WWJ Closeup, August 2023

Published On: July 17, 2023By Categories: Drilling, WWJ Closeup

GREG HALLIDAY
Lead Trainer
North America Sales, Service, Support
Eijkelkamp North America
Wilmington, North Carolina

BEST ADVICE I EVER RECEIVED?
When getting started with sonic drilling, you don’t need to know everything. You need to know who to call when things go south—either downhole or mechanically. Be respectful to the people who trained you, so they don’t think twice about answering the phone when you call with problems.

WHAT SHOULD CONTRACTORS KNOW ABOUT THE SONIC DRILLING METHOD?
It’s one of the most versatile methods of drilling. Sonic is adaptable to do all methods except cable tool for obvious reasons. Sonic will allow you to build a cased hole in nearly anything, at nearly any angle, and provide a terrific lithological profile of the ground.

NO. 1 TIP FOR CONTRACTORS MOVING TO SONIC DRILLING?
Make sure your lead operators have a good foundation of knowledge and training. I say it takes about a year for somebody to go on their own as an operator and be able to assess downhole problems, figure out mechanical problems as they happen, and solve those problems in real time.

BIGGEST LEARNING CURVE WITH SONIC DRILLING?
You need to let go of the past and let the machine do the work how it was designed to do the work. Sometimes the harder you push, the less you get. You have to learn to drill with a gentle hand on the controls to mitigate tooling breakage and rig/head breakage.

BEST WAY TO TRAIN A NEW DRILLER?
Start from square one. The actual sonic drill training starts on day two. Day one is rig training. Give them as much pertinent information without overloading them. Try to be clear and simple with explanations and answers to questions. The easier things are to remember, the more people will retain.

HOW SHOULD CONTRACTORS BALANCE DRILLER TRAINING?
I get calls for training from time to time and this training actually takes place on jobsites. Sometimes it is worth the price to fly somebody in to train rather than having an operator trying to train while trying to make their numbers and keeping the client happy.

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