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Sandvik’s Camlatch system for core barrels catching on

ONE of Sandvik’s latest developments is its Camlatch latching system for core barrels.

Sandvik says the system combines the best features of the spring latch and mechanical latching systems. It is free-falling, meaning there is less resistance in shallow angle holes. Its independent latching action is well-suited for tanged or non-tanged locking couplings.

Canada-based Team Drilling field-tested the cam latch system, seeing a possible opportunity to overcome difficult conditions on a project in Northern Saskatchewan. The ground conditions consisted of silicified sandstone, with large sections of flowing sand and clay. To overcome these adverse conditions, Team was required to “run a good mud” until total depth of the hole was reached. With the old spring-latch system, the mud slowed down the descent of the inner tube and caused premature wear of the latches. The new cam latch assembly was able to restore Team’s productivity with a quicker descent rate and less wear on the latches.

Two cam-latch prototype heads were also provided to Queensland, Australia-based WAR NQ Drilling, and drilled over 1,500m of core.

WAR owner Greg Alloway is converting all of his core barrel systems over to the new cam latch. WAR’s project in northeast Queensland involves several exploration holes, from surface and underground, for Citigold Corporation.
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