Digging Deeper - April 2023 - Akkerman

Digging Deeper – April 2023

Akkerman Inc.

Digging Deeper – April 2023

Fort McMurray Project

Contractor’s Name: Total Trenchless Ltd.
Location: Fort McMurray, AB
Ground Conditions: Raveling Sand
Type of Installation: Guided Pipe Ramming
Material: 36-in x 0.625-wall x 40-ft long SC
Footage Installation: 345-lf
Equipment: Akkerman 240A GBM, P100D Power Pack, Guidance System, Akkerman lube system, Weld-On Ramming Head

This critical crossing took place under the important and busy HWY 63 near Fort McMurray, AB. Due to the raveling sand ground conditions, Total Trenchless Ltd. (step 1) established exact line and grade with their Akkerman 240A GBM system, (step 2) installed the 36-in steel casing directly behind the pilot tubes by pipe ramming with a TT Hammer, and then (step 3) cleaned the casing out with their MBM auger bore machine. This method allowed Total Trenchless to install the 36-in steel casing online and grade while maintaining positive face pressure.

Laser Standing

An essential component of the Tunnel Boring System, the laser stand is positioned over the rails of the skid, behind the pump unit on TBM projects. It serves to correctly house, protect, and position the pipe laser for boring accuracy. With the pipe laser protected from movement in the cabinet, its beam shines through the pump unit laser notch down the center line of the tunnel to a fixed point on the TBM cutter head. Between haul unit cycles, the operator lowers the conveyor to check alignment.

Our first Laser Stand was manufactured in 1983, for our 1250 and later 5000 Series Tunnel Boring Systems. We made 67 of this model. The original laser stand box was sized to house any pipe laser and a car battery for power, with a sliding tube weldment, a lockable cabinet, and support tubes legs and stakes that the crew could pound into the ground with a sledgehammer.

In 2012, we updated our 5000 Series II Pump Unit and took the opportunity to make a few minor changes to the Laser Stand. This design was like the original using the same support tubes and stakes concept, but reducing the dimensions of the laser box to house only the self-powered laser, eliminating some bolts, and moving the lift eyes out closer to the support tube legs. We manufactured 10 of these laser stand assemblies.

In 2022, a new laser stand was conceived and manufactured with the goals of improved rigidity, ease in fabrication, and ability to top-mount the GEO VL80 Automatic Drifting Laser. This design eliminates the support tubes and stakes therefore increasing the limited real estate in the shaft. Instead, they were replaced with four rugged legs that are inserted into the corners of the assembly base. The legs are intended to be pounded in place using an excavator bucket and extracted by the excavator using a chain that loops through the four lift eyes. The laser stand eliminates many bolts and bolt plates for a more straightforward, simplistic design. Other design changes include a basic laser cabinet since modern pipe lasers are typically removed from the project site, making a lockable cabinet unnecessary. Our prototype was included in the Larrett, Inc. order.

Currently, both the F21675F and F61087F designs are active. We will sell our existing inventory and then offer the new model as a standard offering.

Staff Highlight

Jon Valin began employment as a territory sales manager on January 13, 2020 and is remotely stationed in Eagle, WI. Jon was nominated for being technical, resourceful, a forward thinker, and bringing in new customers.

Nominated because:

“Jon has been very active in seeking and securing new customers. He has excelled at educating new clients and is a great proponent of our products.”

“Jon is bringing in new customers, is hard working and determined and cares for our customers’ needs.”

“Jon has been working hard on trying to learn the inner workings of Akkerman so he can provide the most up to date information to our customers. Jon always takes a proactive approach on his customers’ projects.”

Admirable Qualities:

  • Determination
  • Understanding
  • Resourceful
  • Observant
  • Technical
  • Forward Thinker
  • Outgoing

Celebrating 50 Years

2023 marks 50 years in business for Akkerman! Enjoy a highlight of our work over the years!