Surface Machinery and Methods for Oil-Well Pumping Page: 77
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The steel rods may be old bent sucker rods from wells and the
condition of old drilling cables differ widely. One driller dis-
cards a drilling cable much sooner than another; one discarded
drilling cable may have been subjected to much more severe service
than another. Some operators using old steel cable for shackle lines
claim that when each shackle line is made from about equal lengths
of right lay and left lay cable babbitted together, the line has less
A section of cable is often inserted into a long rod line to
take up the " pound." If many pieces of steel cable are used in one
shackle line, the couplings are usually made by babbitting the ends
together within a short piece of pipe. The connections at the jack
and the power ends are usually similar.
The wooden sucker rods, once commonly used for shackle lines,
are made of octagon hickory or ash in lengths of 16 feet to 22 feet
and diameters of 1 inches to 2 inches, with forged wrought-iron
couplings riveted on the ends. After the wood has lost its life,
many of these wooden rods become brittle and break, necessitating
Steel rods or pull rods, as used for shackle lines, are generally
made of round steel in lengths of 20 feet, 25 feet, and 30 feet, in
diameters ranging from z inch to 1 inch, with upset ends con-
nected by a 2-piece rod clamp held together by one or more bolts.
Steel sucker rods with steel box and pin connections with wrench
square, or the type with pins on both ends connected by a common
malleable-iron boxing, are often used for shackle lines.
Some oil companies have adopted the policy of using new sucker
rods in the wells as pump rods, which they later remove for shackle-
line service and replace with new rods. This practice is probably
based on the theory that it is easier to repair rod breakage in the
shackle lines on the surface than in the well, where breakage will
probably mean a " fishing " job and perhaps pulling the tubing.
Much of the breakage of steel-rod shackle lines is due to the use
of rods that do not have enough support or have been bent.
SHACKLE-INE STRUCTURES AND) EQUIPMENT.
The power or jack plant, and the machinery, shackle line, and jack
are generally standard and are purchased from oil-well supply com-
panies, but the shackle-line structures are usually designed and built
by the operating oil company. This results in a multiplicity of
designs and a variety of material unequaled in any other class of
Shackle-line structures may be classified as: 1, Equipment that is
used to take a well off or put it on the power; 2, equipment that
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George, H. C. Surface Machinery and Methods for Oil-Well Pumping, report, 1925; Washington D.C.. (digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc12407/m1/106/: accessed April 27, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, digital.library.unt.edu; crediting UNT Libraries Government Documents Department.