After being awarded the Yan Yean Road Duplication project in Victoria, JLM Underground Solutions (JLM) sought out the latest equipment that could improve their ability to drill into hard basalt rock in order to meet the demands of the project.
Situated in Melbourne’s northern suburbs, directional drilling and structural/civil concrete company JLM is currently installing all the underground HV infrastructure for the Yan Yean Road Duplication Project in Plenty. The project requires the team at JLM to drill into extremely hard basalt while working in tight areas, meaning a compact set up is vital.
Director of JLM, John Mundy, said that the decision to add new equipment to the fleet is no small task.
“We consulted with peers from the underground civil industry, along with industry professionals to ensure we are using the most up-to-date equipment and technology. We also consider the reliability of machines and timely servicing so we can meet contract timelines and turn over larger profits over shorter time periods,” Mr Mundy said.
Let’s torque about dual rod technology
In order to carry out the project, Mr Mundy became the owner of the very first Vermeer D40x55DR S3 drill to be sold in Australia in July 2018.
The S3 range was developed after extensive consultation with end users who identified three key considerations for drilling on modern job sites: speed, simplicity and sound.
The D40x55DR S3 HDD unit is unique from other machines in Vermeer’s current range as it features dual rod (DR) technology. The dual rod technology uses an inner rod to provide torque to the drill bit, while the outer rod offers steering capability and rotational torque for reaming.
This combination provides powerful downhole cutting action and the flexibility to select the appropriate tools to best match the ground conditions, which can allow the entire install to be completed with one machine.
“We have been using the D40x55DR S3 rock drill to bore up to 600mm diameters through hard mudstone in tight access areas. Using a PDC drill bit on Vermeer’s new dual rod rock system has resulted in a dramatic increase in productivity,” Mr Mundy said.
“Although our other drills have rock capabilities via the use of an air hammer, we often work in small areas that require a more compact setup which the D40x55DR S3 offers.”
Some other key features of the D40x55DR S3 include climate control, weatherproofing and reduced noise levels of 80dBA at the operator’s ear in a standard operator’s cab. The machine is powered by a 140hp (104kW) John Deere diesel engine, delivering 40,000 lb of thrust/pullback and 5,500 ft-lb of rotational torque.
The D40x55DR S3 has the ability to install more product in less time with an impressive 500 feet (152.4m) on-board rod capacity.