Jerrys Old Engines in South Africa

Massey Harris well pump & Bentall corn grinder.
28th June 2008.


The Massey Harris well pump was removed from the yard of a very old house that I demolished less than a kilometre from my home. I've held onto it for about 25 years and repainted it about 4 times. This is the last time as it will now be placed on a wooden base and kept indoors. The chances are very great that, if displayed outdoors, it would very soon be stolen by a "scrap iron" collector. (A complete windmill was dismantled and stolen from my neighbours one night a few months ago - to be sold as scrap iron.)

This pump has the name "Malcomess" cast into the upright tube. Malcomess Ltd. were the local agents for Massey Harris but lost the agency after the amalgamation of Massey Harris and Ferguson in 1953 so I assume this pump predates that time.

Can anyone tell me the approximate dates that these pumps were manufactured as I'd like put some information onto the wooden base - something to the effect of "manufactured between the years 19XX and 19XX".


The Bentall No.3 grinder is one of 3 that I have just restored. This one's grinding cone and plate were broken and worn out so I just welded them together as it is only destined to be displayed in my house - it works but is now going into retirement! One of the others was converted, by a previous owner, to be driven of an electric motor by the addition of an aluminium pulley - I'll drive that one off a small Ruston & Hornsby PB at shows. The other was given to my friend, Justin Ludewig who will also drive it off a similar Ruston PB.

I know that these were manufactured for many years (in fact similar grinders are still made in India). Again, can anyone tell me approximately when Bentall started making them and when they finally stopped. My mother remembers selling them (Bentall) during the 1960's but I have no idea if these were the "Original" Bentall or not. They were also later made in South Africa but the "cast in" Bentall logo was different on these as well as the fact that they had "Made in South Africa" included in the casting.
(P.S. I know the colour of the Bentall is wrong - their light blue colour is so uninteresting and this one is destined to be an ornament in my house so I wanted something more striking. It is my grinder after all :-))
P.P.S Having now uploaded the pics and looked at them on my laptop which has a better monitor I see that the colour has not come out very well on the 1st picture of the grinder - the second pic (on the extreme right) is more accurate - the colour is actually called "plum".

Here are the pictures

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