Modern Mining February 2019


Dragline boom repaired in record time

Genrec Engineering (Genrec) reports it has again demonstrated the depth and extent of its skills and capabilities in steel fabrication and engineering by successfully repairing a damaged dragline excavator boom in record time for a South African coal mine. Importantly, this project also marks yet another important milestone in the compa- ny’s drive to diversify into specialist and niche markets since it was acquired by the Southern Palace Group (SPG) in 2016. Genrec successfully completed this tech- nically complex and demanding project in as little as 10 weeks to assist a leading col- liery in the Mpumalanga coalfields mitigate downtime. The company’s involvement commenced with a full-scale investigation into the dam- aged boom structure at the mine site in August 2017. Dr Danie Burger, Managing Director of CMTI Consulting, was part of the team that participated in the investigation with various insurance companies. Burger says that a decision to award the contract to repair the boom to Genrec was based on the company’s long legacy in the South African and international steel engi- neering and fabrication industry. “There is no other steel fabricator and engi- neering company in South Africa with the necessary infrastructure, as well as capacities and technical competence to take on such a complex project,” he notes. “Had the boom been sent to the original equipment manufac- turer (OEM)’s premises in Australia for repairs, it would have taken up to four times longer to return the dragline excavator back to service with obvious negative ramifications on the mine’s production.” Representatives of the mine’s management team visited the Genrec factory in Wadeville, Gauteng, a week ahead of the commencement of the repairs. Mark Prince, Divisional Director of Genrec, says they were very impressed with the state- of-the-art facility and, just as importantly, the skills and experience of the Genrec manage- ment and engineering team. The boom comprises a 37-ton mid-section, which is 30 m in length and 13 m in width, and a 43-ton, 32-m long and 13-m wide front portion; both have a transportation height of 3,5 m. It was completely remodelled by Genrec Engineering’s design team with assistance

from CMTI Shared Services in a process that took about a week-and-a-half to complete. The original drawings of the Bucyrus drag- line excavator were more than 30 years old and updated versions were later received from Caterpillar. They were used to generate models to develop the manufacturing drawings and upgrades to the boom, in addition to the manufacturing sequence, work procedures and transport sections. The project also involved careful and com- plex logistical planning, considering that Genrec had to locate and source up to 34 tons of chord material from various Australian mines to supplement insufficient supplies of the required specification. As part of the project, Genrec was also tasked with upgrading the dragline excava- tor’s boom-point box. The components were transported to the mine site by Mammoet using a 13-wheel Nicolas trailer and resting on 11-ton cradles that were specially designed and manufac- tured by Genrec. It took three days to transport the two loads to site as part of the last phase of the project. This is the largest abnormal load to have ever travelled on the Gauteng road network. Genrec was also involved in the extensive road survey, in addition to obtaining all necessary road permits from the Gauteng Department: Roads & Transport. The mid-section of the dragline excava- tor boom was dispatched to site at the end of November and the front end in early December. I t was successfully assembled by Caterpillar ’s Southern African dealer, Barloworld Equipment, on site in December over a period of four weeks. Genrec, website: The boomwas completely remodelled by Genrec Engineering’s design team – with assistance from CMTI Shared Services.

February 2019  MODERN MINING  41

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