The Lister LD series has been made since the 1940s (?) up to the late 1960s, and possibly into the early 1970s. A particularly nice simple engine, it has been used from general farm and machine shop work, to driving pumps, generators, a small railway engine, and the Lister Autotruck. When part of a generator set they are known as "Start-O-Matic" engines.
This is my old Buzacott engine. It's serial number is 12069, it runs well and hardly uses any petrol. Bloody loud, smokey and wild but. No joke when it's pulling a load flame is EXPECTED to come shooting out the straight 1/2 inch pipe on the right hand side of the cylinder.…
This article is largely reproduced from an original Rosebery manual which I was lucky enough to find in a country junk shop. There really is not that much to owning a Rosebery, but I'm sure people will find this book as useful as I did when the Rosebery is their first baby!
Each engine is carefully built, thoroughly tested and rigidly inspected, and the engine leaves our Works in first-class running condition. Therefore, leave the adjustments as they are set at the factory. Read the instructions, and be sure you understand the operation of each part.
Rosebery verticals are funny - there are not many uglier more purely functional engines than a Rosebery and most people claim to hate them, but it seems that nearly everyone has at least one in their collection - they are probably one of the most preserved makes of all time - at least in this country and a few have even found their way overseas. I've seen them at American shows and I've occasionally been contacted by people overseas seeking information, manuals, and parts. My three were found in varying conditions.
My first (shown at left) came from a garden centre in Melton - the owner of the centre had two threes and two sixes - I bought a three for $250 (which was way to much at the time - does everyone get ripped off on their first?). I worked on it at the centre because I had no way of taking it home and could not afford him to deliver it. He eventually got sick of my being there surrounded by engine parts and took it home for free :). That engine has been to many shows and has been on show at Science Works Museum a couple of times at their Power Of The Past exhibitions. I was very inexperienced with engines (and cameras) when I took this photo. The engine had just had what I then thought of as a restoration (ripped apart, clean up, and a paint job!). Later it has been taken apart and restored properly. Did not need anything more than a light hone and freeing of a stuck ring and it has been fine ever since. How many people can trace an obsession back to the first point? I know where I became interested in engines - at a show with my Dad at (what was then) the Scoresby rally ground of the Melbourne Steam Traction Engine Society. This first engine has grown into a collection which has been as much as 17 engines at one time, and is currently (June 2003) eight engines and a two tractors. Included in the collection are the saw (below), a shearing plant, and a hay baler.
My second was picked up at a farm clearing auction for $90 - it would have been a lot less, but I'd not been sure if I could make it there and asked the farmer's widow to bid on it for me - we bid against each other until we each realised who the other was. I let the bid stand because she needed the money and I was happy to help her in a way she could accept that was not charity. That engine still is not running - I did a total rebuild on it (it was in very poor shape) but never got around to putting the flywheels back on so it has never run. One Day.
My third came on a drag saw and needs no attention at all - all it really needs is paint to be like new - magic condition. That one was $300 with the saw. The weird thing about all this is that I went to a guys house having negoiated over the phone to buy a different engine and did not even know he had a saw for sale. His wife sold the other engine to someone else during my three hour drive (even though she knew I was on my way). I did not want to go home pissed off and empty handed, so I went home pissed off and with a drag saw. I had no idea how much fun they could be and do not regret buying it!
I'm not going to paint it because the original paint is all there (just faded) and includes the original decals. The governor side decal is almost unreadable but the other side is perfect. Pretty good for a saw that earnt its living in the bush chopping up trees on three Warnambool farms in succession. Last time I took the saw to a show, a guy offered me $1000 for the whole outfit (saw and all my logging tools) but I declined - I like playing with the saw too much... there is something about a machine which is capable of eating you that keeps me interested in it!…