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Publication numberUS3732924 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateMay 15, 1973
Filing dateFeb 17, 1971
Priority dateFeb 17, 1971
Publication numberUS 3732924 A, US 3732924A, US-A-3732924, US3732924 A, US3732924A
InventorsChelette F, Goodwin C
Original AssigneeChelette F, Goodwin C
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Apparatus for attaching to the outer of a plurality of tubular members and of cutting through, valving closed, and diverting material flow from all of the tubular members
US 3732924 A
Abstract
The apparatus is employed with a plurality of substantially parallel extending tubular members in the method of diverting the flow matter therefrom, comprising disposing the apparatus in manner to sealably attach the apparatus housing around the outermost of the tubular members, projecting a housing carried severance means to sever the tubular members as a closure plate is moved after the severance means, and at the end of severance is cammed into outer tubular member closing position, thereby closing off the flow of matter from original direction through the tubular members and diverting the flow in a direction sidewardly through the housing from the original direction of flow.
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United States Patent 1 Chelette et al.

[ 51 May 15,1973

Inventors: Francis M. Cl elette, 1910 Crosby Road, Carrollton, Tex. 75006; Charles G. Goodwin, 502 Scott, Baytown, Tex. 77520 Filed: Feb. 17, 1971 Appl. N0.: 115,977

US. Cl ..l66/55, 251/1 Int. Cl. ..E21b 29/00 Field of Search "251/1; 166/55, 55.1,

References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS Clough nee/5s Primary ExaminerDavid H. Brown Att0rney-William E. Ford [57] ABSTRACT The apparatus is employed with a plurality of substantially parallel extending tubular members in the method of diverting the flow matter therefrom, comprising disposing the apparatus in manner to sealably attach the apparatus housing around the outermost of the tubular members, projecting a housing carried severance means to sever the tubular members as a closure plate is moved after the severance means, and at the end of severance is cammed into outer tubular member closing position, thereby closing off the flow of matter from original direction through the tubular members and diverting the flow in a direction side wardly through the housing from the original direction of flow.

19 Claims, 7 Drawing Figures PATUHH) MY 1 5W5 SHEET 1 UP 2 INVENTORS. Francis M. Chelefie Charles G. Goodwin ATTORNEY APPARATUS FOR ATTACHING TO THE OUTER OF A PLURALITY OF TUBULAR MEMBERS AND OF CUTTING THROUGH, VALVING CLOSED, AND DIVERTING MATERIAL FLOW FROM ALL OF THE TUBULAR MEMBERS SUMMARY OF THE PROBLEMS RAISED TO BE SOLVED BY THE INVENTION Various means and methods have been employed to close and/or to divert the flow from a plurality of usually parallel extending tubular members from an original to a sidewardly direction to the original direction of flow, as, for instance, in cases where the discharge from a plurality of such tubular members may be on fire, as at the head or Christmas tree of an oil or gas well. The apparatus employed and methods of its use have at times required great projecting force, as to break off, and swage closed, the tubular members, one by one, without providing for the diversion of flow, thereby leaving the closures subject at times to terrific hydrostatic pressures, as from below. Many similar problems arise, where, for various reasons it is desired to cut through a plurality of parallel extending tubular members to close off the flow therein, whereby to divert the flow sidewardly from the original direction of flow.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION The invention primarily includes a centrally flanged housing that is attached about the outermost of a plurality of substantially parallel extending tubular members so that a severance means, as a milling cutter may be projected from one side of the housing into the aforesaid outermost tubular member, and thereafter to sever the smaller diameter tubular members inwardly from such outermost member, and finally to complete severance of the aforesaid outermost member. As the severance means is projected a closure plate is projected thereafter across the opening provided by the severance of the tubular members, and at the end of severance the closure plate is cammed into place, sealably closing off the outermost tubular member, as a valve plate, across the direction of flow through the tubular members. Since the tubular members may have been conveying fluid and material at tremendous pressures, there is shown a diverting outlet valve from the housing suitably disposed for the diversion of the fluid and material sidewardly, thereby to relieve excess pressure from disrupting valve plate and housing seat coinmunication, or for rupturing the housing or outermost tubular member.

OBJECTS As a primary object, the invention provides apparatus and method whereby a housing means may be attached to the outermost of a plurality of substantially parallel extending tubular members, and housing carried severance means projected through the adjacent wall of the outermost tubular member, then through the tubular members inwardly thereof, and through the opposite wall of the outermost tubular member, a closure plate being projected after the severance means to extend across the opening provided by tubular member severance, and then to be cammed into position as a valve plate seating against the outer tubular member, thereby closing off the fluid and material from its original direction of flow, so that it may be diverted sidewardly through a housing provided relief outlet.

It is also an important object of the invention to provide apparatus andmethod of the class described, where the severance means comprises a milling cutter of cutting length at least equal to the outer diameter of BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS FIG. 1 is an elevational view of a housing with the complementary flanges thereof bolted together to constrain the housing about an outermost tubular member;

FIG. 1A is an elevational view of a housing with the complementary flanges thereof welded together and to an outermost tubular member to constrain the housing about an outermost tubular member;

FIG. 2 is a sectional elevational view through a housing as shown in- FIG. 1A, at the start of milling cutter projection, as taken; along line 2--2 of FIG. 3, to be hereinbelow described;

FIG. 2A is a sectional elevational view through the housing shown in FIG. 2, with the milling cutter at the end of severance travel and the valve plate in outermost tubular member closing position;

FIG. 3 is a plan view, part in section, of the housing shown in FIGS. 1A,. 2 and ZA, showing milling cutter at the start of projection,- as in FIG. 2;

FIG. 4 is a transverse sectional elevational view, taken along line 4'-4 of FIG. 3;

FIG. 5 is an enlarged, fragmentary, isometric view, showing details of milling cutter carriage and drive.

FIG. 6 is a transverse, fragmentary, sectional elevational view, taken along 6-6 of FIG. 3; and

FIG. 7 is a large scale, fragmentary, longitudinal elevational view, part in section,- through the selfadjustable bearing unit and end of valve plate drive worm shaft, best shown in FIG. 2A;

Referring now to the drawings in which like reference numerals are assigned to like elements in the various views, a two-part housing 10 is shown in FIG. 1 as comprised of a first or drive carrying housing section and a second or completion section 15b. The first and second housing sections 15a, 15b, are shown as including, respectively, upper and lower semi-tubular portions or flanges 11a, 12a, and I lb, 12b, terminating in radially outwardly extending connection flanges 13a, 13b connected by nuts and bolts 14 as indicated. Also, between the upper and lower semi-tubular flanges 11a, 12a the housing proper of the first housing section 15a is shown, and between the upper and lower semitubular flanges 11b, 121), the housing proper of the sec-' ond housing section 15b is shown. Radially outwardly extending connection flanges 13c, 13d are shown in FIG. 1 extending normally from the sides of the housing sections 15a, 15b, to connect these sections by nut and bolts 14, as indicated. An outermost tubular member 16 is shown in FIG. 1 extending vertically through the upper semi-tubular flanges 11a, 11b, the first and second housing sections 15a, 15b, and the lower semitubular flanges 12a, 12b. An intermediate tubular member 17 is indicated as being concentrically disposed within the outermost tubular member 16, and an innermost tubular member 18 is indicated as being concentrically disposed within the intermediate tubular member 17. Heavy lines between the respective connection flanges 13a, 13b, 13c, 13d, and 13a, 13b, indicate that suitable gasket means 19 may be inserted between the respective connection flanges, as expedient.

As shown in FIG. 1A, the housing sections 15a, 15b, and the upper and lower semi-tubular portions 11a, 11b, and 12a, 12b, are in correspondence, only in this form the connection flanges are omitting, and heavy vertical line matter, between upper semi-tubular portions 11a, 11b, housing sections 15a, 15b, and lower semi-tubular portions 11a, 11b, housing sections 15a, 15b, and lower semi-tubular portions 12a, 12b, indicate that these respective sections are connected by welding 20. Also, the upper and lower heavy horizontal lines in this view indicate the respective upper semi-tubular portions 11a, 1b, and the respective lower semi-tubular portions 12a, 12b, are connected to the outermost tubular member 16 by welding 20. In each of FIGS. 1 and 1A, a relief valve 21 is shown extending sidewardly from the housing section 15b, with a discharge or relief line or conduit 22 extending outwardly from the valve 21.

Now considering FIGS. 2, 2A, 3 and 4, with relation to the FIGS. 1 and 1A hereinabove described, the first housing section 15a, is indicated as including top plate 23a, bottom plate 23b, side plates 23c, 23d, end plate 232, with partition plate or wall 23f spaced inwardly therefrom. Also, the second housing section 15b is indicated as including top plate 24a, bottom plate 24 b, side plates 24d, 24e, and end plate 240. Thus the aforesaid semi-tubular upper and lower flanges 11a, 12a, extend respectively from the upper and lower plates 23a, 23b, and the aforesaid semi-tubular upper and lower flanges 11b, 12b, extend respectively from the upper and lower plates 24a, 24b. Also, the relief valve 21 is shown as connected to the end plate 24c. As indicated in FiG. 3, a conventional valve operator 25 is indicated as installed to operate the relief valve 21, with conduits 26a, 26b extending therefrom, as to a source of hydraulic operation.

Now considering the milling cutter 27, with cutting length at least equal to the outer diameter of the outermost tubular member 16, the opposed shaft ends 27a, 25b, of the milling cutter 27, are indicated as journalled in conventional bearing units'33 housed in respective opposed carrier cages 28a, 28b. Drive shafts 29a, 29b extend longitudinally down each side of the housing sections 15a, 15b, and, as indicated in FIG. 5, the drive shafts 29a, 29 b, have splines 30, (not shown in FIGS. 2, 2A, 3 and 4) which extend in internal grooves 30a formed in a drive worm 31 that is carried by each respective carrier cage 28a,28b.

Each carrier cage 28a, 28b; is constructed of top and bottom plates 32a, 32b, outer and inner side plates 32c, 32d, and end plates 32e; an end plate 32e, top 32a, and inner side plate 320 being shown in FIG. 5, whereby the carriage shown illustratively in that figure would be the carriage 28a, (FIG. 3), the carriage 28b being similarly constructed in all respects. Each drive worm 31 has a reduced diameter journal or hub 31a at each end to be received in a conventional bearing unit 33 that is pressfitted into a suitably toleranced bore therefor in its respective end plate 32e of its carriage 28a (28b). The worm threads 31b of each worm 31 terminate in flanges 31c with outer side faces to bear against the inner faces of the aforesaid bearing units 33.

As best shown in FIG. 4, the outer side plate 320 of each cage provides an inwardly extending boss 34a which is threaded to receive therethrough a respective cage or milling cutter carrier drive worm shaft 35a (35a, 35b, FIG. 3). Each cage outer side plate 32c has a way groove or slot therein whereby the cages 28a, 28b may slide along ways 52 provided on the inner faces of the respective housing side plates 23e, 23d, as the carriages are moved, by worm shaft rotation, to travel back and forth down the worm shafts 35b, (35a) as will be hereinbelow described.

As aforesaid, the milling cutter, reduced diameter shaft ends 27a, 27b, are journalled in respective bearing units 33, these bearing units being press-fitted into bores therefor in the respective inner side plates 32d of the respective carrier cages or carriages 28a, 28b. The respective shaft ends have mounted on the outermost portions thereof, outwardly of the respective inner side plates 32d, respective worm gears or worm pinions 37 which are disposed to mesh with the worm threads of the respective encaged drive worms 31, as carried to rotate with the respective splined carrier drive shafts 29a, 29b, as they slide along the splines 30 thereof. Thus the milling cutter 27 has its cutting threads 27c pitched in cutting direction to cut through metal as it is rotated by the engagement of the respective predetermined pitched, encaged worm threads 31b with the predetermined pitched worm teeth of the respective worm pinions or gears 37, as the cages 28a, 28b, carrying the milling cutter 27 are advanced inwardly, or to the right in FIG. 3.

As shown in FIG. 3, hydraulic motors 38 have respective bevel gears 39 on their respective shaft ends to drive respective bevel gears 40 on the outer ends of the respective splined shafts 29a, 29b, outwardly of their passage through bearing units 33 in the partition plate 23f. These respective bevel gears 40 mesh with, and transmit drive through respective bevel gears 41 on the outer ends of the respective worm shafts 35a, 35b.

The milling cutter 27 is driven inwardly by the hydraulic motors 38 to cut through the adjacent wall of the outermost tubular member 16, then, as it continues to cut away at the outermost tubular member 16 it cuts through and away at the adjacent wall of the intermediate tubular member 17; continuing, it cuts through the inner tubular member 18 as it cuts through the adjacent walls of the outermost and intermediate tubular members 16, 17, and away at the opposite side walls thereof; then it cuts completely through the opposite side wall of the intermediate tubular member 17, and finally, completely through the opposite side wall of the outer tubular member 17.

A valve or closure plate 36 is shown in FIG. 3 with inner edge adjacent the outermost part of the milling cutter 27, and outer edge adjacent the inner face of the partition plate 23f, and with respective side edges inwardly of the carrier drive shafts 29a, 29b. Thus the plate 36 may be substantially a square with edge to edge dimensions of greater dimensions than the diameter of the outermost tubular member 16. Beneath the valve plate 36 are located outer, central and inner sleeves 42a, 42b, 42c, worm threaded centrally to receive a valve plate drive worm shaft 43 therethrough. The valve plate 36 is constrained substantially horizontally by upper and lower inner wheel units 44a, and by upper and lower outer wheel units 44b.

The wheels 45 of the inner wheel units 44a are mounted to roll in the inner runways or channel tracks 46a, connected respectively to the under surface of the housing section top plate 23a, and to the upper surface of the housing section bottom plate 23b. Also, the wheels 45 of the outer wheel units 44b are mounted to roll in the outer runways or channel tracks 46b, connected respectively to the under surface of the housing section top plate 23a, and to the upper surface of the housing section bottom plate 23b. Accordingly, as best shown in FIG. 3, the inner channel tracks 46a are transversely offset inwardly from the outer channel tracks 46b.

Considering FIG. 6 the lower trackways or channels 46a, 46b are shown disposed in transversely spaced apart relationship, as affixed to the upper face of the lower or bottom housing plate 23b. Also, as shown in FIG. 3, the inner trackways 46b are shown to start near the partition plate 23f and extend longitudinally inwardly under the milling cutter 27 and terminate near the periphery of the outer tubular member 16, on the side thereof adjacent the partition plate 23f of the first or drive providing section a of the housing 15. As shown in FIG. 2A the inner ends 46b of the inner trackways 46a are raised or tapered upwardly as will be hereinbelow described.

In detail each wheel unit 44a, 44b, comprises a centrally bored steel wheel or roller 45 mounted on an axle 47 which has hold on flanges at either end thereof to constrain its wheel 45 against sideward displacement. To the outer flange of each axle leading bracket rods 48a are connected. The bracket rods 48a, 48b, extending oppositely diagonally upwardly with their ends opposite their axle connected ends being recurved inwardly for connection to respective connection tabs 49. Thus in FIG. 6 bracket rods 48a are shown connected to tabs 49, which are in turn shown as being connected, as by machine screws, to the underside of the valve plate 36. In FIG. 6, and also in FIGS. 2 and 2A, the upper surface of the valve plate 36 is indicated as being covered with a sealing material 50, as rubber or compressible plastic.

Also, in FIG. 6, above the sealing layer 49, can be seen upper bracket rods 48a comprising parts of upper wheel units 44a, 44b. These wheel units mount rollers or wheels 44a, 44b, ride in upper trackway or channel tracks 46a, 46b, as shown in FIGS. 2 and 2A, corresponding to the lower channel tracks 46a, 46b, FIG. 6, and mounted on the under side of the housing top plate 23a, as aforesaid. The upper bracket rods 48a, and their corresponding wheel unit members, including the connection tabs 49, serve to connect the respective upper rollers 45 to roll upon the aforesaid upper trackways 46a, 46b, the connection tabs 49 not being shown, but being disposed in openings in the sealing material 50, to be connected by machine screws into the upper part of the valve plate 36.

Considering FIG. 3 in relation to FIGS. 2 and 2A, it can be seen that the outer lower and upper trackways 46b extend as correspondingly constructed channels or trackways 46d, respectively mounted on the upper surface of the bottom plate 24b of the second housing section 15b. At the outer ends 46c of the lower trackways 46d these members are enlarged or tapered diagonally upwardly as shown in FIGS. 2 and 2A. Correspondingly, in FIGS. 2 and 2A, the upper trackways 46e on the underside of the top plate 24a of the second housing section 15b, terminate in reduced or upwardly tapered ends 46f. Also referring back to the upper, inner channels or trackways 46a on the under side of the top plate 23a of the first housing section 15a, the inner ends 46g of these upper trackways 46a are reduced or tapered upwardly.

The valve plate 36 is tracked into closed position, following the milling cutter 27, by the worm shaft 43 which is threaded inwardly through the successively worm threaded sleeves 42a, 42b, 420, as indicated in FIG. 2. The reduced diameter worm shaft outer end 43a passes through a self-aligning bearing unit 33a, of conventional design, but shown for reasons of clarity, part in section in FIG. 7, because of the importance of securely closing the outer tubular member 16 when the tubular members 16, 17 and 18 have all been cut through. Thus the housing 33b of the bearing unit 33a is press-fitted in a properly toleranced bore in the partition plate 23f. The inner surface of the bearing unit housing 33b is outwardly concave or arcuate, while the outer race 330 not .as wide as the housing 33b, is of outer convexity slightly greater than the corresponding concavity of the aforesaid outer race 33c. The worm shaft end 43a is shown as passing through the inner race 33d of the self-aligning bearing unit 33a, the unit being of the ball bearing type as indicated by a conventional ball 332 showing between inner race 33d and outer race 33c in the sectional part of FIG. 7.

A separate hydraulic motor 51 is shown in FIGS. 2, 2A and 3 as mounted on the outer surface of the partition plate 23f with a bevel gear 51a on its shaft end to mesh with a corresponding bevel gear 43b on the outer end portion of the reduced diameter worm shaft end 43a. Thus this separate hydraulic motor may be supplied drive fluid at a rate determined to correlate the movement of the plate behind the separately driven milling cutter 27 as it advances in cutting through the successively at first cumulatively encountered tubular members 16, 17, 18. As spaced, the valve plate 36 moves into outer tubular member closing position as shown in 2A, when the rotation of the worm shaft 43 has first disengaged itself from the inner sleeve 420, then from the central or intermediate sleeve 42b, and finally the inner endof the worm shaft 43 remains engaged in degree in the outer sleeve 42a.

This has projected the valve plate 36 to full travel inwardly or to theright, FIG. 2A. At this point the wheels 45 of the respective upper and lower outer wheel units 44b have moved upwardly on the respective upper and lower tapered'track ends 46f, 46c; and the wheels 45 of the respective upper and lower inner wheel units 44a have also moved upwardly on the respective upper and lower tapered track ends 46g, 461:. This results in camming the valve plate 36 upwardly some small fraction of an inch necessary to cause the seal face 50 on top of the plate to be sealably compressed by forced contact with the severed lower ends of the now separated upper sections of the tubular elements 16, l7, 18. In this regard it may be assumed that the tubular elements l6, 17, 18, have been supported from above the ground level or from above the bed of a body of water, as by a conventional oil well Christmas tree arrangement. The arrangement whereby the valve plate 36 is cammed firmly upwardly into sealably closing relationship with the outer tubular member 16, immediately following the completion of its severance by the milling cutter 27, insures against any further upflow of material and/or fluid. Corresponding the inner tubular members 17, 18 rest sealably closed at their lower ends upon the sealing cover 50 of the valve plate 36.

As an example of the use of the apparatus 10 shown in FIG. 1, an oil well fire may be raging with the tubular members above water, as at over water Christmas tree level, being supplying the fluids and materials of combustion. An operator or operators in divers suits may thus take the two parts a, 15b, down to some underwater point above ground level and bolt the two parts together under water. In this regard the flange parts 13a, 13b, are connected along their horizontally extending respective, upper and lower plate 23a, 23b, and 24a, 24b, contacting edges to these aforesaid respective plates 23a, 23b, and 24a, 24b, and thus the abutting flanges extend in abutting opposition all around the housing sections 15a, 15b, so that these two housing sections may be sealably connected, (gasketry 19 being shown in between flanges), by assembly by nuts and bolts 14. Notice that it is best to place the second housing section 15b into position against the outermost tubular element 16 before the first housing section 15a is placed in position with its cantilevered shafts 35a, 29a, 29b, 35b, extending into the housing section 15b, and with the respective lower tracks 46b, 46d, and the respective upper tracks 46a, 46e, in end to end abutment at the seam between the abutting inner edges of the two housing sections 15a, 15b.

At this point it may be noticed that there are only shown three concentric tubular members 16, 17, 18, whereas in the cases of many oil and/or gas wells, there may be several inner tubular members, as the tubular member 18, within the intermediate tubular member 17. Also, in cases, the tubular member 17, shown as the intermediate tubular member in the illustration of the drawings, may be the outermost tubular member that flows fluid and material, and to which connection is made. Note also, that is is not necessary that the tubular members extend substantially vertically as shown, or with parallel concentricity with relation to each other. Also, in cases, in order to attach to the outermost tubular member, (16 in the drawings), that flows fluid and/or material, it may be necessary to cut away through tubular members outwardly of the outermost member 16 to which connection is shown made in the drawings, in order to get access to such indicated tubular member 16.

The welded construction, FIGS. 1A, 2, 2A, is shown in the drawings and is more applicable where a degree of expendability is attached to the housing sections 15a, 15b, as when they may be cut away with a welding torch after their functions have served. In the case of either the welded or bolted construction, or in combination thereof, the procedure after installation is the same. With hydraulic motors 38, 51, 38, employed, FIG. 3, the respective fluid delivery lines and return lines to the respective milling cutter drive motors 38, may be tied together. Thus control of fluid delivery from a common hydraulic fluid delivery pump (in a closed hydraulic system including a reservoir), accomplished in vicinity of the pump by regulation of the rate of fluid delivery to the common delivery conduit, can be controlled to be such that the opposed milling cutter carriers or carriages 28a, 28b, are traversed at a rate for proper cutting, and in corrdination or equal rate of travel.

The hydraulic motor 51 that drives the valve plate 36 can be considered driven from a separate pump, or by separation delivery and return conduits with a proper proportion of delivered fluid diverted thereto from a common pump, to insure that the valve plate 35 properly follows the milling cutter 27. However cases may often arise where, after the flow in the tubular members involved has been brought under control, that the valve plate 36 may be desired to be withdrawn while the milling cutter 27 is left in its task finished position. In this case, the motor 51 may be desired to be operated alone, with the fluid direction of flow reversed to the aforesaid motor 51. For this reason the motor 51 is not indicated in FIG. 3 as being in any manner correlated, as to drive shaft and hydraulic fluid supply, with either of the motors 50.

A consideration of FIG. 2A with relation to FIG. 7 will indicate that the valve plate worm shaft 43 is shown at an exagerrated angle to the horizontal with relation to the very small angle at which it extends when the valve plate 36 has been cammed, at the end of travel, into firm, sealably closing tubular member position. Thus, also, the degree of camming or uplift of the valve plate 36 at this junction, is correspondingly exaggerated. Also see the exaggerated angle at which the worm shaft end 43a extends in FIG. 7 with relation to the partition plate 23f, and as permitted by the self-aligning ball bearing unit 330. As to how the inner end of the worm shaft 43 adjusts to this angularity, it may be properly stated that the worm thread grooves through the outer sleeve 42a, or at least those worm thread grooves in the outer part of the sleeve 42a may be slightly oversized whereby to accommodate the necessary angularity of the worm shaft axis at valve plate closure position.

When the valve plate 36 is in the position shown in FIG. 2A, tremendous pressures may be encountered in the housing sections 15a, 15b, and against the outer tubular member 16 above the valve plate 36. These pressures result from the closing off of the upflow of fluid and material that continues upwardly through the lower portions of the tubular members 16, 17 and 18. At this juncture the valve operator 25 may be operated by the direction of hydraulic fluid to and from the respective lines 26a, 26b, FIG. 3. Actuation of the valve operator 25 opens the relief valve 21 to by-pass the fluid and/or matter rising upwardly through the severed tubular members so that it may escape, or in cases, be burnt. Enough fluid and/or matter is by-passed until pressures are reduced within the housing sections 15a, 15b. When controllable pressures prevail the relief valve 21 may be closed and operations resumed with relation to the severed well.

Obviously the relief valve 21 shown converted to the end plate 240 of the housing section 15b, opposite the drive carrying section 15a, may be as well provided to extend from a plate of the housing section 15a, or as a matter of fact such relief valve may be mounted to extend from any plate of either housing section. As shown its mounting is a matter of design and balance of accessibility.

The invention is susceptible for use in a number of various applications than in cutting through a plurality of substantially parallel extending or generally directed pipe or tubular members in oil and/or gas wells. FOr instance, the usage may be applied in sulphur mine lines to cut through a plurality of substantially parallel extending, generally horizontally directed pipe or tubular members. Also there are numerous other usages where pluralities of tubular members at variously generally directed angles may be cut through. Thus the particular structures shown are by way of illustration and not by way of limitation, while the appended claims that complete this application are also illustrative of, or introductory to the invention.

We claim:

1. Apparatus comprising a housing to be sealably adjoined around the outermost of a plurality of tubular members, a severance means across said housing to sever said tubular members, a closure plate, means adapted to urge said closure plate after said severance means and into position to close said direction of flow, and valve means from said housing upstream from said closure to divert material from said tubular members, said closure plate being covered on the side that effects closure by a resilient means compressed upon closure against the downstream severed edge of said outermost tubular member.

2. Apparatus as claimed in claim 1 in which said housing comprises a drive carrying part and a completion part to be bolted together about said outermost tubular member for hasty installation.

3. Apparatus as claimed in claim 1 in which said housing comprises a drive carrying part and a completion part to be welded together about, and to, said outermost tubular member.

4. Apparatus as claimed in claim 1 in which said severance means comprises a milling cutter mounted transversely across said housing of cutting length at least equal to the outer diameter of said outermost tubular member.

5. Apparatus as claimed in claim 1 in which said closure plate provides a compressible sealing surface, and in which said housing provides cam track means to cam said valve plate into sealing compression against an outermost tubular member severed surface at the end of severance.

6. Apparatus as claimed in claim 1 in which said severance means and said closure plate are separately actuated.

7. Apparatus as claimed in claim 4 in which the ends of said milling cutter are carried for rotation by included carriages outwardly of the outer diameter of said outermost tubular member, and in which said housing carries means for the coordinated driving of said carriages to urge said milling cutter to cut through said tubular members.

8. Apparatus as claimed in claim 5 in which said closure plate is constrained for movement within said housing and in which said cam track means comprises upper and lower tracked wheel units, and tracks for said wheel units which are cammed at their ends to cam said closure plate into sealably closing relationship with a severed edge of said outermost tubular member.

9. Apparatus comprising a housing to be sealably adjoined around the outermost of a plurality of tubular members, a severance means across said housing to sever said tubular members, a closure plate, means adapted to urge said closure plate after said severance means and into position to close said direction of flow, and valve means from said housing upstream from said closure to divert material from said tubular members, said severance means and said closure plate being separately actuated.

10. Apparatus as claimed in claim 9 in which said housing comprises a drive carrying part and a completion part to be bolted together about said outermost tubular member for hasty installation.

11. Apparatus as claimed in claim 9 in which said housing comprises a drive carrying part and a completion part to be welded together about, and to, said outermost tubular member.

12. Apparatus as claimed in claim 9 in which said severance means comprises a milling cutter mounted transversely across said housing of cutting length at least equal to the outer diameter of said outermost tubular member.

13. Apparatus as claimed in claim 9 in which said closure plate provides a compressible sealing surface, and in which said housing provides cam track means to cam said valve plate into sealing compression against on outermost tubular member severed surface at the end of severance.

14. Apparatus comprising a housing to be scalable adjoined around the outermost of a plurality of tubular members, a severance means across said housing to sever said tubular member, a closure plate, means adapted to urge said closure plate after said severance means and into position to close said direction of flow, and valve means from said housing upstream from said closure to divert material from said tubular members, said closure plate providing a compressible sealing surface, and said housing providing cam track means to cam said valve plate into sealing compression against an outermost tubular member severed surface at the end of severance.

15. Apparatus as claimed in claim 14 in which said housing comprises a drive carrying; part and a completion part to be bolted together about said outermost tubular member for hasty installation.

16. Apparatus as claimed in claim 14 in which said housing comprises a drive carrying part and a completion part to be welded together about, and to, said outermost tubular member.

17. Apparatus as claimed in claim 14 in which said severance means comprises a milling cutter mounted transversely across said housing of cutting length at least equal to the outer diameter of said outermost tubular member.

18. Apparatus as claimed in claim 14 in which said closure plate is constrained for movement within said housing, and in which said cam track means comprises upper and lower tracked wheel units, and tracks for said wheel units which are cammed at their ends to cam said closure plate into sealably closing relationship with a severed edge of said outermost tubular member.

19. Apparatus comprising a housing to be sealably adjoined around the outermost of a plurality of tubular members, a severance means across said housing to sever said tubular member, a closure plate, means adapted to urge said closure plate after said severance means and into position to close said direction of flow,

and valve means from said housing upstream from said closure to divert material from said] tubular members, said severance means comprising a milling cutter a 12 member, said housing carrying means for the coordinated driving of said carriages to urge said milling cutter to cut through said-tubular members.

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Classifications
U.S. Classification166/55, 251/1.3
International ClassificationE21B29/00, E21B33/06, E21B33/03, E21B29/08
Cooperative ClassificationE21B33/063, E21B29/08, E21B33/06
European ClassificationE21B33/06, E21B29/08, E21B33/06B2S