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Publication numberUS3272266 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateSep 13, 1966
Filing dateMay 6, 1964
Priority dateMay 6, 1964
Publication numberUS 3272266 A, US 3272266A, US-A-3272266, US3272266 A, US3272266A
InventorsKennard Thomas A
Original AssigneeKennard Thomas A
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Application for rotatable power elevator
US 3272266 A
Abstract  available in
Images(5)
Previous page
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Claims  available in
Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

Sept. 13, 1966 T. A. KENNARD 3,272,266

APPLICATION FOR ROTATABLE POWER ELEVATOR Filed May 6, 1964 5 Sheets-Sheet l 7%0/7704 A. Ken/70rd INVENTOR.

Sept. 13, 1966 T. A. KENNARD 3,272,266

APPLICATION FOR ROTATABLE POWER ELEVATOR Filed May 6, 1964 5 Sheets-Sheet 2 760mm; ,4. Karma/a INVENTOR.

Sept. 13, 1966 T. A KENNARD 3,272,266

APPLICATION FOR ROTATABLE POWER ELEVATOR Filed May 6, 1964 5 Sheets-Sheet 5 T//0/770J A Ken/70rd 7 4f INVENTOR. P 7 BY M4 Sept. 13, 1966 T. A. KENNARD APPLICATION FOR ROTATABLE POWER ELEVATOR 5 Sheets-Sheet 4 Filed May 6, 1964 I NVENTOR.

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ATTORNEY! Sept. 13, 1966 T. A. KENNARD APPLICATION FOR ROTATABLE POWER ELEVATOR 5 Sheets-Sheet 5 Filed May 6, 1964 l NVENTOR.

United States Patent 3,272,266 APPLICATION FOR RUTATABLE POWER ELEVATOR Thomas A. Kennard, 1506 onrad Sauer, Houston, Tex. Filed May 6, 1964, Ser. No. 365,455 Claims. (Cl. 173-164) This invention relates to a rotatable power elevator for raising and lowering a section of pipe and rotating the pipe. More particularly, the invention relates to a Well tool for clamping about a pipe having an upset tool joint on the upper end thereof and for raising and lowering said pipe and for rotating said pipe during make-up and break-out operations While running the pipe into and removing the pipe from a well bore or casing.

In the process of inserting pipe into and removing pipe from a well, it has heretofore been necessary to use a chain to Wrap around the pipe to thereby spin the pipe in threading one joint into and out of another joint once the joint has been broken by a power tool such as tongs. The use of a chain is not only time consuming but dangerous to the operators in that they may get their fingers or hands caught by the chain during operation. Hence, there has long been a need for a satisfactory tool for spinning a pipe during makeup and break-out operations which will eliminate the use of the chain and provide a safe and efiicient means for performing the operation.

The prior art has a number of examples of various power tongs which have been used for initially breaking the tool joint and subsequently spinning the pipe being unthreaded. The prior art also shows certain power tongs for performing the make-up for the pipe with another pipe. However, none of the foregoing tools included an elevator means, hence it was necessary to use a plurality of tools to accomplish make-up and break-out operations. The prior art also teaches a spinner elevator which the operator is required to lower over the end of the pipe and which apparatus engages the inside threaded portion of the upper end of the pipe. This tool was never successful in that it was very diflioult for the operator to correctly stab the tool over the upper end of the pipe and into the threads thereof, particularly when the pipe was being supported in a derrick. Moreover, it was difficult for the man working on the monkey board to properly align the pipe with the tool for this stabbing op eration. Hence, the tool was not successful for this and other reasons which are obvious when viewed in the light of the present invention.

It is therefore an object of this invention to provide a rotatable power elevator for latching about the outside of a pipe and for raising and lowering the pipe and rotating the pipe during make-up and break-out operations.

It is another object of this invention to provide a rotatable power elevator for clamping about a length of pipe below the tool joint and which tool is then adaptable to slide up and engage the tool joint and thereby support the length of pipe and while so supporting the pipe to rotate the pipe during make-up and break-out operations.

A still further objective of this invention is to provide an improved well tool for clamping about a section of pipe and supporting that section by the upset tool joint on the upper end thereof and for thereby raising, lower-ing, and rotating the pipe during make-up and break-out operations, and which tool has automatic means for opening and closing about the pipe.

Another objective of this invention is to provide a fluid operated power tool of the type described above wherein there is provided a piston actuated gripping means for gripping the pipe during the rotation thereof.

These and other objectives will be obvious to those skilled in the art by reference to the drawings and the description herein.

Briefly stated, the invention herein is for a rotatable power elevator for raising and lowering a section of pipe and rotating this section of pipe during make-up and break-out operations. The tool is formed by an outer housing having two portions which are connected together, preferably in a pivotal manner, for opening and closing, and which in the closed position define or form a recess therebetween for receiving or positioning the section of pipe therein.

Mounted inside of the outer housing is an inner body which is adapted to be rotated therein. This inner body is made of two segments each of which is supported by one of the portions of the outer housing when the outer housing is in an open position. These segments of the rotatable inner body also define a recess therebetween for supporting therein the section of pipe when the outer housing is in the closed position, In the preferred embodiment of the invention the pipe is supported in the inner body by the upset tool joint of the pipe section.

Means are provided in the inner body for gripping the outside surface of the section of pipe and holding it from rotation during make-up and break-out operations.

The outer housing is provided with means for raising and lowering thereof while a section of pipe is being supported by the inner body. Means are also provided in the outer housing for rotating the inner body relative thereto while the section of pipe is being supported by the inner body.

Reference to the drawings will further explain the invention wherein like numerals refer to like parts and in which:

FIG. 1 is a plan view, partially in section, showing one embodiment of the tool of this invention.

FIG. 2 is a central vertical sectional view taken at line 22 of FIG. 1.

FIG. 3 is an enlarged sectional view of the pipe gripping and indexing means of the invention taken at line 33 of FIG. 2.

FIG. 4 is a central vertical sectional view taken at line 44 of FIG. 1.

FIG. 5 is a cross sectional view taken at line 55 of FIG. 4.

FIG. 6 is .a diagrammatic representation of the fluid channels and power actuating portions of the tool.

Referring now to FIG. 1, it will be observed that the outer housing of the tool is formed by a left half portion 11 and right half portion 12, each of which is in the shape of a half-circle and which together form a complete circle and each of which is provided with an extension 13 at the rear side thereof which extensions are joined together by and pivoted about pivot pin 14 passing vertically therethrough. One of the extensions 13 is provided with a rear lug 15 which extends rearwardly therefrom and on which is mounted fluid hose connector 16, the purpose of which will be explained hereinafter. Both right and left half portions 11 and 12 of the outer housing have power means attached thereto for rotating certain portions of the tool. These power means take the form of air motors 17 which are attached to the side of the outer housing and which rotate pinion gears 18 through appropriate gears in gear-boxes 19. Fluid or air for operation of motors 17 is provided through flexible hoses 20 which connect to connector 16.

Means for raising and lowering the outer housing take the form of bail hooks 21, one of which is connected to left half portion 11 and one of which is connected to right half portion 12 of the outer housing and are disposed from each other. These are for the purpose of attaching the bail or traveling block to the tool so that it may be raised and lowered and supported thereby.

Left half portion 11 of the outer housing is provided with a radially extending left handle'22 and right half portion 12 is provided with radially extending right handle 23 which handles are shaped for holding by an operator.

Immediately below left handle 22, left half portion 11 is provided with a lug extension 24 which has cam pin 25 vertically passing therethrough and on which is mounted unlocking handle 26 and latch 27. Latch 27 is designed to engage latch shoulder 28 which is supported by right half portion 12 of the outer housing. Unlocking handle 26 and latch 27 are so mounted on pin 25 that when unlocking handle 26 is rotated outwardly or clockwise as viewed in FIG. 1, latch 27 is similarly rotated. Latch 27 has a cam lug 29 attached thereto which is so positioned such that when the opposite end of latch 27 has cleared latch shoulder 28, cam lug 29 will engage manual switch means in the form of a ball type trigger valve 30, which is mounted in lug extension 24. As will be explained hereinafter, trigger valve 30 is adapted to actuate power means for pivotally opening the outer housing such that left half portion 11 and right half portion 12 are opened up for receiving or removing a section of pipe from the tool.

The top portion of the outer housing is provided with a top cover formed by two semi-circular shaped plates 36 which are bolted to the housing by bolts 37. Plates 36 together form an annular ring about the top of the outer housing when the tool is closed as shown in FIG. 1.

When in the closed position, tool joint 40 of the pipe is supported therein. Air or other fluid is supplied to the outer housing of the tool via air lines'31, 32, 33 and 34, with lines 31 and 32 being connected to right half portion 12 and with lines 33 and 34 being connected to left half portion 11. Reference to FIG. 2 will further explain the internal details of the tool.

There it will be observed that bail hooks 21 have vertical clamp members 41 attached thereto by bolts 42 whereby the bail or traveling block may be attached to the outer housing for raising and lowering. Each of the plates 36 which form the top cover of the outer housing is provided with a central downwardly tapered portion 39, which portions together are in the shape of a funnel.

Positioned inside of the outer housing of the tool is a rotatable inner body having two generally arcuate or semi-circular shaped segments 43 and 44 which together form what might be called an annular ring. Segment 43 is shown being supported in left half portion 11 and segment 44 is shown being supported in right half portion 12 of the outer housing when the tool is indexed for opening as will be explained hereinafter.

Segments 43 and 44 are so shaped that together they form an annular ring or inner body which is rotatable inside of the outer housing formed by portions 11 and 12 thereof. Segments 43 and 44 also form an opening therebetween for receiving pipe 45 to which tool joint 40 is connected. Segments 43 and 44 are provided with two removable semi-annular lugs 46 which together form a sleeve or collar and which engage and support tool joint 40 when the tool is closed. Lugs 46 are removably mounted (by means not shown) so that they may be replaced with lugs forming either a larger or smaller diameter so that different sized tool joints may be supported therein.

Each of the segments 43 and 44 of the inner body is provided with a vertical extending fluid cylinder 47 having a cylinder cap 48 secured thereover and sealing off the top portions of cylinders 47. Positioned inside of cylinders 47 are cam pistons 49 which are Z shaped in central section as seen in FIG. 2. Pistons 49 pass through cam jaw carriers 50 and are adapted to cam carriers 50 radially inward and outward during up and down movement.

The movement of pistons to the upper position as shown in FIG. 2 is caused by fluid pressure or air pressure applied through radially extending lair ports 51 in the bottom portions of cylinders 47. Each of the air ports 51 communicates with a semi-annular shaped air passage 52 in the form of a groove about the inside of left and right half portions 11 and 12 of the outer housing. Both air passages 52 extend almost 180 around the inside of left and right half portions 11 and 12 of the outer housing and each terminate just short of the split line or the opening point of the outer housing. Pressurized air is supplied to passages 52 via lines 32 and 33 as shown in FIG. 1. Hence, as the inner body is rotated air pressure is applied to the lower portion of cylinders 47 whereby pistons 49 are kept in the up or raised position.

When pistons 49 are moved to the raised position, they will ca-m jaw carriers 50 radially inwardly so that jaws 53 attached thereto will be engaging tool joint 40. Thus, when the inner body is rotated, tool joint will be rotated thereby.

Jaws 53 are disengaged by being moved radially outward when pistons 49 are moved downwardly, there-by camming carriers 50 outwardly. Air pressure is supplied to the top ends of cylinders 47 by air ports 54 passing through the side walls of segments 43 and 44. Ports 54 communicate with annular air passages 60 which are provided around the inside of the wall of left and rig-ht half portions 11 and 12 of the outer housing and correspond with air passages 52 described above. Air passages 60 communicate with air lines 31 and 34 shown in FIG. 1. Thus, when it is desired to release jaws 53 from an engaging position, air is admitted to the top portions of cylinders 47 thereby driving pistons 49 downwardly which thereby cam jaws 53 and jaw carriers 50 radially outward to a nonengaging position.

In order for the tool to be opened, that is, in order for left and right half portions 11 and 12 of the outer housing to be opened, it is necessary that segments 43 and 44 of the inner body he angularly aligned with respect thereto. This angular coincidence is necessary so that the split line of the tool will 'be uniform and not interfere with the receiving of pipe and tool joint 40 therein when the tool is opened and closed. In order to assure this angular alignment or angular coincidence of segments 43 and 44 with portions 11 and 12, small annular locking recesses 55 has been provided on the inside surfaces of left and right half portions 11 and 12 of the outer housing and in which centering plugs 56 are adapted to be received. Centering plugs 56 are threaded into or otherwise secured to the outward ends of jaw carriers 50. Hence, when pistons 49 move to a downward position, jaw carrier and centering plugs 56 are moved radially outward. Plugs 56 will not seat in locking recesses until the inner body is rotated so that centering plugs 56 to enter locking recess 55, at which point the tool is properly indexed so that the tool can be opened. While the inner body is being rotated during this indexing operation, plugs 56 will ride against the inside surfaces of the outer housing until locking recesses are reached. The details of one such indexing means is better shown in FIG. 3. There will be seen that left half portion 11 of the outer body is provided with locking recess 55. Centering plug 56 is lined up ready for engagement with locking recess 55. As explained above, centering plug 56 is screwed into the back end of jaw carrier 50. Jaw carrier 53 is attached by bolts 57 to the front or inside end of carrier 50. Jaw 53 is provided with small frictionally mounted inserts 58 for gripping tool joint 40 and may be replaced from time to time. FIG. 3 also shows rectangular recess 59 in jaw carrier 50 through which piston 49 moves up and down to provide the camming action.

Means are provided in the tool for rotating the inner body relative to the outer housing. Referring now to FIG. 2, this means conveniently takes the form of two semi-annular rings 61, one of which is bolted to segment 43 and one of which is bolted to segment 44 of the inner body by bolts 62. Rings 61 are each provided with a row of gear teeth about the outer periphery thereof. Hence, rings 61 together form an annular ring gear about the inner body which ring gear is adapted to be engaged by pinion gears 18 shown in FIG. 1. Hence,

when fluid power is supplied to motors 17, pinion gears 18 are thereby rotated, thus rotating rings 61. By coordinating the direction of movement of motors 17 and annular rings 61, the inner body of the tool may be rotated either right or left as desired.

To further facilitate rotation of the inner body in the outer housing, segments 43 and 44 is each provided with a semi-circular or arcu'ate shaped bottom bearing plate 66 having a polished and hardened bottom surface. Plates 66 are secured to segments 43 and 44 by bolts 67. Semicircular seals 68 are provided between plates 66 and the segment to which they are attached to prevent leakage of oil into cylinders 47 since plates 66 close the bottom ends of cylinders 47.

In order to reduce friction to a minimum during rotation of the inner body with respect to the outer housing, the left and right half portions 11 and 12 of the outer housing are formed with polished and hardened annular bearing surfaces 78 having circular oil pockets 70, each of which communicates through a small inlet 71 to an oil reservoir 72, which may be filled through fill plug 69 and drained through drain plug 73. Hence, oil is fed to oil pockets 70 to provide lubrication to bearing surfaces 78 which support bearing plates 66. As best seen in FIG. 5, oil pockets 70 communicate through a plurality of connecting channels 74 to a plurality of circular oil pockets 75 which are in staggered alignment and each of which is provided with a felt type wick whereby oil is brushed on the bottom sides of bearing plates 66 during rotation thereof.

Referring now to FIG. 2, two semi-annular retainer rings 76, one of which is secured to left half portion 11 and one of which is secured to right half portion 12 of the outer body by bolts 77 are also provided in the tool. Thus, a channel or race is formed in which bearing plates 66 may rotate, which channel is sufliciently lubricated to reduce friction to a minimum. This is important since the weight of pipe 45 will be supported by bearing plates 66. Retainer rings 76 together with tapered portions 39 of top plates 36 also help support segments 43 and 44 of the inner body when the tool is opened.

Power means are also provided for opening and closing the tool whereby left and right half portions 11 and 12 are pivoted open and shut on pivot pin 14. These power means include lugs 83, one of which is attached to left half portion 11 and one of which is attached to right half portion 12 near the backside of the tool as viewed in FIG. 2. Each of the lugs 83 has a pin 84 passing vertically therethrough and support mounts 85 of air cylinder 86. Hence, when the piston of air cylinder 86 is actuated in one direction, the tool is opened up and when it is actuated in the other direction, the tool is closed.

As explained earlier in connection with FIG. 1, when unlocking handle 26 is rotated clockwise, as viewed therein, latch 27 is withdrawn from latch shoulder 28 until cam lug 29 engages trigger valve 30. Valve 30 is so designed as to effect application of air pressure to air cylinder 86 to cause opening of the tool.

Valve means are also provided for closing the tool at a predetermined time which means are best shown in FIGS. 1, 4 and 5. Referring now to FIG. 5, valve means for automatically closing the tool is conveniently shown in the form of finger or pipe lock arm 91 which is semicircular in plan view and mounted for rotation on pivot pin 92. The back end of arm 91 is provided with trigger lug 93 which is designed to contact and actuate air trigger valve 94 which is connected to apply air to air cylinder 86 whereby the tool may be closed upon actuation thereof. When the tool is closed as shown in FIG. 5, pipe lock arm 91 fits into appropriate recesses (not shown) in segments 43 and 44 of the inner body. It is to be understood that arm 91 may be interchangeable with larger or smaller arms so as to adjust for different sized pipe being handled.

When the tool is opened, arm 91 is arranged to pivot outwardly into the opening between the :two portions of the outer housing. Reference to FIG. 4 will show that pivot pin 92 is mounted in segment 44 of the inner body in a vertical position and has coil spring 95 positioned around the lower end thereof, which spring has spring arm 96 engaged in the rear side or right side (as viewed in FIG. 4) of pipe lock arm 91 and thereby biases arm 91 counter clockwise (as viewed in FIG. 5). Hence, when the tool is opened, arm 91 is biased outwardly into the opening between the two sections of the tool.

During operation of the tool, the tool would normally be opened for receiving a section of pipe such as pipe 45 therein. As pipe 45 is placed in the tool, it contacts arm 91, thereby pivoting arm 91 in a clockwise direction until lug 93 contacts valve 94 which thereby actuates the piston in air cylinder 86 to close the tool. Air is supplied to one end of air cylinder 86 via tubes 97 and 98 shown in the bottom of FIG. 4, which tubes connect with air cylinder connector 99, which in turn is connected to air cylinder 86.

FIG. 4 also shows that motors 17 and gear boxes 19 are mounted on the side of the outer housing by bolts 101. Since FIG. 4 is a sectional view taken at an angle as shown in FIG. 1, split line 102 of the tool is shown as the point at which the tool separates during opening thereof. This figure also shows that segments 43 and 44 are formed with openings 103 therein to reduce the weight of the inner body. FIG. 5 also shows the arrangement of cylinders 47 with respect to openings 103.

Referring again to FIG. 4, oil cups or inserts (not shown) may be spaced about the top of plates 36 to provide oil to the annular surfaces of segments 43 and 44 of the inner body and portions 11 and 12 of the outer body.

FIG. 6 is a diagrammatic illustration of the fluid or air flow circuit of the tool. Opening and closing operation of the tool will first be described. A four-way valve 107 is mounted on the body of the tool and has power air supplied thereto via line 108 which can come from a convenient source. Four-way valve 107 is arranged to provide air pressure to trigger valve 30 via line 109 and to trigger valve 94 via 110. Initially the tool will be in an open position with pipe lock arm 91 projecting outwardly as a result of spring 95 biasing it in that direction. When a pipe is inserted into the opening between the two portions of the tool, the pipe will contact pipe lock arm 91 and rotate it in a clockwise direction thereby actuating trigger valve 94, whereupon air pressure is applied via line 111 to air cylinder 86 to thereby drive the piston therein to close the tool, with the two sections of the tool pivoting to a closed position on pivot pin 14. Air pressure is also applied via line 112 to reset four-way valve 107.

With the tool thus closed, the pipe will be supported by the tool for rotation which will be explained hereinafter. When it is desirable to open the tool to thereby release the pipe, opening is accomplished by rotating unlocking handle 26, shown in FIG. 1, until cam lug 29 shown in outline form in FIG. 6, actuates trigger valve 30 which thereby supplies air pressure via line 113 to air cylinder 86 to thereby actuate the piston therein to an open position for the tool. Air pressure is also applied via line 114 to reset four-way valve 107 so that it will be ready for the next closing operation.

The means for actuating the pipe engaging means and for rotating the inner body will now be explained in detail. Fluid power or air power is supplied via lines 115 and 116 to connector 16 which is mounted on the outside of the tool.

It is to be understood that air pressure can be applied to lines 115 and 116 by a foot operated valve on the deck of the drilling floor. Line 115 connects with lines 117 and 118, which lines connect to motors 17 to drive them in a right hand or clockwise direction, for example. Line 116 connects with lines 119 and 120 to drive motors 17 in a left hand or counter clockwise direction, for example.

Lines 118 and 120 also connect with a small hand operated four-way valve 121 which is also mounted on the outside of the tool. When four-way valve 121 is in the F position as shown in the FIG. 6, line 118 communicates with line 122 which connects with lines 32 and 33 which apply air pressure to the lower portions of cylinders 47 which thereby engages the pipe engaging means as explained above. The air pressure on lines 117, 118, and 122 is so arranged that air pressure is applied to the bottom portions of air cylinders 47 a fraction of second prior to actuation of motors 17. Hence, the pipe gripping means will be engaged prior to rotation of the inner body member. In addition, when four-way valve 121 is in the F position as shown in FIG. 6, line 120 connects with line 123 which in turn connects with lines 31 and 34 which apply air pressure to the top portions of cylinders 47.

During a make-up operation, that is, when a length of pipe is being threaded to another length of pipe, fourway valve 121 will be positioned in the F position as shown in FIG. 6. Hence, the operator on the floor of the derrick will apply pressure to line 115 which will apply air pressure to the lower portions of cylinders 47 which will thereby engage the pipe engaging means of the tool. Almost simultaneously, air pressure will be applied to motors 17 to cause rotation thereof in a right hand direction or clockwise direction as viewed in FIG. 6. Hence, the inner body of the tool will be rotated until the pipe is made up or threaded into the connecting pipe.

Since the inner body will quite likely be out of angular alignment or coincidence with the outer housing at the point of complete make-up, it is then necessary to rotate the inner body in a counter clockwise direction until indexing tabs or centering plugs 56 are correctly aligned with locking recesses 55 so that the tool may be opened and the pipe removed therefrom. Hence, air pressure is relieved on line 115 and applied to line 116. This thereby applies air pressure to lines 119 and 120 and to line 123. Again the air pressure on lines 119, and 120, and 123 is so arranged that air is applied to the top portions of the cylinders 47 a fraction of a second prior to its being applied to motors 17. Hence, with the application of air to the top portions of cylinder 47, the pistons therein are driven downwardly, thus disengaging or withdrawing the pipe engaging means as explained above. A fraction of a second thereafter, motors 17 will rotate the inner body in a counter clockwise direction, as viewed in FIG. 6, with centering plugs 56 riding against the inside of the outer housing until they are lined up with locking recesses 55. At this point centering plugs 56 will be cammed into locking recesses 55, thus completely withdrawing the pipe engaging means from an engaging position and properly indexing the inner body of the tool with the outer housing. At this point the tool can be opened by actuation of trigger valve 30 as explained above. A pipe can then be inserted into the tool and the tool closed by actuation of trigger valve 94 when the pipe strikes and rotates pipe lock arm 91.

During the break-out operation, that is, when pipe is being removed from the well and pipe lengths are being unthreaded from each other, then four-way valve 121 will be placed in the R position. In this position line 118 communicates with line 123 and line 120 communicates with line 122. This means that when motors 17 are operated in a left hand or counter clockwise direction as viewed in FIG. 6, air will be applied to the bottom of cylinders 47 to thereby engage the pipe engaging means of the invention. Thus, the pipe being supported in the tool may be unthreaded from the pipe to which it is connected by applying air pressure to line 116, which causes left hand rotation of motors '17. After the break-out has been completed, it is now necessary to index the tool which can be accomplished by terminating the air pressure on line 116 and applying it to 115 which applies air pressure to the top portions of cylinders 47 to disengage the pipe engaging means and then operates motors 17 in a reverse direction, i.e.,' in a clockwise direction until the inner body and the indexing means are once again properly indexed with respect to the outer housing.

It is to be understood that various circuit arrangements could be used to apply air pressure as explained above. Moreover, the air pressure carried by lines and 116 may be at different pressure levels so that during indexing of the tool the air pressure applied to motors 17 may be smaller so as to rotate in a reverse direction at a slower rate than during the actual make-up or breakout operation.

It should be noted that whenever it is desirable to rotate the pipe being supported by the tool in either direction, it is necessary that air be applied to the bottom portions of cylinders 47 to thereby actuate the pipe engaging means. During indexing operation, it is necessary for air to be applied to the top portions of cylinders 47 so that centering tabs or plugs 56 may be aligned for entry into locking recesses 55.

The apparatus of this invention may optionally be provided with a counting means whereby a record is kept of the number of joints of pipe removed from or placed into a well bore by operation of the tool. Such counting means will greatly aid the operator in operating the traveling block and in other respect sinces he will always have an accurate log on the number of joints removed or placed into the well. Reference to FIG. 6 will show one embodiment of such a'counting means.

There it will be observed that exhaust line is connected to the exhaust port of air cylinder 86', such that each time air cylinder 86 is operated to actuate closing of the tool, exhaust air pressure is applied to line 125. Line 125 is connected to a rotating counter 126, which may be conveniently mounted on the side of the tool for easy observation and manipulation. Counter 126 is provided with manual knob 127 such that it may be reset from time to time. Hence, each time the tool is closed, air cylinder 86 exhausts, and each such exhausting is counted by counter 126.

Thus, it will be observed that the industry has been provided with a novel and highly useful tool for performing make-up and break-out operations. One particular advantage of one embodiment of the tool is that it can be placed in an open position and then closed around the pipe at a point below the tool joint. With the pipe thus received in the recess formed by the tool, the tool can be raised with the tool sliding along the outside of the pipe until the tool point of the pipe is engaged or supported by the inner body of the tool. This is of great convenience to the operator who is located on the monkey board in the derrick. Moreover, the operator of the bail or traveling block does not need to try to stab the tool over the end of a pipe or into the end of the pipe, but can latch on to the pipe at some point below the tool joint where it is usually much more convenient.

The tool of this invention will eliminate the hazardous use of the spinning chain. It will save much time over the conventional way of pipe make-up and pipe break-out. The tool is designed to latch automatically while running pipe into the hole thereby saving the derrick man work and also saving rig time. The tool is designed to fit in with the latest modern drilling equipment for fast opera- It is to be understood that the outer housing and inner' body of this tool could be made with more than two portrons or segments each and still fall within the scope of this invention. I

Other modifications may be made in the invention as particularly described without departing from the scope of the invention. Accordingly, the foregoing description is to be construed illustratively only and is not to be construed as a limitation upon the invention as defined in the following claims.

I claim:

1. A rotatable power elevator for raising and lowering a section of pipe and rotating said section during make-up and break-out operations, comprising:

an outer housing having at least two portions which are connected together for opening and closing and which in the closed position define a recess therebetween for receiving said section of pipe,

a rotatable inner body having at least two segments, each of which is supported by one of said portions of said outer housing when said housing is in the open position, and which segments define a recess therebetween for supporting therein said section of pipe when said housing is in the closed position,

pipe engaging means mounted in said inner body for gripping said section of pipe,

means for raising and lowering said outer housing while said section of pipe is being supported by said inner body,

means for rotating said inner body while said section of pipe is being supported by said inner body.

2. The apparatus as claimed in claim 1 wherein:

said portions which form said outer housing are pivotally connected together for opening and closing about said section of pipe.

3. The apparatus as claimed in claim 1 wherein:

said segments which form said inner body are each arcuate in shape and together form an annular ring about said section of pipe when said outer housing is in the closed position.

4. The apparatus as claimed in claim 1 wherein said pipe engaging means includes:

a piston actuated pipe gripping means mounted in at least one of said segments of said inner body, and

means for actuating said piston at predetermined times.

5. The apparatus as claimed in claim 1 wherein said means for rotating said inner body includes:

motor means supported by said outer housing and connected to rotate said inner body relative to said outer housing.

6. The apparatus as claimed in claim 1 including:

power actuated means supported by said outer housing for opening and cosing said outer housing at predetermined times.

7. The apparatus as claimed in claim 1 including:

indexing means mounted in at least one of said segments of said inner body for angular aligning said segments with said portions of said outer housing prior to opening of said outer housing.

8. The apparatus as claimed in claim 1 including:

counting means for counting the number of times said outer housing is opened and closed during operation of the elevator.

9. A rotatable power elevator for raising and lowering a section of pipe and rotating said section during make-up and break-out operations, comprising:

an outer housing having at least two portions which are pivotally connected together for opening and closing and which in the closed position define a recess therebetween for receiving said section of pipe,

a rotatable inner body having at least two segments, each of which is supported by one of said portions of said outer housing when said housing is in the open position, and which segments define a recess therebetween for supporting therein said section of pipe when said housing is in the closed position,

pipe engaging means mounted in said inner body for gripping said section of pipe at predetermined times,

means for raising and lowering said outer housing while said section of pipe is being supported by said inner body, and

motor means supported by said outer housing and connected to rotate said inner body relative to said outer body when said outer body is in the closed position.

10. The apparatus as claimed in claim 9 wherein:

each of said segments of said inner body is provided with an arcuate row of gear teeth, which rows form an annular gear when said outer housing is in the closed position, and

said motor means includes gear means which engage said annular gear and thereby rotates said inner body upon actuation.

11. The apparatus as claimed in claim 9 wherein:

said pipe engaging means includes at least one piston actuated pipe gripping member mounted in one of said segments of said inner body for movement inwardly to a pipe gripping position and outwardly to a non-gripping position, and including indexing means connected to said pipe gripping member for engaging a portion of said outer body when said pipe gripping member is in the non-gripping position and thereby angularly aligning said segments of said inner body with said portions of said outer housing prior to opening of said outer housing.

12. The apparatus as claimed in claim 9 including:

power actuated means connected to at least two of said portions of said outer housing for opening and closing said housing and said inner body around said section of pipe.

13. The apparatus as claimed in claim 12 including:

a manually operated first switch means mounted on said outer housing for operating said power actuated means to thereby open said outer housing, and

a second switch means having a resiliently biased finger which projects into said opening for receiving said section of pipe when said outer housing is in the open position and which finger is adapted to actuate said second switch means when contacted by said section of pipe to thereby close said outer housing.

14. The apparatus as claimed in claim 9 wherein:

said pipe engaging means includes at least one pipe gripping member mounted in one of said segments of said inner body for radially in and out movement, and including an indexing tab connected to said pipe gripping member and adapted to engage a portion of said outer housing when said gripping member is moved outwardly, to thereby angularly align said segments of said inner body with said portions of said outer housing prior to opening of said outer housing, and

piston means mounted in that segment of said inner body having said gripping member and connected to reciprocate said gripping member inward and outward.

15. A well tool for clamping about a pipe having an upset tool joint on the upper end thereof and for raising and lowering said pipe and for rotating said pipe during make-up and break-out operations, comprising:

an outer housing having at least two portions which are connected together for opening and closing about said pipe and which form an annular race when in the closed position,

a rotatable inner body having at least two separate arcuate shaped segments supported on said race of said outer housing and forming an annular ring about said pipe for supporting said tool joint therein when said outer housing is in the closed position, and each of said segments having a row of gear teeth about the periphery thereof, which rows form a ring gear when said housing is in the closed position, and

piston actuated pipe gripping means mounted in at least one of said segments of said inner body for radial inward and outward movement therein and for gripping said tool joints,

indexing means connected to said pipe gripping means for engaging a portion of said outer body when said segments of said inner body are angularly aligned with said portion of said outer housing and said gripping means are moved to an outward position,

motor and gear means connected to said outer housing for engaging said ring gear and rotating said inner body on said race,

power actuated means connected to said portions of said outer housing for opening and closing said housing, and

means for raising and lowering said outer housing during operation of the tool.

References Cited by the Examiner UNITED STATES PATENTS Young 294-90 Penick et a1. 294-102 Jarnett 294-88 Chrisrnan et a1. 294-88 Hasha 173-164 Kvello-Aune et a1. 173-164 10 MILTON KAUFMAN, Primary Examiner.

L. P. KESSLER, Assistant Examiner.

Patent Citations
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Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US3390728 *May 7, 1965Jul 2, 1968Abegg & Reinhold CoWell pipe spinner
US3481228 *Oct 17, 1967Dec 2, 1969Byron Jackson IncPower tong assembly and control means therefor
US3481229 *Oct 17, 1967Dec 2, 1969Byron Jackson IncPower tong assembly and transmission means therefor
US3483774 *Oct 17, 1967Dec 16, 1969Byron Jackson IncPower tong head and assembly
US4410210 *Oct 15, 1981Oct 18, 1983Compagnie Francais Des PetrolesRetaining grippers
US6270136 *Jul 13, 1999Aug 7, 2001Farr Canada Ltd.Tong for well pipe
US20070228753 *Mar 30, 2006Oct 4, 2007Robert DugalRemotely operated elevator and method
EP0008477A2 *Aug 13, 1979Mar 5, 1980DIAMANT BOART Société AnonymeChuck for driving a drill pipe
EP0008477A3 *Aug 13, 1979Mar 19, 1980Societe Anonyme:±Diamant BoartChuck for driving a drill pipe
WO2007126589A2 *Mar 15, 2007Nov 8, 2007Access Oil Tools L. P.Remotely operated elevator and method
WO2007126589A3 *Mar 15, 2007Dec 4, 2008Access Oil Tools L PRemotely operated elevator and method
Classifications
U.S. Classification173/164, 294/86.3, 294/90
International ClassificationE21B19/07, E21B19/16, E21B19/00
Cooperative ClassificationE21B19/07, E21B19/16
European ClassificationE21B19/07, E21B19/16