US 3248132 A
Description (OCR text may contain errors)
April 1966 E.- K. PIERCE, JR 3,248,132
COMBINED RETRACTABLE HOLD-DOWN MEANS AND HANGER SUPPORT Filed Feb. 25, 1963 4 Sheets-Sheet 1 INVENTOR. flit 009A. 195265. 1?
4%, @m4 a Maud 40 arr we s April 26, 1966 E. K. PIERCE, JR 3,248,132
COMBINED RETRACTABLE HOLD-DOWN MEANS AND HANGER SUPPORT Filed Feb. 25, 1963 4 Sheets-Sheet 2 id 4 a? I INVENTOR. i1 2 waaz? K /f'f fi/ ,9 rralvlveys April 26, 1966 E. K. PIERCE, JR 3,248,132
COMBINED RETRACTABLE HOLD-DOWN MEANS AND HANGER SUPPORT Filed Feb. 25, 1963 4 Sheets-Sheet .5
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COMBINED RETRACTABLE HOLD-DOWN MEANS AND HANGER SUPPORT Filed Feb. 25, 1965 iii/ 4 Sheets-Sheet 4 United States Patent O.
3,248,132. COMBINED RETRACTABLE HOLD-DOWN MEANS AND HANGER SUPPORT Elwood K. Pierce, In, Houston, Tex., assignor to Gray Tool Company, Houston, Tex., a corporation of Texas Filed Feb. 25, 1963, Ser. No. 260,372 14 Claims. (Cl. 285-133) This invention relates to a device for engaging well pipe hanger means for desiredpurposes, and particularly to such a device that simultaneously holds down one hanger and supports another.
In one embodiment the invention relates to an improvement in well pipe hanger hold-down means such that the hold-down means has asurface for independently supporting one pipe hanger while simultaneously holding down another pipe hanger. As is usual for pipe holddown means,-the device extends through an aperture in a well head that is adapted to receive successive strings of pipe, including either casing or tubing or both. Generally, the well head aperture has an axis which extends horizontally, i.e., transverse of the axis of the well head and piping, and the supporting surface of the improved hold-down means is horizontal while the surface which engages a hanger to hold it down is on an angle, i.e., tapered outwardly and downwardly, so as to exert downward force on the hanger increasingly as the hold-down device is moved inwardly.
The hold-down device of this invention, in an exemplary embodiment, has a single wedge-shaped element the nose or forward end of which has the aforesaid supporting and hold-down surfaces. It is desirable, if not necessary, to keep these surfaces from rotating while the forward end of the element is being moved forwardly, i.e., inwardly, through the aperture in the well head to effect engagement with the hangers above and below. Such rotation is prevented, in a particular embodiment of this invention, by causing the wedge-shaped element to be moved forwardly, or rearwardly, by a drive means which is eccentric of the well head aperture and wedge.
It has been customary in the past to employ locking screws which threadedly extend through a side aperture in a well head and have a conical inward surface for engaging a similar type surface on the upper end of a hanger to cause that hanger to be held down. For example, the Davidson et al. patent, 2,507,246, of May 9, 1950, shows such a locking screw in conjunction with a stufiing boxy type hanger but the hanger is itself supported in a tapered seat or bowl in the well or casing head. On the other hand, a similar type locking screw is disclosed in FIGURE 5 of the Lillch et ,al. patent, 2,558,940, of June 5, 1951, for the purpose of engaging a ram to move the ram inwardly into a tubing support position. Support for the tubing hanger, however, is
I again a conically tapered section in the tubing head.
As indicated above, the present invention combines the support and hold-down functions of the separate prior art locking screws and rams into a single device, and this provides for many different advantages the principal ones of which include: subsequent hanger loads are not pyramided onto first landed hangers, e.g., the weight of more than one string of pipe is not carried by the outer hanger; vertical spacings of the hangers are dependent on the top of one wedge only and errors do not accumulate from one hanger to the next as they would if one hanger were landed directly on a former, i.e., even if a lower hanger extends upwardly too far the taper on the lower edge of the hold-down wedge of this invention nevertheless engages the hanger without varying the vertical position of the seat in that wedge for the next above hanger; total loads may be hung without enlarging the 3,248,132 Patented Apr. 26, 1966 seal diameters of subsequent hangers and thus oversize control equipment is not required; several casing strings may be drilled for and set Without changing control equipment; and any given hanger may be omitted Without eifecting any other since the improved hold-down and support device of this invention can-be utilized in either of its functions alone as'well as together.
There is no particular limitation, generally speaking,
, to the type of hangers with which the device of this invention may be employed. The hangers in the two abovementioned patents are exemplary of those usable with this invention, with it being understood of course that any hanger which is to be held down by the device of this invention needs to have a surface with which the sloping surface of the device can engage to cause a downward force, and any hanger to be supported by the device of this invention needs to have a surface compatible with the supporting surface of the device in order to effect the desired support. Other hangersand hanger assemblies, besides those described in detail below, which are usable with this invention, are disclosed in the co-pending applications of Watts et al., Serial No. 65,064 filed Octoley et al. 2,485,497, October 18, 1949; Crain 2,568,581,
September 18, 1951; Mueller et al. 2,624,413, January 6, 1953; Watts et al. 2,751,235, June 19, 1956; Watts et al. 2,754,134, July 10, 1956; Watts et al. 3,001,803, September 26, 1961; Watts et al. 3,051,513, August 28, 1962.
It is therefore an object of the present invention to provide improved well pipe hanger hold-down means that has a surface for independently supporting one pipe hanger while simultaneously holding down another pipe hanger.
It is also an object of this invention to provide a device for use in a side aperture of a Well head to engage pipe hanging means, which includes an element slidably movable in the aperture to effect a predetermined engagement with pipe hanging means, and means ecceutrically threadingly engaging the element for causing it to slide without rotation.
Still a further object of this invention, in conjunction with the last preceding object, is the provision on the inward end of the slidable element of an upper horizontal surface for supporting one pipe hanging means and an opposing lower surface extending at an angle to the upper surface for engaging and holding down another pipe hanging means.
Other objects and advantages of this invention will become apparent to those of ordinary skill in the art after reading the appended claims and the following detailed description of various embodiments of the invention, in conjunction with the drawings, in which:
FIGURE 1 is a longitudinal view partially in cross section of a well head and strings of pipe with respective hangers, illustrating an embodiment of the hanger holddown and support device of this invention;
FIGURE 2 is a cross sectional view of the hanger holddown and support device utilized in FIGURE 1, retracted in the well head side aperture;
FIGURE 3 is a right hand elevational view of FIG- URE 2;
FIGURE 4 is a cross section showing a modification of the hanger hold-down and support device;
FIGURE 5 is a portion of a well head partially in cross section illustrating one type of hanger that may be utilized with this invention;
FIGURE 6 isa longitudinal cross sectional view of a portion of another well head illustrating another type of hanger that may be used with this invention; and 7 FIGURE 7 is a longitudinal cross sectional view of a portion of another well head illustrating still a further type of hanger with which this invention'may be employed.
In FIGURE 1 well head 10 is shown with its conventional outlets 12 and a seal ring 14 along with clamp 16 a both as fully described and claimed in the Watts et al. Patent 2,766,829 of October 16, 1956.
At its lower end well head 10 threadingly supports an outer casing string 18. The next string of casing 20 is threadingly engaged to hanger 22 which in turn is supported on the conical'seator bowl 24 of the well head to which it is sealed by a packing ring 26 of rubber or the like as is conventional. The upper end of hanger 22 has annular inwardly and upwardly tapering or conical surface 28, against which conventional locking screws or holding-down devices operate to maintain a hanger in its landed and sealed position.
The present invention provides a device generally indicasted by the numeral 30 in FIGURE 1, and shown in greater detail in FIGURES 2 and 3, which has a forward or inner element 32 with a sloping surface 34 that presses against the conical surface 28 of the pipe hanger 22. In addition, the forward element 32, or wedge, as it may be called, includes a horizontal surface 36 which is utilized to support the next above hanger 38. This latter hanger threadingly engages the casing string 40, all of the weight of which is supported fully on surface 36, ofthe wedge element 32. At its upper end, hanger 38 has an annular lip 42 in which is a ring seal 44 both of which contact the conical surface 46 of the well head. This lip is defiectable and is utilized to cause a good seal to be made with the well head, but does not carry any weight of the hanger or its string of casing. In order to prevent the next hold-down and support device 48 from engaging lip 42 and preventing its proper sealing function, the upper end of hanger 38 extends above the lip and has threadingly I engaged with it a metal ring 50. This ring is part of the hanger assembly, and has an upper conical surface which engages the sloping surface 34 of device 48. The horizontal upper surface 36 of the wedge element 32 of this device supports the upper hanger 52 with which is associated the tubing string 54. The hanger 52 is held down by a conventional conically pointed locking screw 56 though it could as well be held down by the improved type hold-down device of this invention.
From FIGURE 1 it will be noted that the successive hangers 22, 38 and 52 are progressively thicker in order to accommodate the successively smaller diameter strings of pipe in the unchanging internal diameter or bore of the well head. Due to variations amongst dimensions of various parts it may frequently happen that either of the hangers 22 or 38 in their respective overall height dimensions do not conform exactly to the predetermined dimensions between respective seat and hold-down means. However, because the hold-down and support devices 30 and 48 have their seat or supporting surfaces 36 horizontal while the hold-down surfaces 34 are sloping, these devices compensate for any variation in hanger lengths. That is, the device in one instance may go further inward than in another instance in order to effect the desired cotact and downward pressure on the hanger below, but this makes no difference since in either instance the flat supporting surface 36 is sufficiently within the well head to give all the needed support to the hanger above.
From inspection of FIGURE 1 it may also be noted that any one of the hangers and respective string of pipe may be omitted without affecting any others, pointing up again that no lower hanger acts as a support for any upper hanger, but that each of the hangers, except the lowest one, is independently supported by a respective one of the novel hold-down and support devices 30, 48. As an example, lack of employment and omission of hanger 38 and its casing string 40 would make no difference to. either the lower hanger 22 or upper hanger 52, since the.
sloping surface 34 of device 30 would continue to hold hanger 22 down and the upper horizontal surface 36 of device 48 would continue to support hanger 52. This also points up the advantages that there can be no possible accumulation of hanger height errors, since regardless of the presence or absence of a hanger, or of its height, the hanger immediately above it always rests at the same vertical level on the respective fiat surface 36 of the supporting device 30 or 48.
One embodiment of the novel hold-down and supporting device is shown in retracted position in FIGURE 2. That is, the wedge element 32 is shown in its fully retracted position in the side aperture 58 of well head 10, abutting the wedge body 60 which is secured in its tapered seat 62 in the well head by a retainer 64 that threadedly en-. gages the aperture in the well head and presses against the shoulder 66 of wedge body 60.- The wedge element 32 is circular in its outside dimension and is slidably movable inwardly and outwardly in the circular aperture 58. As is shown in FIGURES 2 and 3, surface 36 is flat and horizontal in its length and breadth, while the underyling sloping surface 34 is at an acute angle with surface 36, diverging outwardly relative therto. In assembling the device into aperture 58 of the well head, the wedge element 32 is initially disposed in the angular position illustrated in FIGURES 2 and 3, and it is then desirable to cause this element to move forwardly into the interior of the well head in order to first engage a pipe hanger and hold it down and simultaneously present a flat horizontal surface for subsequently supporting a successive hanger when landed. This means that the inward movement of wedge element 32 should be caused in such a manner that it does not rotate but continues to keep its surface 36 horizontal and facing upwardly. Several ways are available for accomplishing this, for example keying, but the particular way illustrated in FIG- URE 2 is preferred. This Way involves use of a screw stem 68 which engages wedge body 60 and wedge element 32 eccentrically. That is, the axis of screw stem 68 is off center, though parallel, to the axis of wedge body 60 and wedge element 32 as well as aperture 58. Engagement of screw stem 68 is by threads 70 of one hand, for example right hand threads, and engagement wtih wedge body 32 is by threads 72 of the opposite hand.. Therefore, upon turning stem 68, element 32 moves rapidly forwardly or rearwardly according to the direction stem 68 is rotated, without any rotation of element 32 being affected.
For sealing purposes, the screw stem 68 in FIGURE 2 may be surrounded by junk rings 74 and 76 between which is packing 78, secured together by the proper.
tightening of gland 80. Before assembling the device. of
FIGURE 2 into the well head initially, the wedge element 2 is screwed onto threads 72 all the way into its seat in wedge body 60, i.e., to the relative position shown for these two parts in FIGURE 2. Then, the assembled wedge body 60 and wedge 32 along with screw stem 68 I and gland 80, are positioned into aperture 58 with the proper orientation of surface 36. 64 is threaded into the well head, to a hand tight position. tainer 64 is tightened /2 turn alternately until the re tainer is tight with a 36 inch torque wrench for example, and the stem turns freely. The retainer may then be Then, the retainer ring After that, stem 68 is backed off A turn and re-. I
the wedge 32' in FIGURE 4 is substantially the same thereas, and is assembled and manipulated forwardly and rearwardly in the same manner as discussed above relative to FIGURES 2 and 3.
Reference is now made to FIGURE 5, to give a further indication of specific types of hangers with which the present invention may be utilized. Though this and other figures illustrate the wedge elements of the holddown and supporting devices30 and 48 as being of the preferred type shown in FIGURE 2, they may alternately be similar to the wedge element 32 of FIGURE 4. In FIGURE 5 the outer casing 18 is threadedly engaged with the well head 10, while casing 20 is secured in any conventional manner to hanger 82. This hanger is sealed to casing 20 by sealing means 84, and is supported in the bore of well head on a shoulder or ledge 86, it being. sealed to the bore by sealing means 88. The'upper end of hanger 82 has its surface tapered to match the sloping surface 34 of the wedge element 32, though the upper surface of hanger 82 may be disposed at any other angle desired and end at a higher or lower point than illustrated since wedge element 32 is adjustable inwardly and outwardly to cause its surface to contact the upper edge of hanger 82 and hold it down. As previously indicated, in so moving wedge element 32 and its upper surface 36 causes no change in the level at which the hanger 90 is vertically disposed, since surface 36 is horizontal at any position of wedge 32.
Hanger 90 in FIGURE 5 has the casing string 40 secured and sealed to it, and is held down against the supporting surface 36 of device 30 by the sloping surface 34 of device 48. This latter device, in turn supports on its surface 36 another hanger 92 to which is sealingly secured the tubing 54.
Still another type of hanger arrangement which may be employed with the support and hold-down device of this invention, is shown in FIGURE 6. Each of the hangers 94 and 96 in this figure is comprised of a num ber of elements with the respective upper elements 98 and 100 thereof being the same except in radial thickness, and having one sloping edge cooperating with wedge surface 34, thereby being held down 1 Hanger 94 is seated in well 10 by the conical seat 102, but hanger 96 is supported on the ledge surface 36- of the wedge element 32 of device 30. The hanger 96 is held down against that ledge by the downward force of sloping edge 34 of device 48. The upper ledge surface of device 48, in turn, supports a tubing hanger 104. Hangers 94 and 96 respectively cooperate with casing strings 20 and 4!),
being sealingly engaged therewith by seals 106 and sawtooth suspension and wedging devices 108.
'In FIGURE 7 the wedge element *32 supports a hanger 1'10 and holds down a hanger 112, both of which hangers are still of different type, being generally referred to as a wraparound or split type hanger. These hangers are an assembly of elements somewhat similar to hangers 9-4 and 96 and have an additional lower element 114 spaced from element 116 a maximum amount as determined by screw 118, with the spacing therebetween being filled with packing or sealing material 120. This seal is initially set between parts 114 and 116 by the downward pull of the hanger slips, caused by the set weight of the pipe. Seal 120 is further tightened as follows. When surface 34 of the wedge element places a downward force on the upper element 122 of the hanger assembly 112, this causes not only a good seal at the conical surface 124 but a decrease of the spacing between elements '114 and 116 so as to effect a better seal by packing material 120, the stem of screw '118 being movable downwardly in element 114 which is sealed onto the conical surface 126 of the well head 10.
With regard to hangers generally, the sealing means around the pipe and the outside of the hanger or suspension assembly may be of various types. On three or less bowl installations, use may be made of tapered sealing of the head. If outside tapered seals are used on the suspension equipment, each higher hanger will be slightly larger in diameter than the one just below it but if straight line wall seals are used, each hanger will be of the same diameter. I 7
Normally, when multiple bowls are employed in a conventional manner, a 12 inch control equipment flange is required for use with a 10% inch O.D. casing because the extra flange is needed to support the load of each string. However, because of this invention, 10 inch drilling equipment may be used over such casings and 12 inch drilling equipment over 13% inch 0.D. casing and respectively contain multi-suspensions and sealing means.
Thus, there has been disclosed various forms of the hold-down and support device according to this invention, and a variety of types of equipment with which they may be employed. Modifications of this invention and equipment with which it may be utilized, will occur to those of ordinary skill in the art upon reading this disclosure, but it is to be realized that the disclosure hereof is exemplary and not lirnitative, the scope of the invention being defined by the appended claims.
' What is claimed is:
1. A well head; a plurality of hanger means received in said well head for hanging respective well pipes, said well head having at least one hanger hold-down and support means comprising means movable as a unit transversely of said hanger means and having'an upper surface supporting one of said hanger means and a lower surface engaging and holding down another of said hanger means.
2. A well head; a plurality of vertically successively disposed hanger means received in said well head for hanging respective well pipes, said well head having at least one hanger hold-down and support means comprising an element having one substantially horizontal upwardly facing upper surface supporting one of said hanger means and an upwardly forwardly inclined downwardly facing lower surface holding down another of said hanger means.
3. A head as in claim 2 wherein said element is movable laterally toward and away from said hanger means to respectively increase and decrease the hold down pressure on the hold down hanger means while maintaining constant support of the supported hanger means.
4. Apparatus for completing a well comprising a well head; means defining a longitudinally extending throughlbore .in said head; a first hanger adapted to hangingly support a length of the well conduit, said first hanger being received in said head throughbore; means supporting said first hanger with respect to said head; a second hanger adapted to hangingly support a length of well conduit, said second hanger being received in said head throughbore above said first hanger; means defining a laterally extending side port on said head communicating at its inner end with said head through bore generally between said hangers, means defining a hold down and support element received in said side port and protruding into said head throughbore, said element having an upwardly facing supporting surface engaging and supporting said second hanger and a downwardly 'facin-g hold-down surface engaging and holding down said first hanger.
5. A well head as in claim 4 wherein said hold-down and support element has its said supporting surface horizontally fiat so that horizontal movement of the hold-down and support element in a given direction prevents upward pressure on the said second hanger sup ported thereby but. causes downward pressure on the said first hanger to effect the said holding down thereof.
6. A well head as in claim 4 wherein said supporting surface overlies the said hold-down surface.
moving said hold-down and support element essentially solely along an axis extending transversely of said well head.
8. A well head as in claim 7 wherein said moving means comprises means threadeclly engaging said holddown and support element eccentrically parallel of said axis.
9. A device for use with a circular side aperture of a well head to hold-down and support respective pipe hanging means comprising a wedge element having a portion of circular cross-section the diameter of which is substantially equal to the diameter of the aperture, saidwedge being slidably movable forwardly and rearwardly in said aperture and having at its forward end one surface which is'parallel to the movement axis of the wedge for supporting one of said pipe hanging means and an opposing sloping surface which diverges rearwardly relative to said one supporting surface. for engaging and holding down another of said pipe hanging means, and movement means threadedly engaging the rearward end of said wedge eccentrically of the axis of said aperture and said wedge element circular portion causing said wedge to slide in said aperture and preventing rotation of said wedge; said movement means including a wedge body which is securable at a predetermined point in said aperture and a screw stem which threadedly engages both said wedge and wedge body but in opposite hand threads, the axis of said stem being parallel eccentric of the longitudinal axes of said wedge and wedge body.
10. A device as in claim 9 and further having means, including retainer means threadaible in said aperture, for securing said wedge body at said predetermined point in the aperture.
11. Apparatus for completing a well comprising: a well head; means defining a longitudinally extending throughbore in said head; means defining a laterally extending side port communicating at its inner end with said head throughbore; means defining a hanger support in said head throughbore below the intersection of said side port and said head throughbore; a first hanger adapted to hangingly support a length of well conduit,
said first hanger being received in said head throughbore and supported on said hanger support, a radially movable wedge element received in said laterally extending side port; said wedge element including a radially inner end portion having means defining a radially inwardly and upwardly inclined lower surface and a substantially horizontal upper surface; means for reciprocating said wedge element between a first position wherein the forward portion of said wedge element is substantially retracted into said laterally extendnig side port and a second position wherein the forward portion of said wedge element protrudes substantially into said head throughbore and said inclined lower surface thereof wedgingly engages said first hanger thereby holding down said first hanger; a second hanger adapted to hangingly support a length of well conduit, said second hanger being received in said head throughbore and supported on said substantial- 1y horizontal upper surface of said wedge element; and. means on said head above said laterally extending side port holding down said second hanger.
12. Apparatus as set forth in claim 11 wherein said hanger support defining means comprises an upwardly facing shoulder in said head throughbore,.and wherein said head throughbore in the portion thereof extending upwardly from said shoulder is of substantially constant diameter.
13. Apparatus as set forth in claim 11 wherein .the.
means holding down said second head comprises means defiing a second laterally extending side port communicate a ing at the inner end thereof with said head throughbore above the intersection of the first mentioned side port and said head throughbore; a second wedge element substantially into said head throughbore and said inclined lower surface thereof wedgingly engages said second hanger thereby holding down said second hanger.
14. Apparatus as set forth in claim '11 wherein said lateral side port has a throughbore of generally circular cross-section, said wedge element has a region thereof adjacent and rearward of said forward portion of circular cross-section and having a diameter substantially equal to that of the side port throughbore; means defining a threaded socket in said wedge element opening rearw-ardly thereof, said threaded socket being radially displaced from the longitudinal axis of said wedge element region of circular cross-section and extending generally parallel to said axis; a threaded stem threadably received in said socket, said stem having one end thereof protruding outwardly of said side port; and a .wedge body rceived in said port near the outer end thereof and' surrounding said stern, means defining internal threads on said wedge body cooperating with said stem whereby rotation of said stem advances and retracts said wedge element.
References Cited by the Examiner UNITED STATES PATENTS 2,054,336 9/1936 Penick 285l40 2,080,610 5/1937 Humason 285l40 2,144,227 l/1939 Penick 285-133 2,188,557 1/1940 Otis 285111 2,644,224 7/ 1953 C-hilcott 2996 2,775,472 12/1956 Brown 285-" 2,934,148 4/1960 Allaire. 3,004,778 10/ 1961 Williams. 3,072,420 1/ 1963 Lebeaux. 3,155,401 11/1964 Muslof 28518 CARL W, TOMLIN, Primary Examiner.