I was visiting my Amish friend today. He has several ceiling fans and
a pedistal fan run with air motors. One has a Sproul W16-10 motor
that has 6 cylinders and a swash plate design. The others have
oscilating cylinder, single cylinder units. Another has a Gast and
Thompson direct drive motors. Google searches have not yielded
anything. Do any of you have any manufacturer information? These are
made in Pensylvania and are popular in the Amish Community there as
I have often pondered that question myself. I have worked for one that
had a windmill about a half a mile away pumping water to a storage
tank near the house. He had an electric booster pump boosting the
water to the house. When the windmill could not keep up he had a pump
jack underneath the windmill powered by a Honda motor pumping water to
the storage tank. There was a gas well on the place and he used a
bunch of natural gas to keep the storage tank and pipes pump etc from
freezing. Near the house was a barn with electricity, PHONE, and other
sinful modern conviences. He also had some pretty nice tractors. The
house his family lived in was wired for electricity, he did not build
the house, they did not use the electricity or the phone. BUT they
went about 150 ft to the barn with every modern convience known to
There were other contradictions TO ME that were visible but to keep
this short. I asked a man one time what is in the Amish to make them
think as they do. His reply was "An idle mind is the devils workshop"
They try to work everyones ass off to keep them from getting in
trouble. So I still do not know what is going on with them as far as
what is sinful or not or what or why they do what they do but I think
they are strange.
For him it was wrong to pump water with electricity, BUT he could
boost the water with electricity.
NO phone or electricity in the house,BUT in his barn OK.
His DAD had a van, he could not drive it,BUT he could hire someone to
drive it and his family around.
I guess they are like Baptists and drinking.
Scott in Texas
The Amish loophole that I admired was a modern piece of farm machinery
being pulled by a team of horses with a 350 chev. engine mounted on the
drawbar driving the pto shaft. They should think of going into politics.
That one I've heard of. Apparently it's OK to use gas engines, but not as
vehicle propulsion. Maybe they can use gas compressors but not electricity.
What an outrageous waste of resources, if you compare the energy used to a
simple direct drive electric fan.
Might be for a dairy cooler. Someplace that the state won't allow
flame lamps - like a chicken 'barn'. Explosion is not nice.
Martin H. Eastburn
@ home at Lions' Lair with our computer lionslair at consolidated dot net
TSRA, Life; NRA LOH & Endowment Member, Golden Eagle, Patriot's Medal.
NRA Second Amendment Task Force Charter Founder
IHMSA and NRA Metallic Silhouette maker & member.
The BASIS for the rules of the Amish, Old Order, and other
"Conservative" anabaptist sects were very plain, and made a lot of
sense. It was all based on 3 things -Humility,being a "separate
people" and "brotherhood"
The "separate people" became the "plain folk" which tied in with the
humility. The "Brotherhood" dictated that none in a community would
have and use something another in the community could not afford.
So you have the Amish who drive grey top buggies, the "old order"
amish who drive the same with steel wheels and no buttons or zippers
on their clothes and farm only with tractors.No rubber boots (even
heals or soles), no rubber belts on machinery - basically still in the
1600's. You have the Old Order Mennonites who drive black buggies
(some with fancy green pinstripes, some red, etc) and who generally
have rubber tires, may have buttons and/or zippers, and wear rubber
boots. Some of which have advanced to using tractors(some only with
steel wheels - and only red or green in color) all the way up to some
of the Amish and "reborn" who have extremely complex farm based
businesses, with CNC machine shops, tube mills, laser cutters, etc in
state-of-the art (or in other cases, straight out of the '60s) shops
run off a deisel generator (or occaisionally domestic Hydro) while the
homes have no hydro, and usually also no phones.
It's interesting here in Ontario to see the "reborn " (or David Martin
Mennonite) women going in to do the shopping with the horse and buggy,
talking on the cell phone, talking to Hubby out in the machine shop,
being reminded to pick up his cigars/chewing tobacco/machine parts/or
whatever. (Locally known as the "Mennonite Mafia")
Sadly MANY have totally lost sight of the basis of their beleifs and
the reason for the rules they supposedly live by. Many have found ways
to bend the rules and rationalise things, while many others
consciencously live the "simple life" as "the silent in the land".
You have to admire them (those that "walk the talk"), even if you
don't understand or agree with their beliefs. Some very inventive,
intelligent,hard working, honest and unselfish people who believe in
doing what is right, doing it right, and not taking any credit for it,
have made hundreds of thousands of acres of marginal farmland into
some of the most productive land on earth while leaving a "carbon
footprint" that is the envy of the most rabid "Greens" and
environmentalists you could find.
I have seen at least 4 style of fans. One has the swash plate air
motor, the Gast vane motor, and 2 oscilating cylinder motors. One
has a belt drive for speed increase (pedistal fan) and the other is
direct drive (ceiling fans).
These are nicely built units and he said that they came from the Amish
in PA. I do not know the manufacturer. I am hoping that someone here
It's actually surprising how little "control" is exerted i the case
of these groups. Among the Amish, in particular, in the mid teans the
youn-uns are aften allowed to go "free" to decide if they want to stay
in the group permanently (as baptised members) or leave the community.
A VERY substantial majority choose to stay.
I live in a large Mennonite populated area -Amish, "old order" Amish
(Nafzinger etc), Old Order mennonite, Conservative
Mennonite,Waterloo-Markham Mennonite, Conference Mennonite, Mennonite
Brethren, and Old Colony Mennonite(Mexican) as well as the Reborn
The Dave Martin group are the most involved (of the "conservative"
groups) in industry, and have tended to rationalise the most. They are
the ones known locally as the "Mennonite Mafia" or "Wallenstein Mafia"
because of their business practices etc.
Hesr the Old Order, Amish, OldOrder Amish, and the like are largely
farmers, and also include some excellent craftsmen building furniture
etc in the traditional way. Most are VERY devout, and do not interact
a whole lot with the "outside" world. No involvement with government,
insurance,education(secondary, or public) etc. Many still use the
Ausbund as their "hymnal" and work in low german (dialect) while
worshipping in "high german".
Conference Mennonites are outwardly not a whole lot different than
their Baptist, Lutheran, or Catholic neighbours but have a pacifist
viewpoint, a (generally) well developed social conscience, and believe
in "believer's baptism" and separation of church and state. Mennonite
Brethren are very similar (but generally came through Russia rather
than Holland/Pensylvania) and are more likely to be involved in higher
education and government/politics than their conference(swiss)
All have a reputation for being a bit on the shrewd side (knowing the
value of a buck) but also being trustworthy.
Somewhat tongue-in-cheek Definition of a Mennonite? "One who can buy
from a Jew and sell to a Scottsman and make a profit"
I can say that - 6th generation ex-pensylvania Mennonite (family 150
years in Waterloo County this year) - "square head with most of the
corners knocked off in the school of hard knocks"
And a view from afar (about 12000 miles!). I (like many others) was
bowled over by the Amish's response to that shooting last year. To turn
round & forgive the perp. & invite his family to share with them -
that's walking the walk, with a vengeance! G*d bless them, I say!