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Publication numberUS3400938 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateSep 10, 1968
Filing dateSep 16, 1966
Priority dateSep 16, 1966
Publication numberUS 3400938 A, US 3400938A, US-A-3400938, US3400938 A, US3400938A
InventorsBob Williams
Original AssigneeBob Williams
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Drilling head assembly
US 3400938 A
Images(6)
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Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

Sept. 10, 1968 H. WILLIAMS 3,400,938

DRILLING HEAD ASSEMBLY Filed Sept. 16, 1966 6 Sheets-Sheet l INVENTOR. BOB WILLIAMS FIG.|

BY 6 11 v W ATTORNEYS B. WILLIAMS Sept. 10, 1968 6 Sheets-Sheet 2 Filed Sept. 16, 1966 Sept. 10, 1968 B. WILLIAMS 3,400,933

DRILLING HEAD ASSEMBLY Flled Sept. 16, 1.966 6 Sheets-Sheet. 5

2es\ 2e4- HI IH INVENTOR. FIG. 4 Bob Williams ATTORNEY Sept. 10, 1968 B. WILLIAMS DRILLING HEAD AS SEMBLY Filed Sept. 16, 1966 6 Sheets-Sheet 4 INVENTOR.

Bob Williams FIG. 7

WM LQW A TTOIPNE Y Sept. 10, 1968 B. WILLIAMS 3,400,933

DRILLING HEAD ASSEMBLY Flled Sept. 16, i966 6 e t 5 298 FIG. 9

INVENTOR. Bab Williams 386 WMM SO Mm ATTORNEY Sept. 10, 1968 B. WILLIAMS DRILLING HEAD ASSEMBLY 6 Sheets-Sheet 6 Filed Sept. 16, 1966 FIG. I3

FIG. I I2 FIG. ll

FIG. I0

INVENTOR. Bab Williams A TTORNEY EIW/ United States P t t fo DRILLING HEADASSEMBLY Bob Williams, 823 Cavanaugh Road, Fort Smith, 'Ark. 729'01-v Continuation-impart of application SerLNo. 503,555,

Oct. 23,1965. This application Sept. 16, 1966,56, No.586,'912

t Claims. (Cl. 277---31) ABSTRACT or THE plscnosunn i A rotary drilling head assembly for a well bore comprisinga stationary .housing andia seal assembly supported ,bythe stationary housing. I he scaLassernbly coinprises a rotatablesleevemember having a stationary sleeve This application a continuation-in-part application of my co-pending application Ser. No. '503,555,lfiled Oct. 23, 1965 now abandoned and entitled Drilling Head Assembly. This invention relates tota drilling head assembly useful in well drilling, More particularly, :this'in vention relates to drilling heads for rotary drilling rigs and improved sealing means for the drilling heads.

v Drilling of oiland gaswellsis accomplished by means of a bit attached to the end of ahollow string ofrdrilling pipe, The drill bit and ldrilling pipe receives a rotary motion from power equipment located on-the'surface which transmits this rotary motion to the circular drill stem through a non-circular conduit attached to the top of the drill string and known as a drill kelly. The kelly receives its rotary motion from the power equipmentthrough a non-circular bushing locatediuthe drilling fioor through which the kelly slides as the drilling progresses. As the drill bit di gs .deeper into the earth additional sections ,of drill pipe. are" added byjthe procedure of stopping the drilling, raisingthe kellyand the attached drillingstring', uncoupling the kelly vfroni the string, addinga nevv section .of drilling pipe, andthen reeoupling the kelly,

Belovtvthe drilling floor andon theground surface a variety of specialized equipmentis usually attached; to the top of the casing where it emerges from the ground; Among these typesof equipment is usuallyatcornponent known as a drilling head which usually provides means for the circulation of various. fluids used in the drilling and to provide means, for the sealing of theinterior of the well from the surface during drilling In order to main tain a seal around the drilling kelly, and drill'stem while drilling is continuing andparticrilarlywhen the kelly and drill Qstem' are being, removedirorn thetbore, numerous sealing means have been developed tolproivide rotational andslidable sealingfof the ,kelly, within the. drilling head. These generally include a spindle of some. sort through which the kelly may pass.v and. which, includes ta packing at itslower end to seal the circ imferencje olf the kelly from thesur face. Y t f The continual rotation of the kelly and jdrill'stern the frequent upward and downward movement ar as; kelly and drill stern 'du'rin'g addition of dtill stem sections, and the high pressures to which the drilling headlis subjected, demand that the pack ngw pdnents in the drilling head be able to withstand the excessive wear and be capable 3,400,938 Patented se t. 10,! 19 8 of each replacement. Also, as todays oil and gas wells go to increasingly greater depths, the need for a sturdy and well packed drilling head-increases. t

In addition, the increasing'popularity of air drilling combined withthe increasing depth of new wells. demand more efficient means of sealing the drilling head from the internal pressures. v g v The present invention contemplates a rotary drilling head assembly particularly designed and constructedfor overcoming the disadvantages of present-day devices of this type, and comprises an upper and lower housing positi oned' together in a manner that will permit quick dis assembly and'yet which are held sealably together. Within the upper housing is an inner "housing; or spindle which is held therein by means of an improved arrangement of bearings so that both the spindle and the entire drilling head are capable or resisting tremendous thrust forces. Secured to this inner housing is an upper shock absorbing driving connection for a drilling kelly which receives a non-circular kelly and transmits the rotative'rnotion of the kelly to the spindle and yet is designed to provide shock absorbing protection to the spindle and housing. Secured to the lower end of the inner housing or spindle is an improved kelly seal which rotates with the drilling kelly during the drilling operations and is particularly designed to resist the great fluid pressures within the bore hole to which it might be subjected and let to provide for easy slidable motion of the kelly and drill string therethrough.

The primary object of this invention is to provide a rotary drilling head which has improved characteristics of wear and sealing, and is eflicient in operation.

Another object of this invention is to provide a drilling head in which the bearing components are more efiiciently designed to withstand greater stresses.

Still another object of this invention is to provide a drilling head of improved design which incorporates efficient means for protecting the drilling head components from shock and stress.

Still another object of this invention is to provide a drilling head having an improved means of sealing the drilling kelly and drilling stern within the drilling head.

A further object of this invention is to provide a novel drilling head particularly designed and constructed for sealing the bearings from the well fluids and other debris for greatly increasing the useful and efiicient life thereof.

Other and further objects and advantageous features of the present invention will hereinafter more fully appear in connection with a detailed description of the drawings in which:

FIGURE 1 is a side elevational view in partial crosssection of a rotary drilling head embodying the invention.

FIGURE 2 is a side elevational view in partial cross' section of a kelly drive component which may be'used in combination with the invention.

FIGURE 3 is a sectional'view taken on line 3-3 of FIGURE 2.

FIGURE 4 is a broken sectional elevational view of a half section of a rotary drilling head assemblyembodying modification of the invention.

FIGURE is a' side elevational view, partly in section, of a, kelly-.drive adapter, housing such as may beutilized in connection with the invention.

FIGURE 11 is a plan view of the outer housing of the kelly drive adapter housing depicted in FIGURE 10. 3 FIGURE 12 is a plan view of the inner housing of the kelly drive adapter housing depicted in FIGURE 10. v FIGURE 13 is a plan view of the upper ring member of the kelly drive adapter housing depicted in FIG- URE 10.

Referring'now to the figures in detail, in FIGURE .1 the assembled relationship of the components is shown. A rotating head bowl or lower housing member 10 pro.- vides support means for the other components of this device and provides means for attachment of the device ,to'a casing (not shown) or other. oil and gas well component at the surface of the well bore. Attachment of lower housing member 10 to the well components is by conventional flange and bolt means. Besides providing communication between the interior portion of the rotating head assembly of this invention and the bore housing member 10 includes a fluid opening 12 which permits passage of drilling fluids and other bore hole fluids through housing member 10. Lower housing member 10 has an interior bore 14 into which is slidably received an upper housing member 16. Lower housing member 10 has an annular beveled shoulder 18 which includes a recess 20 into which is fitted a packing ring 22. Upper housing 16 has a circumferential shoulder 24 which rests against shoulder 18 of the lower housing member when upper housing member 16 is in its proper position. When upper housing member 16 is positioned within lower housing member 10 and shoulder 24 rests against shoulder 18, packing ring 22 provides a tight seal between the two housing members when they are in proper alignment and held securely together by means of clamp 26 which is a two section substantially cylindrical clamp. Clamp 26 has an upper beveled shoulder 28 and a lower beveled shoulder 30 which, when clamp 26 is locked in position, are secured respectively to an upper beveled shoulder 32 on housing 16 and a lower beveled shoulder 34 of housing 10. Clamp 26 is secured in position by means of a conventional hinge 36 holding the two hinge halves together and conventional nut and bolt locking means 38 securing the two hinge halves in a locked position. Since upper housing member 16 will be securely clamped to lower housing member 10, housing member 16 will remain stationary with housing member 10 and the other well head components to which housing member 10 has been connected.

Housing member 16 is an open ended cylindrical member and provides a support means for the rotating components and sealing components located within housing 16. Housing 16 includes an inner annular seat 40 which provides support for the rotating components and upon which rests a lower thrust bearing 42 which will bear most of the downward thrust, particularly when the drilling string and kelly are being relocated in the bore hole. Thrust bearing 42 further supports a thrust cylinder or tubular member 44 which includes a support 46 which rotates freely between lower thrust bearing 42 and'an upper thrust bearing 48. Thrust bearings 42 and 48 are designed to withstand the tremendous pressures exerted when the, kelly and attached drilling strings are moved upward or downward while they are rotating. Bearing 42 resists the downward stress of the drilling string and bearing 48 resists the upward forces. Neither the inner nor the outer race of either bearing is secured in place. Disposed interiorly of tubular member 44 is an annular shoulder 50 against which rests an exterior annular shoulder 52 of a tubular member 54. Shoulder 52 is secured to shoulder 50 by means of a plurality of Allen head bolts 56 which are further held in position against vibration by means of a nut 58 which has threads on the outside diam of 5 8 cooperate with .1 J. 4f Q-y v H w 7' threads 62 oil the 'int'erior'of tubular member 44.5Ihe'threads on nut 58secure Allen head bolt 56 from vibratingout of position and also hel distribute the thrust load on these members. The load bearing members 42, 46, and 48, are maintained in a relatively closed positionby the provision of a ring member 64 which is further'held in-position by a beveled screw member-66 penetrating" the wall of housing member 16 and. securing ring member64 in position.

Tubular Tn ember.5'4,' and; consequently the rotating drillingcomponents passing through tubularmernber 54, is maintained in a relatively stableaxial position with regard to housing 16 by the action of a lower radial bearing 68 and an upper-radial'bearing' 70 each of which is held in its respective position partly by means of a set screw 72 which holds the outer race of each bearing stationary' with respect to ho'u sing member'16." 7

*Lower radial bearing 68 is'fu'rther held in position-by resting upon a' shoulder'74 of a lower annular support member 76.Support member 76 is held in positionaga'inst upper housing member-16 by means of bolts 78. Upper radial bearing 70 is further held in its position bythe resting of its"inte'rior raceupon beveled shoulder 80 of tubular member 54. Conventional oil andgrease lubricants are supplied to the bearing and moving members described'aboveend are maintained in their proper lubricating areas by a unique arrangement of seals and packing members. The upper and lower ends of upper housing 16 arepacked in an identical manner to form a seal around tubular member 54. A thin tubular member 82 having a polished exterior surface is positioned closely around tubular member 54 and adjacent the inner perimeter of annular support'member 76. Positioned annularly between member 82 and support member 76 are a series of packing members 84 of conventional resilient packing material, which provide the sealing means for the lubricant. Disposed between each packing member 84' is a thin ring 86'which, upon proper'adjustmentj prOvideS'means to expand the packing members 84 and adjust their sealing ability, particularly where they have been subjected to long wear. A heavier metal ring 88 is set at the bottom of the packing assembly to provide additional pressure upon the packing members. Ring 88 has a series of recesses into which fit a number of springs 90 to transmit this pressure to the packing members. Ring88and spring 9 0'are held in their relative positions' in support of the packing members'b'y means of an annular plate 92 secured to support member 76 by a recessed screw 94. A'sim'ilar packing assembly is positioned at the upper end of housing 16 'with an upper annular support member 96 retaining the upper radial bearing 70 in position.'Support member 96 is furnished with a conventional lubricating fitting 97 to permit the passage of oil or greas'e lubricants'into the interior of the drilling head. Support member 96 is' secured against hous ing 16 by a recessed screw member 98. An upper thin tubular member 100 is secured in position around tubular member 54'similarly to member 82. Positioned above an; nular member 96 are a number of packing members 102 with 'thin' rings 'interspaced to'provide means for compressing the packing members and '-forcing them into closer sealing engagement with tubular ember'100. Abovefan endwis'e packing member'104 is 'another heavy ring 106 which has a number of recessed springs 108 which are compressed between ring 106 and'an annular'plate 110 held idpositiori against the upper end ofhousing '16 We series of recessed screws -112. 'Arradclitional sealing assembly is provided intermediate the upper and lower sealing assembliesiust deeter thereof and which is held securely against the top i scribed by means of a special groove packing sleeve; 114 positioned around tubular member 54 andsecurledjby means offAIIfe'n screw 116 to the underside of annular seat 40. Member 1 14'include's" plurality of interior. and exterior circumferential grooves 118 and 120 into which r disposed special'packing rings122fand 124. Besides assisting in maintaining a centered position of tubular member 54, this packing assembly provides a means of isolating the lubricant material above and below the packingassembly itself. For example, if for some reason the packing rings 84 at the' lower end of housing =16 should fail, this packing assembly will assure'thatoil or grease sealedabove packing rings 122 and 124 will not be drained off. v A "llrl addition to the'sealing assemblies described above the. lubrication and circulation of lubricant around the bearings and rotating members is assisted by the unique design of the housing members themselves. For example, housing'membe'r 16 has, on its interior wall somewhat adjacent bearings 42 and 48,. a recessed portion 126 which jerrnits]improved circulation of lubricant around those earings and tubular member 44 has recessed portions 128 and -13Q onits exterior wall opposite bearings 42 and 48 also to: provide. forimproved circulation of lubricant. Other sealing means are. provided at either end of housing 16 to-give protection to the, interior components of the rotating head fromwellbore pressures, dust, and water. At the upper end of housing '54 a resilient annular shield 132 is fitted tightly over housing 54 to rotateywith housing 54 and cover the end portion of housing 16 and protect the interior parts. A further protective assembly is secured to support member 76 at the lower end of housing 16.to give added protection to that part of the assembly. This lower protective component is comprised of an annular steel ring 134 secured to support member 76 by aseries of recessed screws 136, and a flat annular resilient member 138 secured to ring 134. Flat resilient member 138 has a beveled edge 140 and embedded within 138 is a spring member 142. The cooperation of beveled edge 140 of the resilient member and the biasing of springs-142 within the resilient member 138 tend to bias member 138 against tubular member 54 as tubular member54 is forced through the radius of resilient seal 138.

' FIGURE 1 describes in outline a drilling kelly 144 in position through the rotating drilling head assemblyof this invention. As described above, drilling kelly 144. is taken-to be a conventional noncircular drilling kelly which receives its rotative motion from a power device not made ,a part of this invention. When drillingis in progress, itsis necessary that the rotative components of this invention receive their motion .by transmission from the kelly 144 and that at the same time a means of sealing the "kelly below the rotating head must be provided to protect the components of this invention from-the pressure effects and corrosionefr'ects of bore hole fluids and at the sametime prevent the bore hole fluids from reaching the surface of the ground by passage aroundthe kelly. 'FhusFIGUREl in conjunction with FIGURES 2 and 3 describewoneparticular means by-which the power is transmitted from the drilling kelly- 144 to the rotative components or this invention. However, there is no intention oflimiting the drive means to the particular arrangement shown in FIGURES 1, 2 and 3..Althou-gh the drilling kelly 144 maybe of square, hexagonal, or octagonal conformation, for'the sake of simplicity FIGURE 3 describes a drilling kelly of hexagonal shape. A split bushin g formed'from semi-circular components 146 and 148fit together in close position'around kelly 144. Bushin g'half 146 includes a series'ot pins 150 which positioned themselyes within recesses 152 of kellybushing 148. 'Each bushing "component 146 and 148 is externally threaded with threads 154 at the upper portion of the bushing as sembly. lWhei1 pins150 are lined up properly with re c'esses 152"so that bushing halves 146 and 148 are assembled, threads 154 become continuous and permitthe bushing"assernblyto be threaded into threaded portion 156 of octagonal bushing 158. Threaded portion 156 is slightly tapered so that kelly bushings 146 and 148 may be drawn closely around the drilling kelly permitting octagonal bushing 158 to be received slidably into a similar 6 opening in an assembly secured to the rotating drilling head assembly. l t f Outer ring 160 has an internally-threaded portion 16 2 adjacent its lower edge which is threadably received on the external-threads .164 of tubular member 54, of the rotating head assembly. Secured at ,a number of places interiorly of ring 160 are a number of pins 164 facing inwardly .and'embedded in a resilient .material165 such asrubber or neoprene which will act as ashock absorber in reducing the rotative shocks. from the drilling kelly and tend to prevent injury tothedrilling head assembly, An octagonal bushing 166 is also provided with anumber of pins 168. Pins 168 are also embedded inresilient material 165 so that bushing 166 is secured in: a shock absorbing manner to outer ,ring 160, When drilling kelly 144 is provided with bushings 146 and 148 which are secured as mentioned above by octagonal bushing-.158 and is lowered into the drilling head assembly; Octagonal bushing 158 fits closely into bushing 166 andtransmits the rotativemotion from the kelly to the drillinghead assembly. Whenthe semi-circular bushing components 146 and 148 areheld in position around the kelly by octagonal bushing 158, a very close but slidable fit around the kelly is provided so that the kelly wilLbe permitted to slide through this bushing assembly as-the drilling progresses and the drill bit, drill string, and kelly are progressively lowered into the bore hole. Threads 154 on semicircular components 146 and 148 are right hand threads which are further secured during the drilling process. Then, when the kelly and drill string are, to be removed, the reverse rotation of the kelly will loosen these bushing components and permit them to be quickly and easily removed from the kelly.

The interior components of the drilling head assembly are protected from the bore hole fluids by a seal cup 170 which is threadably secured to the bottom of tubular member 54. Seal cup 170 includes an upper annular ring member 172 which has internal left hand threads 174 which threada'bly match external left hand threads 176 adjacent the lower end of tubular member 54. Locking the annular ring member 172 into position around tubular member 54 are a series of locking screws 178 which thread into matching recesses 180 in tubular member 54 when ring 172 is properly threaded onto member 154. In its fully threaded position ring member 172 fits flush against annular resilient member 138 and provides a 16,- gree of maintaining member 138 in its position and gives some additional sealing effect to the drilling head assembly. Annular ring member 172 has a beveled shoulder 182 which helps guide the drilling head assembly into the position at the initiation of the drilling operations. Ring member 172 is secured to a resilient sealing cup 184 by means of the embedding of an annular flange portion 186 and a series of spring-like members 188 into resilient cup 184. Resilient sealing cup 184 has an upper essentially circular portion surrounding flange 186, and an intermediate frusto-conical portion into which springlike members 188 are embedded and a lower reduced diameter neck portion adjacent thelower end of member 184. Spring-like members 188 are embedded in resilient member 184 to a longitudinal extent corresponding to the longitudinal extent of frusto-conical portion of the resilient member 184. Spring-like members 188 cooperate with the frusto-conical portion of member 184 to bias the resilient member 184 into a scalable position around a drilling kelly or a drill stem. That is, when drilling is in progress member 184 will be sealable around the drilling'kelly, and when the drilling kelly and drilling string are either raised or lowered, member 184 will, for a portion of the. travel of a drill string, be in sealable arrangement around the drilling string. Interior of resilient member 184 is a bore portion 190 which is essentially cylindrical in appearance and which is the part of member 184 coming into sealable engagement with the drilling kelly and drill string. Below bore 190 is an outwardly flanging surface 192 which provides means for guiding the sealing member 184 and the drilling head assembly itself onto the drilling kelly when the unit is assembled. Spring-like members 188 extend only through the frusto-conical portion of member 184 so that they will bias bore 190 around the drilling kelly and drill string and yet will permit bore 190 to expand to the limit of the resiliency of member 184 as drilling kellys of different sizes and configurations or ldrilling strings of different sizes pass through bore 190. If spring-like members 188' were to extend the full length of bore 190, resilient member 184 would be restricted in its expansive ability. v

Referring now to FIGURES 4 and 5, reference character 200 generally indicates a modified rotary drilling head assembly comprising a stationary air bowl or lower housing 202 having an' upper housing or sealing assembly generally indicated at 203 disposed therein and supported thereby. The housing 202 is of a substantially cylind'rical configuration and is provided with a centrally disposed bore 204 extending longitudinally therethrough. One end of the bowl 202 is adapted for connection with the well casing (not shown) in any well known manner, such as by an outwardly directed circumferential flange 206 and-a plurality of bolts (not shown). The bowl 202 is held stationary by virtue of the connection with the well casing, and a side opening or port 208 is preferably provided in the bowl 202 for facilitating circulation of drilling fluids during the well drilling operation, as is well known.

The opposite end of the bowl 202 may be provided with an outwardly directed circumferential flange 210 for apurpose as will be hereinafter set forth. The upper end of the bore 204, as viewed in FIGURE 4, is tapered or beveled as shown at 212 and is provided with a substantially centrally disposed annular recess 214 extending circumferentially therearound for receiving an annular sealing ring 216 therein. The recess 214 is of a substantially rectangular cross sectional configuration with the upper and lower sides thereof extending substantially perpendicularly with respect to the longitudinal axis of the bowl 202. The inner corner of the recess 214 terminates on the beveled surface 212 and is thus of a correspondingly beveled or tapered configuration in cross section. The sealing ring 216 is of a cross sectional configuration complementary to the recess 214 and the inner corner thereof is tapered correspondingly with the beveled sur-. face 212 for a purpose as will be hereinafter set forth.

The upper housing or sealing assembly 203 comprises an outer sleeve 218 having an enlarged portion or outwardly extending collar portion 220 providing an upper annular shoulder 222 and a lower annular shoulder 224. The lower shoulder 224 is tapered upwardly and outwardly complementary to the configuration of the beveled surface 212 for engagement therewith as shown in FIG- URE 4 whereby the assembly 203 is supported by the beveled shoulder 212. The upper shoulder 222 is tapered outwardly and downwardly, and the sleeve 218 is held stationary with the bowl 202 in a manner as will be hereinafter set forth in detail.

An annular groove 226 is provided around the outer periphery of the collar portion 220 and preferably substantially centrally disposed with respect to the length thereof for supporting an adapter member 228 (FIG- URES 6 and 7) around the collar 220. An annular recess 230 is provided around the inner periphery of the groove 226 for receiving a suitable sealing ring, such as an O- rin'g, or the like (not shown). The sealing member provides a seal between the sleeve 218 and adapter member 228 in installations wherein the adapter 228 is utilized and may either be substantially permanently disposed within the recess 230 or disposed therein at such a time when it is desirable to utilize the adapter ring 228, as will be hereinafter set forth in detail.

The lower end of the sleeve 218, as viewed in FIGURE 4, is internally threaded at 232m receive a first threaded O 0 seal carrier ring 234-therein. The outer end of the ring 234 is preferably provided with an outwardly extending circumferential flange 235 for engaging the'lower end of the sleeve 218 for limiting the inward or upward movement of the ring 234 with respect to the sleeve 218. The threads 232 are preferably left hand threads for a purpose as will be hereinafter set forth. The inner end of the ring 234 is provided with a centrally disposed circular recess 236 whereby an annular shoulder 238,is formed around the outer circumference thereof. The shoulder238 en; gages the outer race of a first radialbearing member 240 and securely retains the outer race of the bearing 240 against an annular shoulder 242 provided on the inner periphery of the sleeve 218. I An inwardly directed annular flange 244 is provided on the inner periphery of the sleeve 218 and. spaced from the shoulder 242 for receiving thereagainst an outwardly extending flange 246 of a separator sleeve 248. The flange 246 may be secured adjacent the flange 244 in any suitable manner, such as by a plurality of circumferentially spaced screw members 250. The flange 244 supportsafirst thrust bearing 252, and the outer periphery of the lower race of the bearing 252 is disposed adjacent the inner periphery of the sleeve 218 as particularly shown in FIGURE 4. The inner periphery of the sleeve'2l8 is recessed at 254, however, whereby the upper race of the bearing 252 is spaced slightly therefrom. i A bearing separator sleeve 256 is supported from the bearing 252 by an outwardly extending circumferential flange 258 provided on the outer periphery of the sleeve 256 and which rests on the bearing 252. The flange 258, in turn, supports a second thrust bearing 260. The inner periphery of each bearing 252 and 260 is disposed adjacent the outer periphery of the sleeve 256. The sleeve 256 is secured to a rotatable tubular member 262 in any suitable manner, such as bya plurality of bolt members 264 which extend through an outwardly extending flange 266 on the outer periphery of the tubular member 262, and which further extend longitudinally into the bearing separator sleeve 256. The sleeve 218 is in connection with the upper race of the bearing 260 in any well known manner. For example, as shown in FIGURE-4, the inner periphery of the sleeve 218 is threaded at 266 for receiving an annular ring 268 having complementary threads provided on the outer'periphery thereof. The ring 268 rests on the upper race of the bearing 260 and it will be apparent that the inner periphery of the ring 268 is spaced from the outer periphery of the tubular member 262. The threaded con nection 266 is preferably a right hand thread connection for a purpose as will be hereinafter set forth. Of course, suitable recesses (not shown) may be providedon the exposed face of the ring 268 for receiving a suitable tool (not shown) in order to facilitate tightening and loosening or threading and unthreading of the ring 268 within the sleeve 218, as is well known. 1

The inner periphery of the sleeve 218 is slightly enlarged at 270 to provide aninwardly directed shoulder 272 which receives or supports the outer race of a second radial bearing 274. The upper end of the sleeve 218, as viewed in FIGURE 4, is provided with an internally threaded portion 276 for receiving a second seal carrier ring 278 therein. The ring 278 is generally similar to the ring 234 and is preferably provided with an outwardly extending circumferential flange 280 at the outer. end thereof for enagement with the end of the sleeve 218; for limiting the inwardly movement of the ring 278..with respect to the sleeve 218. The inner end of the ring 278 is provided with a centrally disposed substantially circular recess 282 which forms a circumferential shoulder 284 around the outer periphery thereof. The shoulder 2 84, bears against the outer race of the bearing 274 for retaining the bearing 274 securely in position on the shoulder 272. A suitable lubricating fluid (not shown) is provided between the tubular member 262 and sleeve 218 forlubrication of the bearings 240, 252, 260 and 274 and is sealed therein, all as will. be hereinafter set forth in detail. l The tubularfmember 262 is substantially concentrically disposed with respect to the sleeve'218 and bore 204 of the bowl 202 and preferably extends slightly beyond the opposite ends of the sleeve 218. The tubular member 262 is provided with a first enlarged cylindrical portion 286 spaced below the upper end thereof as viewed in FIGURE 4 for bearing against the inner periphery of the inner race of the radial bearing'274. A second enlarged cylindrical portion 288 is provided on the outer periphery of the tubular member 262 and spaced from'the' lower end thereof for "hearing against the inner periphery of the radial bearing 240. Itwill be readily apparent that any rotational movement of the tubular member 266'will betrasrnitted to the inner race of the bearings 240 and 274 by virtue of the e'ngagementtherebetween. However, no rotational movement will be transmitted to the outer races of the bearings 240 and 274. p

A third enlarged cylindrical portion 290 is "provided on the outer periphery of the tubular member 262 for bearing against the inner periphery of thebearingseparator sleeve 256. Rotational movement of the tubular member 262 will betransmitted to the sleeve 256" since the sleeve 256 is secured to the tubular memberby the screws 264. It will be apparent that rotational movement of the sleeve 256 will be transmitted simultaneously to the upper race of the thrust bearing 252 and to the lower race of the thrust bearing 260 through the engagement of the flange 258 therewith. However, the rotational movement will not be transmitted to the lowerr'ace of the bearing 252 or the upper race of the bearing 260. p

The inner periphery of the bearing separator sleeve 256 is enlarged at 292 whereby the separator sleeve 248 is spaced slightly from the inner periphery of the sleeve 256 and outer periphery of the tubular member 262. The sleeve 248 is retained stationary with the sleeve "218 by the engagement therewithfthrougli the screws 250 and flange 244, and consequently there is relative rotational movement between the bearing separator 2561 and the separator sleeve 248. A plurality of spaced annular recessesor grooves are provided on the enlarged inner periphery 292 of the bearing separator 256each for receiving a dynamic sealing member 294 therein. Whereas substantially any suitable sealing or packing'members 294 may be utilized, it is preferable to provide /2-'V inside lip packing as particularly shown in FIGURE'4. This type of packing provides an excellent dynamic sealing between the stationary sleeve 248 and rotating sleeve "256, and the upwardly extending configurationof the inner lip of the packing members permits a lubricating fluid to flow upwardly around the packings 294, but substantially preeludes any reverse flow of fluidtherearound, for a purpose and as will be hereinafter set forth in detail. In addition, it is preferable that the outer periphery of the sleeve 248 against which the packi'ngs 294 ride-be of a hard chrome finish forimproving the useful life and sealing qualities of the packing members and sleeve. 1 The seal carrier rings 234 and 278 areprovided for sealing around the outer periphery of the tubular member 262 for substantially precluding contamination of the bearing members from any well fluids, or other foreign particles or debris. The rings'234-and 278 areigenerallysimilar andfunc'tion in a generally similar, but reverse, manner. As particularly shown in FIGURE 9, the first ring 234 is provided with an enlarged central bore portion 298 for receiving a plurality of packing or sealing members 300 and spacer members 302therein. A cylindrical sleeve 304 is disposed around the outer periphery of the tubular member 262 in substantial align: ment-with the ring23'4 and is rotatable simultaneously therewith. The packings-300 and spacers 304 are retained within the bore .298 by a. retaining ring-306 which may spaced screws 30s (FIGURE4).

Theouter periphery of the sleeve 304 is preferably provided with a hard chrome finish .for increasing the eificient life thereof, andthe inner periphery offeach of the packing members 300 rides againstthis hard chrome surfaceto provide an efiicient dynamic seali'rigfbetwe en the rotatable tubular member 262 and stationary seai carrier ring 234. The packing'members 300 are prefeif ably of the well known ic'hevron'type 'and it is preferable to provide three of the packing members 300 as shown herein. The lowermost packing 300 as viewed in FIG.- URES 4 and '9 is inverted, or disposed in such a manner thatthe sides'thereof are tapered ina downward and outward direction whereas the up per two packings 300 are disposed in an upright position whereby thefsides thereof taper in an upward and outward directionThe downwardly tapering lower packing' '300 functions to substantially preclude any upward passage of well' fluid, or the: like, around the outer periphery o f the cylinder, 304, and the upwardly tapering ,upper packings 300' function 'to substantially preclude: any downward passage of lubrica nt, or the like,"around the cylinder304, I The spacers 302 are preferably constructed .frorri brass, but not limited thereto, and comprise an "upper annular spacer 302a having the lower surface [thereof substantially V-shaped in cross-sectional configuration complementary to the configuration of the upper chevron packing 300. The inner periphery of the spacer 302a is spaced from the outer periphery of the sleeve or cylinder 304 to preclude any engagement therebetween during rotation of the sleeve 304. In addition, an annular recess or trough 310 is provided at the center of the Y between the upper packing 300 and spacer 302a for accumulating a quantity of the lubricant therein, as will be hereinafter set forth. The second spacer 30215 is of an annular configuration with the cross-sectional con: figuration of both the upper and lower surfaces thereof being V-shaped complementary to the upper packings 300. The inner periphery of the spacer 302b is spaced from the outer periphery of the sleeve 304, and an an-j nular trough 312 is provided at the V of the second packing member 300 for the accumulation of a quantity of the lubricant therein. In addition, at least one trans verse passageway 314 is provided in the spacer ring 302b for communicating the lubricant from the outer periphery of the spacer 302b to the inner periphery thereof, as will be hereinafter set forth. The third spacer 3020 is an annular ring wherein the upper surface the reof is substantially V-shaped in cross-sectional confi'gu ration, and the lower surface thereof is of a substantially inverted V-shaped configuration. The inner periphery of the spacer 302a is spaced from the outer periphery of the sleeve 304, and at least one transversely extending passageway 316 for communicating or directing the lubricating fluid from the outer periphery of the ring 302c to the inner periphery thereof; The'lowermost spacer ring 302d is substantially identical to the uppermost ring 302a, but reversed in position with respect thereto. Of course, the inner periphery of' the lower spacer 302d is spaced from the outer periphery of, the cylinder 304. In addition, there will be slight spacing between the outer periphery of each of the spacer rings 302 and the bore 298 for facilitating longitudinal distribution of the lubricant, as will be hereinafter set forth. This spacing is depicted in an exaggerated conditioii in FIGURE 9 for purposes of illustration.

An annular groove or recess 318 is provided on the upper or inwardly directed face to the retainer ring 306 for receiving a compression ring 320, such asan O-ring, or the like -therein. The compression ring '320 is concentrically 'arranged with respect to the spacer ring 302a and is preferably substantially centrally disposed between the inner and outer circumferences thereof for constantly exerting an upward pressure on the "spacer ring 302d for maintaining a longitudinal force through the spacer members 302 and packing members 300.This

assures an elficient packing between thespacers 302 and packing members 300 for increasing the overall efficiency ,of the packing or sealing action of the packing inernbers300'. i g i 7 As hereinbefore set forth, the area between the tubular member 262 and sleeve 218,and between the seal carrier rings" 23.4 and 278 is filled with a suitable lubricating fluid The lubricant surrounds the bearings 240, .252, 260 and 2741 for assuring an eflicientlubrication thereon. A longitudinally extending passageway 322 (FIGURE 9) islprovide'd in the seal carrier ring 234 and has oneend thereof open at the recess 236 for receiving the lubri: eating' fluid therein. A pair of spaced radially inwardly extendingpassageways 324 and .326 extend from the passageway 322 to the bore 298 for directing a portion of the lubricant to the outer periphery of the spacers 302,,and "particularly tothe spacers 302k and 3020. The slight clearance between the spacers. 302 and the bore zss'wm permitthe lubricant to adequately lubricate the packing members "300, disposed against the bore .298, and the passageways 314 and 316 will direct a portion of the lubricant to the inner 'peripheryof the spacers 302b and 302s whereby the lubricant will be distributed to the inner periphery of the packing members 300 which bear against the sleeve 304. A portion of the lubricant will work its way into the troughs 310 and 314 for furthen facilitating and improving the lubrication of the packing members 300 and spacers 302.

It has been found that a relatively small amount of the lubricating fluid is .required to adequately lubricate the packing members 300, and as a result, it is desirable to provide a cylindrical choke member 328 for each bore 324 and 326. The bores 324 and 326 may be internally, threaded at the ends thereof which terminate in the bore 298 whereby the choke members 328 may be threadedly inserted therein and in such a position that the choke members do not extend or protrude into the bore 298. In addition, the internal bores 330 may be filled with a suitable fibrous or fabric material, such as cotton, or like, as shown at 332, for further control of the quantity of lubricant which is allowed to drip or otherwise slowly flow into'the bores 314 and 316.

As hereinbefore set forth, the seal carrier is generally similar to the seal carrier 234, and as shown in FIGURE 4, a longitudinally extending bore or passageway 334 extends therethrough for directing the lubricant into the annular space between the tubular member 262 and sleeve 218. A 'zerk fitting 336, or the like, may be provided at the outer end of the bore 334 for facilitating the injection of the lubricant into the bore 334, as is well known. In addition, an enlarged central bore 338 is provided in the ring 278 for receiving a plurality of packing members 340 and spacers 342 which are similar to the packing members 300 and spacers 302. The packing members 340 are preferably of the well known chevron type, and there are preferably three of these chevron packings provided in an inverted position whereby the lips or sidewalls thereof are tapered outwardly and downwardly. The lowermost two of the packing members 340 are preferably disposed in abutting relationship and the third packing member 340 is preferably spaced thereabove, as viewed in FIGURE 4. The spacer rings 342 are preferably constructed from brass, or the like, but not limited thereto, and are of cross-sectional configurations generally similar to the respective spacer members 302. In addition, the centermost spacer member 342 is provided with at least one transversely extending bore 344 for providing communication between the inner and outer peripheries of the spacers 342. A radially extending bore or passageway 346 is provided in the seal carrier ring 278 for directing a portion of the lubricant from the bore 334 to the bore 338 whereby, a portion of the lubricant, will be distributed to the packing members 340 in a similar manner as hereinbefore set forth with respect to the packing members 300. It is preferably to utilize a choke member (not shown) similar,

12 to the choke 328 in the bore 344 for controlling the flow of lubricant into the bore 334. Of course, a suitable cylin deror sleeve 348 similar to the sleeve 304 is disposed around the outer periphery of the tubular member262 in substantially alignmentwith the seal carrier ring 278 and is provided with a hard chrome outer periphery for receiving the inner periphery of the packing members 340' thereagainst. The sleeve 348 rotates simultaneously with the tubular member 262, and the packingmembers 340 provide an efficient dynamicsealing between the rotating cylinder 348 and the stationary seal carrier ring 278. Of course, a suitable retainer ring 350 may be removably secured to the oiuter surface of the seal carrier ring 278 in any suitable manner, such as by a plurality of circumfer entially spacedstudsor screws 352 for retaining the packi ing members 340 and spacer members 342 withinthe bore 338. In addition, an annular' groove 349 is provided on the inner face of the ring 350 for receiving an O-ring 351, or the like, which is a compression seal for constantly exerting a downward force on the uppermost spacer 342 where by an eflicient sealing engagement is provided between the spacers 342 and packing 340. V v

The sleeve218 is held or retained in stationa ry relationship, with respect to the bowl 202 by means of a sectional clampingdevice generally indicated at 354, and particularly shown in FIGURES 4, 5 and 8. The clamping device 354 comprises a pair of arcuate half sections or jaws 356 and 358 hingedly secured together and to the bowl 202 at 360, as will be hereinafter set forth. The jaws 356 and 358 are substantially identical in construction, and each is provided with an annular recess 362 (FIG- URE 4) whereby each jaw receives substantially one-half of the flange 210 provided on the upper end of the bowl 202 when the jaws are in the closed or clamping position. The free or outer end of one jaw, such as the jaw 356 as depicted herein, is provided with a pair of spaced outwardly.- extending apertured boss of flange members 364 (onlyone of which is shown in FIGURE 8) forreceiv ing one end of a latch arm 366 therebetween. The arm 366 is pivotally secured to the flanges 364 by a suitable pivot pin 368, as iswellknown. The outer end of the other jaw, such as the jaw 358, is provided with an outwardly extending latch receiving member 370 having an open sided slot (not shown) extending along the length thereof .for removably receiving the latch arm 366 therein. The outer end of the latch arm 366 is preferably threaded as shown at 372 in FIGURE 8 for receiving a threaded locking nut 374 thereon whereby the nut 374 may be tightened into a locking engagement with the latch receiving member 370 in the closed or latched position of thearm3 66. ,1 v v I ii Of course, when it is desired to open the jaws 356 and 358, the nut 374. may be backed off, and the latch arm 366 may be quickly .and easily manually pivoted about the. pin 368 for releasing the locking engagement'between the jaws. Conversely, when it isdesired to clamp or lock the jaws 356 and 358 around the bowl 202 the latcharm .366 may be quickly and easily pivoted about the pin 368 in a reverse position for disposition in ,the latchreceiving member 370, and the lock nut 374 may be-locked against the. member 370 for-securely latching the jaws 356 and- 358. in the closed position. -Whereas the particular latch armor swing .bolt depictedherein is very eflicient and durable in operation, it is to be understood that substantially any .desired latching mechanism maybe utilized in lieu thereof, such aszza hydraulic dou-I ble-actjoncylinder, or the like,; as is well known. A

As. particularly shown in FIGURE 5, a cylindrical hinge member 376 is securedto theouter. periphery of the-bowl 202 in any. suitablemanner, such asbya flange 377 which may be welded to the bowl,'or otherwise secured between thebowl and member 376. A pair of longitudinally spaced outwardly :extendinglapertured flanges 378 and 380- are provided .on the outer periphery of the jaw-358 whereby the flange 378 is disposed adjacent-the upper end of the 13 cylindrical member 376. A pair of similar spaced outwardly extending apertured flanges 382 and 384are provided on the outer periphery of 'thejaw 356 whereby the flange 382 isinterposed between the flanges 378 and 380, and the flange 384 is disposed adjacent the upper surface of the flange "380. A suitable hinge pin 386 extends through the apertures of the flanges and through the cylindrical member to provide the pivotal or hinged connected between the jaws 356 and 358 and bowl 202.

Suitable stop members 388 are provided on each flange 378 380, 382 and 384 for limiting the opening pivotal movement pf the jaws 356 and 358 for precluding accidental complete disengagement of the jaws with the upper end'of' the'bowl 202 during the opening of the clamping device 354. Furthermore, it will be noted in FIGURE. 8 that the axis of the hinge pin 386 is offset with respect to the axis of the cylindrical member 376 and corresponding configuration formed by the flanges 378, 380 382 and 384 whereby the path of the outer ends of the jaws will be such that the free ends of the jaws will always be 'inengag'ement with the'upper end of the bowl 202 during the opening and closing of the clamp 354. This facilitates the overall operation of the device, and is a practical advantage of the structure.

Referring again to FIGURE 4, it is to be noted that the inner periphery 390 of the jaws 356 and 358 is slightly spaced from the outer periphery of the collar 220. In addition, an inwardly directed, upwardlytapered shoulder 392 is provided on the inner periphery of each clamp jaw 356 and 358 which is of 'a taper complementary to the taper'ed shoulder 222, and is in engagement therewith in the closed or clamped position of the clamping mechanism 354. The tapered configuration of the shoulders 392 and 222 in combinationwith the tapered configuration of the shoulders 212 and 224 provides a self-centering action as the upper housing. or sealing assembly 203 is clamped in position within the bowl 202. The shoulder 392 is'cutaway at the opposite ends of each jaw member 356 and 358, as shown at 394, 396, 338 and 400 in FIG- URE 8, to provide clearance for facilitating disposition of the assembly 203 in the bowl 202 with a minium of arcuately outward movement of the clamp jaws 356 and 358 inthe open position thereof.

The lower 'end of the tubular member 262, as viewed in FIGURE'4, is externally threaded at 402 for receiving an internally threaded stripper holder ring 404 thereon. The ring 404 may be secured in the desired position on the threaded end 402 in any well known manner, such as by a set screw 406, or the like. A stripper rubber 408 generally similar to the frusto-conical member 184 depicted in FIGURE 1 isbonded or otherwise secured to the ring 404 and is provided with an internal bore 410 adapted to engage the outer periphery of a drill string (not shown in FIGURE 4) in the manner generally as set forth in the first embodiment of the invention, and as is well known.

As hereinbefore set forth, the drill string is rotated by the kelly, and any suitable means may be utilized for transmitting rotation of the kelly to the tubular member 262. For example, as shown in FIGURES 10 through 13, a drive assembly generally indicated at 412 is depicted which'comprises an outer housing or sleeve 414 having an inner housing 416 disposed therein and a retaining ring-418 for retaining the inner housing 416 within the outer housing 414; The inner housing 416 is preferably sectional as shown in FIGURE 12 and comprises a pair of substantially identical half sections 416a and 41611 for facilitating disposition thereof around the outer periphery of the kelly. The inner periphery of the housing 41 6is square or of any other configuration corresponding to the kelly whereby the rotation of the kelly is transmitted to the h'ousing416 by the engagement therebetween. The upperend of the housing 416 is provided with an outwardly extending circumferential flange 420for engagement with ordispositionin an annular groove 422 pro- A plurality of circumferentially spaced outwardly di-:

rected lugs 428 are provided around the upper end of the housing 414, as viewed in FIGURE 10, and each of the. lugs 428 is provided with at least one aperture 430 extending therethrough. The ring 418 is provided with a plurality of circumferentially spaced elongated apertures 432 each having an enlarged portion 433 which Will register or be in substantially alignment with each of the apertures 430 when the ring 418 is disposed on the upper end of the housing 414. A pin member 434 may be disposed through each of the aligned apertures 430 and 432,. and the ring 418 may be rotated in a direction for moving the enlarged portion 433 of each aperture'432 away from the respective pin 432. At leastone of the flanges 428 is provided with a second apertures 436 which will be in alignment with the open portion of the respective aperture 432 upon the revolved position of the ring 418 whereby a suitable locking pin may be inserted through the apertures 436 and 432 for locking the ring 418 in the revolved or orientated position, thus retaining the inner housing 416 securely within the outer housing 414.

The entire drive assembly 412 is adapted for disposition within the upper end of the tubular member 262 for transmitting rotation thereto. The lugs or flanges 428 may be disposed in complementary recesses provided in the upper end of the tubular member 262. Rotation of the drive assembly 412 is transmitted to the tubular member 262 through the engagement between the lugs 428 and recesses 438. Of course, the rotational movement of the tubular member 262 is absorbed by the bearings 240, 252, 260 and 274 and the sleeve 218 and bowl 202 remain stationary. I

It will be apparent that itmay be desirable to provide air bowls 202 in variety of sizes. When the bowl 202 is larger than the assembly 203, the adapter member may be utilized. The adapter 228 comprises a pair of substantially identical semi-circular half sections 440, only one of which is shown in FIGURES 6 and 7, for encircling the collar portion 220 of the sleeve 218. Each half section 440 is provided with an inwardly directed flange member 442 extending around the inner periphery thereof for engagement with the annular recess 226 provided on the outer periphery of the collar 220. The opposite ends 444 and 446 of the half section 4140 are provided with complementary bores 448 and pins 450 where-by the pins 450 of one half section will engage the bores 448 of the other half section for facilitating retaining of the half sections 440 in position around the collar 220. In addition, each end member 444 and 446 is provided with spaced apertures 452for receiving bolts (not shown), or the like, therethrough in order to securely lock'or clamp the half-sections 440 around the collar 220.

The upper end of the other periphery of the half section 440 as viewed in FIGURE 7 is bevelled at 454 at a taper complementary with the shoulder 392 of the clamp 354, and the lower end of the'outer periphery of the half section 440 is beveled at 456 at a taper complemen tary to the shoulder 212 for seating thereon in the same manner as the collar 220. Thus, the adapter member 228 will be engaged by the bowl 202 and clamp 354 in the same manner as the collar 220 whereby the assembly 203 may be securely retained around the drill pipe and within the bowl 202 by selecting an adapter 228 of the proper diametric size. Thus, a single assembly 203 may be utilized for bowls which are of substantially any larger size than the assembly 203.

In the event the bowl 202 is smaller than that depicted in FIGURE 4, a diiferent adapter may be utilized. In this instance, a flange type fitting (not shown) may be utilized which comprises a lower flange of a size complementary to the size of the upper flange 210 of the smaller bowl 202, and which may be bolted or otherwise secured thereto in'any well known manner. An upper flange may be provided for the adapter which is of a size corresponding to the flange 210 of the bowl 202 as shown in FIGURE 4. The adaptermay be provided with hinge connection members similar to that provided on the bowl 202 and the clamp 354 may be hingedly secured to the adapter as hereinbefore set forth. Of course, the inner periphery of the upper flange of the adapter Will be beveled or tapered similar to the taper 212 for receiving the collar 220 thereagainst,'and the clamp 354 may be utilized in the manner as hereinbefore set forth for clamping the assembly 203 to the adapter, which in turn is rigidly secured to the smaller bowl 202.'

. Of course, it will be apparent that the stripper 408 may be provided in a variety of sizes for use with substantially any size drill pipe. The stripper rubber 408 may be readily removed and replaced, as required, either because of wear, or due to need for another size, by unthreading the ring 406 from the end of the tubular member 262, and threading the ring 406 of the new stripper on the tubular member 262 in lieu thereof.

In use, the assembly 203 may be quickly and easily installed on the bowl 202 by releasing the latch arm 366 and opening the clamp jaws 356 and 358. The opening of the jaws will be limited by the stop members 388, thus assuring that the outer ends of the jaws will remain in contact with the upper end of the bowl 202 at all times. This facilitates the reclamping of the jaws around the assembly 203.

The assembly 203 :may then be disposed in the bowl 202 with the lower tapered shoulder 224 of the collar 220 disposed on the shoulder 212. The complementary tapers 212 and 224 will pnovide a self-centering action for facilitating the disposition of the assembly 203 in the bowl 202. The jaws 356 and 358 may then be rotated into a closed position around the collar 220 for bringing the tapered shoulder 392 into engagement with the tapered shoulder 222. This action further facilitates the centering of the assembly 203 within the bowl. The entire device 200 may then be secured to the well casing, as hereinbefore set forth.

Of course, the drive assembly 412 may be installed around the kelly prior to disposition vof the assembly 412 within the tubular member 262, or may be disposed within the tubular member 262, and then the kelly may be inserted therethrough, as desired. The engagement of the inner periphery of the housing 416 with the outer periphery of the kelly will transmit rotation to the drive assembly 412, and the engagement of the lugs 428 of the drive assembly with the recesses 438 of the tubular member will transmit rotation to the tubular member.

The space between the tubular member 262 and the sleeve 218 is filled with a lubricant, as hereinbefore set forth. A portion of this lubricant is directed to the packing members 340 and another portion of the lubricant is directed'to 'the packing members 300. It has been found that this provides an exceptionally efficient lubrication of the packing members and greatly prolongs the useful life thereof. The packing members 340, having the sidewalls thereof tapering downwardly, substantially precludes any upward leakage of the lubricant from the annular space surrounding the tubular member 262, and the upwardly tapering sidewalls of the uppermost packing members 300 substantially precludes any downward leakage of the lubricant from the annular space surrounding the tubular member 262. The downwardly tapering sidewalls of the lowermost packing member 300 substantially precludes any leakage of well fluids into the annular space surrounding the tubular member 262. In addition, the placking members 248 which are provided with upwardly tapering sealing lips, permit the lubricant to flow upwardly around the sleeve 348 for assuring an adequate 16 supply of the lubricant to the lower bearing 240, but substantially preclude any downward passage of fluid around the sleeve 348, thus providing a double assurance that no well fluids will leak around the tubular member 262 for contamination of the bearings 252, 260 and274.

As hereinbefore set forth, the threads 232 are preferably left-hand threads whereas the threads 26 6 and 276 are preferably right-hand threads, This is to facilitate the assembly of the seal assembly 203 whereby the threaded connection of the ring 268 and seal carrier 278 with the sleeve 218 will not unthread the seal carrier ring 234, Of course, suitable tool receiving recesses (not shown) may be provided in the exposed surfaces of the seal carriers 234 and 278 and the ring 268 for receiving suitable tools (not shown) for facilitating the assembly ofthe device 203. V i

The novel rotary drilling head assembly 200 is particular-ly designed and constructed for ease of assembly; to assure an adequate lubrication of the packing members; to assure an eflicient sealing of the bearing members from contamination by well fluids, and the likej and to assure an adequate lubrication of the bearing members whereby the assembly will function efliciently for a maximum of operating time without the necessity of replacement of parts, or other repair thereto. The novel' device is simple and eflicient in operation and economical and durable in construction.

Changes may be made in the combination and arrangement of parts as heretobefore set forth in the specification and shown in the drawings, it being understood that any modification in the precise embodiment of the invention may be made within the scope of the following claims, without departing from the spirit of the invention.

What is claimed is:

1. A rotary drilling head assembly for a well bore comprising astationary housing, a $6311 assembly supported by the stationary housing, said seal assembly comprising a rotatable sleeve member, a stationary sleeve member surrounding the rotatable sleeve, a chamber provided between the stationary sleeve and rotatable sleeve for receiving a lubricating fluid, bearing means interposed between the stationary sleeve and rotatable sleeve and disposed within the chamber, upper and lower sealing means carried by the stationary sleeve and providing a seal for the chamber to substantially preclude leakage ofiiuid out of or into the chamber, and auxiliary seal means interposed between the upper and lower sealing means for further precluding leakage of fluid into the chamber for additional protection of the bearing means, and means being provided for directing a portion of the lubricant to the upper and lower sealing means for lubrication thereof. I v

2. A rotary drilling head assembly as set forthin claim 1 and including means for transmitting rotation to the rotatable sleeve member. I

3. A rotary drilling head assembly as set forth in claim 1 and including adapter means for adapting the seal assembly for support by substantially any size stationary housing. f

4. A' rotary drilling head assembly as set forth in claim 1 wherein the stationary housing is provided with clamp-- ing means for removably securing the seal assembly thereto. I y

5. A rotary drilling head assembly as set forth in claim 1 wherein stripper means is removably secured to the rotatable sleeve member. i

6. A rotary drilling head assembly asset forth in claim 5 wherein the stripper means comprises a ring member threadedly secured to the rotatablefsleeve member, and a substantially conical stripper rubber carried by the said i sm b r- .7. Arotary drilling head assembly fora well bore comprising a stationary housing, a seal assembly supported. by the stationary housing, said seal assembly, comprising a rotatable, sleeye rnember, a stationary sleevemember surrounding the rotatable sleeve, a chamber provided between the stationary sleeve and rotatable sleeve for receiving a lubricating fluid, bearing means interposed between the stationary sleeve and rotatable sleeve and disposed within the chamber, upper and lower sealing means carried by the stationary sleeve and providing a seal for the chamber to substantially preclude leakage of fluid out of or into the chamber, and auxiliary seal means interposed between the upper and lower sealing means for further precluding leakage of fluid into the chamber for additional protection of the bearing means, said upper and lower sealing means each including a plurality of annular packing members, a plurality of spacer members, and compression means for maintaining a longitudinal pressure between the packing members and spacer members.

8. A rotary drilling head assembly for a well bore comprising a stationary housing, a seal assembly supported by the stationary housing, said seal assembly comprising a rotatable sleeve member, a stationary sleeve member surrounding the rotatable sleeve, a chamber provided between the stationary sleeve and rotatable sleeve for receiving a lubricating fluid, bearing means interposed between the stationary sleeve and rotatable sleeve and disposed within the chamber, upper and lower sealing means carried by the stationary sleeve and [providing a seal for the chamber to substantially preclude leakage of fluid out of or into the chamber, and auxiliary seal means interposed between the upper and lower sealing means for further precluding leakage of fluid into the chamber for additional protection of the bearing means, and clamping means provided for cooperating with the stationary housing and seal assembly to removably secure the seal assembly to the stationary housing, said clamping means including a pair of hinged jaw members for alternate opening and closing, stop means for limiting the movement of the jaws in the opening direction, and latch means for securing the jaws in the closed position thereof.

9. A rotary drilling head assembly as set forth in claim 8 wherein means is provided for cooperating between the clamping means and stationary housing and seal assembly for a self-centering of the seal assembly with respect to the stationary housing upon clamping of the seal assembly to the stationary housing.

10. A rotary drilling head assembly for a well bore comprising a stationary housing, a seal assembly supported by the stationary housing, said seal assembly comprising a rotatable sleeve member, a stationary sleeve member surrounding the rotatable sleeve, a chamber provided between the stationary sleeve and rotatable sleeve for receiving a lubricating fluid, bearing means interposed between the stationary sleeve and rotatable sleeve and disposed within the chamber, upper and lower sealing means carried by the stationary sleeve and providing a seal for the chamber to substantially preclude leakage of fluid out of or into the chamber, and auxiliary seal means interposed between the upper and lower sealing means for further precluding leakage of fluid into the chamber for additional protection of the bearing means, said bearings means including a pair of spaced radial bearings disposed between the rotatable sleeve member and stationary sleeve member, a pair of spaced thrust bearings interposed between the stationary sleeve member and rotatable sleeve member and disposed between the radial bearings, and said auxiliary seal means being interposed between the thrust bearings and one of said radial bearings.

11. A rotary drilling head assembly for a well bore comprising a stationary housing, a seal assembly supported by the stationary housing, said seal assembly comprising a rotatable sleeve member, a stationary sleeve member surrounding the rotatable sleeve, a chamber provided between the stationary sleeve and rotatable sleeve for receiving a lubricating fluid, bearing means intenposed between the stationary sleeve and rotatable sleeve and disposed within the chamber, upper and lower sealing means carried by the stationary sleeve and providing a seal for the chamber to substantially preclude leakage of fluid out of or into the chamber, and auxiliary seal means interposed between the upper and lower sealing means for further precluding leakage of fluid into the chamber for additional protection of the bearing means, said upper sealing means being provided with a plurality of annular packing members having the sealing lips thereof tapered outwardly and downwardly, the lower sealing means being provided with a plurality of annular packing members having the sealing lips thereof tapered upwardly and outwardly and at least one annular p acking member having the sealing lips thereof tapered outwardly and downwardly, and the auxiliary seal means being provided with a plunality of spaced annular packing members having the inner sealing lips thereof tapered upwardly.

12. A rotary drilling head assembly comprising a stationary housing having an inwardly and downwardly tapered shoulder provided at one end thereof, a seal assembly supported by the stationary housing and oom prising an outer stationary sleeve member having a tapered shoulder on the outer periphery thereof for engagement with the tapered shoulder of the stationary housing, a rotatable sleeve member concentrically disposed within the stationary sleeve, an annular ch amber provided between the rotatable sleeve and the stationary sleeve fior receiving a lubricant therein, upper and lower sealing means carried by the stationary sleeve for sealing the chamber, upper and lower radial bearings disposed in the chamber and supported by the stationary sleeve and engageable with the out-er periphery of the rotatable sleeve, a pair of thrust bearings disposed in the chamber between the radial bearings and interposed between the rotatable and stationary sleeves, auxiliary packing means carried by the rotatable sleeve and interposed between the thrust bearings and the lower radial bearing, passageway mcans provided in the upper sealing means for directing the lubricant into the chamber, passageway means provided in both the upper and lower sealing means for directing a portion of the lubricant to the inner peripheries thereof for lubrication thereof, and clamping means carried by the stationary housing and cooperating with the stationary sleeve for removably securing the seal assembly to the stationary housing.

13. A rotary drilling head assembly as set forth in claim 12 and including stripper means rernovably secured to the rotatable sleeve.

14. A rotary drilling head assembly as set forth in claim 12 and including means for transmitting rotation to the rotatable sleeve member.

15. A rotary drilling head assembly as set forth in claim 12 and including adapter means for adapting the seal assembly for support by substantially any size stationary housing.

References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 2,170,916 8/1939 Schweitzer et al. 277-3l X 2,176,355 10/1939 Otis 277-31 2,768,007 10/1956 Brenner 166-89 X 2,846,247 8/1958 Davis 166--84 X 3,023,012 2/1962 Wilde 277-31 3,052,300 9/1962 Hampton 166-84 3,128,614 4/1964 Auer 166-84 X JAMES A. LEPPINK, Primary Examiner.

Patent Citations
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US2846247 *Nov 23, 1953Aug 5, 1958Guiberson CorpDrilling head
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Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US4157186 *Oct 17, 1977Jun 5, 1979Murray Donnie LHeavy duty rotating blowout preventor
US4285406 *Aug 24, 1979Aug 25, 1981Smith International, Inc.Drilling head
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US4312404 *May 1, 1980Jan 26, 1982Lynn International Inc.Rotating blowout preventer
US4345769 *Mar 16, 1981Aug 24, 1982Washington Rotating Control Heads, Inc.Drilling head assembly seal
US4363357 *Oct 9, 1980Dec 14, 1982Hunter Joseph MRotary drilling head
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Classifications
U.S. Classification277/343, 166/84.3, 277/346, 175/214, 277/549, 277/510
International ClassificationE21B33/08, E21B33/02, E21B21/16, E21B21/00
Cooperative ClassificationE21B21/16, E21B33/085
European ClassificationE21B33/08B, E21B21/16