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Vermeer Corporation acquire drilling rig manufacturer Horizontal Rig & Equipment

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Vermeer Corporation  have purchased substantially all of the operating assets of Horizontal Rig & Equipment (HRE), based in Conroe, Texas. HRE, manufacturers of horizontal directional drilling (HDD) rigs, have produced three maxi-drill models with pullback forces of 500,000, 750,000 and 1,000,000 pounds.

HRE was founded in 1999 by Gene Carpenter, who previously built maxi rigs for Laney Directional Drilling of Humble, Texas. The drilling rigs that HRE built are the result of many years of experience and rig development that combined hands-on, direct field experience from a major drilling contractor in the world with the engineering and manufacturing expertise incorporated in HRE.

The HRE model design offers high torque, slow speed hydraulic motors used on both the rotary drive and the carriage drives. On the rotary drive, for example, the high torque motor provides all the power required to turn the drill string and downhole tooling with a single hollow-spindle hydraulic motor. This eliminates the need for a bull gear, pinion gears, planetary gear reduction boxes and multiple (high speed) hydraulic motors mounted to planetary boxes. Much hydraulic hosing and electrical wiring is also eliminated.

The design of the HRE vise provides travel of 72" (183cm) up the drill frame and triple-jaw, three cylinder vises break out drill pipe quickly, smoothly and consistently. Die holders can be quickly removed and taken to the workbench for die changes.

Included in the design are large front and rear anchor pads to help hold the rig in place during drilling operations. The large rear pad provides stability, as the rig is supported in the air. The front and rear anchor pads are then tied together with structural tubing for maximum stability in both the push and pull back modes.

Production of these units will be moved to the Vermeer manufacturing facilities in Pella, Iowa in early 2008. The units will carry the Vermeer brand name and be sold exclusively through the Vermeer distribution channel beginning in the spring of 2008.

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