Closed Gap HiLo Tool
The Closed Gap HiLo Tool is designed to measure the external HiLo geometry of two pipes that are aligned for closed gap welding.
Measures the fit-up between two pipes
Two blades measure to the bottom of the bevel J-prep
Magnetic base makes it easy to use
Uses highly accurate dial gauge
Has become the industry standard tool
A client approached us for a tool that would accurately measure the “HiLo” mismatch at the bottom of the J-prep bevel in order to ensure that the fit-up between two pipes was within the desired specification. As the requirement was often for a fit-up of better than 0.5 mm for steel catenary risers this required a tool that would be accurate to better than 0.05 mm. Over a number of iterations we arrived at the tool that we sell today. Early versions were hand held devices but our customers almost always prefer a magnetic base. These devices have become universally used around the world by all the major pipelay companies or welders. The importance of getting pipes to match up accurately is to ensure a good weld and to avoid any stress concentrations due to the mismatch between the pipes. For critical fatigue sensitive pipes, the HiLo measured confirms the fit-up predictions from the OMS SmartFit process and provides the last check before the pipe is welded. The pipe may be checked again for HiLo post weld by OMS’s weld inspection technology.
To operate the tool first it is placed on the pipe and the magnetic clamp is activated. Next the blades are moved by rotating a thumb screw to get the blades directly above the joint between the two pipes. The dial gauge is then plunged into the pipe against the force of a spring to the point at which the two blades touch the bottom of the J-prep pipes. The tool will have previously have been set such that the dial gauge registers zero when the blades are of equal length. Any mismatch in the blades can be read from the dial gauge as a positive or negative number. The process is repeated as many times as the procedure requires to provide a suitable spot check of the HiLo mismatch between the two pipes.
The Closed Gap HiLo Tool is designed to measure the external HiLo geometry of two pipes that are aligned for closed gap welding. Separate measurements of the “land” of the J-prep allow a calculation to determine the HiLo on the inside of the pipe. The use of standard digital guages means that the tool will be familiar to pipe inspectors and is simple to use. All tools are sent out calibrated and a yearly calibration and repair service is provided.