Stationary Engine List
Frequently Asked Questions

This is an FAQ on the Stationary Engine mailing list.  For an FAQ on stationary engines, see Paul Pavlinovich's FAQ.


  • Welcome to a wild ride
  • How the list started
  • The transition to ATIS
  • Rogues' Gallery
  • Policies Ongoing Topics Folklore

    Welcome to a wild ride
    The ATIS stationary-engine mailing list is a cyber discussion among antique engine enthusiasts. There are people of every level of expertise who get together and discuss whatever is on their minds. Just as with any other group of friends, there are running jokes, on-going stories, family history, arguments, etc. The list is a group of friends from around the world (most of whom have never met in person) who welcome new friends.
    How the list started
    The Stationary-engine mailing list was originally started by Brice Adams at Indiana University. Brice used the university mail servers to handle the list mail and, therefore, placed several restrictions on list content. The main restrictions were that there could not be large attachments (such as pictures) and the list could not be used for commercial purposes (buying or selling engines, etc.).
    The Transition to ATIS
    After doing a great job of providing list services, Brice had to discontinue the stationary-engine list service. He arranged for Spencer Yost at (Antique Tractor Internet Services) to take over list services for stationary-engine. Unfortunately, Brice had to shut-down list services earlier than he had originally expected, and before Spencer had setup the list on ATIS.
    Jim Dunmyer of jumped in and setup a temporary stationary-engine list on his list server to handle the list until the ATIS list was up and running. Spencer soon had the ATIS stationary-engine mailing list running and most list members signed up on that list.

    As with most temporary solutions, the Oldengine.Org stationary engine list remained and thrived. This list is smaller, quieter, and more on-topic than the ATIS list. Several list members who did not care for the social activity of the ATIS list have moved to the OldEngine list.

    The Rogues' Gallery
    The Rogues' Gallery is a photo album of some of the people in our hobby. The pictures include people on the Stationary Engine List, ex-listers, spouses, kids, and other enthusiasts. The Rogues' Gallery helps us to visualize the people we are communicating with and also helps us identify each other when we meeting in person for the first time.
    Name and location in signature
    It is customary for list members to put their full name and location in the signature of messages posted to the list. We consider all people on the list to be friends and we would like to be able to address you by your real name.

    The location should give city, state or province, and country.Try to avoid abbreviations. We have list members from around the world and many may not recognize your countries standard abbreviations.

    Trim messages when responding
    Most mailers will include in your message the entire message to which you are responding. It is considered poor etiquet to include the entire message in your message. It is best to trim the message, leaving only the portion required to allow the rest of us to understand your response.

    Opinions differ as to whether you should have the quoted portion of the previous message above your new message, or have the quoted portion below your new message. I personally prefer the ancient internet standard of quoting the smallest possible portion of the previous message just above each of your responses.

    A common annoyance to the list is a post which quotes the entire (long) previous message, but adds only a one line response. A good rule of thumb is that the text that you type should exceed the length of the text that you quote from the previous messages.

    Plain text e-mail messages

    Terminology is somewhat different among popular mailers. Plain text is a common term meaning messages which do not contain rich text, formatted text, or HTML encoding.

    There are several reasons why HTML (or rich text) is usually discouraged. Some are:

    Not all mail readers handle HTML well. Plain text is the most universal language.

    HTML messages really screw up the digest for most readers. The digest concatenates many mail messages and most mail readers don't decode the HTML in the messages in the digest. If you've ever had to read raw HTML you know that this is very difficult to read.

    HTML messages are larger and take longer to download. Some of us are not really affected by download speeds, but it is important to people with low speed connections or with expensive metered connections. Most mailers send both HTML and plain text when told to send formatted text, making the message about 3 times the size that it would be if it were plain text.

    How do I stop HTML posting in my e-mail?
    AOL 5.0
    Need a description.
    AOL 6.0 and AOL 7.0
    Taken from AOL Mail FAQ:
    How do I stop AOL 6 from sending HTML to the Internet?


    With the release of version 6.0 of its client software, AOL began to embrace the use of full HTML in email. This included a controversial feature in the sending of email to the Internet, in which messages were sent in a format known as multipart/alternative, which uses MIME enclosures to include two copies of every message: one in plain text, and one in HTML. Ideally, Internet email programs should be designed to display the version that they understand. HTML-compliant programs can display the HTML section, showing the formatting that the original sender included with the message; while text-only programs would only show the text section. Even HTML-enabled programs could be made to allow their users to choose (or switch to) the text portion if they prefer simplicity. However, some Internet email programs were never designed to recognize these MIME sections, resulting in the recipient of such a message seeing both the plain text


    When communicating with Internet recipients who are not using an email program capable of selecting which MIME section to view, an AOL 6.0 user can turn off the HTML using the following steps:

    1. Change your global email preferences (only needs to be done once):
      1. Go to Keyword: Preferences (or choose Preferences from the Settings menu on the AOL 6.0 toolbar).
      2. Click on Font, Text, & Graphics Preferences.
      3. Click on the Reset button at the bottom of the resulting window. Do not make any changes in the Font Preferences area of the window.
      4. Click on the Save button.
    2. Change a specific email to plain text (must be done for every email):
      1. Compose and address the email as desired.
      2. Choose Select All from the Edit menu to highlight the entire message.
      3. With the mouse arrow somewhere over the highlighted text, click the Right mouse button, revealing a contextual menu (AKA Right-Click).
      4. Choose Normal from the Text menu.
      5. Taking care not to make any further changes to the message, send it.
    Note that changing the text to normal will eliminate the "blue bar" quoted text indicator, but will not remove some HTML elements of the quoted text. The entire quoted section must be deleted (or simply not quoted in the first place), followed by the re-entry of the text quoted manually, prior to changing the text to normal. Changing the text to normal will also eliminate any styled text that would have been seen by AOL recipients of the message, which cannot be re-added. Testing also suggests that messages with hyperlinks cannot be converted to normal text, requiring the prior removal of the link.

    (Thanks to Carpenma for identifying the second part of this solution.)

    Click Tools  -> Options
    Click Styled Text
    Under When sending mail with styled text (HTML): select Send plain text only
    Click OK
    Netscape 4.x
    Click Edit -> Preferences
    Click Mail & Newsgroups
    Click Formatting
    Under Message Formatting select Use the plain text editor to compose messages
    Under When sending HTML mail messages to recipients who are not list as being able to receive them:
    Select Convert the message to plain text
    Click OK
    Outlook Express 5.x
    Click Tools -> Options
    Click Send tab.
    TURN OFF Reply to messages in the format in which they were sent.
    Under Mail sending format select Plain Text
    Click OK
    Outlook 2000
    Click Tools  -> Options
    Select Mail Format
    Under Choose a format for outgoing mail and change advanced settings. and
    Under Send in this message format:
    Select Plain Text
    Click OK
    (See example screen dump)

    If somebody incorrectly posts a message in HTML format, and you reply to it, your message will also be formatted INCORRECTLY. To fix this, in your "RE:" message, go to the  Menu bar at the top, click Format, then click PLAIN TEXT. Outlook will warn you that all formatting will be removed, that's EXACTLY what you want, so click YES.
    (See example screen dump)

    Slick Willie Mailing List

    The Slick Willie Mailing List  was created by Jim Dunmyer at the height of the Clinton-Monica scandal, when vast amounts of bandwidth were being taken up by political comment.  It is the place to irreverently discuss politics, guns, religion - whatever upsets people on the SEL.

    To subscribe, you send Email to:
    with only:
    in the body or subject of the message. You'll receive a reply within minutes.

    Evil Dave
    Dave Rotigel is one of the oldest members of the Stationary Engine Mailing List. In fact, he is reputed to be older than dirt. Dave is one of the most colorful characters on the list, sometimes called a cantankerous old coot with a heart of gold. He is a soldier in the fight against political correctness.
    Dave insists that Maytag MOTORS do not run and that anyone who thinks they have seen one running has been duped. Dave is quick to point out that Maytags are MOTORS, not engines. They were advertised by the Maytag company as MOTORS.

    Perfect Maytags and Axes

    Evil Dave  suggests that the MOTORS have caused so much grief among antique engine collectors that the best thing that can be done with them is to "perfect" them by inserting an ax through the crankcase. Other members of the list come to the rescue of the poor Maytag MOTORS and try to liberate them before Evil Dave does the "dirty deed".

    Little Lisa

    Ron Carroll ( had this to say:

    Little Lisa (a doll) grew up in our house on Poverty Ridge here in Virginia. At first I presumed I was the father, but later events pointed to the Evil Dave as being the real father. Evil Dave had a habit of visiting either when I was away, or my illness had rendered me helpless at which time, I am told, he consoled my wife, Arlene. Unfortunately, nothing can ever be proved either way because we can't get blood or tissue for blood or DNA tests because she's a doll.
    Little Lisa was brought up properly, but we did make the mistake of taking her with us to Portland 1999, where she became acquainted with the more rowdy elements of the SEL crowd. When it came time for us to come home, she crawled on top of the stuff in the back of the Trooper and didn't say anything all the way home. Shortly thereafter she packed up and left home, turning up a few weeks later in Oregon with her new friend Ken L. Since then she has been all over the country, spending time with Rob and Kelley, Novoboy, the Kansas City Crew, and lately has been heard from in the deep Southland. She did come back to Portland 2000 where she completely disgraced herself, but then made a promise of doing better. Alas, her good intentions only last until time for the next party.

    Ron Carroll continues:

    Evil Dave has an associate, or familiar, Novoboy, aka Arnie Fero.  You must acquire a picture of NovoBoy.  I had one, but it was destroyed by a visiting lay preacher.  Both these fellows, Dave and Arnie, are as nice as you could  ask for except when it comes to Maytag engines and respecting the waitresses at truck stops.
    Duke the Wonder Dog

    More from Ron Carroll:

    Now that I have retired and the house is quieter, and Little Lisa has gone away, I have been training and developing a serious guard dog, Duke the  Wonder Dog.  Duke is a miniature (well, small) dachshund and Duke is becoming well versed in watching for and preparing to attack and repel Novoboy.  To prevent damage, Novoboy acquired a chain mail codpiece whereupon we had Duke's canine teeth titanium tipped for better penetration.  It is beautiful  to see when Duke grins on a bright day, with those teeth just flashing in the sun.  So Duke is the main security system here at the Maytag Mansion on Poverty Ridge.
    Neo-Druid Dead Puppy Cult

    Arnie Fero explains:

    Ah yes, the Neo-Druid Dead Puppy Cult...  I wish I could take credit for it!!  The creator is a BRILLIANT political cartoonist who's published in the Pgh. Post Gazette (among others).  His name is Tim Menees (I think that's the spelling).

    The NDDPC came into being when the Christian Fundamentalists (aka Fundys) were lobbying for access to public school facilities to spread their ideas.  The locals were a bit leary of the Fundys.  Tim picked up on this and came out with a series of cartoons depicting the activities of the NDDPC using school facilities for their "prayer services".  His characters have BRILLIANT facial expressions (right down to the wild eyes of the Fundys).  AND they wear AWESOME costumes including pointy hats with the holy dog-bone symbol!!  There is usually a VERY nervous dog (god spelled backward) somewhere in the cartoon!!