April 2019 Vol. 74 No. 4


First Look: QuickConnect Universal Pull Head

What’s the crew doing while pipe is being fused in the hole? That’s exactly the question that was bugging Ellingson Companies Superintendent Clint Baumgartner back in 2012 when he worked on a number of water and wastewater jobs in the Midwest.

Now product specialist at QuickConnect LLC., Buamgartner was the only crew member certified in electrofusion, so he was often the one in the wet hole doing his best.

“Honestly, I just got sick of it,” he said. “At that time, we were spending a lot of time switching between different pull head products to install our projects—
it was a big waste of time.”

Unfortunately, when there’s a five-man crew and four members are standing there looking in the hole while one person is fusing, you’re not making a whole lot of money. And it wasn’t just the money. Being in a hole for any extended amount of time adds to the number and likelihood of things going wrong.

“I hate wasting money,” Baumgartner said, “and I like solving problems.” That mentality has fueled the innovation behind a simpler, faster and, most importantly, safer method of making connections for him and his fellow drillers.

Speed, versatility

Like its name suggests, the QuickConnect Universal Pull Head was developed to speed up every aspect of the connection process. By eliminating the need for multiple pull heads and attachments to accommodate different pipe types or trenchless applications, the product brings versatility to the job site whether it’s HDD, pipe bursting or any other method of pulling HDPE pipe.

The Pull Collar attachment creates a closed seal to keep mud and drilling fluids clear of the pipe.

The pull head has a unique clamshell design which keeps mud and drilling fluids out of pipe. It accommodates both IPS and DIPS pipe diameters and can withstand more than two-to-five times the maximum pull force, depending on product pipe. With the QuickConnect Universal Pull Head, you take off the pull head, put a split backer ring on, and start bolting up.

When thinking about the process before QuickConnect, Baumgartner shakes his head. “We used MJ caps with pull lugs welded on them. But it was hard to do because you had bolts and you’d get dirt in your bolts, and would end up having to cut them off,” he said. “It was just one of those things—‘the way it’s done’—and nobody thought to do it any differently.”

By removing the need for multiple pull heads and attachments to accommodate various pipe types or trenchless applications, the product brings versatility to the job site, whether it’s HDD, pipe bursting or any other method of pulling HDPE pipe.

QuickConnect currently has 4- to 24-inch pull heads available. Several attachments for installing different pipe materials give it additional capability and versatility. Options for multi-duct installations allow drillers to configure multiple pipes—gas, telecom, electric and sewer conduits, along with choices for fusible PVC/PVC.

The Pull Collar for Fusible PVC and PVC pipe creates a closed seal to keep drilling fluids and mud clear of the pipe. A Pipe Bursting Sleeve provides the same cost savings and other advantages in a pipe-bursting application.

The Multi-Pipe Puller attachment can pull in multiple gas, telecom or electric conduits at once, without needing additional cable pullers.

Impressive savings

Eliminating the need for fusing in the trench is something you can’t truly appreciate until you’re doing the same job on solid, level ground.

Imagine having 10, 8-inch bores or pipe-burst runs on one job, all needing MJ adapters on them. It takes two-to-three hours per hole to prep and fuse on the MJ, which includes time to cut off the pull head, lower fusing equipment in, prep for electrofusion, and cooling time.

If the cost of the crew is $500 per hour—not including fusing equipment, materials and equipment downtime costs—QuickConnect in that same scenario would save roughly 20 to 30 hours, or $10,000 to $15,000.

The response from general contractors and crews after using QuickConnect has been positive. “We did a job near Minneapolis for a general contractor we’ve done HDD work for before,” Baumgartner recalled. “Our crew pulled the QuickConnect into the hole, went down, washed it, then popped it off and handed the general contractor the split backer ring. We told him he could start bolting up and he was shocked, saying ‘It usually takes you guys another three hours before I can get in the hole!’”

Results and reactions like these are not only due to the problem-solving mentality and innovation at West Concord, Minn., QuickConnect.

“We have a saying here—‘designed by drillers, for drillers’—that really sets the tone for our business,” Baumgartner said.



QuickConnect, (833) 774-2365, pullhead.com

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