1969 WEST COAST REPORT


| September/October 1970



Case 75 steam engine

Large crowds attended the 6th annual old time Steam and Gas Festival at Jordan this fall. One of the highlights of the event was a pulling contest between a 1906 Case 75 steam engine and a modern International 806. The International won the contest, easil

Florian C. Karl

1121 Hilltop Lane Modesto, California 95350

Well, it is past time that I was getting the annual West Coast report on it's way for 1969 much happened out here last year and 2 branches of the Earley Day Gas Engine & Tractor Association really got off the ground and going in a great way. Last April, at the annual Hughson, Cal. Spring Fair and Machinery Display, a number of the local gas engine collectors including R. A. Squires, Alton Rexin, Percy Goesch and myself, had ten old operating gas engines mounted on a trailer, and pulled in the parade by a restored 1928 Model John Deere tractor this float took a prize. Dick Squires was pulling a 1904 Famous IHC 4 hp. gas engine in the parade behind his 1936 John Deere model AO tractor and it's loud exhausts (of the gas engine) sounded like a cannon going off as the outfit rolled down main street.

Afterwards we set up a display out on the high school football grounds and had in addition to the above mentioned equipment a 1927 Caterpillar 60 tractor, also belonging to Dick, besides the engines which were set off on the ground and were running. They included a number of Fairbanks-Morse, Fuller & Johnson, Aermotor pump jack engine, Stover and others. Fair Board Directors said we had the largest and most crowd-attracting exhibit on the grounds that day quite a contrast was drawn by the huge Caterpillar D9 and the old Sixty both the largest of their day and probably the best.

The first weekend of May, Branch No. 6, EDGTA held their spring meeting at the Cliff Hardy place west of Woodland Equipment started coming in on Saturday and that evening a barbecue was held in Cliff's back yard and on Sunday, a total of 75 engines and gas tractors were on display or operating 65 engines and tractors were running and the rest either on display or for parts engines. Fred Heidrick had his beautifully restored 20-35 light weight model Rumely Oil-Pull on display and running. His collection of over 30 Tractors is the most authentically and beautifully restored group I have seen to date. He takes the greatest pains to restore as exactly as possible to original detail. Small groups of the crowd were taken on conducted tours through his collection located on the nearby headquarters of his large farming corporation. I believe he and his brother farm something like 20,000 acres of land in at least 5 different crops. Represented were Stover, Jaeger, McCormick-Deering, Fairbanks-Morse in different versions. Economy, Hercules Samson, and the star of the show was the beautifully restored Doak engine with a 9 x 14 cylinder and thirty horsepower @ 250 rpm. It sat on skids and with its screen water cooler and all must have measured about 25 feet overall. Had high-tension ignition, with magneto and valves actuated by side shaft drive and was built about the year 1912. It took two men to start it and it had a healthy-sounding exhaust! Darrel Farnham had his Havanna oil well engine present. It was used in the oil fields for pumping and operated off the natural gas from these wells. The annual business meeting was held in the afternoon and this report I believe was announced in detail in the later issue of Engineers & Engines the official publication. Some of the officers elected were R. A. Squires, president, Cliff Hardy, vice-president, and A. E. Rexin, secretary-treasurer. Everett Tomlinson, Francis Noeller and myself were elected directors for the ensuing term. Also decided to hold the October meeting at the Noeller farm near Hughson. The crowd was estimated at about 2-300 people. For steam we had Glenn Weagent and his portable electric steam generator plant present and in operation and it performed as well as always. There was also many other makes of engines ranging in age from 1897 to as late as 1951 in Fairbanks-Morse ZG and the IHC LB models.

In the latter part of May, my wife and I went back to my old home in Nebraska on the train what else for a railroad man for transportation? Here, we went up the way of the Wm. J. Mayberry farm in my old home county, near Niobrara and was pleasantly surprised to see what had been added to his growing collection a nice butt-strap restored 20 hp. Huber steam traction engine, an 80 Case, completely restored, a 36 x 58 Case separator that went with this engine, a Big 4 Flour City tractor restored and running and a Caterpillar Sixty tractor. His collection runs all to the bigger machines and his annual show really packs them in main feature is the horse-powered Red River Special separator operating under full power each year. Mr. Mayberry is an old-time thresherman with both gas and steam power, and even at nearly 80 years of age is still active with his farming and cattle raising. He is always glad to see visiting steam and gas fans.

I also went to an old-fashioned farm auction sale not far from my mother's home saw some old machines go for a song two or three old burr grinders sold for a dollar a piece and an old Hero burr mill was bid up by 3 collectors to about 40 dollars before selling - Lyle Wacker, of Osmond bought this grinder and I called on him the next day.