January 13, 2022
Posted by Rod McCoremick
We have offered a lot of advice in previous blogs, but it never hurts to repeat important information, especially for helpers and other people new to the industry. In this blog, we are going to look at things drillers should never do in diamond drilling.
Never do the following
The list below represents things you should never do while drilling because they can lead to equipment damage, reduced performance or problems that may lead to suspending operations. Again, the list is not exhaustive but if you are doing any of them, you need to stop now.
Turn to the left!
Never turn the rod string to the left. Everything that goes down the bore hole is always right hand threaded so you should never be rotating your rod string or anything else to the left. This will surely unscrew at the worst possible place.
Never let the pipe wrench touch the crown
When tightening a bit, avoid having a pipe wrench touch the crown of the bit. Always try to use a proper sized outer tube wrench to tighten a new bit. The core bit is a precision tool and can be easily damaged by a pipe wrench or the chuck of the drill.
Never push a block
To understand why you should never push a block, you need to understand what a core block is. If you are drilling in unconsolidated or broken ground, and the core bit and outer tube advance in the hole, the broken and wedge like pieces of core can become jammed as the core enters the inner tube. You’ll notice a spike in the water pressure due to the expansion of the shut off valves on the head assembly. This signal should never be ignored and if you continue to drill, severe damage to the core barrel components can occur, including melted shut off valves and burnt bearings to name a few.
Never over-torque threaded joints
Over torquing your drill rods or “snapping” the rods together as you run them into the hole can cause damage to the shoulders of the pin and box ends of the threads, as well as belling and other damage. Your drill rig rotation should be adjusted to the proper torque value.
Ignore the sounds of the drill
A good driller knows to listen to the drill rig and to the sounds it emits as drilling continues. The sounds and feel of the equipment, such as sudden vibrations and the sound of your engine labouring, can be hints that there may be trouble brewing.
Never allow excessive vibration to occur.
Too much in-hole vibration can cause premature damage to the bit, the core barrel, the drill rod and other machine components. Excessive vibration can have a detrimental effect on core recovery as well.