This site is dedicated to
all the Reid engines that are still running out there. I photograph them whenever possible. These old oil field engines are a pleasure to watch and hear run. Not to mention they played
a major role in the early days of oil production in the United States.
Reid engines are two stroke, (or two cycle) in operation. They are large flywheel engines that deploy a separate charging cylinder outside of the main cylinder. The charging cylinder was mounted on either the right or left hand side of the engine.
The early engine used a hot tube ignition and ran off the natural gas directly from the well head. I have seen several variations of the Reid engine, the spark plug ignition used in place of the old hot tube is one common modification.
Most of the Reid engines I see at shows recently are being run off of propane gas bottles.
An old Reid engine retired somewhere in the Ohio snow...