Sabin, Minn. - When Jim and Lynette Briden got a new flat-screen TV, they didn't need to find an entertainment center.
They mounted it to Jim's antique steam engine.
The rural Sabin couple have a full-sized Case 110-horsepower steam engine in their living room.
It was a dream Jim had after spending years restoring the 1910 machine, which was the largest one Case ever built.
He wanted to enjoy it more than four days a year at the Western Minnesota Steam Threshers Reunion in Rollag, so they decided to build a space where they could enjoy it indoors.
Lynette agreed to her husband's idea, but had some requirements: The steam engine had to be clean before coming inside, and the room had to look like a living room, not a garage.
"I married into the love of steam engines," Lynette said. "Too bad he wasn't a model collector. They'd be a lot easier."
They added a large family room onto the house, with a 13-foot ceiling and a door large enough so the steam engine can be taken in and out.
The room is nicely decorated, with leather couches, antique furniture and stained-glass windows.
The steam engine is along one of the dark green walls and fits in with the décor.
The Bridens, who own Larson Welding in Fargo, have displayed the steam engine in the living room for about eight years.
Friends, and even some strangers who have heard about it, stop by to check it out or have their picture taken in the cab.
The Bridens' grandsons are the biggest fans of the machine, using its large rear wheels as a jungle gym.
Last winter, Lynette convinced Jim to attach their new TV to the step of the steam engine by adding two holes.
When the TV is turned off, it's hard to know it's there.
The Bridens, who have been active with the Steam Threshers Reunion for about 30 years, haven't taken the engine to the event recently because it takes so much effort to get it in and out. But with their grandsons getting older, they may take it out again soon.
Jim estimates there are about 25 of those Case steam engines around today.
But he figures he has the only wife who will let him keep it in the living room.
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