Conquering Complexity: FW Murphy Celebrates 80 Years

    FW Murphy Production Controls, Circa 1945.

    FW Murphy Production Controls (FW Murphy) celebrated 80 years in 2019. The company provides a full spectrum of engine management solutions for the oil and gas and gas compression industries, with roots that trace back to the Great Depression and Frank W. “Pat” Murphy creating a simple solution for a complex problem. While Pat Murphy was a sales manager for a major equipment distributor in the 1930s, he found that his customers’ main complaint was “burned up” engines. His solution was to create the Murphy Guardian Safety Switch. Later named the Swichgage, it combined an indicating gauge with a switch that would stop the engine when low oil pressure or high coolant temperature

    Oilfield workers installed those first Swichgages on a number of unattended oil field engines. These gauges become so well accepted that he and his wife, Rosalie, decided to devote 100% of their time to manufacturing the “Murphy Guardian Safety Switch.” Production began in 1939 on their kitchen table in Mt. Carmel, Illinois, USA.


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    This article appears in the January 2020 issue of Gas Compression Magazine. You can read the entire article right now by clicking the link above.


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