=>On Mon, 29 Dec 2003 19:42:46 +1100, "William Pearce" => wrote: =>
=>> Folks, =>> I've read occasionally that geared logging locos such as Shays, Climaxes =>>etc. are called 'stem winders'. I've also just seen a reference that calls =>>them 'steam winders'. Which is correct, or are both? Also, if 'stem winder' =>>what is the derivation of this term? =>> Regards, =>> Bill. =>>
=>I think stem winder is correct (at least that is what I have seen in =>print for years) and is a reference to a pocket watch (lots of busy =>gear works).
The incorrect spelling reflects ignorance of the term's original meaning and derivation (as given above by Charles.) Other words are subject to incorrect spelling for the same reason: I've seen "shoe in" for "shoo in" (I guess people don't shoo chickens out of the garden or into the hen house anymore); "Low" for "Lo" (it's a biblical term, and means roughly "Pay attention, look here, this is a major event in my story!") Then there are the effects of spelling checkers, which are notoriously unrelaible once you get into any kind of specialist vocabulary.
Wolf Kirchmeir ................................. If you didn't want to go to Chicago, why did you get on this train? (Garrison Keillor)