THE STORY OF AN ENGINE THAT COULD NOT BE FIXED


| May/June 1973



60 HP Geiser before restoration

William E. Hall

15700 Santini Road, Burtonsville, Maryland 20730.

This story is about an engine that was looked at by some of the better steam engine men and they agreed that the bucket of rust could never be fixed. My friend, Mr. William Waters and I looked and I agreed. After a wasted afternoon, we decided to waste the evening. Soon our good sense gave way to the inevitable and the obvious decision was made. It was not our first impossible job and may not be our last.

The crate of rivets and parts was what was left of a 60 hp, yes 60 hp, not U U Geiser engine, No. 18263. The engine was built by the Geiser works of the Emerson-Brantingham Co. in Waynesboro, Pa. It was the last engine built for the year 1921. The last engine built by Geiser was 18298, so you can see that we have one of the last of a proud line.

It should be noted at this time that they replaced the 'R' 'T' 'U U' with the 40, 50, 60 HP engines and discontinued all others due to declining sales of steam engines.

Bill Waters and I purchased the engine in partnership and started to work. It consisted of a well-rusted boiler, broken rear axle, disassembled gears, rotten cab and no smokestack. These were the minor items. After 5 trips of 300 miles each we had replaced the axle, assembled the gears, and discarded the remains of several other things. I was beginning to feel as if I had made a mistake. With the help of Mr. John Brian's two sons who drive a tractor trailer for him and my old 56 Ford pick-up, we got the pieces home.

After a complete tube job, building up the front flue sheet, and a section of boiler including 21 stay bolts, we were ready to go. We took it to the National Trolley Museum and it created quite a sensation. We ran it for a year but never took it to a steam show. We found that it needed more work and we will never take it to a show until it is right. At this point I bought out my partner's share and became the sole owner.