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Publication numberUS1586923 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateJun 1, 1926
Filing dateFeb 18, 1924
Priority dateFeb 18, 1924
Publication numberUS 1586923 A, US 1586923A, US-A-1586923, US1586923 A, US1586923A
InventorsTownsend Elvin E
Original AssigneeTownsend Elvin E
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Well-drilling equipment
US 1586923 A
Abstract  available in
Previous page
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Claims  available in
Description  (OCR text may contain errors)


Filed Feb. 1s, 1924 5 sheets-sheet 1 n VEl!" "al I,

ill l w ulllllI-llllllllllu- /NVE/vToR. ELV/N E TOWNSEND A '7" TOR/VE'YS,

June 1 1926. i 1,586,923 E. E. TOWNSEND l WELL DRILLING. EQUIPMENT Filed Febfl, 1924 V 5 sheets-set a 52 I g 3o 4/6' A T' TOPNE YS.

June 1 1926. f 1,586,923

E. E. TowNsEND Y WELL DRILLING EQUIPMENT Filed Feb. 18, A1924 5 sheets-sheet ATTQRNEYS June 1 1926.`

E. E. TowNsEND WELL DRILLING EQUIPMENT u' 5 SheetsShet' 4 Filed Feb. 18. 1924 E EEE,


June 1 1926.



Patented June l., 1926.



Application led February This invention relates to well drilling equipment.

It is the principal objectof the present invention to provide animproved appara- U tus capable of use in rapidly lowering drilling equipment and casings into a well or removing such elements from a well without permitting the escape of Huid from the latter, whereby to expedite well drilling and l@ operations incident to welldrilling.

In carrying out this object I provide an apparatus including a built-up telescoping housing which may be mounted vertically over the mouth of a well. The ends of this w housing are equipped with devices for engagging-and forming a Huid-tight connection between the housing and the d rill pipe or other Velement projectingl upwardly through the apparatus from the well. The devices mentioned may be alternately operated to raise or lower the drill pipe or casing without unsealing the mouth of the well. The devices are also capable of use in capping and uncapping wells.V

M One form of which-the invention may assume is exemplified inthe following de- .scription and illustrated by way of example in the accompanying drawings, in which:-

Fig. 1 is a central vertiealsection through an apparatus embodying the preferred form of my invention and shown as mounted upon a sealed well.

Fig. 2 is a side elevation of the'same.

Fig. 3 is an elevation of the apparatus with parts in section showing the same mounted in the top of the well and in use capping a well.

Fig. 4 is a diagrammatical view disclosing the arrangement of the fluid pressure pipes for delivering Huid pressure to the operating cylinders.

Fig. 5 is an enlarged vertical section through the upper seal. y

Fig. 6 is a horizontal section through the same, taken on lin'e 6 6 of Fig. 5.

Fig. 7 is an enlarged vertical section. through the upper seal showing it in`\con-` tracted position.

Fig. 8 is a plan View of the lower seal with parts broken away to more clearly disclose its construction.

- Fig. 9 is a vertical section through the same taken on line 9 9 of Fig. 8. r l Fig. 10 is au enlarged view of the end of 18, 1924. Serial No. 693,532.

the well with an ordinary type of seal applied thereto.

Fig. 11 is an enlarged view of one o the clamps with parts in section to',y more fully disclose its construction.

,Figs 12, 13 and 14 are views in central vertical section through the apparatus disclosing the dierent positions:y and operations by which a drill pipe or casing may be removed from the well in sections without` unsealing the well.

Referring more particularly to the accompanying drawings 10 indicates the upper end of a well assembled upon which'is my improved apparatus. The latter includes a base plate 11 upon which is fixed acentral 70 guide cylinder 12 and a pair of operating cylinders 14. The latter are positioned one at each side of the guide cylinder as shown in Fig. 1. The operating cylinders are each fitted with a plunger 15and a plunger rody 75 16, which are intended to be reciprocated b pressure admitted to the ends of the cylinders. rlfhe upper ends of the plunger rods are connected by a yoke 17. The guide cylinder is fitted with a guide sleeve 18 which is journalled adjacent its upper end in the yoke 17. The lower end of the guide sleeve is fitted with a plunger reciprocably mounted in the guide cylinder 12. lt will be noticed in Fig. 1 thatthe upper ends of all oflthe cylinders mentioned are fittedwith packing glands.

At the upper extremity of the guide sleeve 18 I mount`an upper gate valve 19 which in turn is connected with what lt prefer to term an upperseal 20, which is most clearly illustrated in Figs. 5 to 7, inclusive. Reference being had to these figures it will be seenv that the upper seal comprises an outer cylindrical casing 21 which is formed at its 'ends 05' with flanges whereby it may be connected to adjacent parts of the apparatus.

Fixed at its ends' within the cylindrlcal casing 21 is a flexible sleeve 22, preferably formed of rubber. The ends of thlsll sleeve are clamped into position within the .cylmf drical casing 21 by eans of pairs of clamping collars 24 and a clamping sleeve 25. Pivotally connected to the clamping collars 24 at each end ofthe seal is a setof 'gripping members 2 6. These members are tapere andi when the iexible sleeve is contracted by means of hydraulicor pneumatic pressure they unite to form a substantially solid coni- `cal collar around a pipe or the like extending through the seal. The gripper members are fitted with flat springs 27 which tend to maintain the grippers in expanded position as shown in Fig. 5. It will be seen in Fig.

' 7 that the conical gripping collars extend in opposite directions. These collars serve to grip the pipe extending through the seal and to limit the contraction of the flexible sleeve as well as protect the ends thereof.

To contract the flexible sleeve to form a seal around a pipe extending through the apparatus I lit the casing 21 with a pipe nipple 28 which extends through the casing 21 and the clamping sleeve 25 and is in communication with an annular groove formed in the latter. The pipe nipple is connected by a pipe 29 to a source of fluid pressure.

Mounted above the seal is a clamp 30 which comprises a casing having a frustoconical bore formed at its lower end. Segmental clamping jaws 31 are mounted in\ this casing for cooperation with the conical bore mentioned. YThese clamping jaws are fitted with operating levers 32 by which they may be placed into engagement with lthe conical bore and thereby contract to grip al pipe or the like extending through the apparatus. v y

A similar clamp 3()EL is located beneath the base 11, which lower 4clamp cooperates with a lower seal 33. Thisseal is most clearly illustrated in Figs. 8 and 9 of the drawings. Reference being had to these figures it will be seen that the device comprises an outer ring 34 and an inner ring 35 which are rigidly connected by bolts 36. The outer ring supports a turnable bevel gear 37 which is ,in constant mesh with pinions 3 8 formed on radially disposed Shanks 40, the latter of which are journalled in the outer rings mentioned. The outer ends/ot spindles 41 are threaded through the shanks 40. The inner ends of the spindles connect with re'- silient segmental members 42, which are adapted to unite to form a seal about a pipe or the like led through the apparatus. The members 42 are interposed betweentop and bottom plates secured on the linner ring and are radially slidable in guideways 43.

To rotate the bevel gear 37 I journal the shank of a bevel pinion 44 in the outer ring 34. The'outer end of the shank of the bevel pinion mentioned is formed square so that it may be yrotated by means of a socket or ar like wrench. It is obvious thatl when the ring gear 37 is rotated the spindles carryir'lg` the segmental members 42 will be advanced or retracted radially in unison.

Connected to the lower end of the lower 'seal 33 and in communication therewith is a lower 'gate valve 45. This valve is connected with the-top of a T-fitting 46- which is directly connected to` the top of the well.

The horizont-al arm bf thislitting is connected to a discharge pipe vthrough the medium of the control valve.

For the purpose of illustration, in Fig. 1 I have` shown' the top of .the well sealed in the usual manner. In Fig. 10 this seal is shown in detail and comprises a sleeve 47 which is placed over the well casing and connected thereto. The upper end ofthe well casing Lis slightly enlarged and a rubber packing gasket 48 is clamped in the enlarged end around the drill pipe. This gasket is clamped into place by a clamping nut48 which is threaded into the enlarged end of the casing.

lVhen assembling my approved apparatus upon the well for the purpose of removing the drill pipe the clamping nut 48a is first removed. The apparatus is then assembled over the drill pipe and connected at its lower end to the top flange 49 of the sleeve casing 47. The apparatus is then placed lin use, as will be described, to raise the drill pipe. When the drill pipe is raised the gasket 48 will be removed with it.,

When it is desired to use the apparatus to remove the drill pipe the lower seal A33 is Aclosed around the pipe an-d pressure is exhausted from the bottom of cylinders 14 'to place the guide sleeve l18 in its lowermost position.. The upper clamp 30 is then actuated to tightly grip the drill pipe which is indicated at 50 in Fig. 1. Pressure is then admitted to the Aupper' seal 2O to form a fluidl l tight seal around they pipe 50. The lower seal 33 is`then opened and pressure is admitted to the bottom of the cylinders Y14 to raise the guide sleeve 18 and themechanism connected therewith. As the u per seal 20 and the clamp 30 will be tight yl connected l to the drill pipe' the latter will be raised simultaneously with the guide sleeve. 'Ilhe lower clamp 30a is then actuated to grip the pipe and the lower seal 33' is clamped to the pipe and theupper clamp and seal are reclamp and seal are mamtained tightlyy inengagement with the drill pipe., Pressure is then admitted to the bottom of the cylinders 14 to raise the guide sleeve 18 and its associating mechanism suflicientlyto place the joint just below the valve 19. The upper seal v20 is then closed-and the guide pipe.

` sired. 5

sleeve 18 and the mechanism connected thereto are revolved to entirely separate the two sections of the drill. When this 4has been accomplished the guide sleeve is raised further to separate the sections of the drill and to permit the upper valve 19 to be closed. The upper seal 2O and the clamp 30 may then be released and the uppermost section of the drill removed from the apparatus." A suitable tool carryinga plug at its lower end may then be lowered into the apparatus. The clamp 30 and the seal 2() are then placed in operation to grip the tool. The valve 19 is then opened and pressure is admitted to the topof the cylinders to lower the sleeve 18 to engage the plug carried by the tool with the end of the drill pipe. The sleeve 18 may then be revolved to thread the plug into theend of the drill During the latter operation the lower clamp and seal are used to hold the lower part of the drill.

For supplying Huid pressure to the cylinders and to the upper seal 20 I provide a :Huid supply pipe 60 which may be connected with any suitable source of fluid pressure. This pipe connects with a four-way valve y61 which in turn is connected with thetop and bottom of the cylinders by pipes 62 and 63. This valve is also connected with the pipe 28 which is fitted with a telescoping joint 61. A quickly detachable union 65 is interposed in the pipe line 28 lto permit the latter to be disconnected when it is desired to rotate the sleeve 18 and its associated mechanism. i

Referring to Fig. 3, when the drill has been removed and 1t is desired to recap the well, the lower gate valve 45 is closed and the portion ot the apparatus above the gate valve is disconnected therefrom and elevated.

Acap 58 is then placed in the valve casing lower end to the cap 58. rlhe apparatus is` then reconnected to the top'of the valve 45 and the guide sleeve 18 and its associated' mechanism is raised to its uppermost position. The u per seal and clamp are then actuated to tlghtly grip the turning tool 51. lPressure is then exhausted from the bottom of the cylinders 14 to cause the guide sleeve 18 and the upper clamp and seal to lower and thereby force the cap 58 downwardly into engagement with the top of the well tof close the salme. A hand plate 52 may then be removed from the T-iitting 46 to permit cap 58 to be bolted to the top of the well. 1 he apparatus may then be removed if de- While I have described but two uses to which my apparatusmay be put, it is understood that it is capable of a wide variety of uses, including theinsertion and removal `tothe lower housing, sai being capable of vertical reel rocation an Aof drill pipes, tools /and casings, and that by its use these various operations may be performed without unseallng the mouth of the Well.

The apparatus may also be used while drilling. That is, the drill pipe may be held by the upper clamp and sealf Thus,l the sleeve 18 will revolve with the drill and the mouth of the well will be kept closed.

While ll-have shown the preferred form of my invention, it is understood that various changes in its construction may be made without departing from the invention as defined in the appended claims.

Havin thus described my invention, what ll c aim and desire to secure by'Letters Patent is:

1. An apparatus of the character described comprising a vertically telescoping housing adapted to be mounted 'over the mouth of a well, and normally ineil'ective packing elements at the opposite ends of said housing, said packing elementsbein adapted to be independently operated an each capable of'forminga fluid tight joint around a pipe or the like extending into said housing to prevent the passage of Huid throu h the housing.

2. apparatus of the character de scribed comprising a vertically telescoping housing adaptedv toY be mounted over the mouth` of a well, normally inedective means adapted to be independently operated and capable oit connecting an element extending into said housing to said housing, d' non. mally inedective 'packing elements at the opposite ends of' said housing, said packing elements being adapted to be independently operated, and each capable oit forming "a fluid tight joint aroundva pipe or 'the like extending into said housin to prevent thev passage of Huid through t e housing.

3. An apparatus of' the /character described ooinprising a lower housing adapted to be mounted over the mouth of .the well', an upper housing telescopioally connected to the lower housing,l said upper housing being' capable of vertical reciprocation and y rotating movement, and normally inedective packing' elements' carried lo housings, said packing eements being adaptedto be independently operated and .each capable of forming a fluid tight joint around a pipe or the like extending into"A said housing to prevent the passage of duid throu h the housing. i

4. apparatus of the character def1* scribed comprising a lower housing adapted H25 to be' mounted over the mouth-of the well, and upper housing telesco ically connected upper -hous'in rotating movement, normal y ineffective packing elements carriedv b .eachfaof the .f housings, said packing'- e ement's* being'f aan ne i

each ot the im All adapted tobe independently operated and each capable of forming a iiuid tightsjoint around a pipe or the like extending into said housing to prevent the passage of fluid through the housing, and operatlng means for reciprocating the upper housing.

5. An apparatus of the` character described comprising a vertically arranged lower housing adapted to be fixed over the mouth of a well, a rotatable and vertically reciprocable upper housing arranged in longitudinal alignment with said lower housing and telescopically connected thereto, operating means for reciprocating said upper housing, a gate valve forming a sec-- tion of the upper housing, independently operated means carried by each of the housings for connecting an element extending into said housings to said housings, and normally ineffective means carried by the 4housings capable of'forming a fluid-tight into said housings.

6. An apparatus of the character de-` extending through said housings to said housings, and normally ineective sealing 3oint around a pipe or the like extending means in each housing capable of forming a fluid-tight joint around a pipe or the like extending into said housings.

7. An apparatus of the character described comprising a lower housing adapted to be fixed over the mouth of a well, an upper housing 'forming a continuation of the lower housing, said upper housing being telescopically connected to said loyver housing and capable of rotating and reciprocating movement, a pair of operating cylinders connected to the lower housing, plungers in said cylinders, said plungers being operatively connected to said upper housing for reciprocating the same, a gate valve in the upper housing capable of closing the passage through the same, clamping means carried by each housing for clamping a pipe v or the like extending through said housings to said housings, sealing means in each.

housing for forming. a fluid-tight joint around a pipe or the like, extending into said housings, to entirely prevent the passage of fluid through said housing.

8. In a device of the character described -a seal comprising an outer cylindrical casing, a flexible sleeve fixed at its ends Within said casing, means for admitting fluid under pressure between. said flexible sleeve and said casing to cause the sleeve to contract and grip an object extendin through said easing, and a set of segmenta members plv Y otally mounted at each end of said casing, the members of each set being adapted to cooperate to form a conical collar when said sleeve is (contracted, said conical collars beingl oppositely disposed.


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U.S. Classification166/77.4, 251/1.3, 15/220.4, 175/210, 24/497, 24/463, 285/105, 277/332, 254/30, 285/97, 166/86.2, 137/320
International ClassificationE21B33/03
Cooperative ClassificationE21B33/03
European ClassificationE21B33/03