Little helper

MINPROVISE has introduced a hire option for one of its products with the hope of extending its popularity even further.
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Minprovise's Dugless at work for Port Waratah Coal Services.

Staff Reporter

Published in the August 2014 Australia’s Mining Monthly

A popular minesite cleaning solution is now available for wet or dry hire.

The Dugless 900 spillage cleaning unit, also known as Little Duggie, is specifically designed to safely remove material spillage from underneath operating conveyor systems.

Manufacturer Minprovise said that for many companies, large clean-ups occurred too infrequently to justify the purchase of a Dugless 900 and it was hoped the hire service would make Little Duggie more accessible.

At only 560mm high, Little Duggie is a rugged, unmanned, remote-controlled digging and cleaning unit capable of safely manoeuvring under conveyors and other inaccessible places to remove spillage and blockages, without any risk to workers or equipment.

Minprovise managing director Graham Townsend said he believed Little Duggie held a bright future in the market.

“We always thought it would find good acceptance but the rapidity of the mining market’s interest and enthusiasm has really surprised us,” Townsend said.

“Efficiency and safety were the two main driving parameters when we started building and testing prototypes a few years back.

“With the new option of wet or dry hire now available, there should be more attraction to those operators whose conveyor and site maintenance programs can’t really justify the capital outlay of purchasing a brand new machine.”

Little Duggie was specifically designed in Western Australia for safe and efficient clean-up of spillage from conveyor belts.

However, since its first work applications, other purposes have also been found, such as cleaning dangerous areas of minerals processing plants, while very hot and cold temperature situations, or enclosed tanks, pipes, drains and culverts have also benefited from its use.

One interesting case study that demonstrates the efficiency of the machine occurred at an iron ore mine in the Pilbara, where just one man operating the remote-controlled unit was able to reclaim 300 tonnes of iron ore spillage from under the conveying system at the stockpile in only 12 hours, equating to a five-day payback period in productivity.

The Dugless 900 is available for both dry and wet hire service, with wet hire including a trained operator and transport to and from site. The length and dates of the hiring period are flexible.

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