4 Types of Ram BOPs

If you plan to work on a drilling site, you should know the types of ram BOPs. A ram BOP is a blowout preventer that uses a pair of steel plungers that oppose each other (rams). The rams can extend towards the wellbore’s center to restrict the flow of fluids or retract open to permit the flow. So, what are the various types of ram BOPs?

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What are the four types of ram BOPs? 

If blowouts occur during drilling operations, they can cause a lot of destruction. To avoid such blowouts from happening, you should install blowout preventers, including the ram BOPs. When there is a high-pressure ‘kick,’ the steel plungers will move inwards, closing the wellbore. That will eventually stop the kick.

Here are the four different types of Ram BOPs

  1. Pipe Rams
  2. Shear Rams
  3. Blind Rams
  4. Blind Shear Rams

1) Pipe Rams

Pipe rams close the spherical space where the wellbore or blowout preventer and the pipe meet. When the pipe Ram closes around the diameter of the wellbore’s meeting point and the pipe in the outside, fluids cannot flow through any opening around the area. It prevents liquids from flowing through the annular space but does not block those flowing within the drill pipe. 

2) Shear Rams

This blowout preventer closing element uses hardened and fitted steel blades to cut the drilling pipes every moment the BOP gets closed. It then closes fully to seal the wellbore. Oilfield operators can use the shear rams to regain pressure control in the wellbore when other alternatives have failed. It always serves as the last resort.

Pro Tip: When the shear rams cut the pipe, it remains hanging in the BOP stack. The drill pipe joint may also suffer some damages, but the other string will stay in good condition. 

3) Blind Rams

These are thick components of a conventional ram-type block out preventer made of a heavy steel component. Blind rams feature two steel blocks that converge at the center to block the hole where the pipe fits. Please note that the blind ram does not have space for piping. This ram closes when the well does not have a drill string

4) Blind Shear Rams

These rams are also known as the sealing shear rams. When the blowout preventer closes, the blind shear rams can cut the tubing or drill pipe. These ram Bops can also serve as the last resort when other BOP types have failed to regain pressure control.


Now that you know the different types of ram BOPs, you can quickly select one that can fulfill your oilfield needs. If you intend to invest in the pipe rams, the variable-bore pipe rams will be the best option to pick. It can accommodate various pipe diameters.

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