4 Things to Consider when Selecting the Compressor to Run Your Down The Hole Hammer

1) Hammer Size and Specs

The below specifications outline the requirements for the most common Down the Hole hammer options offered at WORD Rock Drills. Each of these hammers require a 150 PSI minimum for optimum output. Increasing the CFM and corresponding PSI will increase the capacity of your hammer for the best drilling capabilities.

*Above reference chart specific to DK hammers purchased through WORD Rock Drills. Please verify the PSI and CFM requirements of your hammer make/model before moving forward with a compressor rental or purchase.

2) Production Requirements

Compressor size has a significant impact on the efficiency of your Down The Hole hammer. Finding a balance between efficiency and compressor size can be a thin line and depends heavily on the priorities of the project. For example, if time and speed are a top concern, then investing in a stronger compressor might cost more to run but it will help you move through holes quicker. Alternatively, if you are looking for a more budget-friendly solution, smaller compressors are less expensive to rent or own and do not require as much fuel. Therefore, you might choose to run the minimum size compressor for your hammer in order to save on cost. In most cases, increasing the size of your compressor to achieve the higher end of the PSI range for the hammer can lead to a 40% or more increase in drilling capacity.

3) Altitude

A key variable in the selection of a compressor to run the hammer on your machine is the altitude of your project site. Due to the thinner air at higher altitudes, compressor productivity and capacity can be impacted. This is important to consider because lower compressor output will change the behavior of your Down The Hole hammer and could cause the hammer to cease function altogether. A good rule of thumb to prevent this variable from causing problems on your job site is to always check the compressor specs at altitudes over 8,000ft. The specs for the compressor should outline functioning PSI at various altitudes and help you to determine if the PSI is adequate for the hammer you are running.

4) Availability

It is very common for customers to rent their compressors. Considering the price of compressors, maintenance, and transportation, rental just makes more sense than owning the machine outright. However, renting adds another layer of complexity when it comes to determining what compressor to acquire from one job site to the next and the availability of the compressor you need. When it comes down to it, the main consideration for any compressor should be around the PSI output and the specs of the hammer.

7 Things You Want to Have On-Hand when Hooking Up Your WORD Drilling Attachment

1) Wrenches

All WORD Drilling Attachments are tested before shipment and methodically checked to ensure all connections and fittings are secure, minimizing the potential for hydraulic leaks. However, during transportation it is not uncommon for things to shift and cause small hydraulic leaks when you first attach the machine. Keep the following list of wrenches on hand to quickly address any loose fittings:

  • 3/4 Wrench
  • 7/8 Wrench
  • 1 1/4 Wrench
  • 11/16 Wrench
  • Variety of Pipe Wrench Sizes

2) High Temp Grease

Your WORD Drilling machine has a variety of grease points that need attention before each use to best maintain the functionality of the drill. Use high temp grease before each shift that your drill is in use!

Grease Point Locations Include:

  • Front Sprocket
  • Doofor Gearbox
  • Super Swivel on Rineer Hydraulic Motor

3) Matching Quick Connects

WORD Drilling Attachments use quick connects to attach to your existing skid steer or excavator. The WORD Skid Steer unit comes with standard 1/2 and 3/4 connections. If the connections on your Skid Steer machine are different from the standard provided, it will be important for you to maintine the necessary connections before the day of installation. Having extra connection on hand will allow you to connect the machine easily once it arrives on site.

4) Electrical Connection

If you have a radio remote control with your WORD Drill then you will need to identify a source of power to charge the remote control unit. You will need to charge your radio remote periodically throughout use to maintain connection with the receiver. This source of power can be a 12 volt (cigarette lighter) plug-in or a standard US Type A or B 120 volt outlet. The Radio Control Kit you receive with your machine includes components for both types of charging ports. And, don’t worry! If your original charging cables are lost or damages, we keep replacements in-stock and ready to ship!

5) Rock Drill Oil

Rock Drill oil is an essential item for maintaining the productivity of your machine. We recommend a biodegradable rock drill oil for its environmentally friendly characteristics. Using biodegradable rock drill oil over regular rock drill oil will minimize the amount of harsh chemicals contaminating your job site.

6) Drip Tray

If your job site has particular environmental requirements, you will want to have a drip tray handy whenever you are connecting or disconnection your WORD Attachment. As a hydraulically powered machine, hydraulic oil can leak or spill whenever the connection are being adjusted. Having a drip tray on hand will help minimize the potential for hydraulic oil to cause a mess on your job site.  

7) Feed Rail Wearpads and Spacers

Your WORD Attachment is equipped with a variety of wearpads and spacers. These wearpads and spacers are strategically placed along the machine where constant movement create large amounts of friction. In placing these wearpads and spacers along the drill assembly, they protect key components of the machine that are costly to repair. Keeping additional wearpads and spacer on hand will ensure that these items are replaced promptly when they begin to show wear. Allowing you to avoid more costly repairs in the future.

4 Things for Construction Companies to Consider as the U.S. Makes its Way through the Re-Opening Phases

1. What will the New Normal Look Like

Like any major event, the “normal” we enter into as the U.S. moves through the re-opening phases will not be the same “normal” that we all knew before quarantine began a few months ago. The immense social and economic impact of the “stay-at-home” orders have undoubtedly triggered lasting impacts not only to the U.S. economy but the general state of mental health for U.S. citizens. Although the construction industry was deemed “essential” by many states, we all still felt the strain.

So, what will the new normal look like? Maybe the new normal will require consumers to wear their face masks when in public. Maybe the new normal will require us to find creative ways to maintain the 6 feet apart rule while on a job-site. Maybe the new normal will mean that many of our office staff will continue to work at home. No one really knows. We know that things are going to change, in one way or another, but we are all capable of continuing forward into the new normal and adapting.

2. Prioritize Health

As we return to work it is still important to maintain the safety guideline set by the CDC to help minimize potential exposure. Listed below are some of the CDC recommendations for construction workers:

  • Notify your supervisor and stay at home if you or anyone in your household is presenting symptoms.
  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched surfaces such as shared tools, machines, vehicles and other equipment, handrails, ladders, doorknobs, and portable toilets. Clean and disinfect frequently touched surfaces periodically throughout the shift but also:
    • At the beginning and end of every shift
    • After anyone uses your vehicle, tools, or workstation
  • Limit Tool Sharing if Possible
  • Wear cloth face coverings in public settings where other social distancing measures are difficult to maintain, especially in areas where there is significant community-based transmission of COVID-19.

Read more of the CDC’s recommendations for construction workers HERE.

Additionally, OSHA has released recommendations for the construction industry to minimize worker exposure to COVID-19. Listed below are a few of the recommended actions:

  • Encourage respiratory etiquette, including covering coughs and sneezes.
  • Promote personal hygiene. If workers do not have immediate access to soap and water for hand washing, provide alcohol-based hand rubs containing at least 60 percent alcohol.
  • Keep in-person meetings (including toolbox talks and safety meetings) as short as possible, limit the number of workers in attendance, and use social distancing practices.
  • Clean and disinfect portable job-site toilets regularly. Hand sanitizer dispensers should be filled regularly. Frequently-touched items (i.e., door pulls and toilet seats) should be disinfected.

The official OSHA document with further recommendations can be found HERE.

3. What’s the Budget?

With all of the postponed work and changes due to the COVID-19 shutdown, for many construction jobs the timeline and budget has changed. On top of changes to the parameters of the job, many vendors have been forces to adjust prices and production times in order to stay a-float as their margins were impacted over the last few months. As we get back up and running it’s important to communicate with your vendors if your timeline has changed so they can work the changes into any new production schedules. It is also important to reach out to make sure the funds you have budgeted for your project are still accurate post-COVID.  

4. Check on Your Equipment

Before you get back to work it is important to check over your equipment and perform any maintenance. If your equipment has been sitting you may have a list of things that need to be done to get it back up and running well. WORD Rock Drills, for example, should be routinely greased and checked for wear in areas that see a lot of movement. Greasing the drill and checking the common wear parts ensures that your drill is at top performance when you start working. Looking for more drill maintenance tips? Click HERE




7 Ways to Maintain your Drilling Equipment Between Jobs

1. Grease

Your drill has many grease points that prevent early wear and allow your machine to run smoothly. Regular greasing is important to maintain the machine during use. Sometimes, when your drill is doing work on the job site, common grease points are overlooked during daily maintenance. Down-time on the job site provides a great opportunity to look over your machine closely and make sure everything is well greased.

2. Set Chain Tightness

The feed rail chain on your WORD Rock Drill can become loose periodically. The natural movement of the machine during drilling leads to wear within the primary sprocket of the feed rail chain. This sprocket contains a 1/16th brass bushing which is often the cause of a loose chain. When testing your chain tightness first check to make sure the brass ring within the sprocket is in place and not showing signs of wear. You can then proceed to tighten the chain as usual. Test the tension by moving the drifter all the way forward and checking the rigidity at the middle of the chain.

3. Check Your Lubricator

During your down time it is important to make sure your line oiler is refilled with rock drill oil. When drilling, the oil level in your line oiler should be checked twice a day. When checking your line oiler between jobs, perform the white paper towel test to make sure that oil is making its way through the unit.

Order a new Line Oiler Here

4. Clean Quick Connects

No job site is clean, so it is almost impossible to prevent your quick connects from getting dirty even when they are hooked up. Although they pretty much stay dirty, it’s important to clean the quick connects when re-attaching them to your machine. With the combination of hydraulic oil and dirt, they can get pretty grimy between uses and you don’t want that dirt to make its way into your hydraulic line.

5. Check Extension Clamp Plates

The extension clamp plates are protective plates located on your feed rail. These plates serve as a buffer between the steel of your feed rail and the steel of your feed rail extension piece. The use of these plates prevents the two sections of feed rail steel from grinding together during movement. As the clamp plates wear down, you will notice that the feed rail extension will jostle more when being extended and moved.

Click here to order Clamp Plates

6. Check Nylatron Wearpads

Located on the mounting assembly for your Word Rock Drills motor, the Nylatron Shims on your rock drill allow your motor to move smoothly along your feed rail. Over time, these Nylatron Wearpads become thin due to the constant movement. Regularly replacing these wearpads is essential for maintaining the longevity of your machine.

Click here to order Nilatron Wearpads

7. Look for Wear on your Centralizer Gates

As a key component in the movement of the drill, your centralizer gates wear down throughout a job. Check your centralizer gates between jobs and replace them when they start to wear down to keep your machine in peak condition.

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