MY STORY


| November/December 1961



Nichols & Shepard engine

This is one of my 1907 threshing pictures in Michigan. Nichols & Shepard engine 16 hp - that is me on the tool box.

Storm Lake, Iowa

I don't recall anything about the Case I ran in 1927 except that it had leaky flues and no top on it. You could see how much water you had in the glass sitting on the right side seat. You couldn't see either the top or bottom of the glass but there was an arrow that showed which was about 2 inches from the bottom.

This Gaar Scott I ran in 1929 I could talk on and on about! It was the quietest, smoothest running engine of them all! The eccentric was built sort of double and made no noise at all. I used to sit on the spring seat on the water tank and listen to it run. The big smoke box and the tin stack made a very pleasing exhaust sound. The only thing I could hear besides the exhaust was the governor gears do you suppose I never oiled 'em? It was also the easiest engine to fire I ever run. You only used one shovel of coal at a time, where my other engines I used two. This Gaar Scott was bought new in 1912 by about 12 farmers. The engine only had one injector and it was not a Penberthy don't know what it was. One day it wouldn't work and I asked the man who run it the year before (he was hauling bundles) what could be the matter. He took one look at the steam gauge and said it won't work on less than 105 lbs. of steam - so that didn't happen again.

Next was the Avery ... I bought it and moved it 35 miles, which was no fun! I like 'em better in the belt! This machine was bought new in 1910. I kinda liked that little engine - guess because it was mine. One day a man stopped in, visited a while and sold me 5 gal. of boiler compound. Said to dump a couple gallons of it into a barrel of water and inject it into the boiler about 5 p.m. Said when I washed the boiler next morning I would have to break some of the scales in two to get them through a hand-hole. I used it like he said and - he was right a wash tub full! That day when we went out after dinner I could hear steam before we got there. The steam was down to 60 lbs., water even less! In the front end was a little crown sheet with a soft plug in it, but just below that on left side two stay bolts had let go probably years before and had limed over. They were just flush with boiler, the compound had eaten the lime, and that was the end of the Avery engine.

The next year I bought the Reeves and moved it 20 miles. This Reeves was a pleasure to run. If you had a lapse of memory and discovered that your water and steam were both down you could catch up as it would burn the coal, didn't have to be babied. It had 2 injectors, both always worked and one of them would work down to 55 lbs. before it quit. I extended the platform and built larger tool box and coal bunker. That made it much better as more people could get up there in your way. I also put a Garden City Feeder with a 14 ft. drag on the separator and that enabled the bundle haulers to get more bundles under it. I took pride in keeping my engines clean and also myself. No woman ever put a newspaper under my plate - in fact I was cleaner than the bundle haulers as I very seldom got out of the shade - so no sweat.

Well, folks, that's enough - probably all this won't be printed (maybe none).