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STUCK PIPE

DEFINITIONS
STUCK
Planned operations are suspended when down hole forces prevent pulling the
PIPE string out of the hole.

Down hole forces restrict string movement above normal operating conditions
TIGHT HOLE (a usual warning indicator of a stuck pipe event).

TYPES AND CAUSES OF STUCK

A. Key-Seating.
B. Caving.
C. Under gauge hole.
D. Differential stuck.

A. Key-Seating:
This usually occurs in deviated holes when the drill pipe wears into the wall of the
hole. Since the drill pipe is the smallest diameter in the drill string, the larger diameter
tool joints and drill collars can get stuck when making a trip.
Key-Seating is recognized by the following characteristics:
1. Still having circulation.
2. Can rotate pipe.
3. May be able to move drill pipe down.
Solution:
Once the Key-Seating has been formed, the smallest diameter portion of its
configuration must be reamed out with some sort of reaming device.

B. Caving in:
Causes:
1. Insufficient mud weight.
2. Wetting shales causing sloughing.
3. Insufficient carrying capacity of the drilling fluid.
4. Tectonically stressed and brittle shales.
Caving is recognized by the following characteristics:
1. Can not circulate.
2. Can not move the pipe(sometimes the pipe can be moved down words but not up.
3. Can not rotate the pipe.
Solution:
1. Increase mud weight to balance formation pressure if possible.
2. Use drilling fluid that will not wet or hydrate the shales and at the same time
stabilize shales such as Kcl-Polymer Mud.
3. Increase the carrying capacity of the drilling fluid by increasing YP.
C. Under gauge hole:
Causes:
1. Under gauge drilling assembly.
2. Plastic following formations(such as salt or soft formations) caused by overburden
pressures.
3. Flocculated mud and aggregated mud causes thick filter cake.
4. Wall cake build upon a porous formation in an already gauge hole.
5. All of these can be complicated by additions of drilled solids to the drilling
assembly, commonly refereed as (Bit Balling).
Solution:
1. Check the gauge of the drilling assembly.
2. Increase mud weight to control formation pressures.
3. Reduce filtration to form a smaller wall cake.
4. Reduce bit balling by :
• Change to inhibitive mud.
• Add surfactants (detergent).
• Slugs (having nut plug + caustic soda + spersene).
• Redicoat.
NB: When bit is balled, getting high torque, no progress.

D. Differential Sticking:
Differential sticking is defined as the sticking of pipe at one side of hole against a
permeable formation because the drilling fluid pressure exceeds the pore fluid
pressure of the formation, which causes break of the formation, which by turn will
cause a complete loss. And thus the tendency of sucking of drill string to any side of
pore hole is possible. Differential sticking may occur in any area of drilling but
mostly occurs where deep wells are drilled with high density mud.
Differential sticking is characterized by:
1. Drill with lowest mud weight practical.
2. Maintain low filtration rate.
3. Use lubricate.
4. Do not allow the pipe to remain motionless for any period of time.
5. Use square, hexagonal, or spherical drill collars.
6. Change to INVERMUL.
7. USE a spotting fluid (ENVIRO-SPOT).

ENVIRO-SPOT spotting fluid formation for 100 bbls


WEIGHT 7.3 10 12 14 16 18
(PPG)
OIL 65 58 54 49 51 44
(BBL)
ENVIRO-SPOT 6 6 6 6 6 6
55 gal Drum
WATER 28 26 22 21 11 10
(BBL)
BARITE _ 140 250 350 465 570
100 lb. bag
Start with required volume of oil, add ENVIRO-SPOT, water and barite in that order
MECHANISMS

STUCK PIPE MECHANISMS DISCUSS IN DETAILS

H DIFFERE
OLE PACK- NTIAL STICKING WELL BORE
OFF/BRIDGE GEOMETRY

SETTLED CUTTINGS DIFFERENTIAL FORCE STIFF ASSEMBLY

SHALE INSTABILITY KEY SEAT

UNCONSOLIDATED MICRO DOGLEG


FORMATIONS
FRACTURED LEDGES
FORMATIONS
CEMENT RELATED MOBILE FORMATIONS

JUNK UNDERGAUGE HOLE


CAUSES:
HOLE PACK-OFF / BRIDGE MECHANISM
HOLE PACK-OFF: Formation solids (cuttings, cavings) settle around the drill string
and pack of the annulus resulting in stuck pipe.

HOLE BRIDGE: Medium to large piceses of hard formation, cement or junk falls into
the well bore and jams the drill string resulting in stuck pipe.

HOLE PACK-OFF CAUSES HOLE BRIDGE CAUSES


SETTLED CUTTINGS
SHALE INSTABILITY SHALE INSTABILITY
• REACTIVE SHALE
• GEO-PRESSURED SHALE
• HYDRO-PRESSURED SHALE
• OVER BURDEN STRESS • OVER BURDEN STRESS
• TECTONIC STRESS • TECTONIC STRESS

UNCONSOLIDATED
UNCONSOLIDATED FORMATIONS
FORMATIONS

FRACTURED FORMATIONS FRACTURED FORMATIONS

SOFT CEMENT CEMENT BLOCKS

JUNK
CAUSES OF SETTLED CUTTING
HOLE CLEANING IS AFFECTED BY 6 BASIC FACTORS
FACTOR AFFECT
• RATE OF PENETRATION • Determines the cuttings volume in returning
mud
• HOLE STABILITY • Cavings load added to the returning mud
• ANNULAR VELOCITY • Lifts the cuttings

• MUD RHEOLOGY • Suspend and carry the cuttings

• CIRCULATING TIME • Transport the cuttings to surface


• HOLE ANGLE • Reduces the ability to clean the hole

SETTLED CUTTINGS, NEAR VERTICAL WELLBORE (< 35)

CAUSE:

• DRILLED CUTTINGS ARE NOT TRANSPORTED OUT OF THE HOLE DUE


TO LOW ANNULAR VELOCITY AND/ OR POOR MUD PROPERTIES.
WHEN CIRCULATING IS STOPPED, THE CUTTINGS FALL PACK DOWN
THE HOLE AND PACK OFF THE DRILL STRING.
FIGURE.

WARNING:
• HIGH ROP, LOW PUMP RATE, LITTLE TO NO CIRCULATING TIME AT
CONNECTIONS, TORQUE, DRAG AND PUMP PRESSURE INCREASE.
• OVER PULL OF SLIPS, PUMP SURGE TO BREAK CIRCULATION
• FILL ON BOTTOM.

INDICATIONS:
• LIKELY TO OCCUR ON CONNECTIONS, POSSIBLE DURING TRIPS.
• CIRCULATING RESTRICTED OR IMPOSSIBLE.

FIRST ACTION:
• APPLY LOW PUMP PRESSURE (200-400 psi)
• Apply torque and jar down with maximum trip load.
• Circulate clean to avoid recurrence.

PREVENTIVE ACTION:
• CONTROL, ROP, MAXIMIZE ANNULAR VELOCITY.
• MAINTAIN SUFFICIENT GEL STRENGTH AND YP.
• CIRCULATE 5 TO10 MINUTES BEFORE CONNECTIONS.
• CIRCULATE HOLE CLEAN BEFORE POOH.
FIGURE

SETTLED CUTTINGS HIGH ANGLE WELLBORE (>35)

CAUSE:
• DRILL CUTTINGS SETTLE ON THE LOW SIDE OF THE HOLE AND FORM A
CUTTING BED. THE CUTTINGS BED BUILDS AND SLIDE DOWN AND THE
HOLE PACKING OFF ON THE DRILL STRING.
• WHILE POOH, THE CUTTING BED IS DRAGGED UPWARD BY THE BHA AND
PACKS OFF THE DRILL STRING.

WARNING:
• HOLE ANGLE GRATER THAN 35 deg.
• DRILLING WITH A DOWN HOLE MOTOR.
• HIGH ROP, LOW PUMP RATE, INCREASE IN TORQUE AND DRAG, INCREASE
IN PUMP PRESSURE.
• INCREASE OVER PULL ON TRIPS.

INDICATIONS:
• LIKELY TO OCCUR WHILE POOH, POSSIBLE WHILE DRILLING.
• CIRCULATING PRESSURE RESTRICTED OR IMPOSSIBLE.

FIRST ACTION:
• APPLY LOW PRESSURE ( 100 – 400 PSI ).
• JAR DOWN WITH MAXIMUM TRIP LOAD. APPLY TORQUE WITH CAUTION.
• CLEAN HOLE TO AVOID RECURRENCE.

PREVENTIVE ACTION:
• RECORD TREND INDICATORS FOR INADEQUATE HOLE CLEANING.
• CONTROL ROP, MAINTAIN MUD PROPERTIES, CIRCULATE AT MAXIMUM
RATE, MAXIMIZE STRING ROTATION.
• CIRCULATE HOLE CLEAN BEFORE POOH, ESTABLISH AN OVER PULL LIMIT.
• USE LOW VIS/HIGH VIS SWEEPS.
INDICATIONS OF SETTLED CUTTINGS
DRILLER DRAG TORQUE PRESSURE OTHER
TRENDS
• Pressure surges
• DRILLING Increasing,erratic Increasing,erratic Increasing
• Gradual decrease in ROP
Surge to ♦ Back pressure before breaking
♦ CONNECTI Over pull off
start connection.
ON slips
circulation ♦ Back flow.
Increasing,erratic
 TRIPPING
Over pull off  Swabbing
OUT slips
Increaseing set
 TRIPPING down weight.  Begins with BHA below
IN Over pull off depths of 35 hole angle
slips.
Over pull off  Surge to start circulation.
 BACK slips. Erratic Increasing,erratic Increasing  String pistoning.
REAMING over pull  Loss of fluid possible.
Over pull off  Surge to start circulation.
 PUMPING slips. Increasing  String pistoning.
OUT Increasing,erratic  Loss of fluid possible

RIG TEAM INDICATIONS


Low cuttings return rate for penetration, Erratic cuttings returns, No cuttings
SHAKER
return, High cuttings return on fine shaker screen and desilter / mud cleaner.
TRENDS

LOGGER
Rounded Reground cuttings.
TRENDS

MUD Increasing PV & YP. Increase in low gravity solids, Possible mud weight
TRENDS increase.
PREVENTIVE ACTION
• Maintain the required mud properties.
• Circulate the maximum recommended GPM for hole size.
• Place more emphasis on annular velocity when designing the hydraulics for
12.25” and larger hole sizes. Consider using a riser booster line when drilling 8.5”
and smaller hole sizes.
• Do not allow the penetration rate to exceed the ability to clean the hole.
• Record torque and drag trends for symptoms for inadequate hole cleaning.
• Consider a wiper trip after a long section with a down hole motor.
• Wipe the hole at full circulating rate as long as possible (5 – 10 min.) before
connections, Rotate at maximum RPM when possible.
• Maximize string motion when circulating the hole clean. Use maximum practical
RPM, rise the drill string slowly (5 min/std) and slack-off at a safe but fast rate (1
min/std).
• Consider pumping high-vis sweeps in low angle wells (<35). Consider low-vis /
high-vis sweeps in higher angle wells (>35).
• DO NOT STOP CIRCULATING UNTIL ALL SWEEPS RETURN.
• Circulate until the hole is clean, if the last sweep brings up excessive amounts of
cuttings, continue with hole cleaning operations. Several circulations may be
necessary.
MINIMUM GPM

MINIMUM GPM VERSUS HOLE SIZE AND HOLE ANGLE


HOLE SIZE 26” 17.5 –16” 12.25” 8.5”
ANGLE
INTERVAL

0 – 35 deg 700 GPM 500 GPM 400 GPM 300 GPM

35 - 55 deg 1250 GPM 950 GPM 650 GPM 450 GPM

55 + deg 1100 GPM 750 GPM 500 GPM

MINIMUM ROP

MAXIMUM ROP VERSUS HOLE SIZE AND HOLE ANGLE


HOLE SIZE 26” 17.5 –16” 12.25” 8.5”
ANGLE
INTERVAL

0 – 35 deg 60 110 155 240

35 - 55 deg 40 75 85 125

55 + deg 60 75 100

Penetration rate guidelines are based on adequate mud properties.


MINIMUM STROKES

MINIMUM CIRCULATING STROKES FACTOR (CSF) TO CLEAN


HOLE
HOLE SIZE 26” 17.5 –16” 12.25” 8.5”
ANGLE
INTERVAL

0 – 35 deg 2 1.7 1.4 1.4

35 - 55 deg 2.5 2.5 1.8 1.6

55 + deg 3 1.2 1.7


PROCEDURE:

1. Separate the wellbore into sections by hole angle from interval above.
2. Multiply each hole section length (Sect. Lth) by CSF and totasl the adjusted measured depth
(MD).
3. Calculate the minimum circulating strokes to clean the hole.

Total Adjusted MD X Bottoms-Up Stks

Minimum Circ. Stks = ----------------------------------------------------

Measured Depth

EXAMPLE CALCULATION:

CALCULATE THE MINIMUM CIRCULATING STROKES FOR 12 ¼” HOLE


HAVING THE FOLLOWING PROFILE.

1. FROM 0 FT TO 4500 FT ( 4500 FT ) HAVE 0 – 35 deg.


2. FROM 4500 FT TO 6500 FT ( 2000 FT ) HAVE 35 – 55 deg.
3. FROM 6500 FT TO 13000 FT ( 6500 FT ) HAVE 55+ deg.

MULTIPLY EACH HOLE SECTION LENGTH BY CSF AND TOTAL THE


ADJUST MEASURED DEPTH.

ADJUSTED MD = ( SECT. LTH X CSF ) + ( SECT LTH X CSF ) + ( SECT LTH X CSF )
= ( 4500 X 1.4 ) + ( 2000 X 1.8 ) + ( 6500 X 2 )
= 6300 + 3600 + 13000
= 22900 TOTAL ADJUSTED MD.

CALCULATE THE MINIMUM CIRCULATING STROKES REQUIRED TO


CLEAN THE HOLE.

Total Adjusted MD X Bottoms-Up Stks

Minimum Circ. Stks = ----------------------------------------------------

Measured Depth

22900 X 15000

= --------------------

13000

= 26423 STROKES.
HIGH ANGLE HOLE CLEANING GUID LINES ( > 35 deg )
DRILLING
• Maintain sufficient mud weight to stabilize the wellbore as hole angle and/or formation
pressure increases.
• Use proper low-end rheology for hole size and angle to maximize hole cleaning.
• Circulate at maximum rate for hole size and hole angle.
• Limit the ROP for the maximum recommended for hole size and angle.
• Back ream each stand (or ½ stand) drilled with a down hole motor
• Rotate at a high RPM (160+). Raise the drill string slowly (i.e.. 5min/stand). Lower the
drill string at a safe but fast rate (i.e.. 1min/stand).
• Continue back reaming if hole conditions dictate.
• Consider a wiper trip after drilling a long section with a down hole motor to mechanically
agitate and remove cuttings bed.
• Pump a sweep pill if hole conditions do not improve. Consider low-vis / high-density
tandem sweeps. Optimize sweep type, volume and frequency pumped.
• Consider reducing ROP or stop drilling and circulate until hole conditions improve.

CONNECTIONS
• Start and stop drill string slowly. Ensure adequate back reaming at a full circulation rate
prior to connections.
• Prepare crew and equipments to minimize connection time.
• Record free rotating weight, pick-up weight, slack-off weight, off bottom torque, and
circulating pressure for trend indications of inadequate hole cleaning.
• Pull the slips and slowly rotate the drill string first, then increase pump speed slowly.
Carefully lower the drill string to bottom.

TRIPPING
• Circulate 1 to 3 joints off bottom while cleaning the hole to avoid dropping bottom hole
angle. Consider sweeps (pills) to aid hole cleaning.
• Rotate at high RPM (160+) while cleaning the hole. Raise the drill string slowly (i.e..
5min/stand). Lower the drill string at a safe but fast rate (i.e.. 1min/stand).
• Ensure recommended minimum circulation strokes for hole size and angle be pumped. 2
to 4 times normal bottoms-up may be required. Circulate until the shakers are clean.
• Consider pumping a sweep (pill) to determine if additional circulation time is required.
• Inform the Driller of the measured depth and stand count when the top of the BHA
reaches the deepest anticipated cuttings bed.
• Maximum cuttings bed thickness is likely between 45 and 65 hole angle.
• Determine an over pull limit prior to pulling out of the hole (the lesser of ½ BHA weight
or 30,000lbs).
• If overpull limit occurs, run in 1 stand and repeat hole cleaning guidelines from present
bit depth. When the shakers are clean, continue pulling out of the hole. If the overpull
limit is again reached, repeat procedure.

CAUTIOUSLY BACK REAM OR PUMP-OUT STANDS WHEN A CUTTINGS BED IS


PRESENT!!
Be patient, several hole cleaning cycles may be required to safety pull the drill string out of
the hole.
• Record depths and stand count of high pick-up weights during the trip. Compare these to
the drilling pick-up weights for the same depths to determine value of over pull.
SHALE INSTABILITY

The shale formation becomes unstable, breaks apart and falls into the wellbore

CHEMICALLY
STRESSED MECHANICALLY STRESSED

GEO-PRESSURED SHALE HUDROPRESSURED


SHALE
REACTIVE SHALE
OVERBURDEN STRESS TECTONIC STRESS

CHEMICALLY STRESSED SHALE


REACTIVE SHALE

CAUSE:
• Water sensitive shale drilled with little or no mud inhibition.
• Shale absorbs water and swells into the wellbore.
• Reaction is time dependably.
WARNING:
• Funnel viscosity, PV, YP, CEC increase.
• Torque & drag increase.
• Pump pressure increase.
• Clay balls and/or soft (mushy) cuttings at shaker.
• Over pull & swabbing.
• BHA balling (mud rings)
INDICATIONS:
• Generally occurs while POOH, possible while drilling.
• Circulation impossible or highly restricted.
FIRST ACTION:
• Apply low pump pressure (200 – 400 psi).
• If POOH, torque up and jar down with maximum trip load.
• If POOH, jar up with maximum trip load, DO NOT APPLY
TORQUE.
PREVENTIVE ACTION:
• Use an inhibited mud.
• Maintain mud properties.
• Plan wiper trips.
• Minimize hole exposure time.
INDICATIONS OF REACTIVE CUTTINGS
DRILLER TRENDS DRAG TORQUE PRESSURE OTHER
• Pressure surges
• DRILLING Increasing Smooth Increasing,Smooth Increasing • Gradual decrease in ROP
• Mud loss possible
♦ Back pressure before
Over pull off Surge to start
♦ CONNECTION slips circulation
breaking connection.
♦ Back flow.
Increasing,Smooth.
 TRIPPING OUT Over pull off slips
 Swabbing

Increaseing set  Begins at depth of


 TRIPPING IN down weight. Over problem formation.
pull off slips.  Mud loss possible
 Surge to start circulation.
 BACK REAMING Over pull off slips. Increasing,Smooth Increasing  String pistoning.
 Loss of fluid possible.
 Surge to start circulation.
Increasing,Smooth.
 PUMPING OUT Over pull off slips.
Increasing  String pistoning.
 Loss of fluid possible

RIG TEAM INDICATIONS


SHAKER Soft clay balls. Wet “ mushy “ clay ( Gumbo ). Flow line plugging.
TRENDS

LOGGER
Large quantity of hydrated shale cuttings. High value on shale swelling test.
TRENDS

MUD High funnel vis. & yp, increasing pv, low gravity solids & CEC. Possible
TRENDS mud weight increase. Low inhibitor content.

PREVENTIVE ACTION
• Addition of various salts (potassium, sodium, calcium, etc.) to reduce the
chemical attraction of water of the shale.
• Addition of various encapsulating (coating) polymers to reduce water contact with
the shale.
• Use oil and synthetic base mud to exclude water contact with shale.
• Minimize open hole time.
• Plan regular wiper / reaming trips based on time, footage drilled or or the warning
signs of reactive shale.
• Ensure adequate hydraulics for bit and hole cleaning.
• Maintain required mud properties and minimize low gravity solids.
GEO – PRESSURED SHALE
CAUSE:
• Drilling pressured shale with insufficient mud weight.
• The stressed shale fractures and caves into the wellbore.
WARNING:
• Signs begin to occur as shale is drilled.
• Mud logger trends indicate increasing pore pressure.
• Torque increase and drag on connections.
• Hole fill on connections, bridges on trips, splintery shale caving.
• Possible background gas increase.
INDICATIONS:
• LIKELY TO OCCUR ON TRIPPING, POSSIBLE WHILE DRILLING.
• COMPLETE PACK-OFF LIKELY, HOLE BRIDGING POSSIBLE.
• CIRCULATION RESTRICTED OR IMPOSSIBLE.
FIRST ACTION:
• Apply low pump pressure.
• Apply torque, jar down with maximum trip load.
PREVENTIVE ACTION:
• Adjust mud weight before drilling known pressured shale.
• Slowly increase mud weight to stabilize shale.
• Minimize swab / surge pressures.
• Minimize open hole exposure time.
HYDRO-PRESSURED SHALE
CAUSE:
• Over time, shale pore pressure becomes charged by hydrostatic over balance.
• Drill string motion and wellbore pressure surges stress-cracks the unstable shale.
• The shale falls into the wellbore and jams the string.
WARNING:
• Generally follows a mud weight reduction.
• Torque and drag increase.
• Shale caving at shakers.
INDICATIONS:
• Possible while drilling or tripping.
• Hole bridging or complete pack off possible.
• Circulation restricted or impossible.
FIRST ACTION:
• Apply low pump pressure (200-400 psi)
• Apply torque, jar down with maximum trip load.
• Circulate at maximum rate once circulation is established.
PREVENTIVE ACTION:
• Use OBM, SBM, or GLYCOL base mud if problem is suspected.
• If a mud weight reduction is necessary, reduce gradually over several circulations.
• Minimize wellbore pressure surges.
OVERBURDEN STRESS
CAUSE:
• Mud weight is insufficient to support the overburden.
• Mud weight in not adjusted as hole angle increases.
• Stressed shale fractures and falls into the wellbore.
WARNING:
• Hole cleaning problems.
• Torque and drag increase.
• Shale caving at shakers.
INDICATIONS:
• Can occur while drilling or tripping.
• Hole bridging or complete pack off possible.
• Restricted Circulation or no circulation possible.
FIRST ACTION:
• Apply low pump pressure (200-400 psi)
• Apply torque, jar down with maximum trip load.
PREVENTIVE ACTION:
• Use mud weight needed to stabilize to overburden.
• Increase mud weight as hole angle increases.
TECTONIC STRESS
CAUSE:
• Naturally occurring lateral forces in the formations.
• Stressed shale fractures, falls into the wellbore and jams the drill string.
• Sandstone squeezes in causing undergauge hole.
WARNING:
• Mountainous location.
• Prognosed tectonics.
• Erratic torque and drag.
• Blocky shale caving.
• Creates elliptical wellbore.
INDICATIONS:
• Possible while drilling or tripping.
• Circulation restricted or impossible.
FIRST ACTION:
• Apply low pump pressure (200-400 psi)
• Apply torque, jar down with maximum trip load.
PREVENTIVE ACTION:
• Increase mud weight if possible
• Circulate high density sweeps
• Minimize wellbore pressure surges
• Minimize open hole exposure time.
INDICATIONS OF MECHANICALLY STRESSED SHALE
DRILLER TRENDS DRAG TORQUE PRESSURE OTHER
• Increase ROP followed
by gradual decrease
• DRILLING Increasing erratic Increasing,erratic Increasing
pressure surges.

Over pull off Surge to start


♦ CONNECTION slips circulation
♦ Hole fill

Increasing,erratic.
 TRIPPING OUT Over pull off slips
 Swabbing

 Begins at depth of
Increaseing set
 TRIPPING IN down weight.
problem formation.
 Hole fill on bottom.
 Surge to start circulation.
 BACK REAMING Over pull off slips. Increasing,erratic Increasing  String pistoning.
 Loss of fluid possible.
 Surge to start circulation.
Increasing,erratic.
 PUMPING OUT Over pull off slips.
Increasing  String pistoning.
 Loss of fluid possible

RIG TEAM INDICATIONS


SHAKER Large, splintery or blocky shale caving. Large volume of caving.
TRENDS

Large quantity of splintery or blocky shale caving with striations. Possible


LOGGER
indications of increase in formation pressure. Prognosed mechanically
TRENDS
stressed shale.

MUD
Possible slight increase in mud weight and plastic viscosity.
TRENDS

PREVENTIVE ACTION
• Consider offset well data and/or computer models which simulate failure limits
when planning the mud weight for each hole section.
• Mud weight increase with hole angle and TVD specific to the area to maintain
hole stability.
• Exploration wells, consult the Mud Logger for changes in formation pressure.
Increase the mud weight cautiously until symptoms are no longer observed.
• If possible, increase the mud weight slowly ( 0.1 – 0.2 ppg per day ) until the
desired density for a given depth is reached. This will maintain an overbalance
against the hydrostatically sensitive shale.
• Avoid mud weight reduction after 1+ day exposure to hydrostatically sensitive
shale. If mud weight reduction is necessary reduce the mud weight gradually over
a time frame equal to the time of exposure.
• Use the Shaker Handover Notes to determine trends of cutting volume, size and
shape.
• Maintain mud properties to ensure hole cleaning.
• Use sweeps to help clean the hole.
• Stop drilling until the hole is circulated clean.
• Minimize open hole exposure time.
• Plan contingency to case-off the problem.

UNCONSOLIDATED FORMATION
CAUSE:
• Little or no filter cake.
• Unbonded formation (sand, pea gravel, etc) can not be supported by hydrostatic
overbalance.
• Sand/pea gravel falls into the hole and pack off the drill string.
WARNING:
• Likely to occur as the formation is drilled.
• Seepage loss likely.
• Increase torque and drag, pump pressure fluctuations.
• Hole fill on connections, and trips.
• Shaker & desander over load.
INDICATIONS:
• Generally occurs in surface hole.
• Can occur while drilling or tripping.
• Sudden pack off without warning.
• Circulation impossible.
FIRST ACTION:
• Apply low pump pressure (200-400 psi)
• Jar down with maximum trip load.
• Apply torque with caution.
PREVENTIVE ACTION:
• Control fluid loss to provide an adequate filter cake.
• Control drill suspected zone.
• Use high vis sweeps.
• Spot a gel pill before POOH.
• Minimize trip speed.
INDICATIONS OF UNCONSOLIDATED FORMATION
DRILLER TRENDS DRAG TORQUE PRESSURE OTHER

• Pressure surges.
• DRILLING Increasing erratic Increasing,erratic Increasing

Over pull off Surge to start


♦ CONNECTION slips circulation
♦ Hole fill

Increasing,erratic.
 TRIPPING OUT Over pull off slips
 Swabbing

 Begins at depth of
Increaseing set
 TRIPPING IN down weight.
problem formation.
 Hole fill on bottom.
 Surge to start circulation.
 BACK REAMING Over pull off slips. Increasing,erratic Increasing  String pistoning.
 Loss of fluid possible.
 Surge to start circulation.
Increasing,erratic.
 PUMPING OUT Over pull off slips.
Increasing  String pistoning.
 Loss of fluid possible

RIG TEAM INDICATIONS


SHAKER Large volume of sand over shakers. Sand trap and desander over load.
TRENDS

LOGGER
Large quantity of sand in samples. Prognosed unconsolidated formation.
TRENDS

MUD
Increase in mud weight and plastic viscosity. High % sand content.
TRENDS

PREVENTIVE ACTION
• Provide an effective filter cake for the hydrostatic overbalance to “ push against “
and stabilize the formation.
• If possible, avoid excessive circulating time with the BHA opposite
unconsolidated formations to reduce hydraulic erosion.
• Slow down tripping speed when the BHA is opposite unconsolidated formations
to avoid mechanical damage.
• Start and stop drill string slowly to avoid pressure surges to unconsolidated
formations.
• Control drill the suspected zone to allow time for filter cake build up, minimize
annulus loading and to minimize annulus friction pressure.
• Use sweeps to help keep the hole clean.
• Be prepared for shaker, desilter, and desander over loads.
• Minimize seepage loss with fine lost circulation material through these intervals.
FRACTURED FORMATION
CAUSE:
• Naturally fractured formations.
• Pieces of formations fall into the wellbore and jam the drill string.
WARNING:
• Prognosed fractured limestone, shale and/or faults.
• Likely to occur as formation is drilled.
• Mud logger formation evaluation.
• Blocky caving at shaker.
• Hole fill on connections and trips.
INDICATIONS:
• Likely during trips, possible while drilling.
• Sudden and erratic torque and drag likely just before sticking.
• Circulation may restricted.
FIRST ACTION:
• Do not apply torque. Jar down with maximum trip load.
• Circulate high density high viscosity sweeps.
• Spot acid if stuck in limestone.
PREVENTIVE ACTION:
• Circulate hole clean before drilling ahead.
• Minimize seepage loss.
• Slow trip speed before BHA enters suspected zone.
INDICATIONS OF FRACTURED FORMATION

DRILLER TRENDS DRAG TORQUE PRESSURE OTHER

Sudden, increasing
• DRILLING erratic
Sudden, erratic No change

Over pull off


♦ CONNECTION slips
No change ♦ Hole fill

Increasing,erratic.
 TRIPPING OUT Over pull off slips
 Begins at depth of
Increaseing set
 TRIPPING IN down weight.
problem formation.
 Hole fill on bottom.
Over pull off slips.  Drag increase when
 BACK REAMING Increasing, erratic
Increasing,erratic No change
pumping.
 Drag increase when
Over pull off slips,
 PUMPING OUT Increasing,erratic.
No change pumping..

RIG TEAM INDICATIONS


SHAKER Blocky or angular rock fragments.
TRENDS

LOGGER
Same as shaker trends. Possible offset well data clues. Prognosed fractured.
TRENDS

MUD
No change.
TRENDS

PREVENTIVE ACTION
NOTE:
With fractured formations, maintaining a good quality filter cake can help to support
the formation in some cases. Generally fractured formations require time to stabilize.
Prior to this, the problem must be controlled with adequate mud properties, sweeps
and sufficient circulation time to keep the hole clean, Other recommendations:
• Circulate the hole clean before drilling ahead.
• Restrict tripping speed when BHA is opposite fractured formations and fault
zones.
• Start and stop drill string slowly to avoid pressure surges to the wellbore.
• Anticipate reaming during trips. Ream fractured zone cautiously.
• Be prepared for the potential of lost circulation when drilling fractured formations.
• Problem likely to stabilize with time.
CEMENT BLOCKS
CAUSE:
• Cement becomes unstable around casing show, open hole squeeze plug or kick off
plug.
• Hard cement chunks fall into the wellbore and jams the drill string.
WARNING:
• Excessive casing rat hole.
• Cement squeeze job.
• Cement kick off plug.
• Cement caving at shaker and/or in mud logger samples.
INDICATIONS:
• Problem can occur any time.
• Sudden, erratic torque and drag just before sticking.
• Circulation possible.
FIRST ACTION:
• Attempt to break chunks with jarring and torque.
• Jar in the opposite direction of string movement prior to sticking.
• Apply jarring force & torque gradually.
• Circulate high density, high viscosity sweeps.
PREVENTIVE ACTION:
• Minimize casing rathole.
• Allow sufficient curing time.
• Ream casing show and open hole plugs thoroughly before drilling ahead.
• Slow trip speed before BHA enters casing show or plug depth.

PREVENTIVE ACTION
• Limit casing rathole to minimize a source of cement blocks.
• Several squeeze jobs at the casing shoe increases the potential for cement blocks.
• Allow sufficient cement curing time before drilling out.
• Ream casing rathole and open hole cement plugs slowly and thoroughly before
drilling ahead.
• Maintain sufficient distance between the paths of platform wells to reduce the
possibility of cement blocks.
• Reduce tripping speed when BHA is entering the casing shoe or opposite open
hole cement plugs.
• Start and stop the drill string slowly to avoid pressure surges to the wellbore.
SOFT CEMENT
CAUSE:
• Circulation is attempted with the bottom of the drill string in soft cement.
• Pump pressure causes the cement to flash set.
• High penetration rate when cleaning out soft cement.
WARNING:
• Tripping in hole after setting an open hole cement plug or after a cement job.
• Set down weight occurs above the theoretical top of cement.
INDICATIONS:
• Occurs as pump pressure is applied.
• Circulation highly restricted or impossible.
FIRST ACTION:
• Bleed trapped pump pressure.
• Jar up with maximum trip load.
PREVENTIVE ACTION:
• Known cement set time.
• If set down weight is observed while RIH, pull 2 stands before circulating.
• Start circulation 2 stands above top of cement.
• Control drill when cleaning out cement.

PREVENTIVE ACTION
• Know the calculated top of cement ( TOC ) before tripping in hole.
• Do not rely on the weight indicator to find the top of cement.
• Begin washing down 2 stands above the theoretical top of cement.
• If set down weight is observed when tripping in hole after cement operation, set
back 2 stands before attempting circulation.
• Pre-treat the mud system with chemicals prior to drill out cement.
• Verify cement compressive strength with the cement company before drilling out.
• Control drill when cleaning out soft cement.
JUNK
CAUSE:
• Poor house keeping on the floor. Hole cover not installed.
• Down hole equipment failure.
• Junk falls into wellbore and jams the drill string.
WARNING:
• Junk sticking can occur at any time during any operation.
• Metal shavings at shaker.
INDICATIONS:
• Generally occurs when BHA is in hard formation or inside casing.
• Sudden and erratic torque and drag likely just before stricking.
• Missing floor tool or equipment.
• Circulation unrestricted, depending on type of junk.
FIRST ACTION:
• If moving up when sticking occurred, jar down with maximum trip load.
• Apply torque if progress is made.
• If moving down, jar up with maximum trip load. Do not apply torque.
PREVENTIVE ACTION:
• Good house keeping on floor.
• Inspect handling equipment.
• Keep hole covered.
• Inspect down hole equipment.

PREVENTIVE ACTION
• Inspect slip and tong dies regularly.
• Use good house keeping practices on the rig floor.
• Install drill string wiper rubber as quickly as possible.
• Keep hole covered when out of hole.
• Maintain rig floor equipment in good operating condition.
DIFFERENTIAL STICKING

A sticking force developed when differential pressure ( overbalance ) forces a


stationary drill string into the thick filter cake of a permeable zone.

PERMEABLE FILTER CAKE


FORMATION
A cake of mud solids develops on
Sandstone / fractured limestone. the hole wall due to fluid loss.

OVERBALANCE High fluid loss increase filter cake


thickness.
Well bore pressure greater than FIGURE
formation pressure. Thick filter cake increases sticking
potential.

STRING CONTACTS STATIC FILTER CAKE


FILTER CAKE
Static filter cake increases cake
Angle well bore / un stabilized FIGURE thickness.
BHA increases potential.
The static filter cake seals HSP from
STRING MOTION STOPPED the backside of pipe.

No string motion or circulation Differential force begins to develop.


develops static cake.

FIGURE
LOW PRESSURE AREA TIME DEPENDENT

An area of low pressure With time, the area of pipe sealed in


develops between the pipe & the filter cake increases.
filter cake.
Immediate action is required to free
Over balance pressure across the the drill string.
contact area determines the
differential force.
DIFFERENTIAL STICKING
CAUSES:
• Drill string contacts a permeable zone.
• When string movement stops, a static filter cake develops.
• High over balance applies a differential sticking force to the drill string contact
area.
WARNING:
• Prognosed low pressure sands.
• Long / un stabilized BHA sections.
• Increasing over pull, slack off weight or torque to start string movement.
INDICATIONS:
• Occurs after a period of no string movement.
• String can not be rotated or moved.
• Circulation unrestricted.
FIRST ACTION:
• Apply torque and jar down with maximum trip load.
• Spot a pipe-releasing pill if the string does not jar free.
PREVENTIVE ACTION:
• Maintain minimum required mud weight.
• Keep string moving when BHA is opposite suspected zones.
• Minimize seepage loss in low-pressure zones.
• Minimize unstabilized BHA sections, use spiral D/C & HWDP.
• Control drill suspected zones.
INDICATIONS OF DIFFERENTIAL STICKING
DRILLER TRENDS DRAG TORQUE PRESSURE OTHER

• DRILLING Possible increase No change No change

Increasing over
♦ CONNECTION pull off slips.
No change

Increasing over
 TRIPPING OUT pull off slips.

Increasing over
 TRIPPING IN pull off slips.

Increasing over
 BACK REAMING pull off slips.
No change No change

Increasing over
 PUMPING OUT pull off slips..
No change

RIG TEAM INDICATIONS


SHAKER No change
TRENDS

LOGGER High overbalanced. Permeable formation depth. Permeability data to estimate


TRENDS stricking potential.

MUD Increasing mud weight. Increasing plastic viscosity and low gravity solids.
TRENDS High API water loss.

PREVENTIVE ACTION
• Design the casing program to minimize overbalance to shallower hole formations.
• Limit mud weight to minimum required for hole stability and well control.
• Maintain fluid loss within specifications.
• Minimize BHA length when possible.
• Limit the length of un stabilized BHA. Use spiral drill collars.
KEEP THE STRING MOVING. Consider rotating the string during drilling and
tripping connections while BHA is potential sticking zones.
• Preplan to minimize the down time for operations that require the sticking remains
static (surveys, minor repairs. Etc.).
• In zones with high sticking potential, minimize seepage loss with plugging agents.
• Keep a pipe-releasing pill ready at the well site when differential sticking potential
is high.
WELL BORE GEOMETRY
Hole diameter and/or angle relative to BHA geometry and/or stifness will not allow
passage of the drill string.

BHA CHANGE DIRECTION / ANGLE CHANGE / HOLE ID DECREASE

STIFF KEY SEAT MICRO DOGLEGS LEDGES


ASSEMBLY

MOBILE UNDERGAUGE
FORMATIONS. HOLE

STIFF ASSEMBLY:
CAUSE:
• The stiff BHA can not negotiate hole angle / direction changes and becomes
jammed.
WARNING:
• Doglegs present.
• Pulled stabilizers out of gauge.
• A new BHA design is picked up.
• Sudden set down weight.
INDICATIONS:
• Most likely to occur when RIH.
• BHA at direction / angle change depth.
• Unrestricted circulation.
FIRST ACTION:
• If moving down when sticking occurred , jar up with maximum trip load, do not
apply torque.
• If moving up, torque up and jar down with maximum trip load.
PREVENTIVE ACTION:
• Minimize BHA changes, consider a reaming trip.
• Limit dogleg severity.
• Slow trip speeds before BHA enters suspected zone, plan to ream.
• Limit set down weight.
KEY SEAT
CAUSE:
• Abrupt change in angle or direction in medium soft medium hard formations.
• High string tension and pipe rotation wears a slot into the formation.
• While POOH, the drill collars jam into the slot.
WARNING:
• High angle dogleg in upper hole section.
• Long drilling hours with no wiper trips through the dogleg section.
• Cyclic over pull at tool joint intervals on trips.
INDICATIONS:
• Occurs only while POOH.
• Sudden over pull as BHA reaches dogleg depth.
• Un restricted circulation.
• Free string movement below key seat depth possible if not stuck.
FIRST ACTION:
• Apply torque and jar down with maximum trip load.
• Attempt to rotate with low over pulls to work through dogleg.
PREVENTIVE ACTION:
• Minimize dogleg severity to 3 deg/100’ or less.
• Limit over pulls through suspected intervals.
• Plan reamer and/or wiper trips if a dogleg is present.
• Run string reamer or key seat wiper if suspected.
MICRO DOGLEGS
CAUSE:
• Hard/soft interbedded formations.
• Frequent corrections in hole angle or direction.
• BHA becomes jammed in the successive micro doglegs.
WARNING:
• Prognosed hard/soft interbedded formations.
• Frequent angle direction changes.
• Drilling/sliding with down hole motor.
• Erratic torque and drag on connections.
INDICATIONS:
• Likely when picking up for a connection. Possible on trips.
• Circulation un restricted.
FIRST ACTION:
• If moving up when sticking occurred, apply torque and jar up with maximum trip
load.
• If moving down, jar up with maximum trip load, do not apply torque.
PREVENTIVE ACTION:
• Minimize BHA changes.
• Minimize direction / angle changes.
• Back ream frequently when drilling hard / soft formations.
• Slow trip speed before BHA enters suspected zone.
LEDGES
CAUSE:
• Interbedded formations. Soft rocks – wash out, hard rocks – in gauge.
• Fractured / faulted formations.
• Stabilizer blades and tool upsets become stuck under ledges.
WARNING:
• Prognosed hard / soft interbedded formations.
• Prognosed fractured / faulted formations.
• Sudden erratic over pull.
INDICATIONS:
• Generally occurs when tripping.
• Possible when picking up for a connection.
• Generally associated with micro doglegs.
• Circulation un restricted.
FIRST ACTION:
• If moving up when sticking occurred, apply torque and jar up with maximum trip
load.
• If moving down, jar up with maximum trip load, do not apply torque.
PREVENTIVE ACTION:
• Minimize direction / angle changes.
• Minimize BHA changes.
• Plan reaming trips, ream with caution.
• Slow trip speed before BHA enters suspected zone.
MOBILE FORMATIONS
CAUSE:
• Over burden weight squeezes plastic salt or shale into the well bore.
• The BHA becomes jammed in the under gauge hole.
WARNING:
• Prognosed salt or plastic shale.
• Sudden increases in over pull or set down weight.
• Sudden torque increases with fast moving plastic formations.
INDICATIONS:
• Generally occurs while POOH.
• Possible when RIH after a long period out of the hole.
• Possible while drilling if formation moves fast.
• Sticking occurs when BHA at plastic zone depth.
• Circulation un restricted or slight restriction possible.
FIRST ACTION:
• If moving up apply torque and jar down with maximum trip load.
• If moving down, jar up with maximum trip load, do not apply torque.
• Spot fresh water if in salt. (consider well control).
PREVENTIVE ACTION:
• Select the correct mud system.
• Maintain sufficient mud weight.
• Plan frequent reaming/wiper trips.
• Consider eccentric PDC bits.
• Slow trip speed before BHA enters suspected zone.
• Minimize open hole exposure time.
UNDERGAUGE HOLE
CAUSE:
• Drilling hard abrasive rock wears bit gauge protection.
• Cored hole section undergauge.
• New bit is jammed into the undergauge hole section
WARNING:
• Prognosed abrasive sands.
• Pulled bit and stabilizers are undergauge.
• When PDC bit follows roller cone bit run.
• Running in hole after coring.
INDICATIONS:
• Occurs only when RIH.
• Sudden set down weight.
• Bit stuck near bottom or at top of core hole section.
• Circulation un restricted or slightly restricted.
FIRST ACTION:
• Jar up with maximum trip load. Do not apply torque.
PREVENTIVE ACTION:
• Gauge pulled bit and stabilizers.
• Never force the bit through tight spots.
• Ream the last 3 joints to bottom. Begin reaming 3 joints above core hole section.
• Slow trip speed before BHA enters suspected zone.
The indications of wellbore geometry problems are observed only when BHA is
moving in the hole section with the geometry problem.
INDICATIONS OF WELLBORE GEOMETRY PROBLEMS
DRILLER TRENDS DRAG TORQUE PRESSURE OTHER
• Momentary over pull & set
• DRILLING Increasing, erratic Increasing, erratic No change down

♦ Momentary over pull & set


Increasing, Surge to start
♦ CONNECTION erratic circulation
down

Increasing, erratic
 Momentary over pull & set
over pull with
 TRIPPING OUT BHA at problem
down
zone.

Increasing, erratic.  Begins at depth of problem


 TRIPPING IN Set down weight. formation.

 BACK REAMING erratic erratic over pull No change  Momentary over pull

Increasing, erratic
 PUMPING OUT over pull
No change  Momentary over pull

RIG TEAM INDICATIONS


SHAKER TRENDS No change

LOGGER TRENDS No change.


MUD TRENDS No change.

PREVENTIVE ACTION
• Optimize BHA design (run only what is required ) and when possible, minimize BHA stiffness.
• Plan a reaming trip if new BHA is locked up and/or a hole geometry problem is suspected.
• Slow down trip speed before BHA enters kick off or doglegs depth, depth of micro dogleg and/or
ledges, mobile formation.
• Minimize dogleg severity to 3 deg/100’ or less. Minimize rotating hours below a sharp dogleg
without a wiper or reaming trip.
• Consider using key seat wipers or drill string reamers if a key seat is suspected.
• Limit the length of rathole to avoid key seating the bottom of the casing. Do not start angle
building operations too close to the shoe.
• Minimize sharp, frequent well bore course changes.
• Avoid prolonged circulation in suspected micro dogleg section to prevent hole wash out and
forming ledges.
• With mobile salts consider using a slightly under saturated mud system to allow a controlled wash
out. If necessary increase the mud weight to help slow down salt intrusion.
• Consider drilling mobile salts with eccentric PDC bits. Plan regular wiper trips to keep the hole
section open.
• Use hard faced stabilizers and select bits with extra gauge protection if abrasive formations are
drilled.
• Gauge the old bit and stabilizers as well as the bit and stabilizers picked up.
• Begin reaming 1 joint above a cored hole section. As standard. Practice, ream the last stand or 3
joints back to bottom on all trip.
STUCK PIPE FREEING WORKSHEET SUMMARIZATION:

SUMMARIZATION FOR GENERAL INSTRUCTION TO BE FOLLOWED IN CASE OF STUCK PIPE

INITIAL ACTION

1. If sticking occurred while moving up apply torque and jar down with maximum trip load.
If sticking occurred while moving down, do not apply torque and jar up with maximum trip load.
2. Stop or reduce circulation when cocking the and when jarring down.
NOTE: Increase pump pressure will INCREASE the hydraulic jar up – below & DECREASE the
down – below.
3. Continue jarring until the string is free or an alternative decision is made. Jarring for 10+ hours may
be necessary.

SECONDARY ACTION

• Spot acid if stuck in lime stone or chalk. Spot fresh water with mobile salt.

WHEN THE STRING COMES FREE:

 Increase circulation to maximum rate, rotate and work the string .


 Ream / back ream the hole section thoroughly.
 Circulate the hole clean.

STUCK WHILE MOVING UP OR WITH STRING STATIC

ACTION TO ESTABLISH CIRCULATION

 Apply low pump pressure (200-400 psi). Maintain pressure if restricted circulation is possible.
 DO NOT JAR UP !!!APPLY TORQUE !!!
Slack off to MAXIMUM set down weight. Allow sufficient time for a hydraulic jar to trip (4-6 min for
long cycle. See jar manual).
 If the string does not come free. DO NOT JAR UP!! Jar DOWN until the string comes free or an
alternative decision is made. Jarring down for 10+ hours may be necessary.

WHEN CIRCULATION IS ESTABLISHED:

 Slowly increase pump speed to maximize rate. When possible work the string and circulate the hole
clean from bit depth.
 Ream the section until the hole is clean.
 If POOH to log and / or run casing, return to bottom and circulate the hole clean.
SUMMARIZATION FOR GENERAL INSTRUCTION TO BE FOLLOWED IN CASE OF STUCK
PIPE WHILE MOVING UP OR WITH STRING STATIC

INITIAL ACTION
1- circulate at maximum allowable rate.
2- Work MAXIMUM limit torque down to the stuck depth and hold the torque in the string.
3- Stop or reduce the pump speed to minimum.
4- Slack off to MAXIMUM set – down limit.
5- Allow sufficient time for a hydraulic jar to trip (4-6 min for long cycle. See jar manual).
6- If string does not come free, hold torque in the string and continue jarring down with maximum trip
load.

SECONDARY ACTION

• If the string does not come free after 5 – 10 jar below, continue jarring while preparing a pipe releasing
pill.

WHEN THE STRING COMES FREE:

 Rotate and work the string .


 Circulate at maximum speed.
 Check the poor mud specifications.

STUCK WHILE MOVING DOWN

ACTION TO ESTABLISH CIRCULATION

 Apply low pump pressure (200-400 psi). Maintain pressure if restricted circulation is possible.
 DO NOT JAR DOWN !!!APPLY TORQUE !!!
Apply MAXIMUM over pull to jar. Allow sufficient time for a hydraulic jar to trip (4-8 min for long
cycle. See jar manual).
 If the string does not come free. DO NOT JAR DOWN!! Jar UP until the string is free or an alternative
decision is made. Jarring up for 10+ hours may be required.

WHEN CIRCULATION IS ESTABLISHED:

 Slowly increase pump speed to maximize rate. When possible work the string and circulate the hole
clean from bit depth.
 Ream the section until the hole is clean.
 Continue RIH until excessive set down weight is observed, circulate the hole clean.
NOTE:
Since there are many causes of the drill string becoming stuck in a bore hole.
Identifying the cause will be the key to determine the quickest and most economical
method of getting the pipe free.

The following is a list of the various ways pipe may become stuck:
1) Differential pressure sticking.
2) Cuttings and/or weight material settling.
3) Bridging due to an unstable well bore.
4) Key-seating.
5) Soft clay or salt packing off the annuls.
6) Mud or cement solidification.
7) Jamming bit into under gauge hole.
8) Junk dropped into the hole.
9) Collapsed casing.

COMMENTS:
The first six ways of pipe becoming stuck are directly or indirectly related to the
drilling fluid being used.
The last three ways are purely mechanical.

Of all the causes listed above, differential pressure sticking is normally the most
frequent and requires special attention. It is also the only cause that normally requires
the assistance of a mud engineer to prepare and spot a soak solution.

IDENTIFYING DIFFERENTIAL PRESSURE STICKING:


1) The drill string was stationary when it became stuck.
2) A permeable formation is exposed in the well bore.
3) The hole can be circulated with normal pump pressure.
4) The drill string can not be reciprocated or rotated.
5) The mud has high solids and high fluid loss.
6) The mud weight has been increased recently.

METHODS OF FREEING DIFFERENTIALLY STUCK PIPE:


The following information will deal with the remedies available to free differential
pressure stuck pipe. The area of contact increases as the filter cake with time, thus
produces greater sticking forces. Because of this, a quick determination of the cause
followed by an immediate remedial step is imperative.
1) Spot a PIPE-LAX soak solution quickly. The probability of freeing differentially
stuck pipe is inversely proportional to the time between actual sticking and final
spotting of the solution.
2) Work pipe by tripping the jars both up and down if possible.
3) Reduce mud weight if possible.
4) Run a drill stem test tool and relieve pressure.
5) Pump a slug of water down the drill string and let it u-tube.
6) Pump some air to reduce the hydrostatic head.\
NOTE:
a. Soak solution equivalent in weight to the drilling fluid will help prevent
migration, and help keep the spot in proper placement.
b. Proper placement of soak solution to cover the stuck zone with enough
remaining in the drill string to move at least ½ barrel every ten minutes for
several hours is essential.
c. Attempts to wash over i differentially stuck can involve high risk. If all
attempts within few hours of sticking fail, consider tracking.

PIPE- LAX:
A PIPE LAX soak solution may be prepared with oil, LVT mineral oil or an oil
mud as carrier fluid. A ratio of at least one-gallon PIPE-LAX to one barrel of
carrier fluid is recommended. Soak solution equivalent in weight to the drilling
fluid will help prevent migration, and help keep the spot in proper placement.

FREE POINT
PROCEDURE:
1) Apply more hook load pull (25,000 lbs.) over the weight of the drill string and
record this pull in pounds.
2) Mark a reference point on the Kelly or pipe.
3) Pull an additional 25,000 lbs.
4) Measure of pipe caused by additional pull in inches.
5) Calculate the free point using Eq. 10.4.2 or figure 10.4.3

FREE POINT EQUATION

(735,000) (DP Wt) L


Fp =
▲F
Where:
Fp = Free point, ft
DP. Wt. = Unit weight of drill pipe, lbs./ft, e.g. 16.6, 20.0, etc.
L = Pipe stretch inches.

▲F = Differential pull pounds.

FREE POINT CHART:

EXAMPLE:
Given:
Drill pipe = 4 ½” X 16.6 lbs./ft X 12,000 ft.
Drill Collar = 6 ½” X 2 ¼” X 800 ft.
8 ½” open hole to 12,800 ft.
9 5/8” casing to 9,300 ft.
MW = 14 ppg.
The buoyant weight of the pipe was 154,000 lbs. To make the pipe in tension , the
initial pull 160,000 and reference point was marked. An additional pull of 40,000
pounds was made and the pipe stretched by an amount of 39.7 inches.
Calculate the free point?
SOLUTION:

(735,000) (16.6) (39.7)


Fp = = 12,100 ft.
(40,000)

Or
Using fig. 10.4.3
1) Enter the chart with 40.000 pounds differential pull as left vertical
scale.
2) Move horizontally to the right until the 4 ½” (16.6) is reached.
3) From above intersection, move vertically down and read 305 ft/inch.
Fp = (305) 39.7 = 12,108 ft.

CALCULATIONS FOR SPOTTING PIPE-LAX SOAK SOLUTION


1) After determining where you are stuck , with strong indications that you are
differentially stuck , a calculation must be made to determine how much soak
solution to mix. One would normally want to mix enough to cover the entire stuck
area and leave enough the drill string to move at least ½ barrel every 30 minutes
for several hours, to make sure you keep the stuck zone covered.
2) We must also make calculations so that the soak solution will be spotted properly.
3) We should also anticipate additional or excess pump pressure if we are spotting a
lighter soak solution than the mud in the hole.

EXAMPLE
Given:
1) 8 ½” open hole to 12,800’.
2) 4 ½” (16.6) D.P. 12,000 long.
3) 800 ft. of 6 ½” X 2 ¼” drill collars.
4) Stuck below 12,100’ so we want to cover entire drill collar interval.
5) We want enough soak solution left inside the drill string to move ½ barrel every
30 minutes for 10 hours.
6) Pump output is 0.13 bbl/stk.
7) Surface lines from pits to rotary table holds 5 bbls of mud.
8) Soak solution weights 7.2 lb./gal and mud weight 14 lb./gal.
9) Pump pressure while circulating 14 lb./gal at 40 SPM is 1,200 psi. pressure drop
inside the drill pipe is 30 psi/1000 ft. while inside the drill collar is 36 psi/100 ft.
Find:
1) Barrels of soak solution needed = - - - - - - - bbls
2) Pump stroke required to spot the leading edge of the PIPE-LAX soak solution at
the top of the collars = - - - - - - - strokes
3) Maximum pump pressure while moving soak solution down drill string at 40
SPM.
Solution:
[ (8.5)2 – (6.25)2 (800)
1) A) Volume around drill collars = = 25.8 bbls.
1029

B) Volume inside the drill string = (1/2 bbl / 30 min) (60 min / hr) (10 hrs)
= 10 bbls
C) Total solution needed = 10 + 25.8 = 36.0 bbls

2) A) Capacity of surface lines = 5 bbls.


B) Capacity of D.P. = (0.01422 bbl/ft) (12,000 ft) = 170.64 bbls.
C) Capacity of D.C. = (2.252 / 1029) X 800 X 3.94 bbls.
D) Annular capacity around D.C. (above) = 25.8 bbls.
E) Total fluid to move to spot = 205.38 bbls.

205.38 bbls
F) Pump strokes to spot = = 1,580 stks
0.13 bbl/stk
3) A) Maximum pump pressure will occur when soak solution is longest inside drill
string, which will occur when the drill collars are full and the remainder is in the
drill pipe.
From 2.C. we find the capacity of the drill collars is 3.94 bbls, therefore if we
have 36 bbls of soak solution we must have 36 – 3.94 = 32.06 bbls inside the drill
pipe.
B) 32.06 bbls / 0.01422 (bbl/ft) = 2,255 ft. of soak solution in the drill pipe.
C) Total length of soak solution = 2,255 ft. + 800 ft. = 3,055 ft.
D) Differential density between mud eight and soak solution weight = 14 – 7 = 6.8
lb./gal.
E) Length of soak solution times differential density times 0.052 = (3,055 ft.) (6.8
lb./gal) (0.052) = 1,080 psi , which is the differential hydrostatic pressure
F) Decrease in pressure loss due to the length of soak solution = (30) (2255/1000) (6.8 /
14) + (36) (800/100) (6.8/14) = 173 psi.
G) The expected pump pressure when the soak solution reaches the bit = 1577 + 1200 –
173 2604 psi.
NOTE:
If we stopped pumping with the leading edge of the soak solution at the bit , we
should see 1,577 psi on the stand pipe gauge.
PREVENTIVE MEASURES
Both a positive differential pressure and a contact area, for this pressure to work on, are
necessary for pipe to become differentially stuck. Therefore, any thing that will reduce
contact area or differential pressure will help considerably to minimize or prevent
differential sticking.
1) Keep mud weight to a safe minimum.
2) Keep solids content and fluid loss to an economic minimum
3) Minimize the time during which the drill string is not being rotated or reciprocated.
4) Use a good mud lubricant such as LUBE 153.
5) Use spiral or square drill collars
6) Use heavy weight drill pipe to compensate for loss of weight by using smaller or
shorter drill collars.
7) Use good drilling and pipe handling practices.
8) Optimize stabilizer placement to minimize the contact area between the BHA and the
side of the well bore.

FIGURE 1. STUCK PIPE CAUSES AND RECOMMENDED FREEING


METHODS
.
STUCK PIPE
CAUSE

Mechanical Differential Sticking

Key Wellbore Inadequate Junk or Cement


Seating Geometry Hole Cleaning Collapsed Related
Casing

String String Hole String String String


Jammed Jammed Packed Off Jammed Jammed Jammed

Work String Work String Work String Work String Slump String
Work String Up if RIH Down to Establish Down & Up Up or Down & Rotate
Down & Work String Or Improve Pump Acid if Reduce Mud
Rotate Down if POOH Circulation Available Wt
Utilize
Spotting
Fluid

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