Building Connections

For Ditch Witch© Australia, taking time and care to deliver quality machinery that meets a client’s needs is key to building a strong and ongoing working relationship. Ditch Witch Australia SA/NT Sales Representative, Simon Hendry’s sale of two JT30 All Terrain directional drills to Fulton Hogan is a testament to the importance of building and maintaining these connections.

In October 2015, Ditch Witch Australia South Australia and Northern Territory Sales Representative Simon Hendry was approached by John Herbert and Mick Hall of Fulton Hogan and asked to submit a tender for two JT20 drills, two FM13v mixing systems and down hole tools to suit.
As a very large company, Fulton Hogan has a significant footprint across Australia and New Zealand, which made the goal of establishing a good business relationship that much more important to Ditch Witch.

During the tender, Ditch Witch Australia were up against some strong competition, but Mr Hendry thought the team had a good chance at securing the sale. Simon, John, and Mick had all worked together before Ditch Witch Australia or Fulton Hogan which made communicating that much easier from the start.
Unfortunately, in spite of his best effort and the pre-existing relationship, Ditch Witch Australia was unsuccessful with that tender.
Mr Hendry kept in contact with Fulton Hogan and over the years the relationship continued to grow leading to some smaller sales including locators and duct beacons.
Around mid-June 2017, Fulton Hogan again approached Mr Hendry for a quote on the pricing of two JT30 All Terrain rigs and mixing systems. Due to the now very close relationship, he knew this was the real thing.

Mr Hall says that Fulton Hogan decided to purchase two JT30 All Terrain rigs and FM25 mixing systems, as the AT30 directional drill is considered the best rock drill available on the market. Having worked with Mr Hendry before, Mr Hall was confident that he was receiving the best information available.

“I’ve known Simon for 10 years, as he worked with me in Tasmania. He is very knowledgeable in the drilling game,” says Mr Hall.

After a few weeks of back and forth discussions, a final quotation was issued and soon thereafter the much-anticipated purchase order was returned.

Once all of the equipment was delivered to Adelaide, two representatives from Fulton Hogan – Mr Hall and Darren Pryor – visited the Ditch Witch office. The final set up of the mixing systems was worked out and all of the equipment was sent to North East Isuzu, where the trucks and trailers were being built.

“We were happy to work with Ditch Witch Australia and North East Isuzu, both located in South Australia, as working together has previously been a positive experience ¬– both companies have given Fulton Hogan excellent service in the past,” says Mr Hall.

“The flexibility of laying out the Ditch Witch mud system on the trucks allowed us to leverage the experience and knowledge of all concerned to develop the best possible outcome for our situation.”

Mr Hendry is hugely appreciative of the team at North East Isuzu, who allowed the Ditch Witch team to work alongside them in their workshop to install the mixing systems while they built the trucks and trailers for the machines.

The new collaboration with North East Isuzu experienced during the build and the development of a strong ongoing relationship with Fulton Hogan are both highly valued by Ditch Witch Australia.

“The machines have been used on two projects so far,” says Mr Hall. “In Victoria, they were used for NBN operations, and in South Australia they have been utilised for installing communication conduits. We see an ongoing collaborative relationship with Ditch Witch Australia going forwards. We are already looking at buying three more of the JT30 All Terrain rigs.”

The Ditch Witch JT30 All Terrain directional drill features a powerful 119 kW Tier 4 engine, and is equipped with 11,249 kg of thrust and 13,608 kg of pullback force, making it an ideal choice for operations in tough soils.

It can also be anchored with the heavy-duty anchor system, for improved machine stability and the ability to utilise the full thrust and pullback force.

The optional cab has climate controlled heating and cooling to provide a comfortable environment for the operator. The design also accounts for the operators need for visibility by using open-top vise wrenches that are angled toward the operator, allowing a clear view of the tool join and drill functions.

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