Contractors World 2010 Volume 1 Issue 9
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Formed at the beginning of the year, Forexplo has quickly established itself as a drill and blast specialist in Canada’s Quebec Province, winning a reputation for meeting clean and efficient production targets, on-schedule and within budget.
The company is using Atlas Copco XRVS 1000 CD6 air compressors to power two 750 hp drill rigs.
Jointly formed by Mr. Bilodeau and Mr. Vachon earlier this year, it followed many years experience by both men operating for other contractors.
Quickly winning its first drill and blast contract with Beauval for all their quarries - the first one in Valleyfield, Quebec, 40 km west of Montreal and the site Ange Gardien, some 55 km south of Montreal and near to the Appalachian mountain range. A third award was soon to follow at Herbertville on Lac St Jean. And already the company is confident it is set to be awarded two further contracts.
The XRVS 1000, rated with a free air delivery of 1000 cfm at 25 bar (365 psi) is powered by a Caterpillar C13 ACERT T3 diesel engine and Atlas Copco FuelExpert to provide fuel consumption figures of just 60-62 l/h.
“This exceptional figure compares with the 90 l/h from our previous American compressors,” said Robert Bilodeau, adding, “Over a year this represents a significant cost saving.”
The Ange Gardien quarry was first established in the 1960s and was acquired by Beauval in 1981 to offer a broader diversity of crushed stone comprised mainly micritic limestone and slate and serves the Monteregie and Eastern townships.
Depending on Beauval’s requirements, Forexplo are typically drilling 56 holes for a blast to provide approximately 20,000 t. Using Atlas Copco standard or Speedbit 140 mm diameter drill bits and hammer, Forexplo is drilling up to 30 m/h.
A Bobcat T300 compact tracked loader has provided a unique, cost-effective solution for removing spoil in the construction of a pedestrian tunnel at the site of the 14th century monastery of Santa Caterina del Sasso. This is a popular destination for pilgrims and is located at the base of a sheer cliff face above one of the deepest points on the eastern shore of Lake Maggiore in Italy.
Linked to a new 12-person lift system taking visitors down from the car park, the tunnel will make it easier for everyone to visit the monastery, particularly the elderly and disabled, access for whom was severely hindered by the steep steps that were previously the only way down the 50 metres from the car park to the entrance to the monastery.
The works were commissioned by the Architectural Heritage Sector of the Province of Varese, with the collaboration of the Achille Balossi Restelli Engineering Company in Milan. As early as the planning stage, it was clear that removing spoil from the tunnel would severely restrict the progress of the work. The inaccessible entrance, little room to maneouvre and the need to lower a machine to a specific point using only the construction site crane narrowed the choice down to a compact loader, as no other type of machine would have been able to work in these conditions.
The contractors opted for a Bobcat T300 compact tracked loader, fitted with an anti-particulate filter by Bobcat dealer MAIE to reduce emissions in the tunnel.
Together with a range of attachments, the T300 loader was purchased by Sondrio-based ACCISA SpA, a specialist in this type of excavation work which acted as subcontractor to I.CO.P. SpA, the main contractor on the project, based in Udine.
Massimiliano Duca of ACCISA, said: “We were looking for a compact loader which could remove spoil as quickly as possible. The machine had to be powerful and have lifting capacities suitable for working in difficult conditions. Weight was another problem: we had to partially disassemble the loader and lower the components to the tunnel entrance with a crane which had a maximum capacity of 1.6 tonne.
With the assistance of MAIE, the loader was disassembled so that the largest and heaviest assembly, the main chassis, could be safely lifted by the crane. The machine was then reassembled at the tunnel entrance to carry out the work and, at the end of the job, it was again disassembled to remove it from site.”
Contractors World Magazines are published by VVV Limited
Publisher: Roger Lindley
Page updated: 23-Oct-2010
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