Surface Machinery and Methods for Oil-Well Pumping Page: 112
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112 SURFACE MACHINERY AND METHODS FOR OIL-WELL PUMPING.
or a winch mounted on a tractor, as shown in Plate XXX, A, or a
winch driven by an electric motor and mounted on a wagon, as shown
in Plate XXX, B.
In many of the older oil fields, where all pumping is done by
a power or jack plant, derricks are seldom seen. For the pulling
of these wells, a machine is used that consists of a pipe or timber
mast 35 to 40 feet long, with an attached crown pulley, drum for
winding, and guy wires for temporary support in proper position
at the well. This equipment is moved from well to well on a truck,
tractor, wagon, or wheel-carriage attachment. If the machine is
moved by a wagon or wheel-carriage attachment, the well is usually
pulled by a team of horses. If it is moved on a truck or tractor, the
well is often pulled by a winch mounted on the truck or tractor, or
by direct pull, using the truck or tractor like a team of horses. Plate
XXVI, A (p. 110), shows a well being pulled by a team of horses
with a mast and reel of this type.
Some of the oil-well supply companies sell a caterpillar tractor
with mast and winch mountings to pull oil wells. Several makes of
tractor drilling-machines run by gas engine are also designed and
equipped to pull rods, tubing, and casing. Recently two men using
one of these machines at a well near Bridgeport, Ill., pulled and
replaced 1,960 feet of rods and tubing in one day. Formerly, two
teams of horses and four men, including the teamsters, took two days
to complete the same work.
A winch mounted on a truck or tractor can pull rods and tubing
much more quickly than they can be pulled by horses. Recently at
Oil City, Pa., a winch mounted on a tractor pulled 950 feet of rods
and tubing in 1 hour and 15 minutes, as compared with 3 hours for-
merly required with a team.
Horses are used for pulling wells at places where a truck or even
a tractor could be moved only with great difficulty.
A tractor can be moved over roads that would be impossible for
a truck. A tractor can turn and get into suitable position for pull-
ing in a much smaller space than a truck. However, with good
roads, a truck can be driven much more rapidly from well to well
and can carry men and the equipment needed in pulling.
In general, the choice of equipment to be used for pulling wells
is largely a question of conditions at the individual property, such
as frequency of pulling jobs, character of roads leading to the wells,
amount and variety of service required of the motive power, and
amount of capital expenditure warranted for new equipment.
Wells of the Chilkat Oil Co. at Katalla, Alaska, in a mountainous
area with swamps and tundra, are pulled by means of a donkey en-
gine and boiler mounted on a truck. This equipment is moved to
the well to be pulled over a track of 12-pound steel rails which
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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/m1/147/: accessed March 23, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, digital.library.unt.edu; crediting UNT Libraries Government Documents Department.