First Brake operation of 2020

Jerry Christiansen

Mega Poster
WMSTR Lifetime Member
Hi everyone,

Yesterday, 17 April, Sid F met me at the Pabst building and helped me load the Blue Brake.


We stopped to look at a camper in Upper Lutefisk Campground and I took the picture above.

Then we went to one of our favorite spots for a soda and a cookie.
The sun felt real good as we sat on the west side of the storage building near the Red Brake.
The middle chair was there to provide physical distance and it was our table for the cookies and soda.

No, I can't tell you where the Blue Brake is headed today, 18 April. We have to keep the location secret so the crowd won't get too big. :)...

You will need to check back for the report.

Jerry Christiansen
Hi everyone,

If you read the previous post, you know that the Blue Brake was headed somewhere. We went to Lidgerwood, ND. The hometown of Dusty Ehli. Dusty is a stationary gas guy that has displayed at Rollag for a long time. Last Fall he made the mistake of falling in to tractors. Ask Peter M about that. Peter has some responsibility for Dusty's downfall.

Dusty has a thread on Smokstak detailing the work they did last winter. You can visit that thread

Dusty has a thread started about today in the Steel Wheel Tractors on this forum you can see

As you may know, my favorite black belt broke last summer when we visited the Crosby show. I had another belt I brought along today.


One time when we stopped, I happened to be right by the splice and noticed some printing.


Look closely. That says CRAFTSMAN POWER MASTER.
I wonder if this came with a lifetime warranty like other Craftsman tools? If it breaks, do you suppose I can get a new one at no charge?

We had a great day at the Ehli farm. Nothing broke and the tractor ran well.

Jerry Christiansen

Hi everyone,

Maybe I should have called this thread "Outingsof the Blue Brake" instead of "First Brake operation of 2020" The Blue Brake made a couple trips this weekend. On the 29th of August we were at the Ransom County Fair in Lisbon. Al S and Dan R are the owners of a 75Hp Case and they asked if the Brake could come and play.

Shortly after we got on the grounds, the engine came around.


They drove around a bit and gave a few rides.

Meanwhile we got the Brake set up.


Getting the Bobcat backed on the anchor chain was a bit tricky. This method worked pretty well.
Once the crew saw the belt stretched out, they brought the 75 over.


Belting up went pretty well.


The shade under out canopy was a pretty popular spot.

A baby carriage showed up with Ned and Liz's girl in it. Ned and Liz were there, too.
The 730 John Deere in the back ground came over a played for a while, too.

We were lucky, we didn't have to walk far to get to a bathroom.

When the steamer was getting ready to leave, Ned said he had a tractor he wanted to get on the belt.

We didn't get much power out of this one. As you can see, we got it on the belt.

As we were getting ready to leave I noticed a sign on one of the porta potties.


Please note the little white stripe at about eyeball height. A close up is below.


I am not sure how the folks in Lisbon use these things. I couldn't see how 10 people could be in there at the same time.

We had a nearly perfect day. The sky was mostly blue with a few small clouds, the temperature was just right, a very light breeze and the shade of the canopy.
The 75 crew cooked a ham and some corn on the cob in the smoke box. We had a great supper!

Thanks to the 75Hp crew for inviting us down, we had a great time.

Jerry Christiansen
Hi everyone,

Sunday, 30 August, we had a short trip to Matt F's place just west of West Fargo. We got there a bit after 1PM. Matt and crew were already set up to thresh



Those bundles are the first ones pitched of the day.


A few minutes later and Luke S was checking the separator and oiling things up.


A view from the other side.

Matt asked us to bring the Brake.


Patrick D brought his A to play for a bit. His tractor did a nice job.


After the threshing was done, the Minneapolis came and played on the Brake.


This calculation was done on the front of the Minneapolis.

Matt said it was there when he bought the tractor and he has no idea what the numbers represent.

More in a bit

Jerry Christiansen
Hi again everyone,

A few more pictures from the day.


At first glance this looks a bit confusing. Why is the tractor hooked up to the PTO when a belt is in place?


We got tired of pulling on the belt to try and start the Avery power unit. We talked Matt into bringing a power starter over. Those big, flat 4 cylinder engines sure sound nice! This is a 50Hp unit that just got rebuilt. We only pulled it to 40Hp. We played with it for quite a while varying the load to give it some break-in time.

Luke S brought his F Rumley over to the Brake. I didn't get a picture of that. Several tractors plowed the field. I didn't get pictures of that either.

We got to see some Rollag friends and had a GREAT time. Thanks to Matt and Lisa for a good day.

Jerry Christiansen
Hi everyone,

Another outing with the Blue Brake. This time we went to Drake, ND for their threshing show. We got there Friday evening and got set up. Their show runs Saturday and Sunday.


Pretty well set up and ready. Anchor tractor is in place, coolant line is hooked up, the drain line isn't hooked up and as you can see the chairs are tipped so they won't have dew on the seat in the morning.

We got set up Saturday morning to a picture perfect blue sky day. Once they saw us by the Brake, the'McClusky Boys' came over with their tractors. There is a group of young enthusiast at the Drake show that really support the show and each other.


Lucky for us Sam and Sarah Simons brought a couple John Deeres up. Sam took a couple pictures for me. In case you wonder, Sam and Sarah brought Henry and Michael along, too.

Another shot of the same tractor.


Once we got going on Saturday, there wasn't a break in the action until parade time. People came over and talked during the parade. Just as Jane and I were getting ready to eat some dinner, the parade got over and the tractors came back. We managed to talk them into a 15 minute break for a quick sandwich. Being that busy is a good problem.

Saturday night we had supper with Dean and Shonella L, Chris S and Marilyn B.

Sunday morning was hazy and a bit cooler. A couple view early in the morning waiting for the guests to arrive.

Looking east.


A turn to the south

looking south west.

The show owns an 80Hp Case. Chris and John, the operators and care takers of the Case, were good enough to come over on Sunday morning.



Belted and ready. We had a good run with the 80. We sawed a whole pile of giant redwoods with the Brake. It doesn't look like it here, but when we got going we had a constant flow of people come by.


The only picture I have of picking corn, and the tractor is on the back side of the plot. I am not sure the picker was out of the field before the other fellows showed up with discs to chop up the stalks and then a plow to turn it over.

At least four wagons of bundles were threshed, a bunch of the straw pile was baled using a hay press, homemade ice cream was for sale, blacksmiths were working, more discing and plowing happened, slow races ( I think Sam S won ) and each day ended with a tractor and pickup pull.

Another great weekend with the Drake Threshers, thanks for inviting us.

Jerry Christiansen
So, was this 2 different events? Matt's and Drake?

That blue brake was a good investment! It is a unique piece of machinery and gets you invited a lot of places where no-one else can fill that void! :thumb: Drake is quite hike from here!
Hi Mark,

Yes, two different events. This was our third year at the Drake Show.
The Blue Brake(s) have taken us places. We have certainly met a lot of good people because of it (them).

Drake may be a hike, an hour on the other side of New Rockford. It is closer than Makoti and Crosby.

Jerry Christiansen
Hi everyone,

One more outing with the Blue Brake. This time we went to New Rockford, ND. The Central North Dakota Steam Threshers Reunion celebrated stationary engines this year. Last year New Rockford was WET. On Friday night last year a group of us were in the Edin camper having apple pie after supper and the rain started to fall. When we stepped out of their camper, the water was over the top of your boot deep just outside the door.

Thursday evening after we got camp set up, Jeff E demonstrated where the deep puddle was.


As you can see, the grounds were a lot drier this year than last.

A display was set up in the Potter Pavilion honoring our service members.

The coats on the left belonged to Elanor M's brother. The brown uniform in the middle was my dad's. The blue cape is my mom's Auxiliary Cape that the ladies wore in parades. Other memorabilia was displayed also.

Craig M was back after a several year absence.


Here is a shot of Craig running the Blue Brake on Friday.

The 45 Minneapolis was on the other end of the belt. Tom D did a bunch of measuring and recalculating. The 45 got a pressure increase. It went from 83 psi to 100 psi, that is a 20% jump. Way to go Tom!

On Saturday, Mark P's 110 Case came to play. Craig ran the Brake for that engine, too. I didn't get a picture of that.

If you look above the guy in the red jacket, you can see the US Flag going by.

The reason I took the picture was to show the fellow on the four wheeler and the fellow on the scooter to his right. They both stood as the Flag was presented at the beginning of the parade.

A Kiddie Tractor Pull is held Saturday morning at 10am. At 8am the crew below was bagging goodies for the participants.


Craig M, Jennifer R and Sam S are on the back side of the table. Colt E and Trevor B are on this side.

From the opposite side.


A couple other Edins were involved, too. Clara has the red jacket on, Jeff is in there somewhere and Alton is next to Trevor.

More pictures in the next post.

Jerry Christiansen
Hi all,

A few more pictures of CNDSTR 2020.

Matt F brought his 80 Hp Avery Power unit over on Friday.


A view from the other side.


After we ran it on the Brake, we determined that the governor needed some attention. Matt worked on it and brought it back on Saturday for another run. I didn't get pictures of that.

Fred and Cooper T came again this year.


Cooper is on the engine, I think that is Trevor following with Fred behind Trevor. If you look on the right side of the picture, you can see that Matt's Avery is still belted up to the Brake.

A couple pictures of Matt's Avery running Mark P's sawmill.



These two pictures were taken on Sunday. The weather wasn't as nice as Saturday.

Craig, Jane and I stayed over night Sunday. Sunday evening we helped put some things away.

Larry M is pulling this people mover into the Potter Pavilion.
Don't mess with this guy. Notice that he isn't even working hard pulling the wagon.

Monday morning Craig, Jane and I met with Dean L for breakfast at the New Rockford Café. We packed up and got out of New Rockford about noon.

Jerry Christiansen