Wednesday, May 27, 2015

Stover Engine 1925

I had never heard of a "steam show" nor of the hobby of keeping antique engines, until I stumbled across it in rural North Carolina, the "Old Threshers' Reunion." By now you faithful readers (all three of you) know that I love old industrial equipment, sites, and designs. This show was filled with nostalgic American machinery. There is another annual "steam show" closer to me in Berryville, Virginia, and I made this drawing during a visit to the one in 2003.

Steam shows have more than noisy hardware. They have vendors, live music, food, games, and historical displays. The show lasts all weekend and people camp there in RVs and trailers, or tents they brought in the car or even on a motorcycle. They set up their sites with most of the comforts of home, including little sitting rooms under an awning with a barbecue grill and a cooler and the whole family and the dog. And many of them, in a reserved section, bring along an antique engine that they have restored, which is set up in front of their space for visitors to admire. 

This is one of these hobbyists' pride and joys. It is a Stover farm engine from 1925. It runs on gasoline and was originally used to power a cement mixer. When I saw it and drew its  picture, it was running (note the spinning flywheels) but slowly, about one "chug" every few seconds. The wheeled stand supporting it is modern, so that the engine can easily be moved. The owners were only too happy to explain all about how the thing worked and how they restored it. I ended up drawing a number of engines and equipment, as well as draft horses which were also on display at the show. 

The Berryville steam show is on July 25 this year and I hope I can get to it, sketchbook in hand.

"Stover Engine" is brown technical pen ink and colored pencil, some restoration in Photoshop, 9" x 5 1/4", July 26, 2003.

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