Surface Machinery and Methods for Oil-Well Pumping Page: 105
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POWER TRANSMITTING MACHINERY.
rick built to conform to the orders of the California Industrial
Accident Commission. This derrick is described on page 115.
More recently tubular steel derricks have gained wide use, both
in the larger sizes for drilling and in shorter lengths suitable for
permanent installation at pumping wells. They have these advan-
tages over wooden derrick: They are fireproof, they offer less sur-
face to wind pressure, they are easily erected or taken down, they
have greater stability and alignment, they last longer and one der-
rick may be used at a number of wells, and they are lighter, decreas-
ing transportation costs. Some types of tubular steel derricks can
be erected or taken down without removing a bolt; the only tools
needed are two 10-inch nut wrenches to loosen or tighten nuts.
Plate XXVI, C, shows a tubular steel derrick in use at a well
pumping on the beam in the Big Muddy oil field, Wyoming.
Some of the older oil fields of the Mid-Continent, such as the
Glenn pool in Oklahoma, have chiefly tubular steel derricks.
Most of the steel derricks in use are manufactured and sold by
companies that make derricks. However, many oil companies make
their own tubular derricks for pumping wells. Some companies
formerly used old pipe but experience has proved that new tubing
cut to the proper length at the factory is more economical. An
Oklahoma oil company that builds its derricks from new pipe
gave $350 as the approximate cost per derrick of its 60-foot derricks
for the year 1920. The figure includes the cost of new pipe, con-
crete for foundations, lumber for crown blocks and floor, and the
To run or pull casing, many operators reinforce the legs of
steel and tubular derricks by bolting a duplicate reinforcing leg
up each corner.
USE OF GUY WIRES ON DERRICKS.
Oil derricks that must withstand severe windstorms are gen-
erally reinforced with guy wires. Plate XXVII, A, shows the use
of guy wires on a wooden derrick in the Eldorado field, Kansas.
Windstorms in the California, Texas, Oklahoma, and Kansas fields
have blown down hundreds of derricks with great loss of property
and of oil. Guy wires have much increased the stability of der-
ricks. In standard practice twelve guy wires are used, three at-
tached to each of the derrick legs.
The value of guy wires for oil derricks has been discussed 9 by
F. B. Tough as follows:
On January 17, 1916, and again on the 27th of the same month, the
Sunset-Midway, McKittrick, and Coalinga oil fields were visited by severe wind-
19 Tough, F. B.. Prevention of oil-derrick failures in windstorms by improved methods of
guying: Western Engineer, vol. 8, February, 1917, pp. 63&-66.
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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/m1/134/: accessed April 28, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, digital.library.unt.edu; crediting UNT Libraries Government Documents Department.