from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
- n. Nautical, same as watch-tackle.
- n. A portable force-pump on trucks.
Sorry, no etymologies found.
Source for gasoline powered pumps (what we call handy-billy in the US).?
His only hope lay in a “handy-billy,” a small, portable pump powered by a gasoline engine.
But the wave that had stopped the handy-billy was followed by another and another.
Groping around in the blistering heat, Keeler found the handy-billy.
It took Hamilton about a day to complete the skinning, and, during the process, the huge brute had to be twice turned over, but such is the value of the nautical handy-billy that two men managed it rather easily.
When appointed as such, in later days, he came in "with the hay-seed in his hair," and went out fit for a lieutenant's charge; but from first to last, whatever his personal progress, he remained, as a midshipman, a handy-billy.
a Westing purchase and a "handy-billy" (rope and block purchase) had to be rigged.