September 2015 Vol. 70 No. 9


Equipment Spotlight

Ditch Witch FXT60 Truck Vac Designed For Large Cleanups

Introducing the Ditch Witch FXT60 truck vacuum excavator, an exceptionally versatile machine with the power to perform a wide variety of cleanup tasks, even in difficult-to-access locations. The FXT60 is a powerful vacuum excavator available on a Class 6 or 7 single-axle or Class 8 tandem-axle truc..

Remote Inspection Equipment

Envirosight ROVVER X SAT, a new lateral launch crawler for the industry-leading ROVVER X line of video inspection crawlers, is ideal for locating potentially deadly gas line cross-bores, as well as performing other lateral inspections where residential access is impractical. The ROVVER X SAT crawls..

Equipment Spotlight: Piercing Tools

McLaughlin / Vermeer McLaughlin offers two options in its Vermeer Hole Hammer piercing tool line – a positive-turn reverse design and air-on quarter-turn reverse. Both lines of piercing tools offer contractors a durable, flexible design to handle a variety of utility projects. The popular positive-..

Tandem Axle FXT50

Tandem Axle FXT50 Vac Offers Versatility Dual-purpose vacuum excavators have become a common sight on horizontal directional drilling projects, but most are trailer-mounted models used to keep work sites clear of drilling fluids escaping the bore hole and to dig potholes to expose existing utilitie..

Saving Big with Micro Recyclers

“Micro” drilling fluid recycling systems are becoming a “game changer” for many horizontal directional drilling (HDD) contractors who operate small- to medium-size drill rigs. “Contractors who are using our new Ditch Witch® MR90 mud recycling system report significant savings in drilling fluid cost..

New Products

New Products

John Deere The Final Tier 4 444K, 524K and 544K utility-class wheel loaders’ PowerTech engine deliver impressive torque, 444K (124 hp), 524K (141 hp), 544K (163 hp), to help maintain good boom and bucket speed in and out of the pile for heaped loads, even in wet or hard-packed material. The K-Seri..

McLaughlin Premiers Truck-Mounted Vac-Ex

by Jeff Griffin, Senior Editor McLaughlin introduced a new truck-mounted vacuum excavator at the 2015 ICUEE show in Louisville, KY. The primary market for the machine is expected to be horizontal directional drilling (HDD) contractors for cleaning up drilling fluid and high-production potholing. T..

Thunder Products Introduces Large HDD Recycling System

Thunder Products is introducing a new Thunderstorm drilling fluid recycling system at the 2015 ICUEE show in Louisville, KY, in late September. The Thunderstorm III becomes the largest of three fluid recycling system models in the Thunder Products lineup, said company President Dan Sharpe. It is de..

Fiber Optic Reel Handling Accessories Make Cable Deployment Safe, Productive

General Machine Products Company (GMP) introduces two new reel handling accessories to its line of underground cable placement tools and equipment. These components – the Reel Buck and the Reel Caddy – are uniquely engineered to make fiber optic cable deployment safer and more productive. All of the..

New Volvo EC160E Boosts Fuel Efficiency, Power

The new EC160E crawler excavator from Volvo Construction Equipment is designed with a range of new features that boost fuel efficiency without sacrificing power. Incorporating a Volvo Tier 4 Final D4 engine, the EC160E boasts an 8 percent improvement in fuel efficiency, and 5 percent improvements in..

Caterpillar Unveils Host Of New Products In 2015

It’s been a busy year for Caterpillar. The company held two press events, one at their Athens’ fabrication and assembly facility in April and another in Tucson, AZ, in May to announce six new series to their product line up. The new products meet U.S. EPA Tier 4 Final Emission Standards and have new..

Web Exclusive

Digital Edition September 2015

CLICK HERE TO GET THE DIGITAL EDITION OF SEPTEMBER 2015 UNDERGROUND CONSTRUCTION Digital editions of Underground Construction give you the complete magazine, flip-book experience on your desktop, tablet or phone. It’s an easy and convenient way to keep up with UC’s feature stories and news every..


Directional Drilling: Reamers & Hole Openers

Century Products Century Products introduces a new line of Fly Cutters engineered for maximum performance and reliability.  Incorporating a robust square tube design to ensure longevity with superior strength, this new design features the ability to pull or push ream due to strategically placed cut..

Plastic Pipe: Fusion/Fittings

Ritmo America DELTA 500 All Terrain is a Hi-Tech welding machine for pipeline in HDPE-PP, from 6-inch IPS to 20-inch IPS, made by RITMO. It is equipped with a low-vibration diesel engine and two traction wheels. The automated Easy Life welding cycle includes a data-logging storage. DELTA 500 All Te..

UC's HDD Rig Spotlight

Ditch Witch The 268-hp JT100 is an incredibly powerful machine, but it’s not power that makes it so productive, it’s how the power is distributed. The JT100 is designed to deliver power where it’s needed to complete the bore in the most efficient manner, without compromising power to other machine ..

Underground Construction Drilling Fluids Guide 2015

Bentonite Baroid Industrial Drilling Products (281) 871-4613, Aquagel: Premium grade Wyoming sodium bentonite used as viscosifier and filtrate reducer in freshwater drilling fluids. Meets the requirements of API Specification 13A, Section 9. NSF/ANSI Standard 60 certified. Bore-..

Record Setting Houston Ship Channel Crossing

by Greg Goral, design engineer, Michels Directional Crossings; and Donald Mueller, assistant operations manager, Michels Directional Crossings The 50-mile-long Houston Ship Channel is regarded as a modern marvel of civil engineering. So is the 2.6-mile-long cable-stayed Fred Hartman Bridge that ..

Underground Companies Participate In ICUEE

ICUEE 2015, the International Construction and Utility Equipment Exposition, will be held Sept. 29-Oct. 1 at the Kentucky Exposition Center in Louisville, KY. ICUEE connects utilities and construction contractors with experts from leading manufacturers and service providers to discuss and compare t..

Landfill Gas Grows As Viable Energy Source

New Piping Materials, Procedures Enhance Viability Converting landfill gas – a natural byproduct of the decomposition of organic solid waste – isn’t new, but it is becoming more widely recognized as a viable option for producing renewable energy from waste from the huge supply of garbage in the wor..

In-Depth Auger Boring School

Industry Experts Instrumental In Planning, Teaching Unique Industry Event Final plans are nearing completion for the Trenchless Technology Center (TTC) Auger Boring School to be held Oct. 12-16 at the National Trenchless Technology Research Facility at Louisiana Tech University in Ruston, LA. The ..

CGA DIRT Report Reaffirms Importance Of Calling 811

One Phone Call Reduces Likelihood Of Incidents To Less Than One Percent Common Ground Alliance (CGA), the stakeholder-run organization dedicated to protecting underground utility lines and the people who dig near them, recently announced findings from its comprehensive 2014 Damage Information Repor..

HDD Advisor™ Effectively Matches Job Components Before The Bore

A critical element in every horizontal directional drilling (HDD) installation is correctly matching drill rig, drill pipe and downhole tools to soil conditions – failing to do so can lower productivity, cause unnecessary wear on tools and equipment and could mean the difference between success or a..


By Dennis Wierzbicki , Ditch Witch® President A critically needed part ships overnight from the factory and is delivered by the dealership to a remote job site. A focus group of equipment owners meets with a Ditch Witch® management and engineering team to share thoughts about capabilities they exp..

HDD Units Updated To Match Customer Needs

The first compact horizontal directional drilling (HDD) machine developed specifically for utility applications carried the Ditch Witch® name. The year was 1987 and this first model, introduced at an industry trade show, was mounted on skids and had to be lowered into a pit to begin drilling at the..

VAC For HDD Work Site Clean Up

“The MV800 is perfectly suited for fluid clean up on horizontal direction drilling (HDD) work sites,” said Ditch Witch Product Manager Jason Proctor. “However, its usefulness certainly isn’t limited to that – it’s good for about any in-the-field clean-up task requiring a vacuum.” However, the MV800..

SK850 Thrives On Multiple Applications

The mini skid-steer loader concept The skid-steer loader concept, introduced in the 1950s for working on farms, has evolved into a versatile, multi-purpose piece of equipment that is a common sight today on construction sites, moving and loading soil, gravel and other materials, and performing vari..


Innovative Plan, Creates Community Funding For Lateral Repair

As with most underground utilities, water service lines and sewer laterals are out of sight and out of mind – until they fail. When that happens, property owners in most parts of the country discover that the sewer lateral and water lines from the house to the mainline are their responsibility and ..

Rehab Technology New Products

Flowtite Stops Pipe Joint Leaks Flowtite Fiberglass Reinforced Pipe (FRP) takes full advantage of the specific characteristics of basic raw materials to create strong, corrosion-proof pipe and pipe components. Flowtite is lightweight, long-lasting and extremely resistant to both inner and outer cor..

Trenchless Pipe Rehab Leaders Form Alliance

HammerHead Trenchless Equipment, a Charles Machine Works company, has announced it has formed a strategic alliance with RS Lining Systems LLC, the provider of RS Technik pipe rehabilitation solutions in the Americas. This will complete the suite of nonintrusive rehabilitation solutions available ..

NASSCO Standard Bearer: Gerhard “Gerry” Muenchmeyer

EDITOR’S NOTE: In 2016, NASSCO will celebrate its 40th year of setting standards for the assessment and rehabilitation of underground infrastructure. As we look forward, we also look back to those who have made significant contributions and have impacted the continued acceptance and use of trenchles..

Rehab News for September 2015

AWWA reports water infrastructure renewal still biggest concern The Clean Water Council provided a summation of the AWWA 2015 State of the Water Industry Report quite succinctly in their online newsletter, Clean Water Weekly. The state of water and wastewater infrastructure and how to finance crit..

Regulations Governing Handling Of Asbestos Cement Pipe

by Edward Alan Ambler, P.E., LEED AP Editor’s Note: This is the first installment of a two-part series regarding the rehabilitation of asbestos cement pipe. Part two will be published in the October issue of Underground Construction. Much of the water and wastewater industry’s pipe networks are ne..


Business News: September 2015

Hyundai Hyundai Construction Equipment Americas recently announced that Corey Rogers has rejoined the company as marketing manager. In his new role, Rogers leads all brand and product marketing and communications for Hyundai’s construction equipment and forklift product lines. He is based at the co..

Vermeer D20x22 S3

The next entrant in the S3 generation of drills – the D20x22 S3 – features more power, increased speed, versatility and precise control. The D20x22 S3 makes significant gains in power and speed compared to its predecessor – the D16x20 Series II. With nearly 20,000 pounds of thrust and pullback, and ..

Washington Watch

PHMSA Sets Standards for State Excavation Policies

House members of both parties dragged the latest top Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA) official to appear before Congress to answer questions about lagging pipeline safety rule implementation. Stacy Cummings, the “Interim” Executive Director and apparently top official a..


In Memoriam

Founder Of Carylon Corporation Dies Julius L. Hemmelstein, founder and CEO of the Carylon Corporation, passed away on July 24. Hemmelstein began his venture in the water and wastewater industry in 1949 with a single pickup truck and a patented rodding machine. He opened National Power Rodding Corp..

News shorts September 2015

AEM releases new Underground Utility Awareness video “Everyone has a part to play” to help ensure underground utility safety and damage prevention. That’s the message of a new video and related online and print resource from the Association of Equipment Manufacturers (AEM). “Contractors, manufactu..


Tee up for South Texas UCTA Scholarship Golf Tournament The Underground Construction Technology Association (UCTA) is dedicated to the promotion of education as it relates to underground construction, which includes ensuring our leaders of tomorrow receive opportunities to enhance their education a..

Study finds methane emissions lower than EPA estimates

As reported by Don Santa, INGAA president and CEO, the Environmental Science & Technology journal has released a report finding that methane emissions from the natural gas transmission and storage sector are 27 percent lower than the federal government’s estimate, based on the average estimate from ..

Editor's Log

The Risk Of Narrow Vision

The sewer and water infrastructure industry has again been pushed to the rear of significance and importance by states desperate to maintain their road and bridge funding. Consequently, in the short-lived attention spans of politicians, sewer and water has shifted back to “out-of-sight, out-of-mind”..