short piece is intended to introduce someone to the early days of the Allis – Chalmers Corporation and their first production tractor the 10 – 18. There is also a bibliography of the resources used in researching this essay.
Edward P. Allis 1824-1889
Allis Chalmers began when Edward P. Allis a young New York Lawyer who had migrated to Milwaukee several years earlier purchased the Reliance Iron Works Co for $22.75 at bankruptcy and called his business the Edward P. Allis Company. The Company would continue after his death in 1889. A merger in 1901 of Fraser & Chalmers, the Gates Iron Works, the Dickson Manufacturing Company and The Edward P. Allis Company would bill its self as the Company of four powers-Steam, Gas, Water and Electricity. From this consolidation would emerge what would be known as the Allis – Chalmers Corporation.
By 1912 because of Industrial competition and economic stresses across the country, the Allis-Chalmers Corporation found its self in serious financial difficulties and was forced into receivership. One of the court appointed trustees was a retired Wisconsin National Guard General, Otto Falk. It was during this period that the Allis-Chalmers Manufacturing Company came to be. It would be Otto Falk that led the Company’s move toward agriculture. He realized that agriculture was changing and was determined that Allis – Chalmers would be part of it.
According to C. H. Wendel’s “The Allis – Chalmers Story” Falk focused on three directions. The first, a tractor- tiller of Swiss design, second, a tractor-truck, a halftrack style design that could transport 30,000 pounds and a $5,000 price tag. Little or no information survives of either pieces of machinery neither went into production. Mr. Wendel’s book has several pictures of both machines. The third option introduced in November of 1914 was a tractor with a single offset front wheel, Allis Chalmers own cross – mounted opposed two cylinder engine, two large drive wheels, one piece steel heat-treated frame a Kingston double carburetor, a Detroit force feed lubricator and a high tension magneto. A major selling point used in promoting the tractor concerned the one piece frame, was – no rivets to work loose – will not sag under the heaviest strains and no rivets to work loose. Two fuel tanks a smaller one for gasoline and a second larger one for kerosene or distillate. The engine would be started on gasoline, as was the custom for most farm tractors until the mid 40’s, once warmed up the fuel tank would be switched over to a kerosene or distillate type fuel that was somewhat cheaper to purchase. The tractor would be known as the 10 – 18. Dean Byerly in his book “Better by Design” pegs the production numbers of somewhere north of 200 with about a dozen remaining. Dean estimates current value of one of these twelve surviving tractors, as around 6 figures.
In the end the 10 – 18 proved unsuccessful as sales were disappointing although it was probably as useful to the farmers of the time as others of similar design. Allis – Chalmers had no dealer network as most of their other products were sold directly from the factory to the end customer something that would haunt Allis – Chalmers for several years until they were able to establish their own dealer network.
MODEL 10 – 18 TRACTOR SPECIFICATIONS
Years Built 1914 – 1918
Suggested retail price 1914 $1950.00
Engine: Allis – Chalmers 2- cylinder opposed
Bore & Stroke: 5.27inches X 5.27 inches
Rated Speed: 720 rpm
Horsepower: 10 drawbar 18 belt pulley
Speeds: 1 forward 2.3 mph 1 reverse 2.3 mph
Weight: 4800 pounds
Fuel Capacity: 20 gallons
Cooling system cap: 6 gallons
Carburetion: Kingston dual throat carburetor
Byerly, Dean L. Better by Design, BBD Publishing
Leffingwell, Randy Motor books International, 1993
Morland, Andrew & Henshaw, Peter Motorbooks International, 1997
Wendel, C. H. Allis – Chalmers Tractors, History of Advance – Rumley, Monarch Crawlers, Allis – Chalmers Tractors & Implements Motorbooks International 1992
Wendel, C. H. The Allis – Chalmers Story Krause Publications
Thank you for visiting our website! We hope you will visit our site often, and make this a valuable reference. This is a beginning of a new world for all of "The Allis Connection" members and non-members alike that are interested in the world of Allis-Chalmers. This site will list up-dates as they come in, show dates, how to become a member of The Allis-Connection, and receive your newsletters as well as how to contact your directors. This site will have items added to help grow our site and membership, how-to tips, recipes, and many other things that will be for everyone! If you have anything you would like to see on the website, please let us know. With your help and input this website will become bigger and better.
I want to thank Anita and Willie Van Brocklin for their hard work and dedication in geting this website up and running.
Our members are great, due to the fact that we all try to keep the "Allis-Chalmers" Equipment alive. Doug Shaffer is considered one of the founding fathers of "The Allis-Connection" The first organized dinner meeting was February 1992 in Amana, Iowa. This was where all members had met, had dinner and had lot of fun. Finally a name was chosen for the club, "The Allis-Connection". The name had to mean a couple of things. The connection with Allis-Chalmers and with the people that owned and used Allis equipment. Every thing from Candy Pullers (1926) to Tractors.
We have many shows that you can see the many thing that all of us A-Cers are proud of; we also do working shows from some of our members.
We have Parades, Swap meet area, Memorabilia and something for the little kids. Most of all we must not forget that we have our Fund-Raising Event every year for our Scholarship Fund. Lot of us exchange recipes, and someone might be able to help on how to fix up that old tractor that has been sitting awhile.
We all love to display our A-Cs. There is many other reasons to be part of "The Allis Connection". just be a member and you will find out more.
The ALLIS CONNECTION ~ 1419 Angle Rd. SW ~ Kalona, Iowa ~ 52247 ~ An Allis Chalmers Collector's Club
Founded February, 1992 ~ Website of the Allis Connection January, 2009 ~ Newsletter Published Bi-monthly (Membership)
Membership - U.S.A. $23.00 & Canada & Overseas $35.00 (In US Funds) 6 Issues of the Newslettlers.