SOOT IN THE FLUES


| November/December 1991



Soot in the flues

Merry Christmas to all of you wonderful folks! Know what? To me that sounds silly right now, as I sit here in August writing the column for November/December, which means the Christmas season is really not too far in the future. I really should be used to it by now, as this is my 34th year of getting a regular message to you. I really cannot believe it is that long already, and I'm sure all my good buddies in the senior citizen group agree that the years really seem to have rushed by, and it looks like it may be my last year, according to incoming letters.

So many of you have been faithful for years and sent in many interesting letters, column material and homespun stories that have brought us all education, the warmth of a close relationship between our magazines and families. Stories of joy, laughter and yes, sadness, but it's been wonderful and has enriched my life immensely. I really feel close to many of you, and we have had a bonding of sorts with swapping stories of our lives. I feel I know many of you, though we have never met, and I know lots of you folks know a great deal about our wonderful family. Our children were growing up and you heard all the important events, and little events also.

For quite a lot of years I not only wrote the column, but did all the ads, stories, pictures, all orders, etc., for both GEM and IMA. For the last few years I have only been writing the column for The Iron Men Album. I have not only been nudging you all and begging for your letters, and yes, praying many times for an increase in material for Soot in The Flues. Now I know, all good things must come to an end, and maybe it is about time for me to fade out of the picture. I'll give it a little while and if more material does not come in, I will bow out gracefully and say 'Thanks for the Memories.' (As you will notice, I received only TWO communications for this issue; let's face it, I have always tried to add other interesting items and interests, but without YOUR letters, ideas, thoughts and information, this column is really not necessary, or beneficial to IMA.

Following are the two letters:

BERNARD OBERLANDER, 16345 Los Gatos Blvd., #46, Los Gatos, California 95032, sends this: ' 'I have been a subscriber to Iron Men Album for many years. I am presently planning to build a quarter scale model of a Geiser 'Peerless' Z-3 steam traction engine. I have only Geiser machinery catalogs to provide information for this project. My greatest need is for drawings of Peerless traction engines. The reason I am writing you is to determine if you know of a source for such drawings. I am prepared to purchase drawings of any Peerless traction engines that may be available.

'I prefer to purchase drawings of the Z-3 engines, but I am also interested in other models, especially the Z-Z, Z-l, UU and U-l engines. If you know of a source to purchase such drawings, I shall be very pleased and thankful for your help.' (Surely hope you hear from some of our subscribers, Bernard.)