Saturday, April 17, 2010

Noisy, Dirty, Scary Things

Rotary Engine

I am reminded of a scene from the classic movie "The Quiet Man". John Wayne's character discusses buying a tractor with his wife, played by Maureen O'Hara. Her response was something to the effect that such machines were noisy and smelly.

There were a lot of' 'serious' machines at the auction today. This included rototillers, edgers, lathes, table saws, a few tractors, outboard engines, lawn mowers, and assorted rotary engines.

There were over 1 dozen engines. These would have been affixed to wheels and used to drive belt-driven equipment. They were being sold by an estate of a gentleman who was a collector. The seller told me her ex-husband got hurt by one of the machines (the one pictured) when it sped-up while he was turning the starter handle. It took out a few of his front teeth and cut his face open.

There were also Gravely walk behind tractors. These were gasoline-powered rotary machines that you could hook to snow blowers, mowers, etc. attachments. The snow blower pictured below looks down-right lethal. Not much of a shield around the blade. From the label, this was most likely a 1960s vintage machine. Gravely started to build equipment in the 1920s and the 2-wheeled walk behinds were made into the 1970s.

Gravely Tractor with Snow Blower

I did put an absentee bid in for an anvil. The wife and I saw some large crocks and decorative items we also bid on. Needless to say, I didn't bid on any of these impressive / aggressive machines (though there are serious collectors and enthusiasts for such equipment).

Hand tools look a lot safer . . .

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