O-Ring Dovetail Grooves
It is often necessary to provide some mechanical means forholding an o-ring in a face seal groove during assembly and maintenance of equipment. An undercut or dovetail groove has proven beneficial in many applications to keep the o-ring in place. This is an expensive groove to machine, however, and thus should be used only when absolutely necessary.
It should be noted that although this method has been used successfully, it is not generally recommended. The inherent characteristics of the groove design limit the amount of void area. Normally acceptable tolerance extremes, wide service temperature ranges and fluid media that cause high swell or the elastomer are conditions that cannot be tolerated in this type of groove design.