The Dale C. Maley Family Web Site

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Refurbishing 1923 Waterloo Hit n Miss Engine

I bought this engine on September 4th, 2019, near Moraine State Park, southeast of Bloomington, Illinois.

Using the SN, I checked the Internet and found this engine was made in 1911.  I also found that Waterloo got bought out by John Deere.   After the buyout, John Deere continued to make the engine and kept the Model E designation.

Unloading Engine at Home

I'm estimating the total weight between 200 and 300 lbs. I have a small ditch in my yard, so I parked my F150 in the ditch. I had a friend help me roll it carefully off the tailgate and onto the grass.

Truck Ramps

I ordered 2 steel ramp ends from Amazon. I bought 2 boards, 2x8 inch, pressure-treated, 10 foot long.........and installed the 2 steel ramp ends. I also screwed on some 1x4's to the outsides of the boards to act as wheel guides. The ramp worked ok.


I took the engine to a local expert on hit n miss engines. He showed me where oil fill was, oil drain was, gas fill, gas drain, gas shut-off valve, and speed control knob. He showed me how to check for proper spark by holding wire against a steel ground and spinning the flywheels (there was no visible spark). He also suggested I removed the gas fill tube and make sure the ball check valve was ok. He said they were made to run on kerosene, but he suggested I run it on gasoline. He said to use the gas shut-off valve to stop the engine.

2 Manuals

The local expert let me copy his 2 manuals on the John Deere Model E, which is basically the same engine. These manuals are available on the Internet also.

Here is a link to the 1st manual, and a link to the 2nd manual.

Starting to work on the engine

Got brass fuel drain plug out. It was rounded and had to use vise grips to get it out. A few drops of a thin fluid dripped out. Got oil drain plug out and no oil dripped out.  This was expected.

Pulled gas line. Line was covered with thick black grime. I could not see the end with the hole. I cleaned it up, but ball is not free, and there is a crack/hole in the fuel line also. The expert suggested I buy a new one from Hit n Miss Enterprises, which I did. $34.50 without shipping. Here is a link to their web site.

No Spark

I got no sign of spark holding the wire against the frame and turning the flywheel.  I removed the side cover, 4 bolts, and wiped the copper disc clean.  I removed the top wire, then the brush holder and brush. I stretched the spring a little also. I sandpaper the brush a little to remove glazing. I took a white clean rag, and forced it down into the hole with a pencil like the manual says, and cleaned the surface by rotating the flywheel. Re-assembled and still no spark!

No more instructions in the manuals, so searched Internet. Found instructions for removing and cleaning the magneto assembly. Going to try that next.

If you are tired of paying more to have someone fix your engine's magneto than the entire engine itself cost, then you should consider repairing the magneto yourself. Many of the John Deere Type E engines in original condition have magnetos that fail to produce a spark. In some cases if they do have a spark, it is too weak to allow the engine to run. Usually, a good thorough cleaning of all the parts will be enough to bring back a good spark to the magneto. If most of the major parts are not cracked or damaged, anybody with a few tools can disassemble the magneto, clean it, reassemble it, and 90 percent of the time it will work. After the magneto has been removed from the engine, the first thing to do is gather all of the necessary materials.

There are only a few things needed: a screwdriver, pliers, an adjustable or open end wrench, and a scraper along with WD-40, clear, black, and aluminum spray paint, and some light oil. Two of the most important things are rags and a parts can.

After these materials are gathered, you can begin work. First wipe off as much of the dirt in the magneto as possible and spray all screws and nuts with WD-40. Next, remove the wire from the magneto by loosening the screw where it is attached. Then try unscrewing the large, round black plug the wire was connected to. If it does not come off by hand, carefully use pliers to unscrew it. After you pull this out, slightly stretch the spring and clean the black pick-up at the bottom.

Now unscrew the two screws on each side of the center strap that holds the horseshoe magnet in place and remove the strap. Firmly hold the base and try to pull off the magnet. If it does not come, lightly tap it with a rubber hammer (do not use metal because if you hit it too hard, you could reduce the power of the magnet). Then mark which direction it came off. Next, grab the gear firmly with your hand, use a wrench to remove the nut from the shaft, then pull off the gear. Be careful not to misplace any of the pieces. Now you have all of the external parts removed. The next step is to take apart the inside.

First, remove the four screws that hold the cap on. Slowly pry the cap off with a screwdriver, being careful not to damage the gasket. After the cap is off, slowly pull out the armature. (Make sure you have removed the black plug that the wire hooks up to as explained above because if you do not, you will break the armature.) Once the armature is out, use a rag to wipe it off, inspect it for damage and set it aside. Now everything is apart and each piece is ready to be cleaned.

Generally, everything except the armature and the black plug that takes the spark from the armature can be cleaned. Scrub everything else with soap and hot water until all dirt is gone. Next, wipe the individual parts dry with a rag and set them on some newspaper to air dry. After all the parts are dry, you can paint them if you want the magneto to look like new. Either clear or aluminum paint can be used on the base,- and black paint on the magnet. Spray paint usually works best because it goes on smoother and dries quicker. After the paint has had enough time to dry, you can begin reassembling the magneto.

Reassembling the magneto is not more difficult than taking it apart, only you reverse the order. First, slide the armature back into the base. Next, carefully slide the cover back on, making sure the gasket stays in place. Then put the four screws back in and tighten them up. Check to see if the armature turns freely. If it does not, loosen the screws slightly or put in a thicker gasket. Now all of the internal parts are back in place, the outside parts are next.

It does not matter in which order the gear and the magnet are put back on, but I like to put the gear on first so I can compare the spinning motion of the free armature to that of the one under magnetic influence. Simply slide the gear back onto the shaft and tighten up the nut as much as you can with the wrench. Spin it with your fingers to make sure it turns freely. Now, slide the magnet back onto the base in the same direction that it came off. Place the strap over it, put the four screws back in, and tighten them back up. Now try turning the armature freely. It should be much more difficult to turn now that it is under the magnet's influence.

Now, carefully place the black plug back where it came from, screw it in tightly with for fingers, and put the wire back on to it. If you have painted the magneto so it looks like new, you should also get a new wire. Yellow wires look the best with this type of magneto. The restoration process is complete and testing can now proceed.

The magneto should be tested before it is remounted on the engine. This test is very simple and can be done in a few seconds. Hold the wire by the insulation and place the end within l/16th of an inch of a clean, unpainted steel area of the magneto (the inner side of the gear works well). Then with your other hand, spin the gear as quickly as you can. You should see a bluish-colored spark. If you do not, try it again on a different area of the magneto. The next test should be done on the engine. After you have restored the engine, try the magneto on it to see if it runs. If it does, great. If it does not, check to make sure all of the ignition parts on the engine are operating correctly.

This process may sound complicated, but it is extremely simple and if you are hesitant about attempting it, just do it slowly. You can turn a useless magneto into a very valuable one with little cost to you.

Dis-assembly of the magneto

The directions above forgot to say you have to take the 3 bolts off the crankcase cover which sits on top of the crank.  I got those off ok......and the cover off ok.

When I went to take off the gear nut that drives the armature, I noticed the nut was slightly loose.  Using a wrench, I slowly went ahead to turn the nut clear off, and it fell off into the oil pan!!!!!!

There is about 3/4" oil in the crankcase, I put my hand in the oil and searched 3 times trying to find the nut.......and could not find it.  The 4th time I pushed on the outside edge and my finger went out on the side!!  There is a side cover for the governor assembly, and the nut must have gone in there.  I will have to take the side case off to get it.

I messed up and kept tapping the magneto case with a rubber hammer on the side until it came off.   I think it was bolted to the main casting with bolts underneath.  I think I should have taken the side case off also.  I will take it off today.

So the condition of the magneto is:

-magnet won't generate any spark

-threaded end for gear bolt is broken off

-I broke the housing underneath because I did not unbolt it

-coil winding is oil soaked

-side cover is ok, top tower with brush ok

I should move my screwdriver side to side inside the housing and see if there is any magnetism, like I saw a guy do on the youtube video.

Friday September 13, 2019

At this point, I still can not find the big nut that fell off the magneto drive gear when I put my wrench on it to remove it.  I also need to remove the 2 vertical bolts that were holding the magneto assembly on.

So, I drained the oil, by removing the pipe cap on the drain.  This drains most, but not all the oil in the crankcase, because the drain port is not at the absolute bottom.

Removal of nameplate side cover panel

I used a big screwdriver to remove all the screws, and was careful to not drop it when I took out the last screw.

Found vertical bolt that fell down when removing magneto

Finally found big nut from magneto shaft

It was not in the side cover case was on the RH side of the main oil crankcase!!   I don't know how my fingers missed it before.  This photo shows the nut laying back on the magneto shaft after I found the 2 bolts for the magneto assembly.

Mailing the magneto off for repair in Ohio

I called him, and he still repairs magnetos.  I carefully packaged my magneto and mailed it to him..........insured it for $500.

Lightning Magneto
45685 Co Hwy 54

Ottertail, MN 56571

Ignitor Assembly

I took off the 2 mounting bolts, and disconnected the spring to the exhaust valve open linkage.  It carefully slid out.  The points look ok to me. Maybe I won't have to rebuild this assembly!

Separating Cart from Engine

I want to clean up and paint the cart for my Waterloo hit n miss engine. Just one problem, "How do you get the 250 pound engine off the cart?" The engine also has to set on temporary blocks also, because the 108 year old gas tank is on the bottom. Another requirement my wife made was for her not to have to take me to the Pontiac ER this afternoon :)

Solution: Put a sturdy piece of 4x4 timber across the attic door opening, then use a hand winch from the farm to raise and lower the heavy engine :) :)

It all worked as planned, and no trip to the Pontiac ER :) Now I can clean and paint the 1911 cart and make it look pretty.


I took a bunch of pictures of the cart, in case I needed them for re-assembly after I get everything cleaned up and painted.

Cleaning and Painting the Cart

I had a suspicion there might be nice oak wood under the oily slimy green paint on the cart 4 wood parts.  I ran them through my planer, and I was right !!  The 2 long pieces are either red or white oak. The other 2 pieces are not oak, but maybe maple.  I fuzz cut off the ends and angles to get rid of the paint on the ends.  I put an 1/8" round-over on the main edges, just to eliminate splinters and sharp spots (standard procedure on my woodworking projects).  I used an oil based Golden Oak stain on all 4 pieces.......boy they look nice !!

I was going to put simple linseed oil as a finish.............but my old radial arm saw has plywood with many years of multiple layers of linseed oil.........and it has turned quite dark over the years. I want the light color oak to I bought a can of outdoor oil based finish.......which should resist the oil that will be dripped also.

Cleaning and painting metal parts

I have an old kitchen sink in my put in a couple kinds of soap and soaked the wheels and other parts to clean them.  For the rusty exterior of the wheels, I put the wheel in the vise...........and used a wire brush in my drill to remove the rust.

I bought a new small can of Rustoleum primer.............then used John Deere yellow and green on those parts.............then black on wheel support structure and pull handle.

I did not try putting any of these parts in the old oven at 120F to dry them quicker.......many of them are 2 big to fit into the oven.

Cart re-assembly

I was taking 1 of the wheels to the garage and the new yellow paint chipped off easily.  It seemed soft to the touch after 24 hours drying.  I baked them in the oven at 120F for about 30 minutes to try to make them harder.

I got new cotter pins and square nuts, washers, lock washers, from Ace.  I used my cell phone pictures of the cart before aid me in re-assembly.........which worked ok.

I cleaned the engine with a 1" chip brush and paint thinner in the open garage.  I then hand painted a new coat of John Deere green on it.

Cleaned and repainted cart and engine

Problem with yellow paint on outside of wheels

The paint come off as soon as I rolled the wheels on the concrete.   Then I remembered the paint can I used was dated 2001.........or 18 years old!!!!!!!!!   They paint dryers must have evaporated or I bought a new can to repaint the outside of the rims.


I want to put a decal on each side of the water jacket, saying the engine name and date of manufacture.  I found a web site that makes vinyl labels that stick on.  The web site is this.

Here is what it should look like...........

Water pump

The next thing I need is a water pump.   I ordered a new one with spare seals.  I think the pumping cylinder is built in to the upper base unit.............versus a separate cylinder.....which should save me height. Here is a link to where I bought the pump.

Wheel size

The cast iron wheels are about 8.5 inches in diameter.  I plan on making a cart for the water pump, and I would like to use similar looking wheels for that cart.

Cart concept design

Cast Iron wheels for cart

I found some on Ebay much cheaper than mcMaster-carr.........

Pump Supplier out of stock until January 2020!

After I ordered the pump........about a week later..............I got an email from the company saying they were out of stock until Jan of 2020!!!!!!   I cancelled the order.

I went to Ebay and found what I think is the same I bought it on Sep 25th, 2019.  Supposed to be here next week. Fingers are crossed.

Still Waiting on Gas Line

I am getting tired of waiting, so I went on Ebay and found 1 new one for sale.   I went to order it...........and up pops message...........Seller is on can not order this item :(  

Repainting 4 cast iron wheels

Because my 18 year old paint did not dry properly..........and peeled right off...............I decided to repaint all 4 wheels with freshly purchased John Deere yellow paint.

I put wheel in vise, and scraped off the yellow paint with a 3/4" wide chisel.  The new primer actually stayed on the wheel......which is a good sign !

I used my hydraulic floor jack to raise the motor skid, so I could take each wheel off and back on after repainting.

Gas line

I am anxious to try running my engine, but I'm waiting for the new gas line.  I decided to investigate making my own gas line.  Here is the old one.

The copper line is about 1/4" on the OD. Per McMaster-Carr this is called 1/8" tubing and it has an OD of 1/4".  I have a few feet of soft 1/8" copper tubing in my inventory.

I ordered a check valve from Ebay today.

This check valve might be the wrong orientation........the screen needs to be up for the ball to seat..............and in my hit n miss.......the ball needs to go down to seat.

I decided to see if the brass piece on the end of my old fuel line would unscrew off the tubing..........and it did !!    I dulled the end of a finishing nail to use it as a punch........and I hammered out the old check valve.

I don't see any way I can clean up the little check valve and the seat so it will seal gasoline.  Let's see if I can make one using McMaster-Carr parts.  It would be nice to have a filter, since my old gas tank is not very clean......

Check Valve

Filter has male end, so it will screw into 1 end of the check valve.  Now, how do I transition from 1/8" NPT female on check valve to 1/8" copper?   Options are to thread the 1/8" copper with 1/8" NPT or solder a fitting onto the copper.

I found a sweat fitting that should work.....

It is $15 for an 1/8" NPT die to thread the OD of the 1/8" copper tubing.   I will gamble and assume the sweat fitting will work ok.

I found a compression fitting that might work on the outlet of the tank end........

Here are all the parts I ordered today..................

Only ordered 1 wrong item from mcmaster-carr

I received all the brass fittings I ordered............and I ordered the wrong compression nut that goes into the old threaded plug fitting.  I ordered one for 1/8" copper OD, item 50815K102 and I should have ordered the one for copper tubing with 1/4" OD.  It is easy to get confused because they call copper tubing with a 1/4" OD "1/8" tubing".    I ordered the right one today.  I can use the one that Ace hardware gave me instead if I want.

Bad news on new check valve from McMaster-Carr

I checked and it would not fit into the tapped hole in the gas tank !!   The filter fitting fits fine and so does the copper adapter.

Next I will measure the OD of the threaded fitting that goes into it.............then see if I can Dremel the hex off the check valve and make it fit the hole.

Ready to try making the gas line

The John Deere manual shows the gas line pointing almost straight down and slightly bent.   My old gas line was much longer than this and was bent.

I straightened out my old gas line and put it back down the engine hole. You have to angle it slightly around the cylinder casting, but it pretty much goes straight down.  The tank is much deeper than I initially thought.  My old line pretty much bottoms out against the bottom of the fuel tank.

I removed the brass plug with vise grips (hex is long rounded over)...........and poured some fresh gas down the fill hole in back of the engine.........and nothing came out of drain plug hole???????        Put my old oil collection plastic pan under the gas drain port.

Took a piece of wire and poked it up the hole.........and plooooosh........the gas started running out !!!!!!!!     So, this is my gas tank cleaning operation.

I like the brass ball check I got from ebay better than the mcmaster carr one.   I know brass will hold up in the heat and gasoline......I am not so sure about the mcmaster carr one.   It has a filter I am going to try that one.

Rounding edges on mcmaster-carr check valve

Using a file, or my Dremel with a sanding drum..........I rounded over the edges so it will slide into the hole in the block.  The threads on the block for the gas line fitting appear to be 5/8 - 11 UNC.   The plug thread OD is about 5/8" and the distance between thread peaks is about 3/32.

I ended up not using this fitting. The ebay fitting has a brass ball and fits in the fuel hole fine.  The Mcmaster-carr check barely fits in the hole, and the seal is not brass, but some type of non metallic material.

Ebay check valve I used with brass ball

Making the gas line

I did not use Bob Nussbaum's Ace compression fitting.......instead I was able to cut the old copper line........and slide off the old fitting. 

The old baby fires!

On sep 30th, 2019, I hooked up a 6 volt battery and coil to the engine.  I cleaned up the piece of number 12 copper wire that was on the engine, attached with a side cover bolt, so I would have a good ground connection. I cranked the flywheel and noticed I could not hear the trip lever, which fires the spark.   It was sticky, so I oiled it a little bit [I may have to put a stronger spring on it, the old one is very weak].  I cranked it again, but it did not fire.

I shot some ether into the inlet fitting, and closed the choke plate.  I cranked the flywheel and it started to fire for several cycles !!!!!!!!!

I was able to keep it running for a  minute or two by periodically spraying some more does sound like a hit n miss engine!!

I opened the metering valve about 1 or 1.5 turns, which I read somewhere should be about right, and I had the choke plate 80% closed. I could not see any gas in the inlet fitting.

So, I am not getting gas into the combustion chamber.

I checked with my consultant.............he highly suggested I remove the gas tank and clean it....because I was probably plugging up the new filter on my gas line.  Possible causes of no gas......

1. inlet filter screen is plugged.

2. gas line inlet not submerged into gasoline
3. gas line between rubber coupling is plugged (can remove and check it)

4. line is plugged to metering valve

Bought 2 ft of 1/4" ID black fuel line at auto parts store

I thought I would attach this piece to my new gas line, then suck on it and make sure fuel could flow to the needle valve.  I ended up not using it.

Ether and transformer

108 year old engine starts running by itself

I filled the engine with oil...........using long funnel I bought at Ace last night.   Also filled cooling tank with water.  I had gas in it from yesterday.

I gave it a shot of ether, and it took off running.........and kept running by itself for a couple minutes until I accidentally disconnected the ignition wire.

I used blue masking tape to hold the 6V battery and coil in place better during this debug phase.   She kept running for about 5 minutes, when I disconnected the ignition wire because oil was spraying pretty good from the magneto assembly hole.  I will have to make a temporary cover for the magneto opening until I get it back from rebuild in Minnesota.

I made a Youtube video of the engine running by itself for the first time..........

Magneto hole that I had to make a gasket and sheet metal plate to keep oil from splashing out

Hand Water Pump

It arrived in 2 big and  heavy boxes.   One box had the upper portion with handle and spout...........other had just lower section.

After I unpacked it, they either forgot to ship the 4 bolts that connect the top to the bottom section, or they fell out of the box during shipping. I had to go to Ace Hardware and buy the bolts.

Pump stroke

I used blue masking tape to mark the top and bottom of the stroke.   The max stroke is 5.25 inches.

On my Dain Mfg pump jack, there a set of outer holes and a set of inner holes................give 1 large stroke and 1 smaller stroke.  The larger stroke is .........8 inches.

The shorter stroke is..........5.5 inches.

Now the measured stroke using the handle was 5.25.   I think I can squeeze another 1/4" of stroke out of the pump without the handle.

Lower check valve and 2 flat donut seals

Upper check valve and pump seal

Pump style is ok

This pump has the pumping cylinder integrated into the top casting.  Old farm pumps had a separate pumping cylinder about a foot long, that had to be placed below the bottom of the pump.  This newer style minimizes the height of the pump above the ground, which is what I want.  I need to see if I can pump seals from the 1st pump I ordered the pump from.  I can probably make the 2 flat donut seals from rubber or something.  The cup seal would be tough to make.  The cup seal will wear out first.

I went back to the 1st company that I ordered the pump from............and had to cancel the order for the pump since they were out of stock until Jan 2020............and ordered spare seals.

Pump Fit-Up to Pump Jack

"Houston, we have a problem".    The 1890 pump jack was designed to be bolted to the pump on the skinny lower section of that style of pump.  This modern style pump has a much larger diameter base, and the pump jack does not immediately fit it.

Improved running of engine

Yesterday, the 1st day the engine ran by itself...........I started it about 5 times.  On the 4th and 5th would run about 3 to 5 minutes then stop??

I got nervous the gas line filter was clogged, since I did not clean the tank.  I pulled the gas line today.........filter was fine.  I had to take pliers and bend the gas line more straight after it was inserted back into the gas prevent the end hitting the tank when you tighten the nut.

I fired the engine up.  I had the choke plate 20% open.   I had the gas needle valve about 1 turn open.  When I decreased it to 1/4 turn open, it started to run better...........and it ran for 16 minutes straight before I shut it down !!!!!!    I still have a lot to learn about optimum settings to run the engine at................and how sensitive the speed control knob is.....and which way you turn it to get slower or faster.

Pump Configuration

I decided to keep the pump jack sitting on the same surface as the pump.  I made an oak spacer for the 45 degree angle that goes against the pump..........and to fabricate a new U-shaped piece of 3/8" steel for the clamp.  I got a 3/8" steel rod from Ace and used my old Sears tap to cut the threads.  Boy, 3/8" diameter rod is hard to bend by hand in the vise!

I ended up sawing out a disc, with a 3-15/16 inch diameter, the same as the Chinese pump where the u-bolt goes, then using that disc with the bent rod in the vise to get it closer to shape.  It is not perfect, but it will work ok.

Engine Firing

Each time the engine is ready to fire to get the speed back up, the side arm moves and you can hear the click when it moves the igniter assembly.  In theory, each time you see or hear the click, you should get combustion.  I watched my engine run and it randomly takes 1 to 6 times to get combustion instead of the 1:1 ratio. There could be several reasons for this:

-points are not working properly [maybe I should take off the igniter and try to clean them with rough sandpaper]

-fuel to air ratio is not quite right [determined by choke plate position and gas needle valve opening amount] I consulted with my expert, and he said on his hit n miss engines, on different days it takes a different combination of choke plate setting and gas needle valve setting.

As long as the engine keeps running while it pumps water, it is ok if I don't figure out how to achieve the 1:1 ratio.

Pump Bottom Config

Top of pump configuration

The top piece of the pump, which normally the handle bolts into...........can be swiveled 360 loosening the 2 bolts.  I rotated it so the pump arm bracket was on the same side as the pump spout............or 180 degrees from the pump jack.  This gets it out of the way of the pump jack.

I mounted the 2 oak pieces from the farm on the inner set of bolt holes on the pump jack, to get the correct stroke.  Using the blue tape on the pump rod, of the normal stroke using the lever........I set the height of the pump jack bracket on the oak give the correct stroke.

I need to make a video of the top config while I rotate the pump jack make sure it works ok.   I can not see it because I am bent over turning the flywheel with a pair of vise simulate the hit n miss engine.

YouTube Video

Speed Ratio

The pulley on the pump jack is 8 inches................the pulley on the hit n miss for the flat belt is 4.75 speed reduction ratio is 4.75/8 = 0.59

So 600 rpm on the hit n miss gets reduced to 59% into the pump jack gearbox = 356 RPM............pump jack is 12:1 ratio so 1/12 of 356 RPM = 30 30 RPM divided by 60 sec = 0.5  rev per second................or 2 seconds per stroke.   This should be just right for the speed of the pumping strokes !!!!!!!!

Note: I still don't know if I will use a flat belt or a v-belt from the hit n miss engine to the pump jack.

Pump Cart Design

Some of my design objectives:

1. Make it look like the hit n miss cart as much as possible.

2. Use 8 steel wheels like Waterloo cart

3. Make wheelbase the same as the Waterloo cart, so I can use the same ramp width on my truck

4. Hide the water pipe between the 5 gallon bucket and the pump. Kids or adults won't know where the water comes from.

5. Use pull handle like Waterloo cart.  Can use smaller diameter rod because big will be hard to bend.

6. Allow space on cart on belt end of pump jack to mount a lever to engage/disengage the belt

7. Use oak like Waterloo cart. I have quite a few 3x3's white oak I can use [I can net 2.5x2.5 inches from them]

Pump Paint scheme

I decided to paint the pump International Red.   I also painted the pump jack top casting that connects to the pump rod yellow.   Back in the 1980s I painted it green, but I think now it will look better in yellow.

Pump suction pipe

It is 1-1/4" pipe size.  It will take about 27 inches to get from the female connection inside the pump, to get down below the base.  I plan on using nipples from Ace to do this.

Pump Cart Design

I think I will make a mock-up of the cart using cheaper pine, versus oak. I am not sure to run the v-belt and engagement device yet, which impacts the design of the back of the cart.

Trying to find a v-belt pulley that will bolt onto hit n miss flywheel

If I go with v-belts instead of a flat belt, then I need a 5" OD pulley that I can drill 3 holes in to bolt to the flywheel (3.75 bolt diameter circle).  McMaster-Carr has one, but it is plastic, not steel.  I can not find a steel one on the internet anywhere??  I must not be searching for the right description?

Updated pump cart design

After sleeping on it, I decided to eliminate all the mortise and tenon joints, and just use bolted connections like the hit n miss cart.  It will be much easier to make, and look more like the engine cart design..

Cart Mock-Up

I had already designed the mock up using the mortise and tenon joints and done all the dimensioning.   I just modified 1 of the 6 boards to show it setting on top.....versus correcting the whole drawing.

Axles , Axle u-bolts, and water line hose from McMaster-Carr

Pull Handle

The hit n miss Waterloo engine cart has a bent 3/8" steel handle to pull it........which works very well.  I want to use the same concept on the water pump cart.  But, then ends are bent to fit around the ~1 inch diameter axle.   I can not make this bend cold, I would need an oxygen-acetylene torch to do it.   I could have my brother weld a steel washer with a 1" ID washer on each side instead.

I checked McMaster-Carr and they sell 6 foot lengths of 3/8" steel rod.  This is the longest they ship.   I laid it out in Sketchup with my pump cart.......and tapered the handle down to 12 inches wide where you pull it.........and 36 inches is long enough to work.  My  Sketchup has a 90 degree bend on the pull ends, but it reality it will be curved, like the engine cart handle.

Mock Up construction

There is a reason to build a find mistakes !!

I built up the mock-up from 2x4's and bolted it up using 6 inch long 3/8" diameter bolts.   I then tried to set the pump jack onto the mock-up........and the back 2 holes were about 2 inches too far to the back to match up with the pump jack!!

I went back to my original paper sketch, and I had 6 inches, the right dimension...........but I made a human error in Sketchup and put it at 8 inches !!!!!!!  DARN !

So I fixed the drawing and the mock-up.  Glad I did this mock up in pine...........versus the more expensive white oak !

Another issue with the mock-up

Because the pump jack and pump are physically connected to each other through the oak spacer and u-bolt, the spacing between the 4 bolts on the pump have to be the perfect distance from the 4 bolts for the pump jack.   I had a hard time measuring them with both units sitting on the floor.  I should have slid some carboard under them, then marked the hole dimensions on the cardboard...........versus using a square and tape measure!

So, I bolted down the pump jack first.   Then I bolted down the pump.   I went to put in the oak spacer, and it would not fit!!!!!!!      The 2 units were 1/4 to 3/8" to close to each other!!  I think I will move the pump jack back on its 2 boards, mark the location after the oak spacer is clamped in place........then drill new bolt holes.   I will have to change the drawing also.

Drilling hole in 5 gal bucket with 3/4" Forstner bit

Status on Oct 6, 2019

Today I will give a 2nd coat of red paint to the pump.

I am waiting on short piece of hose to arrive, then I can complete the water piping circuit.  Then I can spin pump jack by hand using a vise grip, and make sure it pumps water ok.  I have a short 1/2" pipe restriction in the 1-1/4" pipe circuit, but I don't think it will impede the pumping rate.

Then I will disassemble the pump cart and reconstruct it in my garage with the hit n miss engine.  After I buy a used flat belt from Ebay, I will see if a flat belt drive will work.  I will also have to add a dummy pulley, maybe from wood with guide lips on the 2 outer edges, to engage and dis-engage it.

Ordered most of the rest of the parts I need

I ordered 4 steel wheels from Ebay.  I also ordered a used 4 inch wide flat belt from ebay.

I ordered a 6 foot long piece of 3/8" steel rod, to make the pull handle from.

This should just about complete all the materials I need for this project.  The only unknown is the belt drive, and how it works.

Decal Installation (3 decals)

I had a break today from working on the water pump cart...........because I am waiting for more parts to arrive.

So, I decided to put on the 3 decals.  They came with strange instructions about using 2 parts water and 1 part isopropyl alcohol..........and soaking the back of the decal using a squirt bottle.  Instead of a squirt bottle, I used a 1 inch chip brush, with the fluid in an old ceramic coffee cup.  I actually read and following the directions, and the decals seem to have gone on ok.  We will see how long they last.

Water pumping test

The biggest ID brass adapter for suction from the 5-gallon bucket I could find on the Internet was 1/2" pipe size..........made primarily for rain barrels.  At the relatively low flow rates on this pump set-up, this short section of restriction should not impact the amount of water pumped........I hope :)   The suction line from the pump is 1-1/4" size pipe.

I put 3 gallons of water into the 5 gallon bucket, using an empty 1 gallon plastic empty paint thinner jug.  I had no initial leaks, but after operating the pump, I have a slow drip from the brass connector to the 5 gallon bucket.  I need to check and see if I need a 1/2" longer pipe nipple there or not. No big deal.

I tried pumping with no priming, by putting a vise grip wrench on the pump jack gear box and turning it by hand.   I got no water.  So, I primed the pump with about 4 glasses of water.  Then, I started to get water flow.........HURRAH                   It does take a little effort by hand to turn the gearbox, but the hit n miss engine should have no problems running it.

Suggested procedure for final oak pump cart

Rather than horse around and try to get all the pump jack, pump, and bolts to the 2 side rails correct..............I should just bolt down the front  pump mounting rail........then bolt the pump jack and pump together sitting on 3 loose rails...........then adjust the rails to the correct position.  This eliminates any chance for errors.

Temporary legs on mock pump cart

The 4 legs are 14 inch long 2x4's..............which simulates the height of the final cart with the steel wheels.  I used 4 deck screws, #9 by 2.5 inches to hold each one, which seems pretty sturdy.

I dis-assembled the mock cart in my basement, and will be moving it, the pump, and the pump jack to my I can do test work with the flat belt and hit n miss engine next.

Got Mock Pump Cart moved to garage

The pump jack is not too heavy to haul up the 16 steps from my basement...........but boy that assembled pump is heavy enough for 1 person to carry!

I re-assembled everything in the garage.  I put the hand lever back on the pump temporarily.  I found it takes at least 1.5 gallons of water to run right........and not suck a vacuum.  I was able to pump a bunch of water using the hand fact............the water came out so fast.........I had to add a funnel so it all went into the bucket.

So now I am waiting on my Ebay used flat belt to try everything out..........which should be thursday.

Used Flat Belt arrived from Iowa

1st, I laid the belt on both flat pulleys (pump jack and engine) with some slack.  It came off when I started the hit n miss engine.  After I got the engine running, I placed the belt, with some slack, onto the rotating pulley on the Waterloo engine........then using the pull handle, I pulled it forward and put tension on the belt............and I put a scrap 1x4 under the steel wheels of the engine cart.  The belt stayed on, but the engine moved (my 1x4 on concrete slipped slowly)........and the belt came off.

I went to Ace and found an expanding pole, made for the bed of pick-up trucks.  You can pull on it and it expands and locks into the nearest can then rotate the pole for fine tuning extension.

I went ahead and put on the flat belt, and used the expanding pole to put tension on the belt.  The engine was warm.  I was able to start the engine with the pump connected !!       And I was pumping water !!!!!!!

I went to the pulley side of the engine, and slid it either in or out..........until the belt edge was maybe 1/4" from the flywheel.   The belt stayed on and the engine ran pumping water for maybe 25 minutes!!!!!!!!!    By manually sliding the engine cart, you can tweak where the belt wants to run on its pulley.

This is great news, because I do not have to design and build an idler pulley to engage and disengage the flat belt.  This means my pump cart design is finalized and I can build the pretty oak cart now.

Youtube video of everything working

Steel Wheels for pump cart

The 4 new steel wheels arrived from Ebay.........boy they are heavy duty wheels!  Now I need to prime and paint them.  I can start building the pump cart now from oak.  I also need to prime and paint the 2 axles and the U-bolts for the axles.

Final Pump Jack Design

I decided to make the 2 main long rails extend 2 inches beyond the pump jack cross bar...........and the back axle be 2 inches short of the long rails.

Since I don't have to mount an idler pulley on the pump cart, this lets me shorten the length of the 2 main long rails..........which also reduces the amount of storage space I need also.

My white 5-gallon bucket is pretty ugly.  Maybe I will paint it John Deere green with 2 yellow stripes on it to gussy it up a little.

First dead 6 volt battery

October 14, 2019, I tried to fire it up to use up the I could drain the gas tank and water tank for winter storage.  I shot in ether, but it did not seem to fire.  I arced across the 2 terminals of the 6 volt battery, and got a very small spark.............not the normal amount.   I bought a new battery, and she took right off !!

I have probably only run the engine maybe 3 hours maybe a 6 volt battery is only good for 3 hours of operation??    When I display the engine and run it for 3 hours next summer, I will have to take along an extra 6 volt battery as a spare.............unless I get the magneto fixed this winter.

I learn something new about this engine all the time :) 

Building the nice white oak pump cart

I ended up changing the design a little from my Sketchup model.  I did not use the U-bolt axle bolts..........I decided to just drill a 3/8" hole right through the 3/4" pipe axle and bolt the axle to its supporting piece of wood above.  This worked ok. I put on the axles, then put on the wheels, and marked the axles to stick out 5/8" from the wheel........then used the Ridgid pipe cutter to cut them.  I did the same on the front axle, but I had to saw off about 5/8" on each side of the wood block..........because Brad's welded washers on the pull handles took a little more space.  Aced did not have 9 inch  long 3/8" shoulder bolts, so I ordered some from McMaster-Carr.

I added 2 wood blocks to keep the 5 gallon bucket in place. During prototype testing, it moved as the engine ran for 30 minute periods.

Dis-assembly and staining

Once I got the cart all built, I dis-assembled it, then did the following:

-erase all pencil marks

-run through router table, round over all edges using 1/8" router round-over bit

-sanded on drill press with 220 grit sanding drum

-stained with Golden Oak

I let all the pieces dry overnight, then applied the 1st coat of outdoors polyurethane.

Gussying up the 5 gal white dry wall mud bucket

I thought a John Deere green bucket with a couple of yellow stripes, would look good on the pump cart.

I did not know if the Rustoleum enamel paint would stick or I gave the bucket 1 coat.  It dried overnight and seemed to stick well to the plastic!!  I gave it a 2nd coat today.  Once the 2nd coat dries, I will do the yellow stripes using blue masking tape.

Putting a sign on the bucket

I paid about $11 each for 2 decals for my hit n miss engine, they were oval 3x6 inch size.

I went back to the same web site, and a 7x7 inch vinyl sign was $20 each !!!!!!!!    I thought that was too expensive, so I will just put 1 or 2 yellow rings around the bucket.


My garage is pretty full already, but I was able to squeeze in the hit n miss engine between my toolbox and bench.  I put the 2 ramp planks on the garage floor, so my truck can drive over them.  I am going to leave the pump cart in the basement this winter.

Exhibition Sign

I will have my local sign maker make me a roughly 24x36 inch sign, which I will use in the display next summer.

Building Oak Pump Cart

Finishing up the Pump Cart Oct 30, 2019

I finally got a little time to finish up the pump cart !!

She really looks nice !

I made a short video showing the pump cart being pulled and turned.

If I get a chance, I will post a link here.

Now the pump cart sits in my basement until June of 2020, when I move it upstairs and use it with the hit n miss engine at several displays.

OOOPS........made a mistake on year engine built

I posted this project on a web site frequented by hit n miss engine Experts.  They said I had the wrong year of manufacture.  I checked and I misread the SN versus date chart, and it is a 1923 and not a 1911 his n miss engine.  I removed the old decals and installed new ones with the correct 1923 year.

May 2020

Over the winter months, I received my rebuilt magneto.   You might say it was a brand new magneto because about every part was broke on it.  I was a little surprised how high the bill was, but on the other hand it is basically a brand new magneto.

The bill was over $500, I  can't find a copy right now.

The guys at work told me I had to time the magneto when I re-installed it, because it makes a 6 volt cyclic voltage, and you want the peak of the cycle to be about where it fires.  Sure enough, there were timing marks on the magneto, drive gear, etc.  I lined up the timing marks.  The 2 vertical bolts were a bear to get tight, because there is such little clearance, but I got them.

New Magneto did not seem to work

After installing the magneto, I was not able to start it using the magneto.   I put on the old 6V battery and coil and it started, but did not run great.  I quit that day.

A few months later, maybe early Sep 2020, my grandson visited Fairbury for the day, so I got the engine and pump cart out in the yard, so he could see it, and dump some soap in the 5 gallon bucket to make lots of soap bubbles.   I got it running on the battery, but I kept having to add ether to keep it running, indicating a fuel problem.

Here is a link to a video showing my grandson and the engine and pumping cart all working.

Sep 16, 2020

It will be time to winterize the engine and pump cart by draining the gas and water from it.  I decided to try to get the engine running better, before I put it away for the winter.

I drained the old gas out of the engine and put some in a clear glass jar to see how dirty it was.  I had put in a gas line cleaner back in May, so maybe the fuel was too dirty and that was why I had to add ether.  The fuel was a little darker, but not that bad compared to new, clean fuel.

Fuel line experiment

I had some extra black fuel line hose, and a brand new gas I put some new, clean fuel, in a glass jar, and fired up the engine.  It ran the best it has ever run !!

I violated the guideline of only changing 1 thing at a time and see the affect.  I probably should have just put in new, clean fuel, and see what that did.......but I did not.

Fuel System

At this point in the troubleshooting, I made an assumption.........that deadly word.   I assumed it was not a quality of fuel problem, but something wrong in the intake gas line going to the tank. I removed the entire fuel system from the engine, including the adjusting knob and its associated fitting in the carburator chamber.  The Brass tube that holds the jet, had some old red material sealing the front gap between the OD of the brass tube and the carburator casting.  Air can leak in here, which reduces the vacuum drawing in the fuel. I bought some Red RTV at Ace and sealed it on the outside.  It may not have any impact, but leakage is not good.

When I pulled out the fuel line, I tried sucking on it with my mouth.  I was not able to easily draw air into the screen.  I suspect the ball for the check valve was stuck against the seat, and/or the screen was covered with a black soot like material.   Boy, the screen and inlet check valve assembly sure gets hot in just a few hours of operation!!

I tried to clean the screen with carburator cleaner, then gently rub it with a clean cloth, the screeen material disintegrated!!!!!!!!   

I checked, and this was the screen filter and ball assembly I purchased from Ebay.

New Fuel Line

I had bought a whole new fuel line in the Fall of 2019, so I installed it. The screen looks like real wire on this one, so maybe it with withstand the heat better than the last one.

I went ahead and bought another Ebay filter to have a spare, which will screw right onto my old gas line.

I should probably try to buy a spare filter/check valve assembly from the same outfit I bought the new one have another spare.

NOTE:  When you change fuel line, it takes about 4 attempts to start the engine, because you have to fill up the copper gas line with fuel until it hits the carb section.

On about the 5th try, the engine took off, and again ran great !!

Magneto started working

Once I got the engine running and the throttle needle valve set, I swapped from the battery to the magneto...........and she kept running great !!   I also noticed a spark when I was swapping to the I think it is working now.  It could be I had a poor electrical wire connection when I tried the magneto before.  I am going to keep the battery and coil, because it seems to start better with the battery as opposed to the magneto.

She ran perfect for 1 hour pumping water, until it ran out of gas...........HOORAY !!

You can see it running on this video using this link.

Ordered spare Ebay filter

Battery and Coil wood box

I decided to use 3/4" thick red oak for the box, since this will be similar to the white oak on the engine cart and pump cart.

I built the design in red oak.  I just had to make 1 minor  change when I tried it out, I had to shorten the top and inside piece by 3/8" to avoid hitting the engine cast iron mounting bracket.  I could eliminate the top piece and inside piece, and just screw it on the cart rail..........but I like the idea of being able to remove it easily if it gets in the way of any maintenance items.

I also went to Ace and bought some alligator clips to use on the wires.  They keep coming off the spring terminals on the 6V lantern battery, so this should eliminate this problem.