One of the biggest decisions a well drilling contractor needs to make is deciding whether to use a tricone bit or a PDC bit. These are the two major drill bit options when it comes to drilling wells, and each offers its own particular advantages and disadvantages.
However, the tricone bit is typically identified as the best option for all purpose drilling. It has earned this distinction thanks to the following five advantages it offers:
Suitable to a variety of different types of rock formation
Many well drilling firms need to be able to drill into a wide variety of rock formations. Tricone bits can handle both soft and hard rock formations.
In part, they can handle the variety thanks to the ability to choose from roller-cone bits, steel-tooth bits, or tungsten carbide bits when a tricone drill bit is chosen for a project. Steel-tooth tricone bits are suitable for soft rock while tungsten carbide bits are appropriate for harder rock forms. Roller-cone tricone bits can handle both soft and hard rock formations.
Fewer disruptions during drilling
Tricone bits are older and more widely used than PDC bits. Their design has been perfected since they were first developed in 1933. They are known for causing fewer disruptions that lengthen projects and consume time during drilling. Mechanics also tend to be more familiar with their repair needs than with repair needs of the less common PDC bit.
Option of using tungsten carbide inserts
When tricone bits are used in well drilling, tungsten carbide inserts can be added to them that allow for extra resiliency and strength. Sometimes, rock formations are so hard that drilling into them creates a great deal of heat. Tungsten carbide inserts help a tricone bit to withstand this heat and safely drill through at very high drill speeds.
Tricone bits feature a design with three cone-shaped heads. Each head has several rows of teeth that cut into the rock. This design allows for a great deal of control and precision when drilling.
Drilling projects require precision when they must avoid obstacles beneath the ground or involve hard rock formations of limestone, granite, or shale. Tricone bits can offer this precision thanks to the control that drill operators enjoy when using them.
Choice between open and sealed bearing bits
Well drilling firms using tricone bits can choose between open and sealed bearing bits. Open bearings without a seal are generally cheaper than sealed bearing bits. They are appropriate to more shallow drilling projects, so they can allow drilling firms to save money on this type of project. However, deeper drilling will typically require a larger investment in sealed tricone bit bearings.
For more information, contact a supplier like Henderson Well & Pump Co.