October 2015 Vol. 70 No. 10


A Small HDD Mud Recycler Built for Big Success

Some of the best new product ideas come from customer conversations. Equipment manufacturers often talk with underground construction contractors about their ever-changing equipment needs on horizontal directional drilling (HDD) job sites. When utility contractors talk about their biggest HDD pain points, disposing of drill mud usually tops the list.

Drilling mud is, well, messy business. Mud can’t be simply left piled on a public easement or private property once underground utilities have been installed. Cleaning up the drilling mud and hauling it away for proper disposal is the responsibility of the utility contractor.

“At the Ditch Witch organization, we listen to customer feedback and engineer equipment to meet specific job-site challenges,” said Seth Matthesen, product manager for HDD at the Ditch Witch organization. “We’re in this together. That’s why we designed the MR90 micro mud-recycling system, to fill a void in HDD support equipment and meet the mud disposal challenges that face our utility contractors on their jobs.”

We’re in this together. That’s why we designed the MR90 micro mud-recycling system, to fill a void in HDD support equipment and meet the mud disposal challengesThe MR90 is designed specifically for drill units with pullback ratings ranging from 20,000 to 60,000 lbs (9,072 to 27,216 kg) – the most widely used drill rigs in service today. In the past, most mud-recycling systems were designed to support large drill rigs. Depending on the capacity of the equipment, operators would have to haul multiple loads to a landfill or disposal site, which is time consuming and costly. The MR90 is a compact, self-contained unit that can mix and recycle mud, handle spoils and is the only unit in its class that can be transported full of fluid. Further, it uses a fraction of the water and additives, saving contractors operating costs.

“Many mud recyclers on the market rely on supplementary equipment to operate, which can quickly add costs. Until recently, some contractors on midsized underground projects would forego recycling drilling mud, as they believed disposal costs to be lower than having a recycler on-site,” said Matthesen. “For these contractors, the MR90 is quickly becoming the breakthrough, as many are reporting significant cost savings and faster completion of HDD projects.”

Recycling creates savings – for example, an HDD rig with 30,000 lbs of pullback can pump 20,000 gal of fluid during the course of a project. With the MR90, that same volume could be pumped using only 1,500 gal of drilling mud, saving 18,500 gal of water and as much as $1,500 of additives.

The reduction of water volume also removes the need for multiple trucks used to haul and process water for the job site. These trucks get about 10 mpg when loaded and 15 mpg when empty – providing significant fuel cost savings.

“In addition to cost savings, contractors using the Ditch Witch MR90 receive other benefits on the job,” said Matthesen. “HDD contractors also see improvement in their rig’s uptime by removing the need to mix drilling mud, during which time the rig remains inactive.”

More than supporting profitability goals, the MR90 also benefits the environment. The most obvious environmental impact is a reduced carbon footprint. With fewer machines on the job site and less fluid to clean up, overall emissions released into the atmosphere decrease. The addition of a MR90 provides an environmentally friendly approach to remove drill fluids from HDD job sites.

Features Designed for HDD Job-Site Efficiency
Underground construction contractors benefit from the MR90 being the only single, self-contained unit that can mix and recycle mud, handle spoils and be transported full of fluid. As the most compact cleaning package on the market, the MR90 is equipped to meet the demands of any small- to medium-size drill with up to 90 gpm cleaning capability.

The MR90 includes a 340-gal first-pass mud tank, and 110-gal clean tank with 3-in. vacuum connections. An optional 300-gal fresh water tank with transfer pump provides additional drilling fluid capacity and high pressure water for cleanup.

In addition to improving efficiency while in use, the MR90 streamlines a contractor’s work flow. The recycling system has the fastest setup time on the market and can be operated from a single point, eliminating the need to move around the job site. The screens are designed to be easier to change and service than those of other mud recyclers, and the shaker frame can be hydraulically adjusted to level the screens.

For more information, please visit http://www.ditchwitch.com/trenchless/fluid-management/mr90.

The Capabilities Guide is a yearly feature in Underground Construction’s October issue. It is a special advertising section in which advertisers are given free matching space to highlight their company, services and products.

Related Articles

From Archive


{{ error }}
{{ comment.comment.Name }} • {{ comment.timeAgo }}
{{ comment.comment.Text }}