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Threashing Bee

Phil53 Member Posts: 73
Not heating related, but anyone interested in steam may find this interesting. Attended the 61st annual Sycamore Threashing Bee hosted by the Northern Illinois Steam Power Club. Saw at least 20 steam powered tractors along with antique gas tractors, stationary steam engines, and small hit & miss engines. Enjoyed the smell of wood and coal smoke and the sound of steam whistles. Even saw a working steam shovel and a steam tractor powered saw mill. Very cool and a nice afternoon. Hard to imagine farmers plowing their fields with these steel wheeled machines, but I'm sure it was a vast improvement over plows pulled by horses and mules.


  • jumper
    jumper Member Posts: 2,139
    Modern steam power equipment can be smaller and lighter than stuff from a hundred years ago. And it could still be fired by agricultural waste.
  • Phil53
    Phil53 Member Posts: 73
    Capturing the methane gas from feedlot waste would probably power most farm equipment, steam or I/C. Steam may be the better choice.
  • L Thiesen
    L Thiesen Member Posts: 54
    Sounds a lot like the annual Threshing Days at Goessel KS. Very interesting.
  • Phil53
    Phil53 Member Posts: 73
    Yes, a lot of similar looking tractors in various sizes, a few with vertical boilers machines.
  • Pumpguy
    Pumpguy Member Posts: 617
    I've been gong there for decades. Picked some really good tools at their flea market. Always looking for Allis Chalmers equipment. Looking for parts I may have machined when working for them as a production machinist.
    Dennis Pataki. Former Service Manager and Heating Pump Product Manager for Nash Engineering Company. Phone: 1-888 853 9963
    Website: www.nashjenningspumps.com

    The first step in solving any problem is TO IDENTIFY THE PROBLEM.
    JUGHNE Member Posts: 10,909
    Crosby, ND has a parade of this type of equipment and much more every year.
    For every steamer/oiler you see running there might be 2 in the trees for parts. They also have a machine shop with the overhead belt drive powered machining. There are dedicated people there who start working on these things weeks in advance.

    All the steamers look like they came off of a RR track.....something about the engineers of the time perhaps. Chain linkage for steering as something new to RR engineer/designers.
  • RomanGK_26986764589
    RomanGK_26986764589 Member Posts: 229
    edited August 2017
    There were actually steam powered cars developed in the 20s!
  • Phil53
    Phil53 Member Posts: 73
    The Gilmore museum in Michigan has a number of steam powered cars in its collection.
  • Solid_Fuel_Man
    Solid_Fuel_Man Member Posts: 2,645
    Ive always wanted to build/restore something wood-fired steam powered. A wood splitter comes to mind. Completely ridiculous, but fun none the less. Once it is going then you are motivated to finish the task as it was so much work to get going in the first place.

    Jay Leno's steam collection has fascinated me for years.
    Serving Northern Maine HVAC & Controls. I burn wood, it smells good!
  • MilanD
    MilanD Member Posts: 1,160
    Had no idea there were gasoline powered steam cars! Way cool!!