Thursday, July 6, 2017

Had To Look; Don't Want To Go Back!

I have never worked on a water-well spudder, but it all looks familiar and understandable because of my years in the Southern Illinois oilfield. I worked on, under, around, and behind pulling units and spudders and I don't miss it. It's hard, dirty, dangerous work, but most of my job was being a mechanic for a fleet of rigs.

Changing magnetos, sparkplugs, working on fuel systems, changing clutches, that was OK; the bad part is crawling around under trucks to change driveshafts, air lines, wiring, and etc., while the rig is on location, often when it was running.

I changed out a clutch on a doghouse truck one afternoon on the side of a highway down south of Eldorado, Illinois. We took everything out of the cab, lifted the floorboard, ran a pipe through the windows, and used a come-along to hold the transmission and bell housing up. Holy Cow! I think that's where I got my hernia! We got it back on the road, though. That was a '64 International with the 304 engine and a four speed transmission. I called that truck Nightmare Alice because it caused trouble every time it went on the road.

Anyhow, this water-well rig does the same kinds of things an oilfield spudder does, it's just a more dainty machine. It picks up and drops a cable-tool bit to make hole, and it would have had a bailer and a sand pump for bringing out the cuttings.

Whoever it was that fixed this old rig did a nice job. I bet there are a whole lotta people who can't tell you what this machine does, and they used to be all over the country.

No comments: