EasyDrill converts excavators into a directional drill

A man makes adjustments to the easydrill excavator attachment

EasyDrill, an attachment that can transform an excavator into a horizontal directional drill (HDD) is now available in Canada. 

Now manufactured in Germany, the attachment was developed in New Zealand about 15 years ago, and has gained popularity in the South Pacific, Asia and Europe.

The Hamilton, Ontario-based Integrity Rail Products is now the first North American distributor for the EasyDrill.

CG Equipment in Guelph, Ontario recently hosted the EasyDrill’s first Canadian demonstration. 

“I’m pretty excited about the product overall because it has the potential to do what a directional drill can do, but for significantly less money,” said Peter Scholtens, President of Integrity Rail Products. 

 With the same capabilities as a small self-propelled HDD, the EasyDrill can install fibre optic cable, gas, electric and water lines. The attachment requires 60 to 80 litre per minute of hydraulic flow from a single hydraulic line. 

“It’ll run on a 3.5 tonne excavator, but you get the best performance out of 5 tonne machines and higher,” Scholtens said. 

Thanks to its compact size, the EasyDrill can tackle surface or pit shots at 90-degree angles.

The machine also features 360-degree rotation and delivers 3,628- kg thrust, 4,764 kg pullback force and 1,225-foot pounds of rotary torque. 

“With a self-propelled unit, you always have to have setbacks so that you can get down at an angle to the depth that you need.  With this unit, you can dig a pit and do a pit shot and be down there without requiring a setback,’ Scholtens said. 

The EasyDrill also has the potential to reduce transportation costs by eliminating the trailer space required for an HDD. 

“Most guys will have a mini excavator on their jobsite anyway. And so, they need a truck and a trailer to move that, then they also need another truck and a trailer to move the self-propelled directional drilling equipment,” Scholtens said.

“In this case, they can put it all on one float.”

The EasyDrill package includes a basket that carries 50 drill rods that are 97-cm-long, a 300-litre water tank and a 5-hp Honda engine to run the lubrication pump.  

The system can be expanded to run an additional 50 rods. 

‘A lot of guys, once they’ve got some experience running it and develop some confidence, will go ahead and buy a second set of rods,” Scholtens said.

“But basically, you get everything you need, except for tracking equipment, to start up your own drilling company.”