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Several tin plated, low-alloy steel couplings designed to connect sections of 180 mm (7 in.) diam casing for application in a gas well fractured under normal operating conditions. The couplings were purchased to American Petroleum Institute (API) specifications for P-110 material. Chemical analysis and mechanical testing of the failed couplings showed that they had been manufactured to the API specification for Q-125, more stringent specification than P-110, and met all requirements of the application. Fractographic examination showed that the point of initiation was an embrittled region approximately 25 mm (1 in.) from the end of the coupling. The source of the embrittlement was determined to be hydrogen charging during tin plating. Changes in the plating process were recommended.

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