Tuesday, August 21, 2018

Ruger's Auction To Benefit The Light Foundation


Ruger isn't making these anymore, so you better make a move on this one.  It is a Stainless, 2 3/4" barrel, .38 Special Speed Six, made in 1983 and stored in its original box in Ruger's vault since then.  This fine little pistol will sell mid-day, August 22, 2018.  CLICK HERE to read all about it and to place your bid.

Tuesday Torque: The Collis Is Highly Unusual And Very Collectible


The Collis is a very rare engine, and it is one that Cushman collectors salivate over. It came out in 1920, and there were only about 800 of them made. Cushman licensed it to be built as the Pierson engine, and there are a few out there with that name. The Collis was a big departure from the typical farm engine of 1920. It turned much faster, was lighter for the horsepower, it had a counterbalanced crankshaft, and it had a radiator instead of a water hopper. Updates came quickly and the rotating radiator disappeared, replaced by a radiator behind the flywheel, which acted as a fan and pulled air through the radiator. The single rocker arm that worked both the intake and exhaust valve was a huge innovation in 1920. Typical farm engines at the time ran at half the speed or less of the Collis, and they used an atmospherically operated intake valve. That wouldn't work at higher speeds, thus the cam-operated intake valve had to be used. This design was meant to be used for orchard sprayers and binders to cut and bundle wheat and oats, and it was much lighter than engines that were being utilized at the time. I think that most of these engines probably failed when the rotating coupler leaked, letting the cooling water escape. That could drain the system quickly if the operator wasn't looking. If you run across one of these that can be restored, grab it. There are very few in captivity that run, and Cushman collectors want them.

Saturday, August 18, 2018

Friday, August 17, 2018

Gas Engine Hill, Here I Come!

I am planning to go to Pinckneyville tomorrow to visit friends and take a few photos.  Here is Dick Brown's classic early Fairbanks engine that he showed there last fall.


Friends Are Home, Safe!


One of my very best friends, Tom Gargrave, is on the far left.  I know some others in this group, too.  They have had some real adventure in Idaho and Utah.  Read about it HERE, in the Southern Illinoisan.  Lots of good photos!

Photo Credit: Tom Gargrave via the Southern Illinoisan

Thursday, August 16, 2018

Weekend Steam One Day Early!

Merle found a good one that really is good to show after the one we had last week.  If you like to look at houses built 100 years ago, this is how moldings were made back then.  Big iron planers with shaped knives that were turned by steam engines made that fancy wood.  I've been lucky to see some of this machinery in action, and now you can too!  Thanks for the good work in spotting, Merle!


The Curve Eats Another One

It might have been a 'possum; might have been a phone call or whatever, but another vehicle ran off the road yesterday in front of Patti's place.


The really sad part of this is the truck was fine when it ran into the ditch.  If only the driver had let it go on through those shrubs he could have driven parallel to the road and come out on the next driveway with no damage.


Instead, he was trying to get back up on the road and he tangled with a power pole as a result.  Luckily, he did not hit it head-on, or it would have been much worse.


Hit the 'possum, don't look at your phone, hit those curves at a proper speed, don't drink and drive.  Do all those things, and wear your seatbelt. We do not enjoy seeing these wrecks.

Tuesday, August 14, 2018

Ruger's Auction To Benefit The Light Foundation


Ruger is offering a highly desirable non-catalog Mini-30 this week.  This little rifle was possibly made as a dealer exclusive model.  It has a laminated Tree-Bark stock and is stainless.  CLICK HERE to read all about it and to place your bid.  This fine little rifle will sell mid-day, August 15, 2018. $1848

Monday, August 13, 2018

Tuesday Torque: Bonus Week!

Merle has been busy, and we have a backlog of good videos to watch.  Let's start with a big one!



And then an amazing restoration!

Do you know that single cylinder tractors are a real thing with some collectors?



Thank You, Merle!

Friday, August 10, 2018

Weekend Steam: A Day At The Mill!

Steam engines doing work is why we have nice things.  I always enjoy seeing these old engines being used to do real work and not just play.


Thursday, August 9, 2018

Brownwall Engine

This video is from seven years ago!  I was looking through old files and found some raw vid from 2011 at Boonville, Indiana.  I love the sound of the LeRoi engine next to this Brownwall engine!


Wednesday, August 8, 2018

Mental Math Makes Sighting In Quick And Easy!


I have had a Bushnell Banner 1.75X to 4X scope on my Mk III for several years and it has given good service.  The only trouble I had with it was when shooting steel plates.  The little bit of magnification at 1.75X  confused my eyes, so I generally shot with my left eye shut, and that slows me down a bit.   Midway has these 1X to 4X Bushnell Banners on closeout right now, so I sprung for one and installed it tonight.  I was short on time and set up my sighter target at 30 feet.


I took one shot, studied the target from the bench and did my mental calculations, turned the dials, and shot again.  It looks good enough for Pistol League this week.  I have already figured out that I can look at the first steel plate while the pistol is at low ready and bring the crosshairs right up into my vision.  This scope should make me shoot a bit faster and I should be able to spot misses with both eyes open.

Tuesday, August 7, 2018

Ruger's Auction To Benefit The Light Foundation


Here is a special one from Ruger's vault!  This is a 50th Anniversary Blackhawk (original smaller frame and grip) made in 2005, and it is not a catalog item.  This .357 revolver was made in 2005, then it was engraved and marked as a 50th Anniversary Blackhawk.  Collector interest does not seem to be excessive, but it has been viewed many times.  CLICK HERE to read all about it and to place your bid.  Click Here to look at more photos!  This extra-special Blackhawk will sell mid-day, Wednesday, August 8, 2018.  $801

Monday, August 6, 2018

Saturday, August 4, 2018

Happy, Happy Birthday To Lisa Marie!

My little baby is five years old today!


The drive to Chickasha was worth every minute, every mile.  She goes with me every day to feed Big Jack and they have become best buds.  They chase each other around his dog yard and then have private little talks.


Friday, August 3, 2018

Weekend Steam: Restoration Of Sumpter Valley Locomotive

Merles' Pick this week is a good one!  We get to watch some of the gritty restoration process of a century-old locomotive.




Thank You for spotting, Merle!

Thursday, August 2, 2018

Autumn, Autumn, Go Away, Come Again About October


We saw goldenrod blooming last week, and that's OK, but now the sumac is turning red already!  It's barely August!  That's jumping the gun!  Black walnut is already beginning to yellow and drop leaflets, and catalpa is visibly changing to a lighter shade of green.  I'm Not Ready!  I still have wood to split and I can't break away from the lawnmower.  August Lilies and Fall colors just seem incongruous to me, but I am always behind the curve.

Wednesday, August 1, 2018

Mini Ammo Can; Yay or Nay?


Right or wrong, I have been carrying extra ammo in old 35 mm film cans for decades.  They hold 6 .357s or 4 .44s or .45s, and the cartridges stay clean and dry.  When I carry I usually have a Ruger single action with me whether I am hunting, cutting wood, or cruising timber. I never have needed a reload, but I like to have it handy.  Forty years ago in Pike County, Kentucky, I had a timber rattler appear at my feet from under a rock.  The landowner was right next to me and my dog, Merky, was coming on the run because I had called him.  I missed the rattler's head with the first shot from my Blackhawk, but got it with the second.  Other times I have used .22 Magnum snakeshot on copperheads.  You can put several reloads of .22 Mag in one of these containers.

What brings this up is I got an "Are You Serious" and "Get A Speedloader" from a couple of commenters on Facebook recently.  I have been questioning myself ever since, but I don't see a problem.  This works for me, so is it a good idea, or not?

Ruger's Auction To Benefit The Light Foundation



Ruger is offering a  pistol this week that could become your Old Dependable.  It is a P 85 with manual safety in 9mm, with ambidextrous magazine release and ambidextrous safety.  These pistols are solid, dependable guns, but they don't grab the interest of collectors, so this is a chance for you to get a high quality home defense gun that will really work well.  CLICK HERE to read the entire description and to place a winning bid.  This Ruger 9mm Manual Safety P 85 will sell mid-day, August 1, 2018.  Update: 11A Central, it is at $430.  $5 increments.  Less than 1/2 hour to go! Get Busy!  $430!  Someone got a bargain!

Monday, July 30, 2018

Tuesday Torque: Oil City Two-Stroke Hybrid Engine

The lower end of this Oil City engine is just like a steam engine, and many early gas engine in the oilfield began as steamers, then were switched to run on gas by changing out the top end.  I suspect that for a while at least, you could order engines either way from some of the oilfield related companies.  This two-stroker runs about like the two-stroke Bessmers, and I really like seeing hot-tube ignition in use.


Friday, July 27, 2018

Weekend Steam: Black Smoke, Black Iowa Soil

This video is up at Forest City, Iowa; a show that I have not seen, but I know some folks who go there.  We must go one of these days.  It's not often you see three traction engines plowing at the same time.  Finder's Fee goes to Merle again this week!,  Thanks, Merle!


Thursday, July 26, 2018

Searching For Our New Normal

Two dates in one day.  First, to Home Depot, then to Pistol League to get re-acquainted with our shooting friends.  Susan hasn't been there in nearly two years.  I shot a couple times, concentrating on making hits rather than making good times, then ran the timer the rest of the time.  It was very much a mental exercise getting back in that groove, and we had a good time.  Nobody to check on.  Nobody to check in with.  We do have dogs, and we are glad for that.   We should return to regular posting in a few days. 

Tuesday, July 24, 2018

Ruger's Auction To Benefit The Light Foundation


Ruger is offering a great gun to keep in your bedroom or behind the seat in your pickup this week.  It is a .357 Service Six with the heavy barrel from 1982.  CLICK HERE to review the photos on Ruger's website.  There is pitting on the frame and they do not want the successful bidder to be surprised.  This gun was shipped to a distributor and returned at a later date.  My guess is that a customer had eaten French fries,  handled this pistol, and it was put back in a display case without being wiped down.  Stainless steel and aluminum will corrode if you feed them salt.  This is a good reminder for all of us.  But anyway, the function of this fine revolver will not be affected by a few pits, and this is a shooter, not a collector's item.  Read All About It and place your bid.  It is hard to beat a .357 revolver.  This fine pistol will sell mid-day, July 25, 2018.  $655, not bad for a good gun that you can shoot guilt-free.

Monday, July 23, 2018

Tuesday Torque: A Big One, In Honor of Patti

Patti loved steam shows, and all old farm machinery.  It's what she knew when she was growing up.  Here is a big twin cylinder Rumely on the Prony brake at Rollag, pulling 3400 foot pounds of torque.  Just the kind of thing to excite a kid who grew up in the Twenties and Thirties.


Thanks for spotting, Merle!

Patricia Ann Bentrup, July 23, 2018


Patricia Ann DuLany was born June 27, 1924 in rural Dahlgren, Illinois and passed away at her home at Belle Prairie, Illinois, July 23,  2018. Her parents were Marjory Darsham and Lewis Ford DuLany. She was raised by Marjory and her stepfather, Martin T. Knapp.  She graduated as the Valedictorian from Dahlgren High School in 1942 and moved to St. Joseph, Missouri to attend nurse’s training at Missouri Methodist Hospital. Patricia worked as an Operating Room nurse for most of her career.   



  She married Oscar(O. T.) Bentrup in 1949, who preceded her in death in 2010.  Patti Ann is survived by two daughters; Susan Johnson (David N.), Jill Heffernan (James P.),  four grandchildren and one great-grandchild.



Patti loved and was devoted to her family.  She cared for her mother, her mother’s sister, and O.T. until their deaths.  Family pets were one of the joys in Patti's life.  She especially loved Schipperkes, and she earned a Companion Dog Excellent rating with her male Schip, Erastus.


                                                           Walking Junior.

Patti was famous for her mashed potatoes, and she was always glad to pass on her cooking skills to the family.


Patti enjoyed studying genealogy of her family and friends.  She spent many happy hours doing research in libraries and cemeteries.




Always a gardener, Patti spent time in her garden to the very end.


Patti took up shooting as part of her therapy after suffering a stroke in 2012.  She especially enjoyed shooting pistols with her friends at the Carmi Rifle Club.  She greatly missed going to Pistol League after her health failed. 

Friday, July 20, 2018

Weekend Steam: There's A Final Time For Everything


This threshing scene was on Pattie's home place twelve years before she came into the World.  She came along in 1924 while the threshing was going on, and she has loved threshing all her life.  She has been a regular attendee at Pinckneyville, Illinois, plus Boonville, Indiana, and Evansville, Indiana threshing shows.  She also attended the little show at Bluford when that was active. 


Pattie went to Pinckeyville in 2015 and had a good day, stomping around the grounds and posing for pictures. 


She got to watch this Advance engine pull a thresher, in addition to seeing tractors, gas engines, and visiting with engine friends.


We went again in 2016, but our time was limited.  Pattie couldn't get around on her feet, but we did some visiting and looked at tractors and gas engines.  That was her last trip to an engine show, and we suspected it that day.  She had a good time, though.


Get out and do those things you like while you are able to do them.  Life is short and you have to live it while you have it.

Wednesday, July 18, 2018

Illinois Concealed Carry Permit Renewal!

Did you get your Illinois Concealed Carry Permit in 2016 when they became available?  If so, now is the time to prepare for renewing that permit.  A refresher class must be taken before you can renew.  Here is info for folks in Southern Illinois, especially those near White County.


                                                                Click On Pic To Enlarge.

Tuesday, July 17, 2018

Ruger's Auction To Benefit The Light Foundation


Ruger is offering a rare treat this week, and it does not seem to be exciting the collectible crowd!  This is a Ruger Magnum Rifle in .375 H& H Magnum, shipped in 1991 to a distributor and returned from a retailer in 1996 for unknown reasons.  Study the images on Ruger's website and you will see that there is very little shop wear; just a few very minor dents in the left side of the stock. With this rifle you can do it all.  Load it down a bit for whitetails, or go full power for moose, musk ox, grizzlies, Cape buffalo; whatever!  It comes with flip up express sights for those close shots on dangerous game, but will take care of less dangerous game, too.  This rifle is a classic so don't miss out.  Click Here to read the full description and to place your bid.  $1431.06

Monday, July 16, 2018

Tuesday Torque: 5 HP Bessemer Oilfield Engine

This size is exceedingly rare.  This one sat outdoors for many years and the iron shows the effects of weather.  It sure runs sweet now.  This is a two-stroke engine, with the back side of the piston pumping in fuel and air, then pushing the mix to the top side of the piston.  The piston rod is connected to a crosshead; just like on the steam engines of the day.  The connecting rod connects from the crosshead to the crankshaft.