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Oil Field Engines & Related Equipment

Reid 15 hp gas air metering


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  #41  
Old 08-04-2008, 11:52:57 PM
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Default Re: Reid 15 hp gas air metering

Jim, I think brass is harder than copper, but aluminum would work. As long as its a "soft" metal.
They were wider than 1\8" but like i said I didnt write down the demensions. As I've never seen 2 Reids that have the same measuerments in this regard.
We just measured the size of the "step" where the top rings sits and made the top ring the same OD of the valve body its self. so it would just slide up into the engine. Know what I mean? And 0.010 taller than the step to ensure a good "squash" fit when I tighten it up in the engine.
We made the bottom ring to te exact same height and width as the top, only a larger diameter, so both top and bottom rings would start to "squash" at the exact same time when tightening to ensure a good seal on the top and bottom.

Jim, also make sure you dont have an old top ring already stuck up in your engine. As this happened to me! And it drove me crazy when I first started to make these rings with the sqare wire, Since I was "unknowingly" trying to get a seal with 2 top rings and one bottom ring and was getting nowhere.
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  #42  
Old 08-06-2008, 02:18:44 PM
Jim Gorter Jim Gorter is offline
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Default Re: Reid 15 hp gas air metering

Main Valve work goes on (and on...)
pulled the Main valve off the 15 hp Reid. I decided to try to see if the valve it self was leaking or the copper sealing rings. Put the valve upright and built a reservoir out of damming putty around the top edge. filled the reservoir with colored water (windshield washer fluid) and let it sit for 2 hrs. came back and the valve bottom was dry (no Leaks) Took the top and bottom copper rings and ran the edges on a piece of oiled crocus cloth. when done, I remiked both rings and found them to be .001 to .002 difference from each other. Put the top ring in the top bore in the cylinder and the bottom ring on the valve body. installed the body but left 1 inch space on the studs. Then I got underneath the valve and shoved it up into bore 4 or 5 times to "set" the rings, then torqued up tight. Removed the charge rod and pushed the piston to TDC. Then rolled the main piston over. When the main piston reached max pressure, the charge piston would move back about 1/2 inch. Still leaks. The search for the perfect sealing ring continues.... Jim.
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  #43  
Old 08-06-2008, 10:21:00 PM
Joel Sanderson Joel Sanderson is offline
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Default Re: Reid 15 hp gas air metering

This is so frustrating. Why did they make these like this anyway? Seriously--can anyone give a good reason why there could only be an 1/8" gasket there? A good 1" lip with a real gasket would've been a huge improvement. I suppose they had their reasons.
Jim, e-mail me your address and I'll make you a gasket that'll seal, assuming I can still get the materials. I'll need the diameter of your casting where the valve slides in too. I'm not sure what I'll have in it, but we can discuss that more privately if you'd like.
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  #44  
Old 08-07-2008, 02:37:36 PM
Jim Gorter Jim Gorter is offline
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Default Re: Reid 15 hp gas air metering

Joel, Thanks for the offer. I will PM you regarding the details. I have the 1/8 inch graphite packing.. still looking for the brass channel. I am scouring the hobby shops locally.
My other thought is to cut rings from High temp exhaust manifold gasket material. this material is softer and would conform to any pits or surface differences.
On the back pressurizing, the charge cylinder only moves about 1/2 inch then stops, even if I continue to apply pressure. This made me think the valve was not seating until pressure comes up forcing it closed. Or maybe the Plunger is holding the valve a bit off the seat. but that would have showed up with the leak test. Still puzzled. Jim.
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  #45  
Old 08-08-2008, 09:40:55 AM
Joel Sanderson Joel Sanderson is offline
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Default Re: Reid 15 hp gas air metering

I tried high temperature gasketing material. I painstakingly cut perfect rings on a coping saw. They all blew out. It also distorted too much from the bolt pressure. This has to be a metalic gasket to withstand the running pressure.

You gave your valve a dye test, so trust the results--it's almost certainly the gasket leaking. Who knows why it doesn't continue to leak after you hold the piston back.

I was wondering if anyone has tried a lead wire. I wouldn't think it would ever get over 621º and melt it. A stained glass worker should know where to get some. Anybody?
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  #46  
Old 08-08-2008, 01:03:27 PM
Jim Gorter Jim Gorter is offline
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Default Re: Reid 15 hp gas air metering

Joel. I have some stained glass shops around here. I will go check it out. Honestly, right now, Im willing to twirl a dead chicken 3 times and do a chant to get this valve to seal. With as many times as I have pulled this valve, Im thinking about putting wing nuts on it. Jim.
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  #47  
Old 08-08-2008, 02:48:25 PM
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Default Re: Reid 15 hp gas air metering

Jim,
I think you need to assess what your goals are with your Reid. Joel's engine is used essentially daily (indoors) at close to rated hp, so his needs to be set up very well. However, if you are just going to take your Reid to shows and run it unloaded maybe 5-10 times a year you may be there already. I have enjoyed reading Joel's information and have learned a lot. He is no doubt one of the gurus of the Reid. However I am going to have to disagree with him about a critical bit of evidence in your tests. I think you are right about the valve needing some pressure to seat and once the valve has enough pressure to seat you can not get any more leaks into the charging chamber. Your charging piston should have continued to move after that first half inch if your sealing ring were truly leaking. I would be willing to bet if you did the same tests you did on most of the Reids you run across in the shows the majority of them will have some kind of leak. But most seem to run pretty well. I know my 12 hp will actually blow my pants leg around a bit if I get it close to the air "intake" when the engine fires and it still runs pretty well. Yeah, I really should work on it, and some day I will. But meanwhile it is running pretty well. These old oilfield engines did not survive for 100 years by being persnickety about everything being perfect. If they required that they would have been scrapped a long time ago.
I think that you just haven't hit on the magic fuel\air setting. It took a while for me to figure that out on mine and I was shown the proper way to do it as I picked the engine up. It just takes a certain feel to get everything right and it takes a bit of practice to get there.
Is there any chance you can belt your engine up to a power source and spin it while you are adjusting the fuel and air mix? That would help a lot finding out what you need to run it. Once you have established the run point then all you would need is the starting point and you are set.
At least that is my opinion and it is guaranteed to be worth everything you paid for it!
Ray Ethridge
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  #48  
Old 08-10-2008, 05:41:38 PM
Jim Gorter Jim Gorter is offline
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Default Re: Reid 15 hp gas air metering

Ray, Thanks for your thoughts on my dilemma. I wholeheartedly agree that Joel knows his stuff. He has given me a lot of help in figuring out this problem. I plan to use this engine for show only, so the need for all the HP this engine can generate is not needed. I plan to pull the valve and inspect the valve action without the return spring. Its possible that the plunger may be cocking the valve slightly, causing a minor gaseous leak until the pressure pushes the seat down to seal. Another stacker with a 15 hp Reid has removed his charge rod and noticed a 1/4 inch push on the charge piston when pressurized, so maybe my problem is not as serious as I had thought.
I may be overly cautious on the starting procedures on this engine. This is my first propane powered engine and I have a lot of respect for flammable compressed gas. As always I have gotten much valuable advice from this board and have learned much about the starting and running of this engine. What remains is to put this advice and knowledge to work. Regards, Jim.
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  #49  
Old 08-16-2008, 07:55:20 PM
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Default Re: Reid 15 hp gas air metering

Saturday 2:30 pm. I got the Reid to fire a couple of times. First I removed the main valve and disassembled.Then I took a flat file to the stem where there were some scuff marks. Then I removed the plunger and did the same thing, filing down the high spots. removed the spring and tested the movement. seemed to work more freely. Reinstalled the valve and tightened down. Rolled the charge cylinder to TDC. Put a 12 inch nipple in the air intake. turned on the gas and lit the pipe. adjusted the flame until it was level with the flat spot between cylinders. Turned off the gas until the flame went out and then turned on again to same mark. pulled the flywheel backwards 1/2 stroke andshut off gas. rolled flywheels forward to TDC, then backwards. She snorted and let out a big cloud of white smoke. I quickly reset the gas to the start mark. but the engine did not fire. I had a lot of accumulated oil in the exhaust elbow and it had blown out a shower when the engine fired. Redid this procedure several times with same results, only one or two detonations then nothing. I tried cutting back on the gas but no difference. Am I flooding the engine, if so how come it will fire after a reprime?
One thing for sure, the 5 inch exhaust stack makes the detonations nice and deep. If I were any happier, I'd sprout wings.
Let me know what I need to do next to get this girl to keep popping. thanks, Jim.
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  #50  
Old 08-16-2008, 11:55:31 PM
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Default Re: Reid 15 hp gas air metering

Jim,
Untill you figure out exactly what you engine "wants" to start by hand, I recommend rigging up a starter motor.
Sounds like your really close, but if you luck is like mine you'll wear yourself out trying to figure it out.
On my 15 Reid the compression sucks, having some new rings made, By rocking it back and forth by hand it will fire every time, but with the loss of some combustion past the rings it will never start this way. I have rigged up a 6hp honda engine as the stater. It pulls the Reid thru two or three times and shes off and running.
Also, do you have a valve cock in place to controll the air intake? I run my engine with a charcoal grill propane regulator, with the gas set to wide open I shut the air off by 50% or so when starting. Once its running I shut the air off to around 25%. It really doesnt take much fuel to run these engines.
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Old 08-17-2008, 06:59:06 PM
Jim Gorter Jim Gorter is offline
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Default Re: Reid 15 hp gas air metering

Thanks Doug, I just have the 12 inch nipple on it now. I built a 2 inch intake with an adjustable slide valve but have not put it back on. I will try to restart with reduced air and see if she likes that. She hits strong on the few starts I did and carries thru several revolutions. I completely removed the main valve spring thinking it may have been too stiff to allow the valve to open. even without the spring, the lower valve plunger is so air tight that ist acts like a buffer spring to keep the valve from slamming open and shut. I have seen some Reids with a weight hanging from a spring on the main valve stem. Maybe that is to assist in its closing at faster speeds. Will keep you posted on the trials and successes. Jim.
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  #52  
Old 08-18-2008, 01:31:54 PM
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Default Re: Reid 15 hp gas air metering

I have been following your reid adventure, I am doing basikly the same thing with my engine. Just about ready to try a start. I am welding up a trailer to move it out of the shop to start it. GOOD LUCK Jim. Phil
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  #53  
Old 08-18-2008, 10:02:40 PM
Jim Gorter Jim Gorter is offline
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Default Re: Reid 15 hp gas air metering

Thanks Phil, If I have learned one thing in this hobby, it is to never give up. I have put a fair ammount of work into this unit and I am bound and determined to get it to run.
One thing to concider is the low pressure of gas I am supplying with the wet gasometer. with no weight on the floating cylinder I get about 3 1/2 to 4 inch H2O at the supply valve. This low pressure may make it hard to suck in enough gas to mix with the air to keep the combustion going.
On the main valve, I feel the close tolerance coupled with a stiff spring and possible drag from high spots on the lower plunger was keeping the main valve from opening full and letting in a full charge after priming. I know I pulled on this engine for a good hour with spring in the main valve. Nothing. Pulled out the spring and filed the high spots reassembled valve and first prime, it hit one or twice.
I will install my air intake with the slide valve and try with reduced air supply. This should act as a choke and cause the engine to pull on the gas side a bit more making the subsequent charges richer. I have all my fingers crossed. Thanks to all for their interest and advice, Regards Jim.
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  #54  
Old 08-18-2008, 10:34:06 PM
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Default Re: Reid 15 hp gas air metering

Jim have you thought of just trying to run off a propain tank with a low presure regulator with your dimond valve, and not using the gasometer at this time. It may give you a more controlable source of fuel. Using an 2 inch air ball valve allso makes for a good emergency shutoff. I have seen some pretty slopy reids run to my amazement, and in the good shape that yours is in, it should fire rite up. One of my first engines was an int model M 1-1/2 HP some 40 years ago, and I remember the excitment at just getting it to run for a few seconds the first time. Good Luck. Phil
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Old 08-19-2008, 07:56:13 PM
Jim Gorter Jim Gorter is offline
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Default Re: Reid 15 hp gas air metering

Phil, I am going to try the reduced air supply first, then I will try the gas system with the regualtor in the line without running thru the gasometer. I know I am close, since I can get the engine to fire every time when I prime it.
The engine actually starts easier than I had expected. Thanks for your suggestion. JIm.
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Old 08-24-2008, 07:46:51 PM
Jim Gorter Jim Gorter is offline
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Default Re: Reid 15 hp gas air metering

The Reid engine is running!!!! I invited some buddies from my engine club over on Saturday to witness the blessed event. Got the hot tube going, oiled up everything nice and heavy, closed down the air intake to about 50% and primed and away it went. The engine accelerates quickly, so I shut the fuel down then slowly reopened the gas valve so it was running evenly and hitting every other stroke. Let it run about 20 minutes varying the fuel and air. COuld get it down to about 68 RPM, but it hits so hard, I was concerned about crankshaft damage (also has newly poured rod brng) There was much rejoicing. I still have a stupid grin on my face. I took some pictures and will post on my Flickr site. http://www.flickr.com/photos/rusty_acres/
Also took a short silent movie of engine running and my son posted on Youtube. search for Reid Oilfield engines and go down to Starting Reid Oilfield engine. No picture just a movie icon. Hope it works.
Thanks to everyone for getting me to this very happy point. Jim.
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Old 08-24-2008, 08:35:15 PM
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Default Re: Reid 15 hp gas air metering

Congratulations, Jim! That is really a great feeling getting one to run for the first time. You really worked hard on that one too, you deserve a big pat on the back!
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Old 08-25-2008, 02:06:27 PM
Jim Gorter Jim Gorter is offline
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Default Re: Reid 15 hp gas air metering

Ray, Thanks for your comments. It has been a fun project. I have learned a bunch about oilfield engines, hot tubes, and propane fuel systems. Best part is I have discovered a whole new bunch of guys who are into the same crazy hobby as myself and are willing to help a newbie get some questions figured out. regards, Jim.
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Old 08-25-2008, 03:24:40 PM
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Default Re: Reid 15 hp gas air metering

Glad to hear it Jim!

On my 15 Reid, to make it really fire really soft I close the air to somewhere around 25% or less. I am using a 3\4" valve on the air intake. Also when doing this the fuel is turned way down too, so it doesnt flood out. I can set the mag timing to TDC or just before TDC when running really slow like this and there is nearly ZERO exhaust noise........but thats no fun so I usually run with the mag timing retarded just so it does make some good stak noise!

I'm sure you'll have fun learing how to adjust the timing with the hot tube, its easy once you get the hang of it. The hotter it is the more advanced the timing, the cooler it is the more retarded the timing. You'll get a feel for it. I'd bet within a week or so you'll have it down to a science!
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Old 08-25-2008, 04:24:12 PM
Jim Gorter Jim Gorter is offline
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Default Re: Reid 15 hp gas air metering

Thanks Doug. It was your suggestion on the air intake that got the engine to keep running. Thanks for that. I will need to do something about the stack noise... this thing sounds like opening day of duck season. I will play around with the air and gas flow to try to mellow it out. Other wise, I will be down at the far end of all the shows, by the portapotties. I still have some work to do on this engine. Build a splash guard to replace my custom piece of cardboard. and a better rod oiler delivery wick. And finish the trailer to haul it around on. Thanks again, Jim.
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