Vermeer has been a pioneer of trenchless technology – one of the broad range of complementary technologies offered by the company for underground service installations.
We recently spoke to Aaron Forbes, Director of Versatile Services Australia (VSA), to discover what Vermeer Australia means to an innovative trenchless technology contractor.
The story behind VSA
We started in early 2018 with the aim of filling a need for a modern underground utility specialist focused on smaller, more technically challenging projects. Two years later, we have a staff of 12 and have expanded beyond our Perth base into the Sydney market, with NBN installation and maintenance being an important part of our work.
Vermeer since the start
I’ve been in the industry for 20 years, working my way up from an offsider position to a plant operator, then site management and construction management until becoming a director of a Horizontal Directional Drill (HDD) company. I was trained on a Vermeer 7x11A and 16×20 15 years ago, and I’ve worked with Vermeer ever since as I had great experiences with it early on. As I moved into management roles, I got to appreciate more about the team that supports Vermeer equipment, so it’s a combination of the equipment itself and the company that supports it.
Vermeer Australia has the traditional sales and support values of a company that has been working with Australian contractors – both large and small – for 30 years. This capability has been further extended with Vermeer now a fully owned part of the RDO Australia Group – one of the largest specialist equipment dealer organisations in the world.
The D40x55DR takes on the big jobs
Our D24x40 was a good reliable machine for the work we did at the time, but we needed a bigger machine for the Sydney work that is mostly hard rock and limestone. The results have been consistently outstanding: we often rack out the drill in solid rock without complications, racking out up to 250m a day many a times in complete rock conditions. Our operators love how easily it handles difficult conditions, particularly the D40x55DR’s automated system has made life getting through the sandstone on the Sydney job a breeze – its reliability and strength in the inner rod system is incomparable to any other drill manufacture.
What lies ahead for VSA
We are currently focusing on tightening our internal gears so we may expand outward. This refers to both an increase in man power but also machinery. We hope to continue to expand our network of Vermeer drills and other machinery on an ongoing basis. With the high volume of work we are seeing begin to appear in WA, our next step for this goal would be to attain some more heavy duty Vermeer drills to match our Sydney capacity.
We’ve enjoyed good support from Vermeer, whether in Perth or in Sydney. As someone who has worked in all ranks within the drilling industry, I can confidently recommend Vermeer to any and all users. Yellow iron all day, every day!