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A Trip To Remember

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I was the youngest of a family of six children and our widowed grandfather lived with us on a small mixed farm. Of necessity, our father was good at mechanics and blacksmithing doing whatever neccessary to keep the farm machinery operating smoothly and in good repair.
 
My childish curiosity had me tagging along and underfoot, contantly asking questions like "why" and "what for" and "how come" He would patiently explain. So my mechanical bent was set early in my life. Isolated as we were on the farm, a small boys play  necessitated building play things from available pieces of scrap iron, wood and often,some parts had to be imagined. Projects I had dreamed about in childhood if one had the tools and wherewithall, would come to fruition not until 30 or 40 years later.
 
Leaving the farm in 1952,  in my first career I was employed on Canadian National Railways as a Telegraph/Train order operator. But advanced signalling  technologies still still had me working midnites after 11 years service. So it was back to Tech School and a new career in Refrigeration&Airconditioning where my mechanical bent and training was an asset in applications and sales.
 
Then after ten years, a final 22 year dream career in Industrial Equipment Sales involved in industrial processes in the Refining, Potash, Pulp and Paper and Steam Plants where I worked with plant and maintainance engineers.
 
Membership in the Threshermens Club at the Western Developement Museum exposed me to working old Antique machinery both steam and gas and the benefit of experience freely shared by a lot of old timers there. A group of us younger members in the '70's became proficient enough in handling steam engines that we began participating in the annual Threshing Competition at Pionera. I captained a team that was declared "Champion" in 1977 using the 75HP Case steam engine. We flew down to Milton Ont  that same Autumn and were victorious there in threshing at "Steam Era" My dream was that some day I would own a steam engine. But that was a very expensive proposition. Many now have their boilers condemned including the '75 HP Case at the WDM I so dearly loved to run.  Hence the switching of my interest to gas and the building of my gas powered parade tractors.
 
Below is a link to "Half the size... Twice the fun" - The Centennial Special a magazine article written for the celebrations of Saskatchewan's Centennial.  You'll read and see pictures of my hobby with parade tractors.

THE CENTENNIAL SPECIAL

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Casually observing the action on the Pionera parade grounds July 2006

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Heading to the Threshing Competition at Pionera 1976

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