New water-house connection with GRUNDOPIT in record time

19.05.20 - Install a new water pipe in rough terrains without causing any damages, or any major preparation and restoration work, within a short time? With conventional methods this is almost unthinkable, but not if the Mini-HDD bore rig GRUNDOPIT PS60 from TRACTO-TECHNIK is applied: Within only 1,5 days the contractor Pöllmann installed a new 46 m length water supply pipe from the road, through a steep slope, directly into the house of his customer in the health resort of Cochem.
The catalyst for a new water pipe installation into the house was what had been the nightmare of every homeowner. The previous, old galvanised water pipe, which had previously supplied the house on the hillside, was so badly damaged, water was already leaking into the cellar. The owner was therefore, first of all forced to shut down the old pipe and then have an overhead emergency pipe installed, in order to keep the water running from the road to the house until the pipe could be renewed by Pöllmann. Oliver Pöllmann GmbH is a second-generation, family-run construction company, who have been installing pipes since 2006 and involved with trenchless bore methods and installation technologies since 2013. They have also continued to become specialists for these types of challenging tasks. “The jobsites must be challenging, but also enjoyable. The most interesting jobsites are those involving the undercrossing of either roads, a house or rivers”, according to Managing Director Oliver Pöllmann, who relies on the competence of the NODIG supplier TRACTO-TECHNIK. Here you always have a competent contact person for technical queries, so that you, as a contractor, can always continue developing with this technology.


PE ND 50 protection pipes, as well as PE ND 40 water pipes, were installed to create the new water pipeline. From a small pit in the road 46 m away, the GRUNDOPIT with the "Hard Drill Head" HDH worked its way through the underground to the target pit. The subsoil was characterised by a very inhomogeneous composition: rock, lava and clay layers often alternated abruptly. The pilot bore for the house connection, with a diameter of 88 mm, initially ran below staircases, crossed beneath the hallway, its terrace, a garden bed, part of the lawn and various paths, before the bore head finally reached the end position inside the target pit. The bore was carried out in depths between 1,0 and 3,5 m and showed inclinations of up to 46%. The new pipeline was precisely calibrated using GPS. During the reaming process, a mixing ratio for the drilling fluid of 15 kg to 1000 l water was applied, as Oliver Pöllmann explained.


The whole path of the bore head was tracked with the Digitrak Falcon F2 detection system. The surface of the property remained unscathed, with the exception of a couple of indication markings, above the bore path. With the compact and powerful GRUNDOPIT, the installation work was literally carried out in the most minimally invasive way, which meant that the surface in the surrounding area was not affected at all – completely different from what happens when conventional civil engineering methods are applied by opening an excavation pit. For this reason, the trenchless installation method was the only possible way to complete a new pipe installation here at all. This way, all necessary preparations including the pilot bore, were already completed by the end of the first day.

For this construction project, the excavation of a conventional excavation pit would have been completely out of the question, due to the nature of the built-up surface with green areas and attachments, as well as the simultaneously existing gradient, as complex interventions with excavation pits on the premises and inside the buildings would have been necessary. On the other hand, with the mini HDD system, work was carried out very quickly, meaning all preparations and the entire pilot bore along the new pipeline route were already completed at the end of the first day. Pöllmann has owned the GRUNDOPIT PS60 for two years and can already look back on many positive experiences with this machine. “With the experience from various jobsites and the technical capabilities of the bore rig you firstly approach the local conditions at each individual jobsite. With the flexible, compact bore rigs, you can ideally adapt to any given requirements on the premises.”

On the morning of the second day in Cochem the bore head was exchanged against a Backreamer with a diameter of 105 mm and connected to the protection pipe, so that the bore hole expansion and pipe installation could be carried out simultaneously. After the Backreamer, together with the protection pipe arrived back in the starting pit, the ND 40 water pipe was pushed in from the top into the protection pipe. Afterwards the drill rods, each of 75 cm length, were retrieved and stowed away, together with the compact bore rig. The whole task was completed within only 1,5 days and the pipe installation itself only took about 2 hours.

GRUNDOPIT perfectly suitable 

After completion of the task, constructor Oliver Pöllmann summed it up like this: “This extremely compact HDD bore rig mastered the given task effortlessly and is ideally suited for these types of construction projects, where a range of up to 100 metres is required.”
Among the many advantages of the GRUNDOPIT PS60 are its compact dimensions, with a simultaneous high performance: It fits into a very small starting pit, is easy to transport, or can be used to start a bore directly from a cellar. Nevertheless, it provides a high thrust, which means drill rods with an effective length of 75 cm can be applied. With its high torque of 1.500 Nm, a maximal rotational speed of 150 RPM, as well as 60.000 N thrust- and pulling force, the compact Mini-Rig works very successfully, even in difficult underground conditions.
All these characteristics ensure that the Mini-HDD Bore rig is the economical alternative to conventional pipe installations, especially for the installation of all types of house connections, but also for crossing beneath roads, rivers and streams up to 100 m lengths. With its clearly arranged control panel, the fully automatic bore mode and the drill rod handling system, it makes work easier for the user and guarantees target-precise bores.

Advantages of GRUNDOPIT PS60 for all concerned

The application of the trenchless technology in general and especially the compact Mini-HDD rig GRUNDOPIT PS60 make sense, where little space is available for the installation of service lines, or where traffic and other “obstacles” have to be avoided. In principle, planners and local authorities can expect lower costs for pipe installations, as the application of the compact bore rig is very economical. Surfaces and resources are protected, as only small excavation pits with dimensions of only 1.400 x 1.100 x 1.500 (L x W x H) are required for this bore rig. This and the overall shorter construction time have a very clear effect on the level and predictability of the expected costs.
Suppliers have significantly less effort in planning and coordination, as no excavation pits are necessary on private properties. Building contractors benefit, among other things, from the ability to plan, due to short construction and set-up times, fast execution and the combined adherence to deadlines towards their customers. There are also lower demands on the end customer, local residents and the business community involved with the jobsite than in previous construction projects, due to the short duration of the jobsites and the minimal disruption to traffic and reduced environmental damage caused by the construction work.



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