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Publication numberUS2634405 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateApr 7, 1953
Filing dateMar 29, 1949
Priority dateMar 29, 1949
Publication numberUS 2634405 A, US 2634405A, US-A-2634405, US2634405 A, US2634405A
InventorsLopker Frank J, Stanley Minor Burt, Stone Clifford E Van
Original AssigneeLopker Frank J, Stanley Minor Burt, Stone Clifford E Van
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Traveling block indicator for oil well derricks
US 2634405 A
Abstract  available in
Images(4)
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Claims  available in
Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

April 7, 1953 c. E. VAN STONE ET AL 2,634,405

TRAVELING BLOCK INDICATOR FOR OIL WELL DERRICK-S Filed March 29, 1949 V 4 Sheets-Sheet l a Jim 2. fi zxyf i 2470, 2;

April 7, 1953 c. E. VAN STONE ETAL 2,634,405

TRAVELING BLOCK INDICATOR FOR OIL WELL DERRICKS Filed March 29, 1949 4 Sheets-Sheet 2 TRAVELING BLOCK INDICATOR FOR OIL WELL DERRICKS Filed March 29, 1949 April 7, 1953 c. E. VAN STONE ETAL 4 Sheets-Sheet 3 ji zajz.

4/! ZXA/AUST ail} 46 p 047 f? if u. 5 5

' Arm/Mix Patented Apr. 7, 1953 TRAVELING BLOCK INDICATOR FOR OIL WELL DERRICKS Clifford E. Van Stone, Santa Maria, Frank J. Lopker, Los Angeles, and Burt Stanley Minor,

Whittier, Calif.

Application March 29, 1949, Serial No. 84,196

2 Claims. 1

Our invention relates to a travelling block indicator for oil well derricks whereby a driller or operator may be visually appraised of the position of the travelling block within the derrick at all times.

An object of our invention is to provide a novel travelling block indicator in which a movable finger indicates the relative position of the travelling block in the derrick on a dial or chart in front of the driller or operator.

Another object of our invention is to provide a novel travelling block indicator in which the operator or driller is warned when the travelling block is at a dangerous elevation in the derrick so that the travelling blocks may be stopped before damage is done.

Another object of our invention is to provide a novel travelling block indicator in which the elevating mechanism of the blocks is automatically shut ofi when the travelling blocks reach a dangerous elevation in the derrick.

Still another object of our invention is to provide a novel travelling block indicator of the character stated in which any part of the indicating or controlling mechanism will fail safe that is, the driller will always be definitely appraised of any failure of any part of our mechanism.

A feature of our invention is to provide a novel travelling block indicator in which the indicating finger or arm is moved synchronously with the travelling block due to the fact that the mechanism is connected to the actuating mechanism of the travelling block, such as the crown block.

Another feature of our invention is to provide a novel travelling block indicator of the character stated, in which there is an electrical circuit and a pneumatic circuit, these being inter-connected, the pneumatic circuit operating the clutch and brake of the draw works.

Another feature of our invention is to provide a novel travelling block indicator of the character stated, in which there is an electrical circuit operating the indicator, an electrical, steam or diesel power unit operating the travelling block, the two being inter-connected so that either has certain selected control of the other.

Still another feature of our invention is to provide a novel travelling block indicator in which the electrical contacts within the instrument may be adjusted to provide for derricks of different height.

Still another feature of our invention is to provide a novel travelling block indicator which is compact in arrangement and may be readily positioned on the floor of the derrick so as to be observable by the driller.

Other objects, advantages and features of invention may appear from the accompanying drawing, the subjoined detailed description and the appended claims.

In the drawing:

Figure 1 is a side elevation of an oil well derrick in which our invention is placed.

Figure 2 is a fragmentary front elevation of the instrument case.

Figure 3 is a fragmentary longitudinal sectional view of the instrument case.

Figure 4 is a fragmentary longitudinal sectional view of the instrument case taken at right angles to that shown in Figure 3.

Figure 5 is a sectional view taken on line 5-5 of Figure 4.

Figure 6 is a sectlonal view taken on line 68 of Figure 4.

Figure 'I is a fragmentary si e view taken in direction of the arrows I'! of Figure 6.

Figure 8 is a sectional view taken on line 88 of Figure 4.

Figure 9 is a sectional view taken on line 99 of Figure 8.

Figure 10 is a fragmentary side view of one of the crown block sheaves and showing the selsyn generator mount.

Figure 1'1 is a diagrammatic view of the electrical system and the pneumatic system.

In the drilling of an oil well, a crown block is mounted on the too of the derr k and a travelling block with a hook, elevator links and eleva tor attached thereto is suspended from the crown block on cables and moves within the derrick for the purpose of verticallv moving pipe and drilling equipment in the derrick. Due to accident or carelessness, the travelling block is occasionally permitted to move too high in the derrick, thus striking the crown block and causing serious damage and possible serious injury to the workmen.

The derrick I is of usual and well known construction. and similarly the crown block 2 is usual and well known in the art. The travelling block 3 is suspended from the crown block 2 in the usual manner and a cable 4 is trained over the sheaves in the crown block which vary in number in use according to the load to be hoisted and one or more of these sheaves 5 move synchronously with the block 3, that is, the rotation of the sheaves 5 will always be the same relative to the movement of the block 3 in the derrick. The indicating mechanism, to be described subse- In order that the driller may have a visual in dication of the position of the travelling. block 3 immediately before him, we providea'selsymgem erator I, which is mounted on or at the crown block 2, and is suitably connected'to one of the above mentioned sheaves 5,-preferably'by means of the chain drive 8. A selsyn motor or receiver 9 is connected to the generator 1 by meansof the wires ill, which run vertically in the derrick i from the top to the bottom thereof. It will thus be evident that any movement of the selsyn generator i will be'immediately"transmitted t'o'the selsyn motor 9 and the movement of the rotors of these two selsyns willbe-synchronous and will be identical. It is to be noted that the windings on the rotors or the instruments 7- and 9 are electrically connected as are-also the fieldwindings.

Thus, as 1 the sheave a rotates with the: vertical movement ofthe travelling. block 3; the selsyn instrument I will rotate correspondingly at the same time the selsyn receiver 9 will. rotate and theshaft H is suitably gearedtoashaft i2:jcurnalled in the housing: le of' the fioor instrument. The shaft l 2is j ourn'alled" in-a-bracket' i lsecured within the housing. and a-second' shaft 1 5 isjournalled in the bracket l6;.adjacent the: upper end of the housing 13; A sprocket I iemounted on the shaft 12 and a similar sprocket I8 ismou'nted on the'shaft l5. A chain t9 encircles these two sprockets and this chain is moved synchronously with the selsyn 9 and, therefore, is synchronized with the movement of the travelling block 3. A rider 2i! is fixedly secured to the-chain: l9 and moves vertically within the housing F3, but only on one reach of thechain i9; t-hat-is,.the ride'r never passes over the sprockets I? or l8; Thus, the height of the derrick is: simulated by the movement of the rider 2fl on:on'e reach of the chain as and from the lower sprocket It" to" the upper sprocket It. A knob Zl'extends from the sprocket l! and it-is'possible'to manually rotate the sprocket H and the chain 19: as well as the rider 2i! to synchronize this riderwith the position of the travelling block a in the derrick.

To insurethat therider 2i! willaccuratelyi move in its vertical path, we provide a pair of channel guide strips 2-2 and 23, in: which the rider 28 moves. The rider is provided with spaced rollers 24 which fit in these channel guides, thus insuring the proper and accurate movement 01- the rider. The guides 22 and 23 are fixedly secured to'brackets 2.5 and 2:5 which arefixedly securedto the wall of the housing 53. Strips 27 and 28 extend between the brackets and 26 acting as stifieners for the guides 22 and 23,- and also as mounts for the contact strips. which will be subsequently described.

, The housing l3 has a front panel 29 which may be calibrated infeet to indicate the height of a derrick; or itmay have a picture of a derrick thereon to simulate the type ofderrick in which the apparatus isused. A- plate 30 at the top of the panel 29 with the wording Crown may be adjusted in the slots 31, so that various heights of derricks may be indicated. A plurality .4 of tabs 32 are mounted on the face of the panel 29 and these tabs indicate the actual position of the derrick finger with relation with the elevator, the top safe limit for the block 3, and other indications which may be desired. These tabs are also adjustable in a slot 33 to provide for various heightsof a derrick:

The rider 263 has a finger 34 secured thereto and this finger moves in a slot 35 in the panel 2-3. The length of the finger representing the combined length travelling block 3, the hook, the elevator links, and the elevator. The top end of the finger 34 indicates the position of the block 3 in' the derricktand shows the driller where this: blockisat all. times. The lower end of the finger 34', likewise, indicates the position of the elevator.

Thus far we have described the visual method of. indicating the positioning of the travelling block 3 in a derrick. Inaddition to this visual indication, we: also provide. an electrical circuit which. will actuate. audible;signals and visual signals,-.andzalso-through apneumatic system controlled by the electr-ical system. will automatically stop the draw works 6 in the event that the travelling block 3 reaches-a-dangerous height, in the derrick.

The rider 2!), in its.- vertical. movement, engages electrical.contactswhich: consist of a bus bar 35 and adjustable-contacts. 33-38-439. The contacts. 37-38 are adjustable relative to each other andalso on theplate 28: sothatadjustment may be made for difierent heights of derricks. These: contacts: are. adjusted. by loosening the plates lc. similarlythecontact39 is adjusted by loosening the plates 4|.

Our deviceis-sodesigned and'arranged'that if failure? occurs within the deviceor to. either the electrical or pneumatic. supply, the. device will fail safe and. prevention is also. made (within the limits of human: error) so that the device cannot be put into operation until the air supply and the electrical. supply have been proved out Withinthe electrical circuit we. provide a magnetically operated contactor switch. 42, which isnormally open. This switch. is closed by the push. button 4-3, which energizes the coils of the switch 42 and causes this switch to close. When the switch 41.2 is closed, the: holding circuit is established- This holding circuit leads from one incoming electrical lead 44, through the coil 45 ofthe switch, then. through the pressure switch as in the air or pneumatic circuit, which will be subsequently described. The circuit. then extends through the twolimitv switches. lL- lil, which prevent over. travel. of the. indicator pointer. 3. 3, and thence back to. the other incoming electrical lead 49-. The switch 42 will be opened and all power. removed from the equip ment when the push button 59 isopen or'by failure cf the air supply. Also, the switch 42 will be opened on: openings of. the air pressure switch 45 or the opening of. either of thelimit switches s21 or 48. The power from the. main switch 42 goes to an overload relay 5t which is magneti cally operated when the main contact 42 is closed. In case this overload relay- El is caused to open by a short circuit or other overload o the electrical circuit, it can be resetaiter removal of the overload by pressing the reset push button. The power from the overload relay 5| is then taken directly to the field of the selsyn 7 through the wires l0, and also to the field of the selsyn 9 through this same wire. The main power is also taken from the overload relay 5| through the wires 52-453 to lights 54-45-55. Current is thus supplied to bus bar and contacts 3'l3839.

The light 54, which is preferably white, is connected between the two leads from the overload relay 5!. This light is the power on light and indicates that the device is in operation. A warning horn 51 is provided to warn the operator that he is approaching a danger limit. This horn is energized through a timer 56, which is provided to limit the length of time during which the horn will sound. The horn will sound for one or two seconds each time the travelling block 5 reaches a set height. The timer 58 is an instantaneous reset type which is energized when the rider 28 engages the contact 39, as will be evident from the drawing. When the rider 2! closes the circuit between the bus bar 56 and the contact 33, a yellow light will be lit, thus indicating that the travelling block is at a pre-determined position, usually the finger height in the derrick. When the rider 20 closes the circuit between the bus bar 36 and the contact 31, the red light 55 will be lit and at the same time will energize the relay 59, thus opening this relay. The relay 5%? is in series with the solenoid of the three-way operated air valve 55. The opening of the relay 59 will de-energize the solenoid 65 and thus operating the valve in the air system,

which will be subsequently described, will re- L lease the clutch on the draw works, and at the same time will apply the brake on the draw works bringing it to a stop.

Considering now the air or pneumatic circuit, which operates the usual clutch and brake of the draw works 5. This air circuit consists of a check valve 5i in the line from the usual well known master four-way valve 62. The air then extends to the brake cylinder. An air relay valve 83 is piped to the master valve 52 and directs the air to the clutch. The elements 5| and 63 are operated by application of air pressure from our safety device. When the draw works is in use, air is applied from the master valve 62 to the clutch and the line between these two elements is under pressure. As the same time, air is exhausted from the cylinder through the fourway valve 62 to atmosphere.

The operation of the safety device is as follows:

Air is applied to the relay valve 63 which closes the air line from the valve 62 and opens the air line from the clutch. This exhausts the air from the clutch to atmosphere and releases the clutch.

At the same time, air is applied through the check valve 51 directly to the cylinder, thus setting this brake and stopping the draw works. Air pressure to the relay valve 63 a d the check valve 5| is applied through a three-way solenoid operated valve 64. This is the valve which is controlled by the solenoid 61], previously described. This valve 54 is so wired that air pressure will be applied to the control circuit whenever the solenoid is de-energized. This feature is included to make the device fail safe in case of failure of the electrical power. When the solenoid 60 is energized the air circuit from the relay valve 63 and the check valve 5! is open to atmosphere allowing normal operation of the draw works.

An electrical pressure switch 65 is installed in the air line 66 to the solenoid valve 64. This pressure switch has electrical contacts which are normally opened when there is no air pressure. When air pressure is applied the contacts 46 are closed. This switch is included in the circuit to make the equipment "fail safe as the switch is connected in series with the electrical wiring. Thus, failure to properly supply air pressure to the safety device will cause the electrical contacts 45 to remain open and this in turn will prevent the main electrical contactor 42 to remain closed. Thus, the device cannot be put into operation unless air pressure is first proved out.

An auxiliary bleeder valve 6'! is installed in the pipe 55 so that air pressure in the line to the relay valve 53 and the check valve 6| can be bled to atmosphere. Thus, the operation of the draw works can be continued after a shut down caused by electrical power failure. Should the operator wish to operate the equipment above the limit point 3'. and while the relay 59 is open, he can re-energize the relay by closing the bypass push button 68, thus releasing the brake and reengaging the clutch. The push button 58 is spring loaded and will remain closed only as long as it is manuallyheld. Release of the push button will cause the three-way air valve 64 or the coil 58 to become tie-energized as long as the relay 59 is open.

From the foregoing description, it will thus be evident that our indicator will not only furnish a visual indication of the relay position of the travelling block 3 within the derrick, but it will also operate supplementary lights, horn and the like, and will even entirely shut down the draw works at pre-determined points.

Operation With the travelling block 3 in its lowest position, the indicator or rider 20 is synchronized by adjusting or turning the knob 2|. The contacts 42 are now closed which lights the power on lamp 54. When the elevator suspended from the travelling block reaches the finger in the derrick, the yellow light 5| will go on. At this time the rider 20 is engaging the contact 38. When the top of the travelling block reaches the warning point the light 55 goes out and the red light 56 goes on. The horn 51 has also been sounding during the time that the yellow and red lights are one. When the red light 56 is lit, the limit switch 48 will also be operated, thus actuating the pressure switch 65 and actuating the valve 64 to release the clutch and set the brake. As the travelling block is lowered, the red and yellow lights will be successively extinguished and if the rider 20 moves to a bottom position, the bottom limit switch 41 will be engaged, which again will operate the pneumatic circuit to release the clutch and set the brake of the draw works.

Having described our invention, we claim:

1. In combination with a derrick, a travelling block in the derrick mounted for vertical movement therein, means connected to the travelling block to actuate the same, a travelling block indicator comprising an instrument housing mounted on the floor of the derrick, a rider mounted for vertical movement in said housing. said rider having a length proportionate to the travelling block, visual elevation indicating means on said housing, said rider moving adjacent the visual elevation indicating means, electrical drive means connected to said rider to move said rider synchronously with the block, a second electrical means operable by the block and connected thereto, said second electrical means being electrically connected to the said electrical drive means, a scale on said housing over which said rider moves to indicate the posiion of the travelling block, said scale being in the same proportion to the total movement of the rider as the height of the derrick is to the total movement of the block, and means actuated by positioning of the upper and lower extremities of said rider, said last named means extending to and controlling the travelling block actuating means.

2. In combination with a derrick, a travelling block in the derrick mounted for vertical movement therein, means connected to the travelling block to actuate the same, a travelling block indicator comprising an instrument housing mounted on the floor of the derrick, a rider mounted for vertical movement in said housing, said rider having a, length proportionate to the travelling block, visual elevation indicating means on said housin said rider moving adjacent the visual elevation indicating means, electrical drive means connected to said rider to move said rider synchronously with the block, a second electrical means operable by the block and con nected thereto, said second electrical means being electrically connected to the said electrical drive means, a scale on said housing over which said rider moves to indicate the position of the travelling block, said scale being in the same proportion to the total movement of the rider as the height 01 the derrick is to the total movement of the block, the position of the rider on the scale being proportionately identical to the position of the block in the derrick, and means actuated by positioning of the upper and lower extremities of said rider, said last named means extending to and controlling the travelling block actuating means.

CLIFFORD E. VAN STONE. FRANK J. LOPKER. BURT STANLEY MINOR.

REFERENCES CITED The following references are of record in the file of this patent:

UNITED STATES PATENTS

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Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US2790162 *Jan 20, 1956Apr 23, 1957Mccormack Robert HDisc type slip detector and rectifier
US2956666 *Mar 15, 1957Oct 18, 1960Lake Erie Machinery CorpLength gage for structural steel beams and the like
US3052878 *Mar 17, 1960Sep 4, 1962Socony Mobil Oil Co IncAlarm for logging systems
US3381287 *Oct 22, 1965Apr 30, 1968John R. Curtis Jr.Light flasher for fork lift vehicles
US4334217 *May 2, 1980Jun 8, 1982Rig Electronics Ltd.Electronic control indicator for cable hoist equipment
US4545017 *Mar 22, 1982Oct 1, 1985Continental Emsco CompanyWell drilling apparatus or the like with position monitoring system
US4613849 *Apr 23, 1984Sep 23, 1986Hughes Tool CompanyInterference warning device
US4862997 *Sep 14, 1987Sep 5, 1989Eberle Kenneth FWheel chair with elevating seat having a high lift capability
US8051909Apr 26, 2007Nov 8, 2011Frank's Casing Crew & Rental Tools, Inc.Method and apparatus for positioning the proximal end of a tubular string above a spider
US8905250Apr 16, 2010Dec 9, 2014Manitowoc Crane Companies, LlcPower and control for wireless anti-two block system
US20040162658 *Nov 24, 2003Aug 19, 2004Newman Frederic MCrown out-floor out device for a well service rig
US20080149326 *Apr 26, 2007Jun 26, 2008Frank's Casing Crew & Rental Tools, Inc.Method and Apparatus for Positioning the Proximal End of a Tubular String Above a Spider
WO2004048249A1 *Nov 24, 2003Jun 10, 2004Key Energy Services, Inc.Crown out-floor out device for a well service rig
WO2008134346A2 *Apr 23, 2008Nov 6, 2008Frank's International, Inc.Method and apparatus for positioning the proximal end of a tubular string spider above a spider
WO2008134346A3 *Apr 23, 2008Mar 18, 2010Frank's International, Inc.Method and apparatus for positioning the proximal end of a tubular string spider above a spider
Classifications
U.S. Classification340/685, 187/399, 340/315, 340/854.1
International ClassificationE21B19/02, E21B19/00
Cooperative ClassificationE21B19/02
European ClassificationE21B19/02