Surface Machinery and Methods for Oil-Well Pumping Page: 29


bends as possible, and the top or return water pipe should be larger
than the bottom or inlet pipe.
The methods of water circulation are the thermosiphon system,
the gas or air pressure system, and the pump circulating system.
The thermosiphon system is based upon the fact that as the water
in the jacket becomes heated it expands and rises and starts to flow
through the discharge pipe to the tank, being replaced by the colder
water from the bottom of the tank. With this system, to obtain the
best results the tank should be installed so that its bottom is a little
above the bottom of the water jacket, and the lower or intake pipe,
carrying water from the tank to the water jacket of the engine,
should slope toward the water jacket. The discharge pipe from the
water jacket should also slope toward the water jacket, and should
enter and discharge in the water tank several inches below the
surface of the water.
Water circulation is maintained by introducing gas or compressed
air into the discharge pipe from the water jacket, so that an impulse
is given to the water in the direction of the tank.
The pump circulating system is usually driven by means of a small
centrifugal pump from a pulley on the engine shaft. Plate VII, A
and B (p. 22), shows an installation of this type. Plate VII, A,
shows concrete water-circulating tank at a, intake pipe to water
jacket b, and discharge pipe from water jacket at c. Plate VII, B,
at a shows the pulley used to drive the centrifugal pump to circulate
the water.
In many oil fields where water conditions are bad, concrete water-
circulating tanks have replaced wooden and steel tanks. Bad
water rusts the hoops on the wooden tanks rapidly, and steel tanks
soon leak and must be replaced after a year or two of service.
Some operators using wooden tanks have replaced the ordinary
steel hoop by sucker rods with turnbuckles, which usually prevents
hoop trouble.
A standard type of concrete water-circulating tank, used by some
companies in the California oil fields, is 9 feet square and 3 feet
deep, with reinforced walls and bottom 3 to 4 inches thick.
The deposition of scale or lime on the walls of the water jacket causes
heating of the engine cylinder, because it insulates the cylinder
and prevents the circulating water from absorbing heat. This de-
posit of scale also obstructs the pipes and water passages and pre-
vents proper circulation. If the water circulation is partly or entirely


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George, H. C. Surface Machinery and Methods for Oil-Well Pumping, report, 1925; Washington D.C.. ( accessed February 17, 2018), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library,; crediting UNT Libraries Government Documents Department.