Oil Held Engine Society News

| August/September 2001

  • Bessemer Engine
    Bill Baker cooks his lunch with the help of Frank Furguson's 10 HP Bessemer.
  • 20 HP Pattin Bros. engine
    Richard Hunt's 20 HP Pattin Bros. engine

  • Bessemer Engine
  • 20 HP Pattin Bros. engine

1231 Banta's Creek Road, Eaton, Ohio 45320-9701 oil engine@voyager.net

This month we have some correspondence and photos from two of our California OFES members. The first is from Frank Furguson of Forest Ranch, California, who sends in a photo of his 10 HP Bessemer being used as a hot dog cooker by a friend of his, Mr. Bill Baker. I don't know what this would do to your hot dogs, but I'd assume that it would add somewhat of a propane flavor to them. And another mystery which Mr. Furguson didn't explain was why Mr. Baker is wearing a helmet. Needless to say, these guys are real 'Oafs,' and appear to know how to have a good time. Mr. Furguson writes that the Bessemer runs wonderfully and that he also has a 12 HP Reid in his collection of oil field engines.

The next correspondence is a letter from Richard Hunt about his experience in the oil field engine hobby. He also sends along two photos of his 20 HP Pattin Bros. engine.

Hunt says 'I enjoy the Oil Field Engine News section of GEM and hope to see it continue to be a regular addition in many future editions. My father and grandfather worked oil fields of Oklahoma and moved to the Signal Hill area of southern California in the early fifties to continue that tradition. I remember the forest of oil derricks that covered Signal Hill and the sound of the 'grasshopper' pump units.

'I began collecting old gas engines about six years ago. I suppose my oil background drove me to decide to try to find an oil field engine. My search led me to the Internet and, after about a month, I was able to locate a 20 HP Pattin Bros. engine here on the West Coast. Mike McKinney sold me the engine and delivered it to the 2000 Antique Equipment Show in Tulare, California, last April. Bill Tremel was a lot of help and gave me plenty of instruction on how to set up the propane system and some starting procedures. I also received a lot of information from Gerald Johnson, Myles Lamm and Ed Rerrad.

'I attempted to start it by hand, but since I was not sure about the gas valve setting, or exactly how much to prime (or not to prime), I belted it up to my tractor. After it fired the first time and covered me with oil, I began experimenting with the gas valve setting and regular pressures. It now starts fairly easily by hand by backing it up onto compression.


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