Tri-State Original: Gas Engine Collector - Quincy News, Weather, Sports, and Radio

Tri-State Original: Gas Engine Collector


WYACONDA, Mo. (WGEM)-- How many gas engines do you have at your home right now?

Its a strange question, but if you include your vehicles, lawnmowers, generators, etc. you may have more than you think.

But can anyone beat 225?  That's how many one Missouri man has making his collection one of the largest and most unique in the world.

And one of the oldest and rarest gas engines ever made belongs to Wyaconda, Missouri native George Martin.

"It was sitting outside in bad shape and rusted cylinders, the bolts you couldn't get out, you had to saw them off and everything," Martin said.

 It's called an inverted gas engine, and Martin's dates back to 1902.  And it's just one of about 225 engines he's rebuilt over the years.

"I bought them mainly from junk yards and places like that. And someone would tell me where there was one I would go get it," Martin said. 

 But finding the engines is just half the fun.

Martin says the best part is figuring out how to make these old time engines run, and that usually means building the parts he needs.

"It was something I like to do to make the parts and make something run. I always like to make something run and I just liked that from years ago," Martin said.

His collection even attracts quite a few visitors, some who've come from as far away as Japan just to see the sight first hand.

"I've had visitors from 40 states and about five or six foreign countries," Martin said.

And if you're someone who just has to see the engines themselves, Martin says he'll be more than happy to take you on a tour, and show you all 225 machines.

If you would like to contact George Martin, you can call 816-479-5477.

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