September 27, 1924—September 28, 2020
A Machinist by Trade and Model Engineer by Choice
Theodore Carder was a World War II veteran who served in the Army from June 1943 to September 1945, and was awarded the Combat Infantry Badge and a Purple Heart. He saw action in Holland and in the Battle of the Bulge at St. Vith, Belgium where his unit was captured by the Germans. He spent 97 days in German captivity. Following a 27-1/2 year career in the aerospace manufacturing industry in Glendale, California, Ted and his wife, Dee, moved to Montrose, CO in 1973.
In the late 1980s, Ted put together a small shop in his home and began pursuing an interest in model engineering—primarily model steam engines. For over 30 years, Mr. Carder produced a wide range of exceptional projects, many of which were donated to various clubs and museums.
When Theodore passed away in September of 2020, just days after his 96th birthday, Bob Evans was tasked with finding a proper home for his remaining projects. In his will, Ted had stipulated that the projects should be donated, if possible, to anyone who would appreciate them. Needless to say, the first place that Mr. Evans thought of was the Miniature Engineering Craftsmanship Museum.
All told, eight of Mr. Carder’s projects were donated by Susi Trumbo for display. Included is a Shay locomotive with functional mechanisms as well as a somewhat whimsical steam engine driven display he called the “Gear Go-Round,” which features salami-sliced gears. There are also five other engines, a punch press, and a hammer (stamp) mill. The punch press functions, and can be driven by one of the steam engines. All of these engines operate on compressed air.
We thank Susi Trumbo and Bob Evans for considering the Miniature Engineering Craftsmanship Museum as a home for Mr. Carder’s impressive miniature machines. The projects are currently on display, and the Shay Locomotive, Gear Go-Round, and Steam Roller Engine all run on compressed air. View more photos of Theodore Carder’s impressive model engineering projects.