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1940's Sullivan Air Compressor Help

Good morning. I am a volunteer engineer aboard a WW2 cargo ship. Our original Ship Service Air compressor is a bit tired and is need of some TLC. Before delving into a tear down project, I'd like to try and find some additional information on the compressor I'm dealing with.

The compressor itself is a Sullivan Model EA, likely built around 1944. The compressor is a two cylinder model, and is driven by an ~20HP DC motor. Scouring the depths of google has not resulted in any information on this compressor. I do wonder if Sullivan manufactured another maker's air compressor, as was common during the war. Also, the spare parts we do have are all marked with Joy Manufacturing tags, a company that didn't exist until the 1950's, leading me to believe they bought the line or parts rights.

Attached are a few photos.

Any help on finding more information about this compressor and a potential parts supply would be greatly appreciated.
 

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dalmatiangirl61

Subscriber
Last Subscription Date
07/10/2019
There are some places that carry military manuals, you might have to ask around to see if one can be located. Parts may not be too big of a problem, but may require you to tear it down so you can provide dimensions. As long as bore is not worn out, a set of rings and some valve work might get it going again. If bore is worn your option is bore and find over-size piston and rings, or bore and sleeve and just find new rings.

I've torn into a few old compressors, bore was always acceptable and just got by with rings, bearings and valve work. Good luck and let us know what you find.
 
I was thinking some rings, valve, cylinder honing, and maybe some bearing work would be needed. We have a fair amount of parts and manuals, though I didn't notice rings nor head gaskets. I could probably draw up the head gaskets in a CAD program and get some graphite ones made up.

I'd like to tear into it, but the powers at be are always leary of opening stuff up. Guess I have more problems than just a parts source.

Further research leads me to believe Gardner-Denver would be the likely owner of any rights to this line of compressor.
 
While going through our parts this week, I think I have most of the hard parts to do a decent rebuild of the compressor. Shaft support bearings are a standard roller bearing I can get, various oil seals are required which I can find online, and we have a stock of rings and valve parts to do the compressor many times over.

My only question is with regards to the head gasket. The original gaskets are a copper clad fibrous material (asbestos most likely). We have one brand new head gasket for the LP cylinder, and a few for the HP in questionable condition, including a shop fashioned one. Most modern compressors I've worked on have used some sort of graphite gasket. Would this be a suitable material to replace the copper/asbestos gaskets with?
 
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