Never one to throw out anything useful, Rudy Kouhoupt converted his family’s old well pump into a steam engine using a flywheel he’d found somewhere else. The cast iron body pumped water for many years, and now it lives on in another useful form.

One of the first large donations to the Miniature Engineering Craftsmanship Museum was the collection of famed model engine builder Rudy Kouhoupt. After retiring as a chemist, Rudy had a second career building engines and writing magazine articles documenting the process. Many people have built his models, but we have the honor of displaying all of his original prototypes. Rudy’s collection includes scale model engines, locomotives, tractors and more. Additionally, thirteen of Rudy’s model steam engines are hooked up to run on compressed air to demonstrate their function. 

Another look at the well pump steam engine.

Exhibit added: November 17, 2023 - Last modified: January 29, 2024

Presented by The Joe Martin Foundation for Exceptional Craftsmanship