CUMMINS HISTORICAL RESTORATION CENTER
to help carry out the plan. With Goggin and Steve Sanders, Watson located a building in which to store it and got it moved in 2012. The collection moved again to a larger 10,000 square foot building in 2015. Watson retired that year but still works at the HRC and is currently leading the restoration of the legendary 1934 Cummins racecars.
The historical artifacts are used by Cummins marketing in displays at shows, dealer events or new-product introductions. The HRC is also used as a training venue for new hires and for catered events for Cummins personnel and dealers. The HRC volunteers often find themselves doubling as teachers, and education both inside and outside the company is another key focus. In addition, the HRC supports car and truck clubs, charities and local history organizations.
The Cummins Historical Restoration Center is proof that the history of a company, especially one as rich and industry-pivotal as Cummins, is a useful corporate tool that not only benefits the company but the public as well.
The collection recently acquired this 1952 NVHIS-1486, a monstersized, 1,486 cubic inch V12. The Nvh-series V12s were introduced in 1949, replacing the even more monstrous VL-12 (4,618 cubic inches!), and were discontinued in ’74. Here, retired service engineer Art Clark and engineers Ben Schulte (black shirt) and Mike Quarles check out the internal condition using a borescope. The engine powered a backup generator in a large Rhode Island building that was torn down. It had been left outside for a number of years, so the inspection is the first step in getting this old dinosaur running again. The base model of this 5,500-pound behemoth was rated for 400 maximum horsepower at 2,100 rpm. This supercharged version makes over 600 horsepower at the same rpm using two Cummins Twin Disc injection pumps.
Clessie Cummins began his corporate journey with one-cylinder engines like these starting in 1919. With banker William Irwin backing him up, Cummins acquired a license to build the Hvid engine, a 4-stroke oil engine invented in 1902 by Jan Brons of the Netherlands. The U.S. patent was owned by Robert Hvid (pronounced “Veed”), a transplanted Dutchman, so his name was on the U.S. patent. It partially meets the criteria to be called a “diesel” due to a 16:1 compression ratio, but it doesn’t have a highpressure injection system. Rather, a metered amount of fuel essentially dribbles into a pre-combustion chamber on the intake stroke, is vaporized by heat and finally ignited on the compression stroke. This is a 1920 Cummins/hvid with a 5-inch bore and a 6-inch stroke, making 6 horsepower at 550-600 rpm. Approximately 100 to 125 like it were made. The Cummins Hvid engines were also built in smaller 1.5and 3-horsepower versions. Many were sold by Sears under the Thermoil name.
This 1942 HBIS-600 is a supercharged version of the legendary Model H four-stroke engine. It makes 672 cubic inches from a 4.875 x 6-inch bore and stroke. It cranked out 200 horsepower at 1,800 rpm and 625 lb-ft at 1,400 rpm via a Cummins Single Disk pump. The “I” in the letter designation indicates an industrial engine, but there were automotive and marine versions as well. In the background is the front half of a 1955 International Harvester R190 truck mounting a 1939 HB-6 engine. This is one of the earliest H-series engines known to exist and the earliest production H-series engine Cummins has in the collection. Recovery of this engine and truck from a South Dakota farm is a story unto itself. It’s currently being evaluated to see if it can be brought back to life after 40 years sitting in a field.
In the foreground is a Cummins vertical Hvid engine developed for marine use, this one built in 1921. It has a 5-inch bore and a 6-inch stroke for 147 cubic inches. Weighing nearly 1,000 pounds, it cranks out a whopping 8 horsepower at 600 rpm. A two-cylinder version was also built. Only two vertical Hvid engines are known to survive and Cummins has both. In the background is an experimental two-stroke engine Cummins founder Clessie Cummins worked on in 1924. Behind that is a horizontal Hvid engine.