Can anyone help me with this one? I have a Wizard that appears much older than any pictured on this site. It has no shroud. self contained (gas tank mounted on the motor). I have some pics if someone can help me identify this motor. I'm starting a re-build but am working totaly blind here.
Much Thanks, Brian
Western Auto Supply sold outboard motors made by
several makers. Can you give a description or post
a photo? Is there an ID tag or model and serial
number stamped into rope start plate?
Sometimes information is stamped elsewhere on
motor or and covered with paint or grime.
Carburetor and magneto (usually have model numbers
on them)and some other parts made
by outside suppliers are sometimes unique to a
brand or model or year...brush off the grim and
record what you see and a photo if possible
Why do you believe it to be a Wizard?
Louis, Thanks for the response. I can't seem to post my pics of iton this site.. Any suggestions on the procedure?
The rope start plate says WIZARD Western Auto A National Institution Serian N0. WA-2-1005. I can't seem to find any other numbers. I could email the pics if you wish.
Your Wizard WA-2 serial number 1005 is a 1940 model
made by Kiekhaefer. In 1939 Kiekhaefer took over a
failed outboard maker hoping to make a line of magnetic devices. The left over stock of rejected
Sea King brand Thor outboards in the plant were refurbished and offered to Montgomery Ward in an
attempt to gain some cash flow...the improved
Sea Kings sold out and Montgomery Ward asked for
more...the legend of how Elmer Carl Kiekhaefer
got into the outboard motor business.
Well aware that the old Thor/Sea King design was obsolete Kiekhaefer worked up a vastly improved outboard motor for 1940.
Western Auto asked Kiekhaefer to make
outboard motors for sale under Wizard Brand...
Mr. Kiekhaefer concluded that if those fellows
can sell outboard motors so can we, adopting
Mercury brand name for motors to be sold thru
Mercury distributor dealerships.
So...in 1940 & 1941 Kiekhaefer factory was turning
out three brands of outboard motors with trim and
feature variations. Western Auto had also asked
Kiekhaefer to make a twin cylinder model....a sample
was made with great haste and shown to Western Auto
executives who insisted on running it...fortunately
the hacked together parts held up and Kiekhaefer
went home with orders for more outboards than he
was ultimately able to deliver...not for lack of
Mercury 1940 models begin with K as in K-1
Wizard 1940 models begin with WA as in WA-2
Mercury 1941-2 models begin with KB as in KB1 or KB-1A
Wizard 1941-2 models begin with WB as in WB-6
1946-7 Mercury models begin with KD (plus KB4-1 in 1946)
1946-47 Wizard models begin with WD
Sea King (5.5cu in singles only) 1940 and 1941 were identified by Montgovery Ward catalog numbers 8819,8820,8821?
After WW2 Montgomery Ward sold Gale made outboards
There may be exceptions to above general outline
but it should be a usable guide.
Be aware that it was not uncommon to repair early Kiekhaefer outboards with available parts so you will find mixed parts motors. Also rewind starter kits
and improved vane style waterpump kits were offered
Obsolete early style cylinders,pistons and water jackets could be replaced with later assemblies too.
Prewar owners manual indicated that motors could even
be returned to factory for complete rebuild to a
like new condition...most changes and repairs not
to that high standard. In most cases returning to
"original" condition not practical due to non availabilty of original parts or parts motors.
Excellent first motor projects with a high return
of enjoyment for time and effort.
I like them all.
Kiekaefer the man and Kiekhaefer the company are
pretty well one and the same...he ultimately
owned the company outright and ran it from the
get go as an extension of his person...right or wrong
he was THE BOSS!
THANKS!! What great information. I'll have even more pride in it now that I know it's history.
Are parts of any kind still available?
Again, many thanks.
Parts are like Love in that everyone needs both.
Some parts would only be available from a parts
motor while others like gaskets are available
from several sources.
email me at LouD31M066@aol.com if you have a specific
need...some parts are the same for all models... others such as rusted out one year only steel gas tanks simply are not to be found...but...more common and very durable cast aluminum tanks can be fitted and
look period authentic...involve no permanent change
if a correct tank shows up. Poppet valve carburetor
can be swapped out for a Tillotson AJ3 or AJ10 for
easier starting and running...again a fully reversable
I have heard the prewar singles described as easy to
restore but useless...I disagree...on a light boat
or canoe they shine and you are in no danger of
a ticket in a no wake zone.
The Old Outboard Book by Peter Hunn
and a book about Elmer Carl Kiekhaefer
entitled "Iron Fist" are sources of information
about Thor,Sea King,Mercury and Wizard.