought second hand, and none was sent along with it.

I did find the parts sheet for my tractor at the annual Wheel Horse Show held in June in Arendtsville, Pa.

Thank you for any help.

Grace K. Miller, 6365 St. Peters Rd., Macungie, PA 18062; (610) 966-4557.


The December 2001 article on UDLX Comfortractors incorrectly reported the number of units built. Most sources agree 150 were built: 25 of the rare UOPN, 125 of the UDLX. My source is Brian Rukes’ Buyers Guide to Minneapolis-Moline Tractors.

Sam Green, 63139 Balk Rd., Sturgis, Ml 49091.S

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