From the magazine

Hitting the ground running

Following the purchase of a highly regarded utility equipment manufacturer by its United States-based parent company, Toro Australia entered into the horizontal directional drilling market in early-2014.

In 2012, Minnesota-headquartered Toro Company acquired Astec Underground, Inc, a manufacturer of directional drills, riding trenchers and other utility equipment. In the years following the acquisition, several Toro directional drills have now been sold into the underground market, including Australia.

Grabbing the bull by the horns

One of the first companies to take delivery of a Toro DD4045 directional drill was PDR Group from Burpengary, Queensland. The communications construction company specialises in directional drilling and telecommunications infrastructure.

PDR Drill Supervisor Shane Crawford said he was very pleased with his DD4045: “I have previously used Astec horizontal drills and with all of the improvements to the DD4045 that Toro has made, it is now a better machine than it used to be.”

The Toro DD4045 has a thrust capacity of 18,000 kg, making it suitable for most mid-range applications.

Mr Crawford said his DD4045’s first drill shot was a large rock job on the Sunshine Coast at Caloundra: a 350 mm hole down to a depth of 12 m and over 180 m in length.

“The Toro drilled through layers of hard bluestone and “÷coffee’ rock with ease. We are currently using the machine to boost our productivity as part of our work on the NBN roll-out on the Northside of Brisbane.”

Combining the flexibility of two machines into one unit, the DD4045 can be easily changed between single-stick or two-stick operation. For continuous operation through unexpected obstacles or challenges, a “÷life jacket’ unit is also provided for support if the drill encounters any issues.

“Toro has been absolutely great to deal with and has exceeded our expectations from the moment we showed interest,” said Mr Crawford.

“Their price, quality, service and expertise is beyond what we expected. We have never had support like this, and Steve Timms from Toro knows the machine inside and out and is fantastic to deal with.”

To help customers obtain new equipment, Toro offers Toro Finance, a program that helps spread equipment costs, maintain cash reserves and bring forward the benefits this new technology delivers.

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