Improved coiled tubing (CT) technology, development of specially-designed hydraulically-actuated service tools, and increased emphasis on cost efficiency have made coiled tubing a viable option for many fishing jobs. Before the emergence of coiled tubing fishing technology, traditional service procedures included use of wireline to retrieve fish from oil and gas wells. If wireline was unsuccessful, a rig or hydraulic workover (snubbing) unit had to work over the well and remove the fish.

This paper addresses the successful use of CT in fishing operations. The capability of CT to circulate fluids at the fish and generate high downhole forces enables the retrieval of fish in situations that would not be possible or cost effective by other service options. CT fishing can be performed under pressure on live, highly-deviated or horizontal wells; the job can be completed and the well returned to production within 1 to 3 days for only a fraction of the cost of a workover.

The paper will describe the tools, their capabilities, and service techniques currently in use for CT fishing operations as well as new equipment being developed. Data from several case histories will be used to provide considerations, surface rig-up, and job limitations.

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