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Discovering the Value of Specialized Drilling Cost Vs. Price

By February 23, 2023No Comments

Drilling, by nature, has many costs associated with it. Partnering with a quality contractor supports miners and explorers as they discover the true value of specialized drilling cost versus price.

Mining.com published an article describing how important quality mineral exploration is to the current mining upcycle. Major Drilling champions quality as one of its core values that miners and exploration companies can expect.

The article explains the benefits of discovering specialized drilling cost versus price.

Price per meter, with a low bottom line, is a typical format used to estimate drilling projects. However, with that model, overall amounts can add up quickly when considering costs like supporting a drilling camp, salaries and expenses of geologists, geological and geophysical costs. Other hidden fees can easily accrue.

Major Drilling teams drill from the remote platform at the Schaft Creek 5,000-meter heli-supported drilling project operated by Teck Resources in northwestern British Columbia, Canada. Photo taken August 2022.

In the article, a scenario outlines why price versus cost is a hot topic in contract drilling. Suppose a minor mechanical problem stops drilling and requires a spare part. A low-price drilling team will likely stop work to source spare parts. In contrast, Major Drilling has strong financial resources and extensive parts

inventory to keep drilling going and limit work stoppages. Project costs will move ahead steadily and as expected at the quoted rate.

The article focuses on three key questions a mining or exploration company can ask to help it identify a quality drilling contractor:
  • Does the company have a diverse fleet of specialized equipment?
  • Are expert personnel available to both operate and maintain drill equipment with readily available parts?
  • Are continual innovation and safety improvements a priority to successfully navigate unique challenges at each project?

Major Drilling always quotes a clear, upfront price per meter with these added values:

  1. Industry knowledge and expertise
  2. Commitment to safety
  3. An innovative approach
  4. A robust network of inventory including supply of critical spare parts
  5. A superior hole completion rate
  6. Expert crews who are committed to their shifts and clients’ overall programs
  7. All which adds to better productivity (more meters per shift)

Major Drilling President and CEO, Denis Larocque, is quoted. He explains how specialized drilling includes more than projects completed by a specific drill. It also includes work that requires drilling teams to meet the rigorous customer standards of customers such as technical capabilities, operational and safety standards and other related factors. For more than 40 years, Major Drilling has become expert in delivering this service.

“Specialized work is the majority of what we do,” he said.

It’s a boon to companies seeking specialize drilling services that Major Drilling has strategically diversified its services, helping strengthen its fleet offerings both on the surface and underground. “I’m proud to say that we now offer one of the most modern underground fleets in the industry,” Larocque said.

Having dialed up its workforce which stands at more than 3,800 employees, Larocque also points out the expertise that comes with choosing a quality specialized drilling contractor.

Underground drills are an essential part of the Major Drilling fleet. From left to right: Smart 8 setup for PQ size holes with rod handling capabilities; Major U600 mobile carrier rig with reduced setup times; and LM110 setup for PQ size holes, rod handling and other innovative features.

“Our customers have access to specialized drilling experts who can help them achieve their project goals,” Larocque said. He tells of Canadian teams who drilled the deepest diamond hole in the nation at 3,467 meters. In Mongolia, teams undertook some extremely deep 2,000-plus-meter PQ3 holes. Others drilled a record 1,985-meter NQ hole in Mexico. “We have an extremely high hole completion rate, and a great part of that can be attributed to our expertise.”

Major Drilling is known across the globe for completing record depth holes. At Oyu Tolgoi’s copper project in Mongolia (left) teams celebrate a 2,000-plus-meter PQ3 drilling record. Canadian teams (center) drilled the 3,467-meter Discovery 1 drill hole, which stands as the longest diamond drill hole in Canada at Osisko Mining’s Windfall Project site in Québec. In Mexico, teams drilled the country’s deepest NQ diameter hole (right) at just over 1,985 meters at the Bismark Mine in Chihuahua.

Furthering the case for quality specialized drilling, the article describes Major Drilling’s focus on critical risk management, eliminating hazards, world-class safety programs, and a proven track record.. A miner and/or exploration company seeking a quality specialized drilling contractor can have confidence in partnering with a company that puts best practices like these into action.

“When we provide all the right tools for our drillers, everyone wins,” Larocque said.

Read the full article, “Discovering the Value of Specialized Drilling Cost Vs. Price” at Mining.com here.