Varel International, the world’s largest independent supplier of drill bits for the oil and gas industry, announced the commercial launch of new Higher Roller series roller cone drill bits. The bits, ranging from 14-3/4” to 18-1/2”, are sealed roller bearing designs with either Steel Tooth or Tungsten Carbide Insert cutting structures. This series responds to the increasing demands being put on larger diameter roller cone drill bits. Bits in this size range are being applied with greater weight on bit (WOB) and higher rotations per minute (RPM) than ever before. Varel bit designers worked to tailor specific cutting structure designs to match the challenging operating requirements and parameters directional and rotary steerable drilling require.
Varel’s Vice President of Roller Cone Technology, David Harrington, cited industry demands as the main driver behind the enhanced product line, “In order to expand in our target markets, it was necessary to deliver a step-change in performance improvement into a very demanding segment. The High Roller series is our answer to those demands. We feel the improvements implemented in this product line give us the opportunity to provide outstanding performance in large diameter, high energy applications.”
Using the solid foundation of the proven High Energy technology introduced in 2008, this innovative addition to the roller cone product line includes the company’s patented conical seal gland geometry technology along with a new, larger lubricant reservoir which allows High Roller bits to support longer bit life and increasingly demanding applications.
Features of the High Roller series include :
Highly engineered roller bearing
Optimized for large diameter bits, Varel systematically improved and enhanced its roller bearing package. This larger, anti-friction bearing package assists in reducing heat generation and bearing torque for higher RPM runs.
Patented conical seal gland design
The conical seal gland positions the seal in such a way that it can better handle pressure fluctuations and still maintain a preferred dynamic sealing interface. In addition, the overall dimension of the seal has been increased compared to previous large diameter roller bearing bits.
Increased capacity reservoir design
To increase lubricant volume, a new, larger grease reservoir was designed for the series. The upgraded design increases the grease volume by nearly five times compared to the previous design. This increase in size was driven by the increased bearing size and energy requirements.
Precision Hydraulics and Cleaning Efficiencies
Varel incorporated the V-Jet™ hydraulics package to this series enabling precision aiming of the nozzle flow to achieve excellent cuttings cleaning while avoiding erosion of the bit’s cones and the borehole wall due to recirculation. V-Jet translates into higher rates of penetration, more efficient drilling and extended bit life. All IADC code 545 and lower hardness range tungsten carbide insert bits in this series include Varel’s V-Jet hydraulics package. Harrington concluded, “Through these improvements and implementations, we are in a position to assist our customers in filling a huge gap in their programs. These bits have shown excellent field results and we look forward to bringing the complete range to the market.”