The self-centering device (1, Figure 1) includes articulated claws 3 hinged and indirectly coupled to a first spindle 2, so they can move along it. A centring device 4 for the claws includes connecting rods 5 articulated at one end to intermediate parts 30 of the claws, and at the opposite end to a support 6. The position of the support can be adjusted coaxially in stroke along the length of the upper part of the spindle. A second tubular spindle 7 coaxial with the first spindle, independent of it in rotation and secured to it in stroke, has an external thread 70 to thread a handle 8 onto which is fixed in stroke but can rotate independently of the support. A hollow piston 90 hydraulic cylinder 9 includes an internal thread 91 into which the first spindle is threaded. The cylinder is located in the space 50 existing between the connecting rods, resting on the support to produce its movement with extracting grip from the claws. The cylinder may include a connector (92, Figure 1) for connecting an external hydraulic pump.