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Oil Field Engines & Related Equipment

Cleaning oilfield engines. Need suggestions.


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  #1  
Old 06-09-2013, 10:03:56 PM
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Reed Engine Reed Engine is offline
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Default Cleaning oilfield engines. Need suggestions.

We had a vat, it contained Oakite, this was a basidic cleaner originally used to clean locomotives. It's no longer politically correct to use so to keep the EPA away we started using a torch to burn off the caked on grease, been doing it for years now. To clarify, an oxygen acetylene torch and by pushing the lever down just like you do when cutting steel, that burns/blows off the crud.

This has become pretty expensive over the past year. Is there a better, cheaper way to get this done?

I'm open for suggestions.
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Old 06-09-2013, 10:19:54 PM
Black Eagle Black Eagle is offline
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Default Re: Cleaning oilfield engines. Need suggestions.

Which Oakite formula were you using? There are several other formulas offered by Chemtall ( manufactures Oakite) that may work and still keep the EPA at bay. I would think that the burning off of the grease would pose more problems with the EPA and the bean counters than finding a new cleanser. I use purple industrial degreaser by zep chemical in a heated pressure washer to do heavy degreasing. Apply once let it sit then spray off again with cleaner then a clean water rinse to neutralize.
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Old 06-09-2013, 10:27:34 PM
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Default Re: Cleaning oilfield engines. Need suggestions.

If burning remained the option you will find an Oxygen/Propane set up will work just as well but considerably more cost effective.
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Old 06-09-2013, 10:31:50 PM
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Default Re: Cleaning oilfield engines. Need suggestions.

Black Eagle, How many engines do you do a month? Can you give me an average monthly cost? Asking to get some idea on cost comparison. We do at least one major overhaul a week (as many as three sometimes), from Fm 118 through C96 Arrow. Then 10-20 cylinder heads and 10-20 clutches. We burn them all.

---------- Post added at 09:31 PM ---------- Previous post was at 09:28 PM ----------

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Originally Posted by Jack Innes View Post
If burning remained the option you will find an Oxygen/Propane set up will work just as well but considerably more cost effective.
This may be a real possibility. Thanks!
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Old 07-02-2013, 08:00:22 AM
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Default Re: Cleaning oilfield engines. Need suggestions.

An update, I finally got my tank set and plumbed in and passed the pressure test. Had to do things according to code etc. I had them set a 500 gallon tank and used 1" line pipe, we cut and threaded the pieces to keep joints at a minimum. Code says you can only come into a building with 30 lbs pressure so there is a pounds to pounds regulator on the tank feeding the 1" pipe. I was looking at a large acetylene bottle and noticed the valve on it was 1" pipe. I called the company and they sold me one for $25.00, so I have the exact valve on the end of my line the regulator screws onto to. I'm going ahead and running my last bottle of acetylene out before I make the switch but I'm ready. Also have my torch tips.

If the research I've done is correct I should use from $1000.00 to $2500.00 less a year compared to acetylene. It calculates out to nearer the higher but I'm not going to say that until I see the actual bills at the end of the year.

Thanks for the suggestion.
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Old 07-02-2013, 10:17:06 AM
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Default Re: Cleaning oilfield engines. Need suggestions.

We are part time non-comm here but costs of cleaning just a few grease ball antique engines a year plus the other shop projects caused us to go to a heated pressure wash cabinet two years ago. We are using TEMCO machinery and AP blend detergent and the detergent cost per unit is dirt cheap. Oil skimmer works great and we take that down to the local oil recyler. When the batch gets dirty we boil it down and scrape the dregs out of the bottom and put it in 5 gallon buckets that goes to the greenies when they have a houshold hazardous waste day

Cant say enough about the AP blend. We run it at 150 when there is paint we'd like to save and 170 when there is tough work to be done at the expense of the paint. My only knock on the entire set up is we are not busy enough to just leave the heat on so we have to plan things a bit and run parts in batches.
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Old 11-15-2013, 02:42:16 PM
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Default Re: Cleaning oilfield engines. Need suggestions.

Update.

It's been several month now since the switch to propane. As of today I've saved enough in acetylene to pay for the 500 gal tank of propane. When they delivered the tank he filled it to 70%. Right now it sets at 55%. I'm at break even and still have months of propane to go. I'll refill next summer when the price is down. As far a oxygen usage, I use 2 more bottles every 2 weeks. I'm up from 4 to 6, but compared to acetylene this is no expense. Thanks much for this suggestion, it's saving me a lot!
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Old 08-07-2014, 01:32:09 PM
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Default Re: Cleaning oilfield engines. Need suggestions.

One year update. Just had my propane tank filled and did the math, I've saved $1600.00 compared to the year before.
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Old 08-10-2014, 09:25:19 PM
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Default Re: Cleaning oilfield engines. Need suggestions.

have you tried a roofing propane torch kit 500000 btu brush flame. rich
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Old 08-11-2014, 04:17:07 PM
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Default Re: Cleaning oilfield engines. Need suggestions.

We use Ox / propane in a cutting torch to burn/blow off cooked on crude. Not sure the weed burner would be violent enough for what we do. Have you used one? If so and know it works I might be willing to try it.
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Old 08-11-2014, 07:13:32 PM
dalmatiangirl61 dalmatiangirl61 is offline
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Default Re: Cleaning oilfield engines. Need suggestions.

I've used one, throws a pretty mean flame, but never tried it for what you are doing. Needed to anneal some parts last year, setup some bricks to form an oven then stuck the weed burner in the side, turned them cherry red in just a couple of minutes.
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Old 08-14-2014, 10:01:13 PM
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Default Re: Cleaning oilfield engines. Need suggestions.

I seen roofers use them on tar roofs before they will make hard tar turn to a liquid fast.
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