Box 61, New Ulm, Minnesota
IN REGARDS TO the ‘Two Blower Thresher’ article in the
May-June, 1957 issue, will say I know this blower. A neighbor of
ours up in Pembina County, North Dakota, had a machine with this
blower. It was a Randolph Double Tube Blower. It was adjusted on a
ball and socket principle. It did not have much swing either
vertically or horizontally and had a plain hood to deflect straw
down. It seemed to work fine except for very limited swing.
There were other ‘freak’ blowers made and in use in our
neighborhood such as Fosston, which had a very large diameter tube.
Then there was a Maplebay that had a very wide tube, almost the
width of the separator. This blower was made so that the straw did
not enter the fan but was blown by air force only. This blower made
a very loud humming noise that could be heard for miles away. All
these three blowers worked fine, except for having little
adjustment. They could not be swung around like most other
I would like to hear from some of the old timers, that have a
certain amount of smoke, oil and steam in their makeup. Did you
ever hear of, or see, any engines called the Ames? There was one in
our area. Back in the days of steam when there was a rig on every
other farm. It seems this was a return flue with, if I am not
mistaken, a dry bottom boiler. I was just a kid on my father’s
farm then but I remember this Ames engine very well. I guess we
never forget these things no matter how old we get.
I never owned a rig myself, but my brother owned and operated a
27 hp. Minneapolis return flue engine and had a large separator. I
worked on rigs from the time I was 11 years old for many seasons. I
will have to say that I, like so many others, miss the old steam
outfits very much. I fired with straw a 30 hp. Avery two seasons.
Also fired and run a 36hp. Minneapolis for two seasons. Around our
home there were a great many Minneapolis rigs, also Case, Avery,
Reeves and some Gaar Scott and Advance. I hope this information on
the double tube blower answers William Gayer’s inquiry. I sure
enjoy reading the letters from the fellows as they appear in the
wonderful IRON-MEN ALBUM. So will close the throttle and bank the
fire with best wishes to all the old timers and the ALBUM
While in Chicago last March for a nationwide sales meeting held
by the company for whom I work, I tried reaching you by telephone.
I had an interesting bit of information for you but found the issue
had gone to press. Since then there has been so little time to
write that now I have waited until subscription renewal time for
the ALBUM. The enclosed is for my renewal and gift subscription as
In saying a few words about the ALBUM, I’ll first say that I
certainly do enjoy it! There are times when some criticism of an
article is in order and you quite thoroughly accept it and print
it. I was one of many who appreciated Mr. B. B. Brown’s letter
in your 1956 Jan.-Feb. issue. Had he not corrected the information
given in an earlier issue regarding the 36-110 HP. double cylinder
Rumley, I was one of several who would probably have written to you
on that subject.
A great many of us who read the ALBUM do not have a highly
polished education. Therefore, when we send in material for
publication, we would all appreciate the editor checking and
correcting the English that is used. Everyone, whether educated or
not, likes to read articles that are correctly written.
The ALBUM’S recommendation of the book ‘Machines of
Plenty’ is valuable. The book is interesting and undoubtedly
many read it, as a result of the publicity in the ALBUM.
An extremely informative and interesting book is ‘The Great
Iron Ship.’ Any reader of this book will enjoy it. So much is
portrayed besides the grand story of a great steam ship built 50
years before her time when the world just wasn’t ready for her.
The many details of how tragic business management killed this
giant, can in so many ways be compared to our business world today.
The book also gives an interesting account of who invented the
reaper and how this same man used his great engineering skill to
repair the mammoth ship in New York harbor during the Civil
THE IRON-MEN ALBUM along with the Engineers and Engines magazine
make a fine pair. They are different, each with its own
characteristics. This is as it should be so the picture to the
reader is more complete.
1 will immediately send material to you for several articles
that I hope you will find interesting. The first is in regard to
the Phoenix log hauler. My contacts with the present manager of the
Phoenix Steel Company enabled me to get all blueprints, drawings
and pictures as well as the specifications. Do you need the actual
photographs or the negatives? I had several views specially touched
up in our advertising studio in Chicago.
Also, I have some interesting data concerning the performance of
steam engines on the prony brake at the reunions last summer. When
a comparason is made between this and the modern diesel engine
running on a dynamometer, the results are quite stimulating for
those of us who are steam engine fans. The many conveniences of the
modern diesel and also its economy cause it to be so widely used.
However, the tremendous versatility of steam power shows up quite
favorably even when comparing our old engines to the modern diesel
engine and its characteristics.
A. E. RIXMANN, 2315 Northwest 56th Street, Oklahoma City,