Pro Tips for Saving Money with Diamond Drilling

Productivity is important with any drilling job.  The equipment isn’t cheap, and it’s important to get the most out of it.  And when you set yourself up right, you’ll be able to do the fastest job with the best quality of service.  This means both higher productivity and higher quality results.  Higher productivity means your jobs get done at less expense to you.  And this is the way to really save with diamond drilling.

Productivity is all about the little details. Diamond drilling is a complex operation, and one little thing can throw the whole process out of whack.   Sometimes, the best way to go about things is to keep tweaking things here and there until you have things running smoothly.

Here are a few tips for boosting your productivity and reducing costs:

1. Boost your Rate of Penetration (ROP)

The higher your ROP, the more effectively you will be able to drill through hard materials when diamond drilling.  This makes your drilling operation more economical.  It’s also important to assess the ground prior to drilling, and to choose the best crown configuration and core bit for the ground you’re working with. 

2. Buy really good equipment!

This one tip can save you massively over the life of your drilling operations.  When it comes to diamond drilling, you get what you pay for.  You can go the cheap route and save some money in the short run.  But, that will lead to drill rods breaking prematurely and changing core bits more often.  Better equipment is less likely to break and lasts longer, which means that you’ll spend less time fixing a broken drill rod when you really want to be digging a hole.  Plus, better equipment will do the job faster and at higher quality.

3. Fit the equipment to the situation

No two drill sites are the same.  Select the equipment based on the ground and conditions of the site.  This is probably the most important element in raising productivity in drilling operations, and it requires knowledge and experience.  Consider ground variability, hardness, competency, and abrasiveness.  It’s also important to take into consideration the type and configuration of the crown.  If you want to go all out, you can look into the choice of drill rods, core lifter system, core barrel, and reaming shell.

4. Keep a close eye on your bits

All experienced drilling contractors know how important the bit is to a smooth drilling operation.  Make sure to check your bits for damage before you drill.  With that in mind, it’s also important to try to extend the life of your bits as much as possible.  Use them until they are too damaged to do a good job, and you can save a fair chunk of cash.  But don’t push it too far, or you’ll be out for the repairs and time.

5.  Higher crowns are the way to go

Unfortunately, no bit will last forever.  But you can significantly extend the life of your bits by using higher crowns in hard ground.  The Vulcan configuration is ideal for this, as its higher crowns mean less times stopping to change the bit during the operation.

6. Don’t skimp on maintenance

Inspect all of your equipment regularly, and make sure that all parts are working correctly.  Lubricate and clean everything regularly.  Inspect the rod threats to ensure they are coated with thread compound.  If you run into tough spots, use a degreaser.

7. Spring for additives

It might seem like additives are an unnecessary expense, but this couldn’t be further from the truth.  They can actually improve performance in a number of ways and reduce your operational costs significantly.  Additives lower your risk of stalled operations and lubricate your equipment, adding yours to its life.  You can also find other additives to help with specific types of ground.  Whether you’re dealing with abrasive holes, sandy holes, dry holes, or collapsing holes, there’s an additive out there that will smooth the process and cut time and effort.

If you have any questions or you’d like to look into your drilling job, feel free to contact us.  At BG Drilling, we’ve got you covered.

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