When it comes to the majority of underground drilling operations, it is common practice to use water injection for dust suppression during the drilling process.

Normally, this water is quite corrosive to core parts of the drill string. Not only does it negatively affect the service life of hammer components, it also reduces rate of penetration (ROP) – directly impacting productivity.


However, Mincon Group’s Water Drill Pipes System (WDPS) offers an innovative solution. Developed by the very experienced team at Viqing in Sunne, Sweden, the pipes that use WDPS feature a sealed inner tube for water injection, rather than having it pass through the hammer.

Instead, a special adapter is fitted above the hammer, spraying water directly into the flushed cuttings to contain dust levels.

Along with providing effective dust suppression, the WDPS approach also has other advantages. It eliminates the need for additional volumes of, or more expensive lubricants, as water does not pass through the hammer itself. In turn, it avoids oil contamination and future corrosion in the hammer. Finally, it eliminates the detrimental effect of water injection to the hammer operating cycle. As a result, hammer efficiency is improved – resulting in a higher ROP.

This was recently successfully proven at the Punta del Cobre mine in Chile, as well as an additional test site at the Carola copper mine. After extensive drilling at production sites, WDPS achieved excellent results that benefited operations at both mines.

In these implementations WDPS resulted in hammer service life increasing up to 50% and ROP growing up to 25%. This case study showcases the advantages of the latest technologies used in Mincon Group’s Viqing drill pipes. To find out if WDPS can be used in your drilling operations, contact your country’s Mincon representative for a consultation.

mad2run mincon 1You might ask why 36 Madsters would want to run 24 hours around the clock from Johannesburg to Cape Town for 7 consecutive days with very little sleep, well it was done to raise funds for the MAD Leadership Foundation. The Foundation is an organisation that “want to make a difference by providing a scholarship program to educate, foster leadership and provide life skills development” to under privileged individuals who will become “role models who inspire others” .

The target was to raise R 1.5m through corporate sponsorships and through the individual Madsters themselves by being sponsored a rate per km that they ran.

With the ever-changing landscape facing businesses in South Africa in terms of gaining the most advantage out of their BBBEE (Broad Based Black Economic Empowerment) rating, Mincon had to look at options available to them in support of maximising their Socio-Economic Development spend, hence we got on board in being a day sponsor, our day being Wednesday 28 March from Fraserburg to Sutherland in the remote area of the Northern Cape.

We kitted out the Madsters with Mincon vests, hats and water bottles. I was very fortunate to travel down to Sutherland and meet up with the Madsters on the dusty dirt road some 80 km’s from Sutherland for the 16H00 shift change, there were 3 teams of 12 runners in each team who would run for 8 hours before handing over to the next team and so on – I ran the first 5 km’s with the new shift, and what an experience it turned out to be The Madsters were so thankful and complimentary about the Mincon sponsorship and my participation on the day, that it gave me a deep-felt respect and admiration for what the Madsters were achieving and going through (at this stage there were a number of varying degrees of injuries) which made me very proud of being part of Mincon and for our involvement in the project.

The Madsters started in the rain at 07H30 on Friday 23 March from Nelson Mandela Square Johannesburg and finished in the rain at 11H00 on Friday 30 March at the Cullinan Hotel in Cape Town.

Thank you Mincon for your sponsorship Neill Reynolds Finance Manager – Mincon SA

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Mincon recently exhibited at the Big 5 Trade Show in Dubai. Mincon were represented by Khalid Shafiq Rao, Jukka Ahonen and Gerry O Connor. Mincon had several visitors from the following markets,

Mincon South Africa in action at Gamsberg mine

Elf Drilling who are doing Grade Control at the Vadanta Zinc Mine in Aggenys in the Northern Cape using Mincon MR120 hammers and bits as well as Driconeq RC Remet drill pipe have just taken ownership of a Progradex EL 850 sampling system, also supplied by Mincon. Brian Coetzee and Pieter Brecher from Mincon, joined up with Toby Day, the designer and MD of Progradex from the UK. To commission the rig. Although Progradex have supplied a few other systems into South Africa, this is a first for Mincon.

On 19th March 2018, the Group completed the acquisition of Driconeq AB, the holding company for the Driconeq Group of companies.

Driconeq is a leading global supplier of high quality drill pipes and accessories for down-the-hole (DTH), rotary and reverse-circulation applications with factories in Sunne, Sweden, Johannesburg, South Africa and Perth Australia. An integral part of the group is the heat treatment business, HARDtekno, located in Kristinehamn in Sweden.

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As part of Mincon’s strategy for the North American Market the group has expanded its sales footprint by adding a full-service stocking location in Reno Nevada. Located in the heart of the Southwestern USA mining segment this new location will facilitate the further development of Mincon business in this critical market segment.

mincon australia facility

Mincon Australia breaking conformity and running in its own lane - While a number of the major Drilling Consumable Manufacturers are busy outsourcing operations overseas in belief its not viable to manufacture in Australia, Mincon Australia are doing the opposite. They have invested heavily in local facilities to ensure increased production capacity, service capability and development opportunity for our Australian customers. Featured in Perth’s major newspaper The West Australian, the article talks of Mincon’s belief in servicing the client locally, offering an experience that is unmatched in Australia. Automation and new technologies Mincon have invested in make labour rates void as unmanned machinery produces product 24/7 from two facilities in Western Australia. Service centres are set up in all major mining regions in Australia to ensure service is always at the top of our priority. Mincon Australia has re-birthed its Australian operation in 2017 with outstanding results and has no plan on slowing down.

drilling above the arcticAbout four hundred kilometres north from Arctic Circle lies one of the most fascinating sceneries of Finland, Arctic lake of Kilpisjärvi and its holy mountain of Saana.On Western shores of the lake Kilpisjärvi lies a Tripoint, the Three Country Cairn, land-mark between northmost Sweden, Norway and Finland while European Route E8 passes the lake using the eastern side lower altitude passage on its way to Tromsa, Norway. E8 is an important part of goods transport route in Northern Europe and a part of Nordic Way, a new Intelligent Transport System test in arctic conditions called Aurora. Aurora enables testing connected and automated driving as well as intelligent infrastructure asset management tests and trials on cross-border corridor E8. The ecosystem facilitates testing in all conditions. A part of E8 modernization and road upgrade project is the im-provement of the bridges in Kilpisjärvi region. A Keller company, Sotkamon Porapaalu, carried out all bridge foundation work by drill-ing 8 pieces of 406 mm casing and 14 pieces of 813 mm casing with average depth of 18 meters having 4 meters rock sockets in solid granite. Drilling was performed during the winter months offering very little ambient light . During the drilling period, in the middle of January, there was only 1-2 hours of daylight temperature being -10 - -30 degrees C°.