The Care and Feeding of SIE Cement Bond Tools

The following material was provided by Paul Knight to some of his customers a few years back.  Paul is a legendary character in the history of the oil well logging industry and has "forgotten more than the rest of us will ever know" about cased hole logging.  Paul's initials, PEK, appear inside countless numbers of logging tools and surface panels, many going back to the days when he worked at SIE.  Paul is fond of referring to himself as "The Old Grouch" these days, but he still works on tools, and remains an invaluable and irreplaceable source of information to the industry.

Paul's Advice

Tool housings and subs are becoming difficult to replace; wash the well fluid off the tools as soon as possible after completing the logging job.  After cleaning, wipe the outside of the tool with automatic transmission fluid; it is superior to diesel oil and will last a month or longer.

If you must use black vinyl electrical tape on the outside of tools that are run in wells, remove the tape once a week to allow cleaning under where the tape was; this will help prevent corrosion of the housing.  The same holds true if you use the rubber centralizers; remove them periodically to facilitate cleaning.

Never use motor oil on O-rings; it will destroy them.  Use Lubriplate 930-AA; it will work up to 500 F and is electrically non-conductive (this is exactly the same grease that GO and MLS marketed for years).

The rubber boots on SIE bond tools will sometimes absorb gas from the well fluid.  When the tool is removed from the well, watch closely for any sign of swelling.  If balloon-like swelling is observed, immediately loosen one of the filler screws to bleed the pressure down.  Later, at the shop, refill the affected section with Dexron automatic transmission fluid and install new O-rings on the filler screws.

The filler screws for the receiver section (and transmitter section in two inch tools) are 8-32 x 3/8 inch long seal-screws, although a binding head screw will work.  The O-ring is a size 2-006.  The big transmitter uses 1/8 inch pipe plugs; the hex key socket head type is preferred because conventional pipe plugs have been known to hang tools in the hole (the socket head types are more or less flush with the transmitter can surface, but the conventional plugs stick up).  If you cannot find 1/8 inch hex key socket head pipe plugs locally, we will be pleased to furnish a couple at no charge.

Use only Dexron automatic transmission fluid, never substitute.  Stand transducers to fill, filling the booted transducers from the bottom and allowing the air to exit the top.  The large transmitter "can" may be filled from either hole, allowing the air to exit the other hole.  It is not necessary to apply vacuum to the tool, any residual air will be compressed from well pressure, but always leave as little air as possible when filling.

Note:  An excellent filling tool can be made from a Goldenrod brand oiler (or equivalent), a short bored section of 8-32 threaded rod, and a piece of hose.  A pipe plug can be drilled and tapped with 8-32 thread to adapt the tool to large transmitter can service.  Contact us if you require details on how to make your own.

Paul working on a chlorine tool in December, 2003.
Photos by Dan Blowhowiak of teweco.

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Last 10-20-10