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Introducing "Mr. REO" and His REO Mower Collection

Ohio man known for his passion for REO mowers and memorabilia.

| April 2016

  • A 1963 REO 725 garden tractor. Denny Schimmoeller has the mower deck for the tractor. Built for just one year, this is a rare tractor.
    Farm Collector archives
  • A 1953 REO Townhouse Flying Cloud electric 18-inch mower.
    Farm Collector archives
  • A 1952 REO Royale De Luxe with sulky.
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  • Denny’s first REO: a 1951 REO Royale De Luxe. Not looking exactly royal here, the mower sold at auction for $2. It came with all of the original paperwork, including two wire tags advising the owner to fill with oil before using.
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  • The REO Royale De Luxe after restoration.
    Farm Collector archives
  • A 1958 REO Rider Model WR-425-8.
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  • Denny’s very first tractor was this 1951 Waterbury Model D walk-behind (built in Waterbury, Conn.) with a full set of Simplicity attachments (reel mower, sickle bar mower, cultivator, snow plow and disc).
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  • The Waterbury, after Denny completed a full restoration. He later sold it to a man who showed it with his Waterbury rider. “I wish I would have kept it,” he says.
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  • This 1954 REO Snow Throw is among the first pieces Denny added to his collection.
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  • A 1963 REO Raider in original condition.
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  • A 1946 REO Motorless reel push mower.
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  • A 1959 REO 3-wheel rotary mower.
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  • Denny’s display at the R.E. Olds Museum, Lansing, Mich., in 2014.
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  • The stuff that dreams are made of. Denny’s “first big steal” of lawn and garden items: a Springfield tractor, reel mower, sickle mower, cultivators, disc, plow, two Choremasters, an unknown reel mower and a Planet Jr. – all for $30.
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  • REO Royale advertisement.
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All collectors have that special brand name or model or type of item that we seek out, and we’ll go to great lengths to put our hands on a piece that fits our collection. Denny Schimmoeller – or “Mr. REO,” as many of his friends know him – is no exception.

Denny, who lives in Delphos, Ohio, is an avid collector of REO lawn and garden equipment and memorabilia. His REO collection started more than 10 years ago, when he bought a 1951 REO Royale De Luxe at an auction. For $2, he got a mower in need of restoration – and the original packet containing instructions and a manual.

After that, he began scouring the Internet for information on REO. And that led to additions to his collection. “I started buying various models REO built over the years,” he says, “and I also began buying REO memorabilia, mostly magazine ads and sales brochures.”

Denny’s daughters had the magazine ads framed for him as a Christmas gift, and then things really took off. “I started thinking it’d be neat to make a display of memorabilia to take to engine shows,” he says. “With my daughters’ help, we laminated photocopies of the ads and put them on a display board.”

Display showcases unique line

That display board creates a colorful and informative backdrop for his display, which includes Denny’s favorite REO piece: a 1953 REO Trollabout inboard trolling motor kit used to convert a rowboat to an inboard-powered craft.

His friend Doug Tallman discovered the NOS kit (still in its original REO packaging) when the two collectors were looking for a tire for Doug’s Shaw tractor at a swap meet. “I was very excited by that find,” Denny says. “It’s the pride of my collection.”


Farm Collector April 16Farm Collector is a monthly magazine focusing on antique tractors and all kinds of antique farm equipment. If it's old and from the farm, we're interested in it!

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