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Publication numberUS3023651 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateMar 6, 1962
Filing dateDec 23, 1959
Priority dateDec 23, 1959
Publication numberUS 3023651 A, US 3023651A, US-A-3023651, US3023651 A, US3023651A
InventorsWallace Elmer M
Original AssigneeLamb Rental Tools Inc
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Tongs
US 3023651 A
Abstract  available in
Images(4)
Previous page
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Claims  available in
Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

March 6, 1962 E. M. WALLACE TONGS 4 Sheets$heet 1 Filed Dec. 23, 1959 fil 5/? er M. Wa//oc INVENTOR. BY W 9M ATTORNE VJ March 6, 1962 E. M. WALLACE TONGS 4 Sheets-Sheet 2 Filed Dec. 25, 1959 5/? er A4. Wa//oce INVENTOR.

ATTORNEY) March 6, 1962 E. M. WALLACE TONGS 4 Sheets-Sheet 4 Filed Dec. 23, 1959 [/mer M Wa//ace INVENTOR. B wqw ATTORNEVJ United States Patent F 3,023,651 TONGS Elmer M. Wallace, Lafayette, La., assignor to Lamb Rental Tools, Inc., a corporation of Louisiana Filed Dec. 23, 1959, Ser. No. 861,620 Claims. (CI. 8157) The present invention relates to a tong for gripping tubular members and imparting rotary motion thereto, and more particularly to improvements in power operated tongs for use with tubular members.

At the present time, various types of power operated tongs are provided whereby a rotary motion or torque may be imparted to a tubular member so as to threadedly connect the tubular member to another member or to disconnect tubular members. More particularly, in the drilling and completion of well bores, it is necessary to lower a long string of pipe into a well bore in the earths surface, or to remove the pipe string from the well bore. This string of pipe is composed of a plurality of joints or sections of pipe of predetermined length, such as 20, or feet, and threads are provided on each of the joints of pipe whereby they may be threadedly connected together as the pipe is lowered into the well bore, and threadedly disconnected as they are removed from the well bore.

The tongs presently employed for rotating the pipe sections to connect or disconnect them relative to each other are disadvantageous for many reasons. For example, in order to most efliciently use a tong, it is desirable to supply power thereto so that the mechanism of the tong can be rotated by power, rather than manually, which rotation is in turn imparted to the tubular member or pipe section on which the tong is positioned. The tongs are generally provided with jaw segments, which segments are moved into engagement with the tubular member so that rotation may be transmitted from the tongs to the tubular member. In certain tongs, presently employed, the construction of the jaw segments is such that the area of contact of the jaw segments with the tubular member is restricted to a relatively small area on the circumferential periphery of the tubular member, so that when the jaw segments engage the pipe the rotating effort or force is applied over a relatively small circumferential area of the tubular member. Even under normal use of the tong, the pressure exerted may be suflicient to cause the tubular member to become damaged at the point of contact with the jaws.

Also, some power tongs mount the jaw segments in a manner so that the rotating elfort, or load applied through the jaw segments of the tongs is concentrated over a relatively limited area of the pipe or tubular member, which further increases and enhances the possibility of damage to the tubular member not only by scarring, but by applying a load at a given point or on a circumferential area or portion of the tubular member which may cause the tubular member to become permanently deformed.

Not only is the construction of the jaw segments and the manner of moving the jaw segments into engagement with the tubular member objectionable, but also the manner of initiating the gripping action of the jaws with the tubular member, or the manner of starting the jaw segments to move into engagement with the tubular member creates additional problems in power tongs presently employed.

Additionally, power tongs presently employed are extremely difiicult to engage about the tubular member. Some tongs are constructed so that they must be positioned about the tubular member by slipping the tong downwardly and longitudinally about the tubular member. It can be appreciated that this is extremely disad- ICC vantageous since it may be desirable to immediately unthread a pipe section after it has been threaded with another pipe section, such as for example where the pipe sections have threaded incorrectly and it is desirable to reverse the rotation of the tubular member in order to rethread it. Where the tongs are constructed so that they must be engaged with the tubular member by placing them over the tubular member from one end, the tong must thereupon under the above described circumstances be partially disassembled and the jaw segments then removed from the tong and reversed as to their position in the tong and the tong thereafter reassembled, whereupon the reversing operation may be performed. Thereafter the tong is again partially disassembled, the jaw segments returned to their normal position, and the tongs then reassembled for engagement with the pipe. It can be appreciated that this operation is extremely time consuming, and furthermore the raising and lowering of the tongs to position them on the pipe requires additional equipment which in turn creates problems in the installation and servicing thereof, as well as manipulation or operation of the equipment.

Other tong constructions presently employed provide a radial slot or opening in the tong so that the tong may be slipped laterally about the pipe, whereupon the radial opening is closed and rotation imparted to the tubular member engaged in the tong. It can be appreciated that this type of construction is also objectionable in that the size pipe which can be handled by the device is limited by the size of radial opening, so that it is necessary to employ several djfierent tongs with various size radial openings where the handling of diiferent diameter of pipe is necessary. When it is desirable to reverse the direction of rotation with this type construction, it is necessary to remove the tongs from about the tubular member, turn them over and then reposition them on the tubular member or take the jaw segments out of the tong and reverse their respective positions in the tong. This also is extremely disadvantageous.

Also, most tongs employ a cage mechanism which supports the jaw segments in the tong. This cage mechanism further reduces the range of pipe size which may be handled by any particular tong because the cage mechanism reduces the opening size in the tongs and the jaw segments mounted thereon reduce it even further. This reduction in the opening in the tong substantially decreases the range of pipe which can be handled by any particular size tong.

The present invention relates to a power tong which overcomes all of the above and other problems presently encountered with power tongs.

A primary object of the present invention is to provide a power tong for imparting rotation to tubular members which tong is formed of a segmented construction so that the tong can be opened up and easily positioned about a pipe, and which tong eliminates the use of a cage mechanism to thereby permit the tong to be used on a wider range of pipe sizes.

Also, the tong provides a jaw segment construction which engages the rotary'member substantially over its entire circumferential periphery thereby more evenly distributing the torque applied to the tubular member to inhibit damage thereto, and which jaw segments are mounted in the tong so that they can be reversed without removing the tong from engagement about the tubular member. The present invention also employs an arrangement of jaw segments which eliminates special actuating mechanism to initially move the jaws into engagement with the pipe or tubular member.

Another object of the present invention is to provide a tong wherein the jaw segments for engaging a tubular a pipe, the segmented tong including segmented jaws which engage the tubular member over substantially its entire circumferential peripheral extent.

Yet a further object or" the present invention is to provide a power tong of relatively simple construction which can be disassembled, if desired, with a minimum of effort.

Stilla further object of the present invention is to provide a segmented tong construction which can be readily positioned about a tubular member, which segmented construction automatically locks when positioned about a tubular member to inhibit relative movement of the segmented portions while theton'g is in use.

Yet a further object of the present invention is to 7 provide a power tong which is formed of segmented construction wherein the segments are constructed and arranged, and are provided with means, whereby they are locked against undesired relative movement when the tong is positioned about a tubular member, and which construction and arrangement enables the power tong to be quickly and easily disengaged from the tubular member when desired. H

Still a further object of the present invention is to provide in a power tong a construction for imparting rotation to a tubular member wherein jaw segments are 'mounted on a segmented ring adapted to be positioned various diameter in the tong.

Other objects and advantages of the invention will become more readily apparent from a consideration of the following description and drawings wherein:

FIG. 1 is a perspective view illustrating the tong of the present invention opened and ready to be positioned about a tubular member;

FIG. 2 is a top plan view of the segmented ring and illustrates the..rigid relationship of the ring segments when the tong is closed about a tubular member and imparting rotation thereto;

FIG. 3 is a sectional view partly in elevation and illustrating the tong of the present invention engaged about a tubular member and showing the relationship of the components of the device during operation thereof;

FIG. 4 is a sectional view on the line 4-4 of FIG. 3 to illustrate additional structural details of the segmented "rotary ring, as well as illustrating the roller means for supporting the rotary ring in the housing, and the manner of supporting certain of jaw segments on the segmented ring;

FIG. 5 is a sectional view on the line 55 of FIG. 7

p and illustrates the locking means for holding the segments of the rotary ring in rigid relationship when the tong is actuated;

FIG. 5A is a sectional View on the line 5A-5A of FIG. 5 showing further structural details of the segmented ring locking means;

FIG. 6 is a sectional view on the line 66 of FIG. 3 and shows in greater detail the cam surface means and arrangement on one of the rotary ring segments and one of the jaw segments for actuating the jaw segments and moving them into engagement with the tubular member;

FIG. 7 is a perspective view of the tong of the present. invention showing it in position on a pipe;

FIG. 8 is a fragmentary view, partly in section, of one of the segments of the rotary ring and the jaw segment thereon, showing in greater detail the cam surface arrangement for actuating the jaw segments. FIG. 8 showsthe relative position of the jaw segment on the ring segment when the cam surface means is in inoperative position; 7

FIG. 9 is a view somewhat similar to FIG. 8 but show-- ing the jaw segment in elevation in order to illustrate the window therein forming part of the cam surface ar-' rangernent; and

FIG. 10 is a view similar to FIG. 9 and illustrating:

the relative position of the jaw segment to the ring segment and the relative position of the components of the cam surface arrangement for engaging the segmented jaws with the tubular member.

Attention is first directed to'FIG. 1 of the drawing wherein the invention is illustrated generally by the numeral 10 and is shown as being opened for receiving a tubular member therein whereby the tong may thereafter be closed about the tubular member and rotation imparted to the tong and the tubular member.

In FIG. 3 the tong 10 is illustrated in closed position about the tubular member and the components thereof in position for imparting rotation to the tubular member in a desired direction. The tong 10 includes the housing designated generally at 11 which housing is illustrated as being hollow and including the bottom wall 12, side wall or peripheral end wall 13 and top wall 14. The

housing 11 walls 12, 13 and 14 are cut as illustrated at 14a toform the housing in segments 15, 16 and 17,

' with the segment 15 being designated the main housing segment and the segments 16 and 17 being connected to the main segment portion 15 at the pivot points 16 and 17', respectively.

The main segment portion 15 of the housing 11 is of a general Y configuration as better illustrated in FIG. 7

'with the segments 16 and 17 mounted on the legs 15' and 15", respectively of the housing segment 15 as illustrated in FIGS. 3 and 7. The lower wall 12 and top Wall 14 extend laterally from end wall 13 a suitable distance so that the segments 15,16 and 17 when closed as illustrated in FIGS. 3and 7 define a substantially circular opening 18 in which the tubular member 19 is received. The lower wall 12, top wall 14 and end wall 13 are also constructed so that each segment 15-, 16 and 17 is circular, and define a housing portion for receiving Y segmented rotary ring 32 and jaw segments 37, 38 and 39..

The pivot points 16' and 17' for the segments 16 and 17 respectively may assume any suitable construction and as illustrated in the drawings pivot pins 16a and 17a of suitable size are provided and extend through the top wall 14 and the bottom wall 12 of the main segment. 15 and also extend through reinforcing brackets 20..

There are four reinforcing brackets which are secured on.

the top and bottom of legs 15 and 15" by any suitable: means such as support blocks 21 which are welded to the top 14 and bottom 12 and to the reinforcing, brackets 20.

Brackets 22 and 22' secured to the top and bottom of each of the segments-16 and 17 respectively, extend from each of the segments to overlap the legs 15' and 15" respectively, and fit beneath the reinforcing bracket 20 on each of the legs 15' and 15" as illustrated in FIG. 1 of the drawings. The pivot pins 16a and 17a extend through the upper and lower walls 12 and 14 of the main segment 15 as well as the reinforcing brackets 20 and whereby a nut may be engaged thereon to hold them each in place.

This construction permits the housing 11 to be opened up easily and quickly as shown in FIG. 1 for receiving pipe therein and thereafter the segments 16 and 17 can be pivoted to a closed position as illustrated in FIGS. 3 and 7 whereupon the latch 25 locks the segments 16 and 17 relative to the main segment to prevent relative movement of the segments, or opening of the segments as the tong is in operation. The latch 01' lock means includes the projection or lug 26 mounted on one of the segments such as the segment 17 illustrated in FIGS. 1 and 7 and the latch member 27 which is mounted on the bracket 23 by means of the pivot pin 29 on the other of the segments. A spring 30 is arranged so as to urge the latch member 27 into engagement with the lug 26 when the segmented housing is closed about a tubular member 19. In order to open the housing, the latch member 27 must be depressed towards the tong and against the action of the coil spring 36 so thatthe member 27 may disengage from the lug 26, whereupon the housing may be open.

A plurality of roller means as illustrated generally at 31 are mounted at spaced intervals in each of the housing segments 15, 16 and 17 and provide a means for supporting the rotary ring designated generally at 32. The outer periphery 33 of the rotary ring is provided with gear teeth 34 so that the rotary ring 32 may be rotated through the gear train 35 which is actuated by a suitable power source (illustrated in dotted line at 36 in FIG. 1). The rotary ring 32 in turn supports the jaw segments 37, 38, and 39 thereon whereby the segments may engage the tubular member 19 and impart rotation thereto. A cam surface arrangement illustrated generally by the numeral 40 is provided on the ring 32 and one of the jaw segments whereby all of the jaw segments may be moved into operative engagement with the tubular member when rotation is imparted to the rotary ring 32.

The rotary ring 32 is also segmented so that it can be opened or spread apart simultaneously when the housing 11 is spread apart and thereafter closed about the tubular member 19 as the housing 11 is closed about the tubular member.

The rotary ring 32 includes the main segment 41 with the segments 42 and 43 being pivotally connected to the main segment 41 by any suitable means such as the pivot pins 44 and 45'. Each of the rotary ring segments 41, 42 and 43 includes a central plate 45 with an upper plate 46 and a lower plate 47 secured thereto by any suitable means such as bolts or the like, as illustrated at 48 as best seen in FIG. 4 of the drawings. It will be noted that the central plate 45 is substantially wider than the upper and lower plates 46 and 47 and that the upper and lower plates 46 and 47 are positioned adjacent, but spaced from, the outer periphery or edge 33 of the central plate 45.

The upper plate 46 on the main segment 41 and the lower plate 47 on the main segment 41 extend beyond the ends of the central plate 45 so as to overlap the central plate 45 of each of the segments 42 and 43. As can be seen in FIG. 3 of the drawing, the central plate 45 of the segment 41 is illustrated as terminating at 50 in the arcuate recess as shown and the central plates 45 of each of the segments terminate in the arcuate projection 50a which interfits the recess 50. The upper and lower plates 46 and 47 of the main ring segment 41 have portions 51 which extend beyond the end of 59 of the central plate '45 of the segment 41. The central plate 45 of each of the segments 42 and 43 fits between the extended portions 51 of the upper and lower plates 46 and 47 on the main rotary ring segment 41, and the overlapping portions 51 of the upper and lower plates 46 and 47 on the ring segment 41 terminate as illustrated at 52. The upper and lower plates 46 and 47 of each of the ring segments terminate as shown at52a, and each extends arcuately about its respective segment as shown in the drawing. The upper and lower plates 46 and 47 of each of the ring segments 42 and 43 are constructed in a manner, and are provided with means to lock them in engagement as will be described in greater detail hereinafter.

The pivot pins 44 and 45' extend through the upper and lower plates 46 and 47 which are mounted on the main segment 41 of the rotary ring 32, and extend through the central plate 45 of each of the segments 42 and 43 whereby the segments 42 and 43 are pivotally mounted on the main rotary ring segment '41.

The interfitting ends 50, 50a of the central plates 45 on the main ring segment 41 and each ring segment 42, 43 respectively, and the manner of fitting the central plate 45 of each ring segment 42, 43 between the extended portion 50 of each upper and lower plate 46, 47 along with the arrangement of the pivot pins 44, 45 enable the rotary ring 32 to be opened easily when the housing 11 is opened and thereafter closed about a tubular member.

Of course, the ring segment 41, as well as the segments 42, 43 must be in a predetermined position in the housing 11 to enable the tong to be opened, and if desired a suitable marking on the housing 11 and ring 32 may be utilized to visually indicate when the ring 32 is aligned in the housing 11 so that the tong can be opened.

In FIG. 3 the segments 41, 42 and 43 of the rotary ring 32 are illustrated in a position when the jaw segments 37, 38 and 39 are moved into engagement with the tubular member 19. When the rotary ring 32 is in this position the housing 11 and the rotary ring 32 are locked in position about the tubular member 19, and the segments of the housing 11 as well as the segments of the rotary ring 32 are locked against relative movement. in order to open the housing 11 and the rotary ring 32 to either engage or disengage the tubular member 19, the rotary ring 32 must be aligned with the housing as noted above and as will be described in greater detail hereinafter.

The roller means 31 for supporting the rotary ring 32 is best illustrated in FIG. 4 of the drawing and is shown as including the roller member 61 which is rotatably mounted by any suitable means such as the bearings 62 upon the eccentric shaft 63. The shaft 63 extends through the upper and lower surfaces 14 and 12 of the housing and is retained in position by means of the enlarged annular collar 64 at the upper end and the nut 65 which is threadedly connected to the lower end. The roller member 61 provides the roller surfaces 66 and 67 which are adapted to abut the edges 68 and 69 of the lower and upper plates 47 and 46, respectively.

As can be viewed in FIG. 3 the rollers are circumferentially spaced about the rotary ring 32 so that when the rotary ring 32 is rotated, the surfaces 66 and 67 roll around and engage the outer peripheral edges 68 and 69 of the lower and upper plates 47 and 46, respectively. The central plate 45 extends into the recess 70 on member 61 formed between the roller surfaces 66 and 67.

The eccentric shaft 63 enables the roller member 61 to be adjusted relative to the outer peripheral edges 68 and 69 to compensate for wear of the roller surfaces 66 and 67 and wear of the edges 68 and 69.

The termination of upper and lower plates 14 and 12 of the housing 11 defines an opening 18 in the housing as shown in FIGS. 3 and 7. The central plate 45 of the rotary ring 32 extends inwardly relative to the opening 18 in the housing and the edge 93 of each central plate 45 of each ring segment 41, 42 and 43 defines a circular opening 93a. The plate 45 also supports the jaw segments 37, 38 and 39 on the rotary ring 32.

The jaw segments 37, 38 and 39 are generally arcuate in configuration, and each is provided with an arcuate slot 36a in its rear edge between the upper and lower surfaces 7 of the jaw segment, in which slot the plate 45' of each ring segment is received, as best seen in FIG. 4. The slot 3611 includes the side walls 36b and 36c spaced to slide on the surfaces 45b and 450 of each central plate respectively. The edge 93 of each of the plates 45 abuts the end 36d of the slot in the jaw segment mounted there- The above enables the jaws to slide circumferentially, but inhibits the jaws from becoming skewed in relation to each other or in relation to the plate 45 on which they are carried so that they are always in position to properly engage the pipe 19 when contacted'therewith.

The jaw segments 38 and 39 are retained on the plate 45 of each of the rotary ring segments 42 and 43 by suitable means such as the arcuate window 80 which is provided in each of the central plates 45 of each of the ring segments 42 and 43. A pin 81 extends through the slot 36a in each of the jaw segments 38 and 39 and through each of the windows 80 to position the jaw segments on the central plate 45. The window 80 is slightly larger in width than the diameter of the pin 81, to enable the transmission of the load from the jaw segment to the ring segment as noted before.

The pin 81 may be threaded into the lower portion of the jaw segment as illustrated in FIG. 4 of the drawing ifdesired. This arrangement accommodates circumferential sliding of each of the jaw segments 38 and 390m each of the rotary ring segments 42 and 43 to enable the jaw segments 37 38 and 39 to engage the pipe 19 properly and to enable the jaw segments to disengage from the tubular member 19 when desired. Any suitable configuration or means may be provided on the face of jaw segments as illustrated at 82 for aiding in gripping the surface of the tubular member 19, as shown in FIG. 3, the means 82 may be fitted in dovetail grooves 82 on the jaw segments, and

surface of the bottom wall 12 of each of the housing seg-' ments 15, 16 and 17 for retaining the rotary segments 41, 42 and 43 in position therein. The block 84 may be retained in position in each of the housing segments by any suitable means such as the screw 85 secured through the lower plate 12 of the housing '11 and into the block 84 as shown in FIG. 4 of the drawing.

A cam arrangement 40 is provided for moving the jaw segments 37, 38 and 39 into engagement with tubular membe 19. The cam arrangement includes the arcuate window 90 in the jaw segment 37, holes 91 and 92 positioned adjacent each end of the window and in the central plate 45 of the ring segment 41, a pin 105 for fitting in either hole, and a recess, or cam surface designated generally by the numeral 94 on the edge 93 of the plate 45 of ring segment 41. The jaw segment 37 is illustrated as being cut away as shown at 96 in the slot 36a for receiving the roller 97 therein which roller is mounted on the pin 98 that extends through the jaw segment 37. The roller 97 is positioned in the jaw segment 37 so that the outer peripheral edge 99 of the roller extends beyond the normal peripheral edge 36d of the jaw segment 37 as illustrated at 100 in FIG, 8.

When the jaw segment 37 is in the position on the rotary ring segment 41 as represented in FIG. 8 of the drawings, the cam surface or cam arrangement 40 is inoperative to move the jaw segment 37 inwardly relative to the ring segment 41 to engage the tubular member 19. It will be noted that when the jaw segment 37 is in the position as illustrated in FIG. 8, the roller 97 is adjacent, but spaced from the central recessed portion 95 in the recessed portion 94 on the edge 93 of the central plate 45.

The edge 93 of the plate 45 on the segment 41 along with the edges 93 of each of the central plate 45 'of each of the segments 42 and 43 define'the circular opening 93a, as noted previously, and as also previously noted with regard to FIG. 4, the jaw segments in their normal position are adapted to abut the edge 93 of the central plate and slide therealong. In order to engage the tubular member 19, at least one of the jaw segments must'be moved inwardly toward the tubular member 19 to engage it whereupon the diameter of the opening 93a existing in the tong 10 between the jaw segments will be reduced sufficiently to thereby elfect gripping of the tubular member 19 by the jaw segments 37, 38 and 39. A pin 105 is adapted to be positioned in either of the openings 91 or 92 depending upon the direction of rotation of the rotary ring 32 and the direction of rotation in which it is desired to engage the tubular member 19 with the jaw segments 37, 38 and 39.

For example, if the pin 105 is positioned as shown in FIG. 3, it is in the opening 91 and if the gear train 35 is rotated in the direction as illustrated by (the arrow 106, then rotation is imparted to the rotary ring 32 in a counterclockwise direction as represented by the arrow 107. When this occurs the segments 41, 42 and 43 will rotate together and upon initial rotation of the rotary ring 32 each of the jaw segments 37, 38 and '39 will tend to re main stationary relative to the plate 45 upon which it is supported until the pin 81 in each of the jaw segments 38 and 39 engage the end of the groove 80 whereupon they will then rotate in unison with the rotary ring 32.

However, since :the peripheral edge 99 of the roller 97 projects outwardly beyond the edge 36d of the slot in jaw segment 37, rotation of the segment 41 relative to jaw segment 37 will cause the roller 97 to ride upon the cam surface 94 as shown in dotted line in FIG. 3, thereby forcing the jaw segment 37 inwardly against the tubular member 19. When this occurs, the opening between the jaw segments 37, 38 and 39 is decreased so that the jaw segments 38 and 39 also then engage with the tubular member 19. As a practical matter, the engagement of the jaw segment 37 and the engagement of the jaw segments 38 and 39 with the tubular member 19 is substantially simultaneous.

As long as the rotary ring 32 is rotated in the direction of the arrow 107 when the pin 105 is in the hole 91, the jaw segments will'be retained in engagement with the tubular member 19. If the direction of rotation of the rotary ring 32 is reversed with the pin 105 in hole 91,

- then the jaw segment 37 will tend to remain stationary so that the ring segment 41 moves relative thereto to disengage the peripheral edge of the roller 97 from the surface 94 to reposition the roller as illustrated in FIG. 8. Since jaw segment 37 is thereby released from tubular member 19, the opening size between the jaw segments is increased, and the jaws 38 and 39' also disengage from the member 19.

An advantage of the present invention is that the cam arrangement 40 enables the jaw segments 37, 38 and 39 to grip the tubular member 19 in either direction of rotation of the rotary ring 32 with a minimum of adjustment. For example, if the pin 105 is moved to the hole 92 as illustrated in FIG. 9 of the drawing and if the gear train 35 is again rotated in the direction of the arrow 106, the rotary ring "32 Will again rotate in the direction of the arrow 107; however, the pin 105 will abut the edge 110 of the window when the segment 41 moves relative to the jaw segment 37 and thereby prevent the roller 98 from engaging the cam surface 94 on the edge 93 of the plate 45 of the segment 41. In this manner, the rotary ring 32 may be turned relative to the pipe 19 and not engage the jaws therewith.

If the direction of rotation of the gear train 35 is reversed so that the direction of rotation of the rotary ring 32 is in a clockwise direction, thatis in a direction opposite to the arrow 107 of FIG. 3, then the pin When in hole 92 must travel the length of the Window 90 before it engages the edge 111 of the window. The relationship of the roller 97 and the arrangement of the cam surface 94 is such that prior to the time that the pin 105 has traversed the length of the Window 90, the peripheral edge 99 of 9 the roller will have engaged the cam surface 94 as illustrated in dotted line in FIG. 10 of the drawing. This causes the jaw segment 37 to move radially inwardly to decrease the opening between the jaw segments 37, 38 and 39 whereupon the jaw segments 37, 38 and 39 grip the tubular member 19.

It should be noted that when the pin 105 is positioned in the hole 91 as previously described with regard to the FIG. 3 illustration, the rotary ring 32 can be moved in a clockwise direction, that is in a direction opposite to the direction of arrow 107 in FIG. 3, and the pin 105 in such event will contact the edge 11 1 of the window 90 and thereby lock the jaw segment 37 and the rotary segment 41 together so that the jaw segment 37 will not move inwardly.

From the above description, it can be seen that when the pin 105 is in the hole 91 the rotary ring 32 when moved in a counterclockwise direction as represented by the arrow 107 will cause the jaw segments 37, 38 and 39 to grip the tubular member 19, whereas clockwise direction of rotation of the rotary ring 32 will release the jaw segments 37, 38 and 39 from engaging with the tubular member 19 and maintain them in non-engaged position. When the pin 105 is in the hole 92, then the jaw segments 37, 38 and 39 will engage the tubular member 19 when the rotary ring '32 is rotated in a clockwise direction and will release from the tubular member when the rotary ring is rotated in a counterclockwise direction as represented by the arrow 107 in FIG. 3.

This construction is particularly advantageous in that it enables the operator to reverse the direction of actuation of the tongs without breaking the tong apart and disengaging it from the tubular member, and without removing the jaw segments from the tong.

It is necessary to retain the segmented rotary ring 32 in locked position when the segments are closed about the tubular member 19 to prevent relative movement of the ring segments 41, 42 and 43 during actuation of the tongs, and to prevent the rotary ring 32 from becoming disconnected during use. FIG. 5 illustrates a form of lock means used in connection with the present invention to accomplish this purpose.

In FIG. 5 the lock means is illustrated generally by the numeral 120. In describing the lock or latch means 120, it should be noted in connection with FIGS. 1 and 2 of the drawing that the ring segment 41 of the rotary ring 32 is received within the housing segment 15 when the tong is opened to receive the tubular member, or immediately after the tong has been closed about a tubular member as illustrated in FIG. 7. Also, the segment ring 42 of the rotary ring 32 is received within the housing segment 16, and the ring segment 43 of the rotary ring 32 is received within the housing segment 17. FIG. 2 represents schematically the relationship of the segments 41, 42 and 43 of the rotary ring 32 immediately after the housing 11 and rotary ring 32 have been closed about the tubular member and the lock means 120 is shown in position ready to lock the ring segments 42, 43 relative to each other and relative to the segment 41.

It will be noted that the housing segments 16 and 17 are each provided with an upstanding portion defining a recess as illustrated generally at 121 in FIGS. 1 and 5. This recess is formed in the upper surface 14 of the housing 11 and when the housing 11 and rotary ring 32 are closed about the tubular member 19 the housing segments assume the locked relationship shown in FIG. 3, and the rotary ring 32 assumes the position shown in FIG. 2 of the drawing relative to the tubular member and relative to the housing 11. At this time the lock means 120 is positioned immediately below the recess 121 so that the lock means is as yet unactuated, but ready to actuate to connect the segments 42 and 43 together, while FIG. 3 represents the lock means 120 actuated and connecting the segments 41, 42 and 43 together in rigid relationship.

The lock means includes the block 123 which is adapted to fit in the recess 124 formed in the upper plate 46 at the end of the ring segment 42, as best seen in FIG. 5A. It will be noted that the upper plate 46 of the ring segment 43 overlaps the center plate 45 of the segment 42, as best illustrated in FIG. 5 of the drawings. Also, the lower plate 47 of ring segment 43 underlaps the central plate 45 of the segment 42 so that when the segments 16 and 17 are abutted together, the central plate 45 of the ring segment 42 extends between the upper and lower plates 46 and 47 of the ring segment 43. This is the relative position of the adjacent ends of the ring segments 42 and 43 when the housing 11 and the segments 16 and 17 thereof are closed about a tubular member. In order to hold the block 123 in position in the recess 124, while accommodating up and down movement thereof, a groove or slot 125 may be provided on each side of the slot in plate 46 so as to receive the pin 126 therethrough, as shown in FIGS. 5 and 5A. This holds the block 1 23 in position in plate 46 of ring segment 42, and prevents it from falling out when the ring segments 42 and 43 are not engaged. A roller 127 is mounted on the shaft 128 in block 123 and is adapted to abut the inner surface 129 of the upper plate 14 of the housing 11 as rotation is imparted to the rotary ring 32.

A spring 130 tends to urge the block 123 and roller 127 outwardly relative to the upper plate 46 so as to abut the inner surface 129 of the plate 14 of the housing. The spring 130 is mounted in the recess 130a of the central plate 45 and surrounds the spindle 130i). The spindle 13% extends upwardly into the opening 1300 and guides the block 123 as it moves up and down in the slot 124.

When the roller 127 is adjacent the raised portion 121 of the upper housing surface or plate 14, the block 123 by reason of the spring 130 acting thereon, will urge it outwardly into the recess 121. The block 123 has the projection 131 depending therefrom which extends through plate 45 of ring segment 42, and when the rotary ring 32 is rotated so that the block 123 is moved out of the recess 121 and reseated in 124, then the block 123 will be depressed so that the projection 131 engages in the opening 132 in the lower plate 47 of the ring segment 43. This locks the segments 42 and 43 together and prevents relative movement thereof. When the roller 127 is urged upwardly into the recess 121, projection 131 is disengaged from opening 132.

The pivot pins 44, 45' and the lock or latch 120 form a rigid construction which prevents the ring segments 41, 42 and 43 of the rotary ring 32 from moving relative to each other. This is diagrammatically represented in FIG. 2 wherein it can be seen that the rotary ring 32 forms a rigid construction by reason of the triangular relationship of the pivot pins 44, 45 and the lock means 120 which hold the segments in rigid relationship when closed about and rotating about a tubular member. Additionally, it will be noted that the central plate 45 is segmented in an arcuate manner as indicated at 50 and 50a so that when the ring segments are closed about a tubular member and the ends thereof are positioned together, they will interlock with each other along the line of segmentation. The end 50 provides a recess in the ring segment 41 and the end 50a of each ring segment 42, 43 in eifect provides a projection to aid in interlocking the ends of the ring segments together.

While it is believed that the operation of the invention is apparent by reason of the foregoing description, to further amplify and illustrate, it will be assumed that the device is to be engaged on a tubular member such as a casing or the like for rotating the casing to threadedly engage it with a casing section immediately therebeneath. The tong 10 will be moved toward the tubular member while in open position as illustrated in FIG. 1 of the drawing, and after the tong is positioned about the tubular member the housing 11 will be closed mani uallynby grasping the handles 150, -1S1,-whereupon the When rotation is imparted to the rotary ring 3'2, the

' :segments of the rotary ring 32 are locked together by reason of the latch 120, to prevent relative movement of the ring segments during operation of the tong. The pin.;-S is then positioned either in the hole 91 or 92,

. depending upon which direction it is desired to rotate the tubular member 19.

If it is desired to impart rota- 'tion to "the tubular member 19 in a counterclockwise direction as viewed in FIG. 3, then the pin 105 will be 2 placed in the hole 91; however, if it is desired to rotate the tubular member 19 in 'a clockwise direction then the *pin105 will be placed in the hole 92.

' Thereupon rotation may be imparted to the rotary ring '32 in the desired direction to cause the actuation of'the i*cam"arrang'ement 40 to e'ngage'the tubular member 19 andobtain the desired direction of rotation of the tubular It will be noted that the'jaw segments 37,

scarring or damage to the pipe, and to inhibit the application of an excessive pressure to a localized area of the tubular member.

Additionally, it is to be noted that the jaw segments move into engagement with the tubular member 19 without any actuating mechanism other than the difference in momentum between the rotary ring 32 and the jaw segment 37, 'at the beginning of rotation of the rotary "ring 32. Similarly, the jaw segments '37, 38 and 39 move out of engagement with the tubular member 19 merely by reversing the direction of rotation of the rotary ring r 32 from the direction required to engage the jaw segments with the tubular member.

T T he construction of the present invention is such that the rotary ring 32 transmits the reaction of the torque applied to the tubular member 19 to the rollers 31 and "then 'to the tong housing 11 thereby distributing the load over a plurality of members, and over the substantial circumferential extent of the tong. This prevents the application of any undue reaction forces in the tong mechanism and tends to retain the reaction forces balanced inthe' tong.

When it is desired to open the tong 10 to disengage it'from'the tubular member 19 or to engage it with a tubular member, the ring 32 may be visually aligned,

' with housing 11, by aligning marks 160, 161 which indicates thateach ring segment 41, 42 and 43 is positioned respectively in hollow housing segments 15, 16

' and '17 whereupon the tong may be opened as shown in FIG. 1.

' i It will be further noted that the rotary ring 32 is supported in the housing solely on the roller means 31 and retained in position only by means of the blocks 84 thereby enabling the ring to be removed from the hous- "ing for repair or replacement with a minimum of effort.

1 Similarly, the jaw segments 37, 38 and 39 are mounted on the ring segments 41, 42 and 43 in a manner so that the jaw'segments'can be removed if desired and jaw segments of difierent sizes placed in the tong in order toengage tubular members of larger or smaller diameter *as "desired. "To remove jaw segments 38 and 39 the pin 80 in each jaw segment is unthreaded and the jaw removed. To remove 'jaw segment 37, pin 105 is removed,

whereupon jaw 37 may be removed.

No cage mechanism is provided for supporting the "jawse'gments, rather the jaw segments are mounted directly on the rotary ring which enables the tong of the present invention to function on various size diameter :pipes.

The segmented construction of the housing and fire segmented construction of the rotary ring enable the device to be quickly and easily positionedabout a tubular member, while the lock means-associated with the housing and the lock or latch means .associatedwith the rotary ring positively engage the housingand the ring segments in rigid relation to eachother to prevent relative movement thereof during rotation of the rotary ring.

-The cam surface or cam arrangement designated generally at 40 provides the surface 94 upon which-the roller edge99 is adapted to engage, and additionally provides the deeper cam surface 95 so that the roller'99 will engage with the surface 94. quickly asit moves towards the surface, and on the other hand will disengage from the cam surface 94 rapidly as it moves away from engagement therewith.

Broadly the invention relates to a power tong which overcomes manyof the problems encountered at the present time.

What is claimed is:

l. A power tong for rotating tubular members including a rotary ring having gear teeth on its outer periphery whereby it may be rotated to transmit rotation to a tubular member about which said rotary ring is positioned, saidrotary ring being formed of segments with -two segments being pivotally mounted on a third segment whereby said rotary ring may be opened to receive a tubular member therein and thereafter closed about the tubular member, jaw segments slidably mounted on each of said rotary ring segments and extending substantially circumferentially about the tubular member to grip it, a plurality of roller means circumferentially spaced to support said rotary ring, a housing to support said roller means, said housing being formed in segments which are pivotally connected together whereby it may be opened simultaneously when said rotary ring is opened to receive the tubular member therein, lock means on saidtwo rotary ring segments cooperating when said rotary and housing are closed to lock said rotary segments together against relative movement when rotation is imparted to said rotary ring, and cooperating cam surface means on one of said rotary. ring'segments and one of said jaw-segments whereby rotation of said rotary ring feeds said jaw segments inwardly to grip the tubular member and rotate it.

2. The combination recited in claim 1 wherein said cooperating cam surface means includes a roller mounted on said jaw segment, and a recessed portion on said rotary segment adjacent said roller whereby rotation of said rotary segment engages said roller and recessed portion and forces said jawsegment inwardly to grip the pipe, and means to actuate said cam surface means in either direction of rotation of said rotary ring and to release said jaws from the tubular member in either direction of rotation.

3. The combination recited in claim 2 wherein said last named means includes a window in said jaw segment, openings at each end of said window in said r0- tary ring, and pin means for fitting in either of said openings whereby said pin' locks said jaw segment and ring segment for rotation together in one direction to prevent engagement of said jaws with the tubular member, but accommodating a relative movement-between said jaw and segment in the other direction to force said 3 j-aw segment'into. engagement with the tubular member.

4. The combination recited in claiml wherein'said lock means on said rotary ring segments includes roller means adapted to abut said'housing as said rotary ring rotates, a carrier supporting said roller in one of said segments, a plunger mounted on said carrier and extending through saidsegment in whichsaid carrier is mountring segment, said plunger moving into said opening when said rotary ring rotates in said housing to lock said rotary ring segments against relative movement, and latch means for holding said housing closed when said ring segments are locked together.

5. A power tong for rotating tubular members including a rotary ring having gear teeth on its outer periphery whereby it may be rotated to transmit rotation to a tubular member about which said rotary ring is positioned, said rotary ring being formed of segments with two segments being pivotally mounted on a third segment whereby said rotary ring may be opened to receive a tubular member therein and thereafter closed about the tubular member, jaw segments slidably mounted on each of said rotary ring segments and extending substantially circumferentially about the tubular member to grip it, a plurality of roller means circumferentially spaced to support said rotary ring, a housing to support said roller means, said housing being formed in segments which are pivotally connected together whereby it may be opened simultaneously when said rotary ring is opened to receive the tubular member therein, lock means on said two rotary ring segments cooperating when said rotary and housing are closed to lock said rotary segments together against relative movement when rotation is imparted to said rotary ring, cooperating cam surface means on one of said rotary ring segments and one of said jaw segments whereby rotation of said rotary ring feeds said jaw segments inwardly to grip the tubular member and rotate it, and wherein said rotary segments each include a central plate having said gear teeth on its outer periphery, upper and lower plates mounted thereon, said central plate being wider than said upper and lower plates and said upper and lower plates being adjacent, but spaced from the outer periphery of said central plate, said roller means comprising spaced upper and lower rollers on a shaft for receiving said central plate therebetween, said rollers abutting the edge of each said upper and lower plates respectively to support said rotary, and means mounted on said housing to retain said rotary ring therein.

6. The combination recited in claim wherein said slidable mounting for said jaw segments on said pivotally mounted ring segments includes a window in said central plates of each of said pivotally mounted ring segments, and a pin fixed in each jaw segment and extending through said window to slidably support said jaws on said central plate.

7. A power tong for fitting about a tubular member to transmit torque thereto comprising a hollow housing, including a main segment portion, and segments pivotally mounted on said main portion to define an opening in said housing when said pivoted segments are engaged, a plurality of circumferentially spaced roller means mounted in said housing, a rotary ring formed of segments supported by said roller means, a jaw segment mounted on each of said rotary ring segments for engaging a tubular member extending through said housing opening, gear means mounted in said housing and gear teeth on said segmented ring whereby rotation may be imparted to said segmented ring and jaws supported thereon, said jaw segments being slidably mounted on said rotary segments, cooperating cam surface means on at least one of said rotary ring segments and at least one of said jaw segments whereby rotation of said rotary ring feeds said jaw segments inwardly to grip the tubular member and rotate it, said cooperating cam surface means including a roller means mounted on said jaw segment, and a recessed portion on said rotary segment adjacent said roller whereby rotation of said rotary segment engages said roller and recessed portion and forces said jaw segment inwardly to grip the pipe, and means to actuate said cam surface means in either direction of rotation of said rotary ring and to release said jaws from the tubular member in either direction of rotation.

8. The combination recited in claim 7 wherein said roller means are mounted in said housing to abut said segmented ring for support thereof, and means associated with said roller means for adjusting them to position said roller means closer to said ring as wear occurs between said roller means and ring.

9. The combination recited in claim 7 wherein said last named means includes a window in said jaw segment, openings at each end of said window in said rotary ring, and pin means for fitting in either of said openings where by said pin locks said jaw segment and ring segment for rotation together in one direction to prevent engagement of said jaws with the tubular member, but accommodating a relative movement between said jaw and segment in the other direction to force said jaw segment into engagement with the tubular member.

10. A power tong for fitting about a tubular member to transmit torque thereto comprising a hollow housing, including a main segment portion, and segments pivotally mounted on said main portion to define an opening in said housing when said pivoted segments are engaged, a plurality of circumferentially spaced roller means mounted in said housing, a rotary ring formed of segments supported by said roller means, a jaw segment mounted on each of said rotary ring segments for engaging a tubular member extending through said housing opening, gear means mounted in said housing and gear teeth on said segmented ring whereby rotation may be imparted to said segmented ring and jaws supported thereon, said jaw segments being slidably mounted on said rotary segments, cooperating cam surface means on at least one of said rotary ring segments and at least one of said jaw segments whereby rotation of said rotary ring feeds said jaw segments inwardly to grip the tubular member and rotate it, said cooperating cam surface means including a roller means mounted on said jaw segment, and adjacent cam surface portions on said rotary segment one of which is a deeper cam surface than the cam surface adjacent thereto whereby engagement of said roller means and said deeper cam surface portion affects rapid radial movement of said jaw segments to grip the tubular member.

References Cited in the file of this patent UNITED STATES PATENTS 1,955,727 Adams Apr. 24, 1934 2,510,813 Gean June 6, 1950 2,639,894 Smith May 26, 1953 2,650,070 Lundeen Aug. 25, 1953 2,846,909 Mason Aug. 12, 1958 2,933,961 Adams Apr. 26, 1960

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Classifications
U.S. Classification81/57.18, 81/57.2
International ClassificationE21B19/00, E21B19/16
Cooperative ClassificationE21B19/164
European ClassificationE21B19/16B4