Patent Number: 8,720,607

Title: Downhole tool having a friction stirred surface region

Abstract: A method for hardening a portion of the outer surface of a downhole tool body includes friction stirring the vulnerable surface of the tool. Such friction stirring generally includes rotating a friction stir weld tool in contact with the surface until a portion of the tool penetrates the tool. The friction stir weld tool is then translated (while rotating) across a predetermined region of the surface thereby creating a friction stir zone. The friction stir zone is generally considerably harder, and therefore more wear resistant, than the parent material that makes up the tool body. The resulting downhole tool includes at least one surface with a hard friction stir zone.

Inventors: Davis; Richard (Houston, TX), Cruickshank; Brian W. (Montgomery, TX)

Assignee: Smith International, Inc.

International Classification: E21B 7/28 (20060101)

Expiration Date: 5/13/12018