Gearing Up for Increased Exploration: Di-Corp Launches Expanded Drill Rod Production
Despite recent headwinds in mineral commodity markets, many forecasters of future energy and mining activity still see the global push toward electrification as being a key driver of future demand and commodity prices for minerals like copper, cobalt, nickel, lithium, manganese, rare earth elements, and others.
Certainly, geo-political influences may be influencing market prices as well as short-term exploration and development decisions in some jurisdictions. Overall, however, the long-range outlook is for continued growth in mineral exploration worldwide, and Di-Corp has been gearing up production, engineering, and technical support to be sure they’re well positioned to assist their growing global customer network of drilling contractors and mining companies.
To ensure drillers are tooled up and ready for increased activity, Di-Corp has also been tooling up.
Over the past year, Di-Corp has completed a major expansion and automation project at its North Bay, Ontario, drill rod production plant. The expansion significantly increases Di-Corp’s drill rod heat treating and machining capacity to meet growing demand. The re-tooling work includes an additional heat treat cell, an extra machining cell with two CNC lathes, as well as state-of-the-art fully automated material handlers, cooling, and packaging equipment.
“Di-Corp’s tubing products have been gaining a global reputation for superior drill string life under all conditions. In particular, we’ve been getting a lot of industry feedback that Drillers Edge rods are the preferred choice and deliver much more resilient performance under deep and technically challenging drilling conditions,” said Ryan Boesche, Regional Sales Manager for Mining & Drilling Products in Ontario and Quebec. “This, along with the opening of an office in Ghana, West Africa, and growing demand in Australasia and other regions, has meant that many times over the past year or two our rod plant has been in a sold-out position.”
Di-Corp’s increased drill rod production capacity came online in late July. As the system ramps up to full output, Di-Corp will be able to start addressing the pent-up demand for its highly reliable Drillers Edge drill rods. In the meantime, the popularity of Di-Corp’s rods and a backlog of orders means that the plant’s newly added production capacity has been already pre-sold well into the fall. Contact Di-Corp to get your orders into the queue.
Introducing a completely revamped Diamond Tooling line-up
In addition to tooling up for increased drill rod production, Di-Corp has been preparing to change the landscape of the diamond tooling market with the introduction of an all-new bit line-up expected soon. Chief Metallurgist Gadi Greenman, who joined the company in 2021 after leading R&D programs for a major international tooling manufacturer, has conducted a thorough review and revamp of the entire line of Drillers Edge diamond tooling.
Every existing Drillers Edge matrix has been redesigned to deliver better performance and bit life. The new line-up is in final testing and early production phases now, with new branding and technical information expected to be launched in fall 2022. As part of the revamp, Di-Corp will introduce two additional bit matrices (DE 11 and 13) designed with rugged Canadian conditions in mind. The Di-Corp bit matrix numbering system is delineated by seven rock groups which roughly correlate to the Mohs Hardness Scale of 1 through 10. This straight-forward numbering system makes it easier for drillers to select the right bit for the ground conditions in which they’re drilling. An updated bit selection chart is available for download.
“The new bit line-up brings us to 21 total matrices, including two additional bits for use in harder ground conditions,” explained Mr. Greenman. “The new Drillers Edge 11 and 13 bits are available in Regular (R), Abrasive (A), and Endurance (E) matrix formulations.
Keeping rods and bits turning smoothly
Having started out more than 60 years ago as a supplier of drilling fluids to the western Canadian petroleum sector, Di-Corp is extremely well-versed in all aspects of drilling, drilling fluids and mud systems. Drill Fluids Manager, Walker Dillabough, has designed drilling fluid (aka mud) systems for mineral exploration drilling operations across North, South, and Central America, even travelling to customers offices and drill sites to conduct mud training schools for new drillers and drill hands.
“Drilling fluids affect nearly everything on and around a drill,” says Dillabough. “From hole stabilization to lubricating and improving the wear life of the bits and drill string, investing in a little knowledge and some high-quality products can make a huge difference in the efficiency of the drill.”
In addition to sourcing, manufacturing, blending and distributing fluids and polymer products such as TurboCut, Synvis D, ProPac D, Claysperse L, Claymean, Hydravis D, and Multimix, Di-Corp’s fluids team has developed handy fluid management tools such as the Fast Track Fluids Tool for efficient fluid system planning, and the M.O.L.E. System (which stands for Mix On Location Easily) to help drilling contractors optimize their drilling fluid systems for more efficient drilling.
So, whether you’re busy drilling now or preparing to gear up for future exploration and production work, Di-Corp has been gearing up to assist you. Their philosophy of doing whatever they can to help optimize the resource industry shines through in their willingness to invest in new production capacity, new technology, and efficient, effective support for drillers working in multiple drilling disciplines across Canada.