With the increased popularity of long, tortuous and HPHT wells, the performance requirements for wireline cables used in logging and well intervention jobs in these modern wells have become significantly more demanding. Once a manufacturer releases a new cable design and before the new cables are used in customer jobs, to avoid safety, operational and service quality incidents, the wireline service companies need to assess and confirm the cables' fitness for the conditions in which they will be used.

This paper documents the recent wireline cable design changes and a battery of post-manufacturing processes and tests intended to qualify the resulting new wireline cables, all product of a close collaboration between a wireline cable manufacturer, a cable service and repairs vendor, a cable testing laboratory and a wireline service company. The post-manufacturing tests and processes subject of this paper can be grouped in the following categories:

  • Cable strength and comprehensive fatigue tests

  • Cable constructional stretch removal process

  • Live well-control running qualification process

In this paper, we will elaborate on the design of the specific cable design changes, qualification tests, post-manufacturing processes, and their rate of commercial adoption by our industry. We will also show several specific examples of modern cables along with the outcome of the post-manufacturing processes applied to them.

The ability to perform logging and well interventions in modern complex wells using fit-for-purpose wireline cables has resulted in safer operations, shorter operating times, significant savings when compared with alternative deployment methods, longer useful cable lives, avoidance of expensive fishing operations and lost-in-hole charges.

This paper is intended to enhance the understanding of the readers on the technologies, materials, methods and processes involved on the quest to design, make, qualify and properly use wireline cables; this knowledge will benefit the most those who buy or provide wireline services in challenging environments.

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