TEXAS OIL FIELD ENGINES


| September/October 1983

  • 50 horsepower Superior engine in Texas
    Kevin Batterberry, looks over a tired, old, 50 horsepower Superior engine in Texas-a single cylinder, duplex, two cycle in sad shape.
  • Ajax engine use natural gas
    James Batterberry with a 20 horse Ajax engine in Texas. These engines use natural gas and are of two cycle design. Heavy, duty, well designed, they ought to run for a long time with minimum care.
  • Arrow oilfield engine in a yard
    Kevin Batterberry studying a new, 20 horse Arrow oilfield engine in a yard in Alice, Texas.
  • Portable oil-field pumping unit
    James and Kevin Batterberry with a portable oil-field pumping unit. Skid mounted, it can be moved with relative ease from well to well. These portable units come in a wide variety of sizes.
  • Duplex Superior natural gas engine
    A two cylinder, two stroke, 150 HP duplex Superior natural gas engine long since tossed a side into the Texas brush. Jim and Kevin Batterberry give some idea of the size of this old unit.

  • 50 horsepower Superior engine in Texas
  • Ajax engine use natural gas
  • Arrow oilfield engine in a yard
  • Portable oil-field pumping unit
  • Duplex Superior natural gas engine

1887 Dahlstedt Road, Burlinaton, WA 98233.

The single cylinder, heavy duty gas engine is alive and well in the Texas oil fields. They are much in evidence in the equipment sales yards and at the wellheads throughout South Texas. On a recent two day trip to the area in and around Alice, Texas, we saw innumerable engines in the fifteen to fifty horsepower range. Most are equipped to run on the natural gas available at the wellhead. Natural gas collects in the well casing at pressures of 1000 PSI or so. A regulator at the casing drops the pressure to around 100 PSI. A second regulator at the engine drops the pressure to a few ounces. The engine breathes this low pressure gas from a receiver of several cubic foot capacity. The engines are equipped with sensors to detect excessive speed, heat, or failure of the lubricating system. All in all the engines provide a reliable and economical method of pumping deep oil wells. Most engines are of the Ajax, Arrow, or Witte brands. Don't plan on running down to Texas and adding one to your collection. Prices start at four to five thousand dollars.