US 2758654 A
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A g- 1956 D. M. SIMMONS 2,758,654
SYSTEMS AND STRUCTURES FOR CONTROLLING THE MOVEMENT OF WELL PIPE IN WELL BORES 7 Filed Aug. 10, 1953 3 Sheets-Sheet 1 Dr u/ M 6mm? 0/7:
IN V EN TOR.
Aug. 14, 1956 D. M. SIMMONS SYSTEMS AND STRUCTURES FOR CONTROLLING THE MOVEMENT OF WELL PIPE 'IN WELL BORES Filed Aug. 10, 1955 3 Sheets-Sheet 2 m Ml mm m m flA W22 M w w 0 Aug. 14, 1956 D. M. SIMMONS 2,753,554
SYSTEMS AND STRUCTURES FOR CONTROLLING THE MOVEMENT 0? WELL PIPE IN WELL. BORES Filed Aug. 10, 1953 3 Sheets-Sheet 3 l A r Dru/y M 3/07/7700;
SYSTEMS AND STRUCTURES FOR CONTROLLING THE MOVEMENT OF WELL PIPE IN WELL BORE'S Drury M. Simmons, Shreveport, La.
Application August 10, 1953', Serial No. 373,422
3 illairns. (Cl. 166-77) This invention relates to new and useful improvements in systems and structures for controlling the movement of well pipe in well bores.
In my co-pending U. S. patent application, Serial No. 282,859, filed April 17, 1952, now Patent No. 2,721,614, I have disclosed a system and structure for controlling the movement of well pipe in well bores. Such system and structures provides for the insertion and removal of well pipe from wells in which considerable well fluid pressure exists. The present invention is concerned with an improved system and structure for handling or controlling the movement of well pipe in well bores, the systems and structures of this invention being adapted to be used in conjunction with the systems and structures of my aforesaid pending patent application, when it is necessary to provide a rotation of the well pipe for removing a section or sections of the pipe without losing the well pressure during such removal.
It is therefore an object of this invention to provide an improved system and structure for controlling the movement of well pipe in Well bores, wherein the well pipe is moved longitudinally and is also capable of being rotated for removing a section or sections of the pipe without losing the well pressure during such removal.
An important object of this invention is to provide an improved system and structure for handling well pipe in well bores, wherein the uncoupling of sections of the well pipe can be effected for the removal of a section of pipe having a plug or the like therein and while said structure remains connected to the casing head to thereby maintain the well pressure under control during such removal.
Another object of this invention is to provide an improved system and structure for controlling the movement of well pipe in well bores, wherein a pressure cylinder is adapted to be releasably connected to the upper end of a blowout preventer and slip section mounted on the casing head, said cylinder having therein a piston which is adapted to move longitudinally in the cylinder in accordance with fluid pressure acting thereon, said piston having means therewith to effect a rotation of the well pipe relative to the cylinder when such rotation is desired for the uncoupling of sections of the well pipe or the like.
The construction designed to carry out the invention will be hereinafter described, together with other features thereof.
The invention will be more readily undrstood from a reading of the following specification and by reference to the accompanying drawings forming a part thereof, wherein an example of the invention is shown, and where- Figure 1 is a longitudinal view, partly in section and partly in elevation, illustrating the apparatus or structure of this invention as used in carrying out the first step of the system or method of this invention.
Figure 2 is a view similar to Figure 1, but illustrating the next step in the method of this invention.
States Patent Figure 3 is a view similar to Figure 1, but illustrating the third step in the method of this invention.
Figure 4 is a view similar to Figure 1, except that it illustrates the fourth step of the method of this invention, wherein the upper portion of the cylinder and associated apparatus have been removed.
Figure 5 is a view similar to Figure 4, showing the next step in the method, wherein a Wire line lubricator has been connected to the structure for the lowering of a pluginto the well pipe.
Figure 6 is a view similar to Figure 5, but illustrating the next step in the method, wherein the plug has been lowered into the well pipe.
Figure 7 is a longitudinal view, partly in elevation and partly in section, illustrating the details of the structure of the invention.
Figure 8 is a view similar to Figure 7, but illustrating the closed position of the gate valve after a section of the well pipe has been uncoupled and raised into the upper portion of the cylinder.
In the drawings, the letter A designates generally the control apparatus or structure of this invention which is adapted to be releasably connected to the upper end of a casing 10 which has power-operated slips S and suitable blowout preventer equipment B (Figures 1-6) mounted at its upper end. The apparatus A of this invention is so constructed that it can be releasably connected to the well pipe P for the primary purpose of effecting the removal of the section P of the well pipe P from the portion of the well pipe P therebelow, such section P having therein a plug F of any conventional type which is adapted to be seated in a section of pipe.
The apparatus A of this invention (Figures 7 and 8) has a pressure cylinder C which includes an upper cylinder section 12, an intermediate valve section 14 and a lower cylinder section 15, with the sections 12, 14 and 15 being releasably secured together by bolts (not shown) or any suitable connecting means. The lengths of the cylinder sections 12 and 15 will depend upon the length of the well pipe P to be handled, as will be apparent from the following description. The internal diameter or bore of the cylinder sections 12, 14 and 15 are substantially equal to the bore or internal diameter of the casing 10.
A quick-acting union or coupling 20, of usual construction, is provided at the upper end of a collar 21 mounted above the slips 5 for the coupling of the cylinder C to the casing 10. This coupling 20 may take numerous forms, but, as illustrated in the drawings, such coupling 20 is of the split collar type in which two semi circular halves are joined at one side by a transverse pin or bolt 22 and at their other side by a bolt (not shown) which extends through opening 23 in lateral extending ears or lugs 24. Each of the halves of the union 20 has threads 25 on its inner surface which are engaged with threads 15a on the external surface of the lower end of the cylinder section 15 and external threads 2111 at the upper end of the collar 21. With this construction, when the two halves of the union 20 are bolted together, the ends of the section 15 and collar 21 can be snugly tightened together by a rotation of the coupling 20, but when it is desired to release the coupling so as to disconnect the cylinder section 15 from the collar 21, the bolt extending through the openings 23 can be removed and the split halves of the coupling 20 can be readily separated (Figure 1).
As shown in Figures 7 and 8, the valve section 14 has a lateral extension 27 in which is mounted a gate 28 of a gate valve, with the valve seat 29 being provided in the bore of the valve cylinder section 14. This valve is of usual construction and is operated by the rotation of a handle 30 mounted on the end of a threaded shaft 31 housing 27; so that upon rotation of the handle and shaft 31, the gate 28 can be moved inwardly to seat on the. valveseat 29 when no obstruction is presentin-the bore of the valve. cylinder l4(Fig'ure 8-) or can be retracted completely out of'the bore of the valve cylinder 14 when the valveis' not necessary (Figure 7).
A piston 'is disposed within the cylinder C'for longitudinal or axial movement therein in accordance with fiuid pressures applied. thereto, as. will be explained. The piston. 35 is carried by a rod or mandrel 36 which has annular shoulders or rings 37' and'38' thereon for maintaining the piston 35 in a predetermined position relative to the rod or mandrel 3.6 so that the piston 35"will move with the rod or mandrel 361 The piston 35' has seal rings lll'and 4l'on its external surface for sealingly engaging with the inner surface of the pressure cylinder C. The. internal surface of the piston 35 carries bearings 42' which may be of any standard construction and may be either ball or roller bearings. Thus, itwill be evident that the piston 35 is actually a cylinder which fits about the rod or mandrel 36 and is confined betweenthe'annular rings 37 and 38,
but such piston 35 is capable of rotation relative to the mandrel or rod 36, with the bearings 42 providing an anti-friction contact during such rotation. will be explained, the piston 35 does not itself rotate due to the frictional engagement of the seal rings 40and 41' which are made of rubber or similar elastic material with the internal surface of the cylinder section 12, butit is the mandrel or rod 36 which is actually rotated;
The upper end of the cylinder section 12' has aninlet pipe tS for the admission or discharge of fluid under pressure to the bore of thecylinder section 12 above the piston 35. The upper-end'of the cylinder 12 is open and is provided'with' a packing gland-"46 held in position internally threaded collar 52 onthe upper endof the pipe section P. This collar 52 is of the usual tool joint collar construction whichis-used for'connecting together sections of well tubing or pipe. When it is desired to thread the threads-51' of the mandrel 36 into the threadson the collar 52, the mandrel 36 can be rotated by the use of tongs engaging'the' mandrel 36 on itsportion ex tending above the packing gland collar 47 or by a conventional power swivel mounted with the traveling block and connected to'the eye 5% throughthe usual hook on the traveling block.
The power slips S are utilized for holding'the well pipe Pwhen the mandrel 36=is disconnected therefrom (Figure 8 Such slips S can be of any desired construction, but they are preferably power operated with hy'- draulic fluid and canbeof the form illustrated in Figure 7,- which includes the gripping slip jaws-60, each of which is connected to a piston 61 which operates in a piston chamber 62. When itis desired to move the slip jaws 6t) inwardly to engage the. well-pipe P, hydraulic fluid is admitted into the piston-chamber62through the inlet 63 and when it is desired to retract said jaws 6t; to: com-- pletely open the bore-tothe full'diameter of the bore of the casing Ittl, hydraulic fluid is admitted into the piston chamber 62'tlirough'the pipes 64.
Although the blowout preventer B which is located below the slips S is not shown in detail, it is constructed in' substantially the same manner as shown in Figure 7; and-as is apparent from Figures 16 wherein the blowoutpreventer B isshown diagrammatically, the only dif-- Actually, as
ference resides in the substitution of rams "ill with resilient seals 70 in place or" the pipe gripping jaws of the slips S. Each of these rams 71 is semi-circular in construction and also the sealing elements are semicircular so that a complete seal is provided around the well pipe when the rams are forced to their inner position. The operation of the blowout preventer B is elfected hydraulically in the same manner as the operationof the slips Si In the operation of the structure or apparatusofthis invention for carrying out the system or method of this invention, the basic steps illustrated in Figures l6 are carried out. As previously mentioned, the system and structure of this invention are preferably used in conjunction with the snubbin'g'method and apparatus of my aforesaid copending application. For purposes of explanation, it will be assumed that the well pipe P is to be removed from the casing 10 wherein a high well pressure exists.
Prior to the removal of the pipe from the well casing or well bore, a plug F is inserted into the section P of the well pipe P, which section P is generally the third section of pipe from the bottom of the pipe string. After all of the well pipe has been removed with the exception of the pipe section P and the sections of well pipe P therebelow, by the use of the apparatus in my aforesaid copcndingapplication, or withconventional snubbing apparatus or even with thepresent apparatus, the section of pipe?" must then be removedfrom the well pipe string. Figure l of. the drawings illustrates the position of the well pipe after-all ofi the. pipe has been removed with the exception of the section of pipe P in which the plug F' is-located, and the section of pipe therebelow. The slips 5' are engagedwiththe pipe section P and the blowout preventer, Eis. also, engaged therewith to hold the well. fluid in the casing whilesuspendingthe well pipe P therein.. The apparatus A of this invention is then connected asshown in Figure 1 through the coupling 20. The cylinder C is pivoted, about the pin 22 of the coupling 20 sosthat the dogs or cars 24 on the. coupling, or union 20 can be connected to position the cylinder C in axial alignment with the casing. 10. It should be noted that the coupling 20 provides a sufficiently snug fit between the ends of the cylinder section 15 andthe collar 21 to prevent any leakage therebetween, but if desired, seal rings may be utilized in, the coupling to further assure that no leakage ofthe fluid'pressure in the well occurs. With the cylinder C in its position. above the casing 10, the piston 35 is forced downwardly'by the admission of fluid under pres: sure through the pipe 45'into the cylinder section 12. The downward-movement-of the piston 35 carries the mandrel 36. therewith .due to. the radial annular shoulder 38 on the mandrel 36. Thisloweringof the piston 35 and the mandrel 3'6 continues until thethreads 51 on the lower end of the mandrel .36 engagewith the internal threads on the tool. joint collar 52, at which time the mandrel 36 is rotated, by a conventional power swivel connected tothe eye 56 or bytongs (not shown) which engage with that portion cffthe mandrel 36' extending above the upper cyl-v inder section .12. The rotation of the mandrel 36 will be in adirection to. thread the threads 51 intothe internal threads of the collar 52, such direction being normall'yto' the right or clockwise as viewed from the top of Figure 1.
With the. threads 51 engaged in the collar 52, the pressure above the piston 35' in the cylinder C is released, and
the power slips .3 and the power blowout preventer B are collar 52a on the'lower end of the pipe. section P in which the plug F is located is positioned above the slips S and below the upper end of the collar 21. Such upward movement can be halted by closing valve 45a or by admitting fluid under pressure through line 45 until the pressure above and below the piston 35 is equal.
With the movement of the piston 35 and pipe P thus stopped, the slips S are then actuated with hydraulic fluid so that they engage the well pipe. Rotation is again imparted to the mandrel 36 through a power swivel or tong, such rotation being in the opposite direction from that previously required for threading the threads 51 into the collar 52. Since the lower section of pipe P is held by the slips S, the rotation of the mandrel 36 will rotate the pipe section P and will therefore thread the lower end of pipe section P out of the lower tool joint collar 52a. The blowout preventer B is not closed during this rotation so that the well fluid pressure is constantly acting on the lower end of piston 35 to move it and its associated parts upwardly. Therefore, as soon as the lower section of the pipe section P is detached from the collar 52a, the well fluid pressure moves the mandrel 36 and the pipe section P upwardly until the lower end of the pipe section P' is positioned above the valve cylinder section 14 (Figure 3).
The blowout preventer B is then closed, and since the valve cylinder section 14 is free from any obstruction, thegate valve 28 can also be closed by a rotation of the handle 30 to move the gate 28 into its seated position, thereby closing off the bore of the cylinder sections 14 and (Figure 8). The blowout preventer B can also be closed at this time.
The upper portion of the apparatus A which includes the upper cylinder section 12, the mandrel 36 and attached parts are then disconnected from the valve cylinder section 14 (Figure 4) and entirely removed therefrom. With the apparatus in this position, the well fluid pressure is maintained under control by the gate valve 28 being closed and by the blowout preventer B being closed.
It is then necessary to lower into the well pipe P a plug in order to etfect the removal of the lower sections of pipe P which remain in the casing. This is accomplished by the steps illustrated in Figures 5 and 6. As shown in Figure 5, a lubricator including a cylinder 112 is attached to the upper end of the valve cylinder 14 by bolts (not shown) or other suitable releasable connecting means. A wire line 75 is dropped through the cylinder 112 in the usual manner for wire line lubricators. The wire line 75 extends over a pulley 76 and the plug F on the wire line 75 is disposed within the lubricator cylinder 112 when the connection is made to the valve cylinder section 14.
Once the lubricator cylinder 112 is securely attached to the upper end of the valve cylinder section 14 in fluid tight relationship, the valve 28 is retracted (Figure 6) and the wire line 75 is lowered to lower the plug F into the well pipe P. The lowering of the plug F continues until such plug reaches the lower end of the last section of well pipe. With the plug F' properly positioned in the usual manner, the wire line 75 is released therefrom and the lubricator cylinder 112 and wire line 75 can be removed after the valve 28 is closed.
Thereafter, the cylinder 12 can be reconnected to the cylinder section 14 to complete the removal of the pipe P from the casing 10, or, if desired, the snubbing apparatus illustrated in my aforesaid co-pending application can be utilized.
It should be understood that, although this invention has been described in connection with the removal of the particular section of pipe P having the plug F therein, the apparatus of this invention could be utilized for removing additional sections of pipe or for inserting sections of pipe into a well under high pressure. Preferably, however, the apparatus of this invention is used in carrying out the above operation and method, and the snubbing apparatus of my aforesaid co-pending application will be used for the insertion and removal of the other portions of the well pipe.
The foregoing disclosure and description of the invention is illustrative and explanatory thereof, and various changes in the size, shape and materials, as well as in the details of the illustrated construction, may be made, within the scope of the appended claims, without departing from the spirit of the invention.
What is claimed is:
1. A structure for controlling the movement of well pipe in a well bore including a casing in the well bore, a cylinder connected in axial alignment with the casing in pressure-tight relation, the interiors of the casing and the cylinder being in direct communication and forming a continuous chamber of larger diameter than the well pipe, whereby the well pipe may be received therein free of any external contacts and passed freely through the interiors of said casing and cylinder while maintaining said cylinder in pressure-tight connection with said casing, a piston in the cylinder having a mandrel extending through the piston and connected thereto rotatively between spaced annular rings forming parts of said mandrel, means communicating with said cylinder above said piston for applying a pressure fluid into said cylinder against said piston to move the piston and mandrel longitudinally downwardly of the casing whereby said mandrel may be releasably connected to the upper end of a section of said well pipe which section of well pipe may be removed from the well upon rotation of said mandrel and by action of well pressure upon said piston when the bore of the cylinder and the casing are in well fluid communication.
2. The structure set forth in claim 1, wherein the piston is a cylinder and the mandrel extends through the bore thereof, and bearings between the bore of the piston and the mandrel to provide an anti-friction means to facilitate the rotation of the mandrel relative to the piston.
3. The structure set forth in claim 1, including a gate valve associated with said cylinder and adapted to close the bore thereof when the portion of the bore adjacent said gate valve is free of obstructions.
References Cited in the file of this patent UNITED STATES PATENTS Re. 19,498 Otis Mar. 12, 1935 1,895,132 Minor Jan. 24, 1933 1,910,890 Fortune May 23, 1933 1,983,854 Howard et al Dec. 11, 1934 2,148,327 Smith et a1. Feb. 21, 1939 2,180,680 Hild Nov. 21, 1939 2,721,614 Simmons Oct. 25, 1955