The growth of the telecommunications industry in Australia — particularly with the roll-out of the NBN — has presented contractors with a range opportunities, but it is not without its challenges. Having the right equipment can overcome these challenges, allowing contractors to complete installations with ease and within deadlines. Along with the support of strong before and after-sales customer service, contractors can get the competitive edge to grow their business.
Lawrence Bourke, Owner of Queensland-based L&K Directional Drilling, first opened the business in 2015 under the name Bourke Fibre Optics Solutions, completing NBN service installations, splicing and lead ins.
“In 2017, we wanted to become a more versatile company so we began undertaking large civil projects. We first came across directional drilling when we were installing nodes as we had to subcontract a lot of the work. I found it intriguing and wanted to know more,” Mr Bourke said.
This led to Mr Bourke purchasing a used Vermeer D18X22, and he liked it so much that 10 months later he bought a new Vermeer D20X22 S3. To reflect the company’s new capabilities, he changed the company name to L&K Directional Drilling.
“We now do all of our own service locating, directional drilling and civil construction in underground telecommunications. In the future I would like to obtain more projects that specialise in gas, water and power installations,” Mr Bourke said.
CONSIDERATIONS WHEN SELECTING A DIRECTIONAL DRILL
Mr Bourke said there were three key reasons that led him to purchase the D20X22 S3: size, remote control and safety. The D20X22 S3, like other drills in Vermeer’s horizontal directional drill range, has been designed to maximise productivity and efficiency while working in tight spaces and challenging conditions.
The D20X22 S3 is available with an optional remote control which enables tracking and setup of the drill from convenient locations, and provides safer loading, unloading and tracking of the drill in hazardous areas. It also allows the operator to choose their perspective when working in challenging conditions, which increases safety.
“The safety features are outstanding, and using the remote control to move the drill is extremely useful, especially loading on and off the truck, and when getting into tricky locations,” Mr Bourke said.
“It is also a good size drill for telecommunications work.” Mr Bourke said since purchasing the D20X22 S3 the company has completed all projects with ease even when working with difficult ground conditions.
“We have used the D20X22 S3 to successfully complete an NBN installation in Kilcoy, South East Queensland. During the project we came across a lot of rock and this drill cut through it with ease.
“It has become an asset for the business as it is quick and reliable, allowing us to complete projects ahead of deadlines.”