Here’s a great old sled story we received from SnoRider reader, Cal Carter. The above illustration is from the book As the Snow Flies by L. Allister Ingham — it is of another home-made sled, possibly similar to the one Cal and his friends pieced together back in Raymore, Saskatchewan. The one pictured was called the Eggleton Power Toboggan. It was constructed by Gordon Eggleton, also of Raymore, Saskatchewan. I wonder if it had one forward gear and three reverse, too?
Here’s Cal Carter’s old sled story:
“In response to your ‘Got a Vintage Snowmobile Story’ I can tell you a tale of the early era of snowmobiles. These events took place in Raymore, Saskatchewan.
My cousin had built a snow machine toboggan (let's call it that) and it consisted of a sleigh-type structure with the body built from wood; the front was sloped up like a toboggan and it was just like two toboggans built side-by-side with a gap between where the track ran.
He had salvaged a track from a small Bombardier vehicle and I remember he used a 9 HP Briggs and Stratton motor taken off his grain auger. As this all took place in the late 50's, that is about all I can recall.
Not to be outdone a friend of mine, Jim Buitenhuis, and I commandeered my Uncle Jack. We set out to make a snow machine of our own—this would have been around 1960. We salvaged a feeder chain out of an old threshing machine and the gears of course.
The frame was made out of angle iron and was quite heavy. We built a rectangular frame to house the track and fashioned a seat at the front. The track was able to float up and down within the framework held by chains. We got a transmission out of an old car which was turned via drive belt accepting power from this 8 HP Wisconsin motor which we took off my Uncle's grain auger. We fashioned a single ski for steering. After a great deal of welding, etc. we were all set for the "big ride".
The sled affair actually worked and scooted us around town. There were two basic problems — one being that the track was turning too fast and the chain was old and couldn't take the rigors of the icy streets, the other issue was that we had one forward gear and three reverse...go figure!”
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