A Fun Year

| July/August 1992

  • IHC Case
    60 HP Case owned by the Illiana Antique Power Association shown at Boswell, Indiana in 1991.
  • Case

  • IHC Case
  • Case

RR #3, Box 381 Danville, Illinois 61832

The winter months are hard on steam engine people. This winter would not be typical for me. It was January 11th, 1991 and my wife Lisa, son Matthew and I were leaving that morning for Kansas. I had monitored the weather conditions and it looked like we would not have any winter storms for the next week. It was about 9:00 when we got everything loaded and left town. I had planned on leaving earlier but when you are taking everything needed for an eleven month old baby you take everything that you think that you could possibly need and then some.

We had a light snow on the ground and the roads were slightly iced. The first leg of our journey was from Danville, Illinois to Sikeston, Missouri where I had to pick up a sixteen-foot tandem axle trailer. Sikeston is home to several trailer manufacturing companies who sell to the general public at considerable savings. I saved about one third on mine, making it worth the trip. This is where most of the trailers in the Midwest are built. We left Sikeston headed to Springfield, Missouri where we had reservations for that night, and on to Valley Center, Kansas the next morning. It was late when we reached Wichita, so we decided to get a room and let my wife and son rest. I was anxious to meet Tom, Lois and Aaron Terning and see my new engine, so I called to let them know that I was in town and would see them in a while.

Upon arriving at the Terning's, I saw lights in the workshop and drove on back to it and parked. When I walked through the door I saw a nice one-half scale Case model that looked like it belonged in a show room. I thought that this engine was too nice to be the one that I had ordered. I told Tom and Lois that I didn't realize that they were going to paint it. They had decided that the weather conditions would make it rust if it were not painted. Tom asked me what I thought of it and I told him that I was very pleased with it which was quite an understatement.

I told Tom that I never had the opportunity to run a model, so he hooked up an air hose to the boiler and pumped it up to one hundred and fifty pounds. I climbed aboard and engaged the clutch, pulled the valve lever back and gently opened the throttle. The model started forward slowly while sounding like a big engine. At that moment I knew that the planning and waiting for this engine was worth it. I had sold a steam engine, a car, and a tractor so that 1 could have this engine built.

It took almost a year to sell my steam engine, and another year to have this engine built. One year to build a good steam engine is not very long, considering how long it takes most people to build an engine.


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