Vermeer unveils the latest addition to its line of Navigator HDDs

Vermeer Navigator HDD

When Vermeer unveiled its D220x300 S3 Navigator horizontal directional drill (HDD), it created a new category in the industry.

Now, the manufacturer is following up on the D220x300 success with the new D220x500 S3 Navigator horizontal directional drill. 

With the ability to be configured for large-diameter water and utility installs in urban areas, as well as challenging pipeline work, the Vermeer D220x500 S3 delivers up to 54,000 foot pounds of torque at a spindle speed of 36 revolutions per minute, 240,400 pounds of thrust/pullback, and fluid flow rates of up to 1,325 litres per minute, if the onboard pump is selected. 

The D220x500 S3 is available with an onboard cab or stand-alone operator cab, and with a 6.1 metre to 9.1 metre rod rack.

Contractors may also choose between a rod stager or full-length catwalk, as well as add an optional mud pump, crane or hydraulic scissor lift for optimum staging efficiency. 

“The new D220x500 S3 integrates many of the quality features found on the Vermeer D220x300 S3 Navigator HDD, but with even more versatility and ramped-up performance,” said Tod Michael, product manager of trenchless products for Vermeer.

“This drill is designed to meet the needs of utility contractors performing large-diameter city work, as well as pipeliners that are performing long, large-diameter bores.”

Configuration options

Equipping the Vermeer D220x500 S3 Navigator with a 9.1 metre rack provides the ability to use a variety of Range 2 drill pipe at various diameters and a range of 8.3 metres to 9.8 metres in length, which is an ideal set up for performing pipeline work.

The rack configuration can be paired with a rod stager that holds four rods or a full-length catwalk. As well, the optional hydraulic scissor lift with the rod stager helps reduce drill rod and wireline staging cycle times. 

Also, if paired with a stand-alone pump, the D220x500 S3, with its four 3.8-cm mudlines and 7.6-cm head shaft, can accommodate 2,460.5 litres per minute of downhole drilling fluid flow.  

For more mobile operations, the D220x500 S3 can be equipped with an on-board excavator-style cab that has a view of the open-top vises, as well as the rack and rod stager. 

Both the on-board and detached cab include the same dual multifunction joystick controls found on all Vermeer S3 horizontal directional drills. 

The quiet, yet powerful Navigator

The Vermeer D220x500 S3 is built with a 415 hp Cat C13 ACERT Tier 4 Final engine that is convenient to service. The drill also runs quiet at 81.2 dBa. 

“The combination of the D220x500 S3 drill’s class-leading rotary torque and fluid pressure delivers optimized drilling and reaming performance in challenging ground conditions like rock,” Michael said. “More torque helps reduce the number of reamer passes crews need to make when widening a hole, and high fluid flow helps protect tooling while maintaining the drill hole integrity and operational efficiencies.” 

The D220x500 S3 Navigator also features a sliding vise that helps clamp the rod connection at different positions when reaming and pulling product, and includes a wireless remote for repositioning, as well as mounted cameras near the drive chuck, vise and rod handling areas for outstanding operator visibility. 


Vermeer now includes three years of telematics service on all new Vermeer industrial equipment. 

The Vermeer standard telematics package includes access to operating hours, GPS location and geofencing capabilities to help contractors stay informed about the service needs of their fleet. 

As well, Vermeer plans to introduce new tiers of telematics packages across all of its industrial product lines that will incorporate machine performance information as well as many other data-driven metrics to help crews work more efficiently and maximize their equipment. 

Vermeer equipment lines that now come with standard telematics include:

  • Horizontal directional drills.
  • Pipeline trenchers.
  • Vermeer Terrain Leveler.

Vermeer plans to equip its other equipment lines with standard telematics throughout the next year. 

Brad Ausman, product manager for Vermeer Intelligent Worksite, explained that adding telematics to every Vermeer machine is the first step in the company’s plan to giving customers access to machine data, which can help them be more proactive with preventative maintenance, right-size their equipment needs and increase operating efficiencies. 

“Telematics today have evolved, and reporting has gotten better,” Ausman said. “Today, the Vermeer standard telematics package can help contractors go from reactionary to predictive maintenance. In the future, we’ll be able to provide even more data-driven equipment and applications solutions that will allow contractors to operate more efficiently and maximize production.”

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Vermeer believes its telematics initiative is unique, as it spans so many niche industries and machinery categories. 

“We are committed to creating data-driven solutions focused on the needs of all the markets and customers we serve,” Ausman said.

“To do this, we are talking with contractors and our dealers to shape data into insights that can be acted upon and that will add value to our customers’ businesses. This level of telematics, the Vermeer Telematics Silver package, is already available on many horizontal directional drills, pipeline trenchers and the Vermeer Terrain Leveler SEM.” 

Currently, the company is also redesigning its telematics user portal to make it more user-friendly and allow contractors to export data for use with other fleet management platforms. 

Additional telematics packages will be introduced across all of the industrial Vermeer product lines in the future.