US 3097696 A
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Description (OCR text may contain errors)
W.' P. ORR
July 16, 1963 SELF-EXPANDING RETRIEVABLE OR PERMANENT BRIDGE PLUG Filed July 2'?, 1961 2 v,She/ets-Sheet 1 ATTORNEY.
July 16, 196s w. p.. @RR 3,097,696
SELF-EXPANDING RETRIEVABLE OR PERMANENT BRIDGE PLUG Filed July 27, 1961 2 Sheets-Sheet 2 FIG.` 7.
United States Patent O 3,097,696 SELF-EXPANDING RETRIEVABLE R PERMA- NENT BRIDGE PLUG l Willis P. Orr, Tyler, Tex., assignor, by mesne assignments, to Jersey Production Research Company, Tulsa,
Okla., a corporation of Delaware Filed July 27, 1961, Ser. No. 127,228 Claims. (Cl. 166--135) This invention relates to the production fof oil and gases. More particularly, this invention is 1an improved plug member for use an Ioil `or gas well.
For various reasons it is often necessary to firmly set plugs in vthe tubing `and/or casing of a Well. For example, when it is necessary to perform repairs on the well equipment or perform well completion operations, a plug must be set in the casing to plug ed a portion of the well.
The new plug member to be described herein is simple in construction, has a number of parts to perform the required plugging function and is easily operated.
Briefly described, this invention includes a self-expand-ing, stretchable member which may be lowered to the desired position within the casing in. a stretched condition. W'hen the desired position within the casing is reached, the self-expanding member is released. The member thus expands automatically into .pluggingcontact with the casing within which it is located.
The invention as well as its many advantages may be further understood by reference to the following detailed description and drawings in which:
FIG. 1 is la sectional elevational view showing the plug member lowered to aa desired position which may be just above a producing formation by means of a running tool;
FIG. 2 is a sectional elevational view showing the plug member in its expanded position in place within the casma;
FIG. 3 is an elevational view, partly in section, showing the relative position of the parts of the running tool when the running tool is used to lower the plug member to the desi-red position within a casing; U
FIG. 4 lis a view taken along line `4 4 of FIG. 3;
FIG. 5 is a view taken along line 5 5 of FIG. 3;
FIG. y6 is an enlarged view showing the slip release dogs contained within the running tool;
FIG. 7 is an elevational view, partly in section, showling the relative positions of the running tool parts as the plug member is allowed 4to expand into contact with the inside of the casing; and
FIG. 8 is an elevational view, partly in section, showing yone type of pulling tool which can be used to remove the plug from the casing if desired.
'The figures illustrate the use of this plug for plugging 0E .a producing formation in a .tubinglesstype well. However, it -is to be clearly understood that lthe use of this plug is not limited to such lan application.
Referring to the drawings, the new plug is shown suspended in a borehole casing 10 which entends from the earths sur-face (not shown). -For reasons of clarity, the usual cement sheath about the casing is not shown.
The new plug member includes a self-expanding, stretchable member 14. Member 14 may be made of any suitable material such as rubber. A lower metal plug 16 `and an upper metal plug 18 having a iishing neck 20 are mounted -in the lower and upper extremities of the self-expanding, stretchable member 14, respectively.
Gripping members such =as `slip segments `22 :are vulcanized to the rubber portions 14. The slips 22 :are lo- AlCf cated mid-.Way between the upper and lower ends of the member 14.
Iintegrally attached to the self-expanding, stretchable member 14 are an upwardly facing rubber cup portion 24 and a downwardly facing rubber cup portion 26 located above and below the slip segments 22, respectively. A coaxial passageway 2'8 extends through the upper plug member 18 and 4the self-expanding, stretchable portion 14 and terminates within the lower plug member 16.
An upper metal tubular sleeve 30 has its top threaded in the bore of upper metal plug 18. A lower metal tubular sleeve 34 is integral-ly attached to lower metal plug 16 and `extends upwardly within member 14. Tubular sleeve 30 has an outside diameter slightly less than the inside diameter of tubular sleeve 34. The lower portion 36 of tubular sleeve 30 ts into the upper portion of tubular sleeve 34. The tubular sleeves prevent reduction of passageway 28 when the plug is stretched as shown in FIG. 1 or contracted as shown in FIG. 2.
In operation, .the plug is lowered within the borehole casing 1) in its stretched condition. This may be accomplished, for example, by using a running tool including an elongated `central rod 40. The central rod 40 is -suiciently long to stretch the plug to its position shown in FIG. 1 when Ithe running tool is connected to .the shing neck, for example, by shear pins 42. In its stretched condition, the plug member has an outside diameter sutliciently less than the bore of the casing 10 to provide sucient uid bypass as the tool is lowered. For example, the outside diameter of the plug in its -stretched condition may be approximately onehalf inch less than the bore of `casing 10.
After the plug has been properly located, means to be subsequently described are provided in the running tool to .permit the rod 4% to be moved upwardly by the expansion of plug member 14. After the plug member 14 has been expanded into its expanded position, the running tool may be pulled free of the iishing neck 18 by exerting suliicient pull on the running tool to break the shear pins 42. The running tool may then be removed to the earths surface leaving the plug member 14 in its expanded position.
lThe plug member will automatically self-expand into the position shown in FIG. 2. The expanded position of the plug member is greater than the bore of the casing 10. For example, it may be provided that the expanded outside diameter ofthe plug member is one-half inch greater than the bore of the casing 10.
The small slip segments 22 vulcanized to the outside wall of the rubber portion 14 illustrate one method of retaining the plug in its set position when it is subjected to differential pressure in either direction. The rubber cuptype elements 24 and 2,6 at the top and bottom of the plug serve to seat the plug tighter as it is subjected to differential pressure in either direction.
Should it -be desirable to set the plug permanently, the plug may be coated with a cementitious material such as epoxy resin when the plug is iu its stretched condition just prior to running in the hole. Thus, the cementitious material will permanently cement the plug member to the casing 10.
FIG. 3 shows the relative position of the parts as the running tool is lowered to the desired depth and below a collar recess 44 in casing 10. The running tool includes a body 46 having lower slots 48 and upper slots 50. Recesses 52 having spring biased slip release dogs `54 pivotally mounted therein are provided in the body member 46 between lthe lower slots 48 and upper slots 50. A shear pin 55 (see FIG. 6) and a stop member 57 are also provided in each of the recesses 5-2.
A cone body S6 extends downwardly into the bore of body member 46. Lugs v58 are provided at the lower extremity of cone body 56. The lugs 58` extend outwardly into the slots 50. The cone body 56 is used to operate the slips 60 which are pivotally mounted to the upper extremity of body 46 by means of pivots 62. The tubular portion 64 of cone body 56 is releasably connected into the body 46 by means of shear pin 66.
The jars 70, shown in dotted lines, have a solid rod member 72 fxedly attached thereto and extending down- Wardly therefrom. A. metal tubular member 74 is connected to the lower portion of solid rod member 72.
A bushing 76 is shear pinned to the rod 40 by shear pins 78. An annular member 80 is screw threaded into the body member 46. Annular member 80 serves to limit the upward movement of ybushing 76. The body member 46 is also provided with an upwardly facing annular shoulder 82 to limit the downward movement of bushing 76.
The cone member `56 is provided with a downwardly facing shoulder 84 at the upper portion thereof. The downwardly facing shoulder 84 of cone member 56 engages with the upwardly facing shoulder 86 of the metal tubular member 74 when the jars 70V are raised upwardly to remove the running tool from the borehole after the plug member 14- has vbeen expanded.
In the operation of the running tool, the tool is run into the well casing with the plug 14 attached thereto, and the relative positions of the parts of the tool are as shown in FIG. 3. The plug member 14 is in the stretched position. After the tool and plug have been lowered to the desired depth below collar recess 44, the tool is then raised to allow the dogs 54 to engage the recess 44. The shear pin 66 connecting the cone 56 to the upper part of body 46 is then sheared to release the cone 5 6. Thereafter, a greater upward force is applied to the tool to break shear pin 55 and move dogs I54 to the positions shown in FIG. 7. The jars 70 are then raised a desired amount and then lowered fast to engage the slips 460 with the wall of casing 10. i'I'he body 46 is then stationary against downward movement.
Thereafter, the operator jars down on the tubular member 74 to shear the pins 78 holding retainer bushing 76 to the rod 40 extending into the bore of the plug member 14. This allows the plug to contract to the positions shown in FIGS. 2 and 7. After the plug member 14 has been contracted, the jars 70` are raised and jarred upwardly to shear the shear pins 42 connected to the fishing neck at the top of plug member 14. The running tool is then removed to the earths surface.
If it is desired at any time to remove the plug member 14 from the casing 10,- a pulling tool such as that shown in FIG. 8 may be used. The pulling tool, generally designated 89, includes a solid rod 90 which extends downwardly into the plug member 14. An annular release' member 92 is slidably mounted about the upper portion of rod 90 and is normally supported as shown by the shoulder 93 formed by the lower portionof the rod 90. The purpose of the member 92 is to provide an emergency release mechanism in case the plug 14 cannot be pulled loose when desired.
Rod 90 is threaded along a portion of its length as at 94. The threaded portion screw threads within a member 96 including grasping means 98. Grasping means 98 are flexible members and are adapted to slide over and snap latch to the fishing neck 20 for removal of the plug member 14. The grasping members 98 are provided with inward protrusions 100. Spring biased friction blocks 102 are mounted in the upper portion of member 96 and engage the wall of the casing to prevent rotation of member 96 as the rod 90 is threaded vertically therethrough during the removal operation.
To remove the plug member 14, the assembly or tool 89 is lowered by way of an operating string of tubing until the flexible grasping means 98 engage with the fishing neck 20 with the rod 90 extending into the central bore of the plug member. The rod is then rotated to the right thereby extending the rod and stretching the plug 14 to the position shown in FIG. 1 whereby it can be removed from the casing 10.
In case the plug member becomes stuck in the casing to the extent that the tool 89 cannot disengage it, the rod 90 is rotated to the left so as to move the rod vertically upward with respect to the member 96. As the rod moves up the annular member 92 likewise is moved vertically until the member 92 engages the protrusions 100, thereby spreading the `grasping means 98 and disengaging them from the plug head 20. The tool 89 is then removed from -the'casing 10 and the plug is drilled out or removal attempts may be made with heavier equipment.
l. A plug member for casing comprising: a self-expanding, stretchable member having a coaxial passageway extending therethrough, said passageway being open -at the top and closed at the bottom; a fishing neck at the open end of the passageway; and gripping members on the outside of the self-expanding, stretchable Imember whereby a running tool having a rod adapted to enter the passageway and engage the bottom of the passageway may be used to lower the member down the casing in stretched condition to the desired location and the tool then removed to permit the self-expanding member to expand into contact with the casing.
2. A plug member in accordance with claim 1 wherein the gripping members are slip segments.
3. A plug member in accordance with claim 2 wherein the self-expanding, stretchable member is made of rubber.
4. A plug member in accordance with claim 3 wherein i `an integral upwardly facing cup portion and an integral References Cited in the le of this patent UNITED STATES PATENTS 2,138,156 Halliburton Nov. 29, 1938 2,212,619 Roe Aug. 27, 1940 2,678,101 Thaxton May 11, 1954 3,003,560 Corley et al. Oct. l0, 1961