Surface Machinery and Methods for Oil-Well Pumping Page: 61


ances the maximum temperature was about 1600 F. and the decrease
in power consumption was noticeable. The author has seen the record
of a deep well in another California oil field where by using a coun-
terbalance $40 a month in cost of electric power was saved. A com-
pany in the Eldorado oil field, Kansas, which is pumping a num-
ber of wells on the beam by gas-engine drive, has cut the consumption
of gas by the gas engine more than 15 per cent by the use of counter-
The saving in power consumption by a counterbalance is usually
between 10 and 20 per cent; it varies with conditions at each well
and with the kind of power equipment used for pumping.
Plate XI, B (p. 60), shows the concrete-block type of counter-
balance which is coming into general use for permanent beam-
pumping plants. The concrete block is suspended by an iron rod
from the end of a timber bolted to the power end of the walking
beam. When the block is poured two pieces of 4-inch pipe are
placed vertically in it to serve as sleeves for two pieces of 3-inch
pipe which are placed vertically and concreted into the pier. Thus
the two pieces of 3-inch pipe serve as guides to the counterbalance
as it rises and falls with the reciprocating motion of the walking
beam. Some guides have at the top of the concrete pier a threaded
coupling to facilitate the installation of the counterbalance, but gen-
erally this is poor practice because the pipe works loose from the
couplings, destroys the threads, and causes trouble.
Some counterbalances are made with four guides and sleeves in-
stead of two. Others are made in slabs so that the number can
be increased or decreased to balance the load. Plate IX, C (p. 45),
shows a well being pumped on the beam without the use of a counter-
balance. Plate XII, A and B, show two common types of counter-
balances for beam pumping, each box filled with stone or old iron.
In the type shown in Plate XII, A, at a, the box rests on a bearing on
the ground and the upper part of the frame is attached to the
wrist pin of the band-wheel crank arm by a steel cable that passes
under a pulley anchored below the wrist pin. Plate XII, B, shows
a counterbalance consisting of a box suspended from the end of
the power arm of the walking beam by a steel cable or steel rod
at a point between the pitman and the Samson post. Another type
is suspended from a timber extension of the power arm of the
walking beam by a steel cable or steel rod, and is at a point be-
tween the pitman and the engine house.
The type shown in Plate XII, B, is held in a vertical plane by
means of an arm and support extending from the box container to a


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George, H. C. Surface Machinery and Methods for Oil-Well Pumping, report, 1925; Washington D.C.. ( accessed March 26, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library,; crediting UNT Libraries Government Documents Department.