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chickenminer
05:21:28 Fri
Mar 8 2013

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Excavator Ripper

Wondering if any of you guys have experience using a ripper on an excavator? I am not wanting to rip frozen gravel, just frozen muck.

Looking for one to fit my Hitachi EX300LC-3. Something like this SEC ripper.

SEC ripper

Anyone familiar with SEC brand?



---
Dick Hammond - Chicken, Alaska
Chicken / Stonehouse Creek Mining
Chickenminer.com
 
 
dickb
16:23:10 Fri
Mar 8 2013

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Re: Excavator Ripper

Not familiar with the conditions your going to try to dig.
But, after 30 years experience in construction here in IA, I can tell you the bigger the better the out come.
The depth of the frozen ground has a lot to do with the operators ability to penetrate the ground and remove the frozen muck. You need to be able to get under the frost and lift the ground with the machine causing the ground to fracture. Once you get the hole started it's much easier to advance the trench. Even a ripper tooth on a cat has it's work cut out for it self. Working frozen ground is very hard on both the ripper and the machine, so expect high maintenance.
Hope this helps.
Dickb

  
geowizard
16:38:02 Fri
Mar 8 2013

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Re: Excavator Ripper


Last year, I was given an all day tour of the Doosan proving grounds at a mine south of Tucson. I was able to test drive every loader, excavator and haul truck (all new units) on the lot.

My question was... What can I get to rip frozen ground with? :confused:

They had earlier been pitching the easy, fast, simple replacement of attachments on the excavators and we walked over to the attachments. Their answer was to use a hammer attachment.

Lemmee tell ya... They had some big hammers!

It seems intuitively obvious that if a hydraulic chipping hammer can break concrete, it WILL cut, rip, break up and make short order of frozen ground. :smile:

- Geowizard


  
chickenminer
17:39:55 Fri
Mar 8 2013

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Re: Excavator Ripper

dickb...
Thanks for the input. Unfortunately working frozen ground is just a fact of life here in Interior Alaska. With permafrost there is not just a thin layer of frozen to remove. What I am looking at is 15 feet of solid, frozen muck on top of gravel that I need to get rid of.
I've got a Hitachi 200 and a 300, but like you said I think bigger would be better for this application.

Chuck.....
I know hydraulic hammers are very hard on machines. I'd really like to try the ripper instead.



---
Dick Hammond - Chicken, Alaska
Chicken / Stonehouse Creek Mining
Chickenminer.com
 
 
sabretooth
17:57:23 Fri
Mar 8 2013

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Re: Excavator Ripper

Dick rippers are hard on the cylinder seals and hyd hammers do not work that well on frozen muck. Have a look at this.http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=K3CvOvA0L9U&list=UUaI1ds8kDMS3HhvoLMD8H6A&index=35 Look up Xcentric rippers
[1 edits; Last edit by sabretooth at 18:00:19 Fri Mar 8 2013]

  
Jim_Alaska
18:33:39 Fri
Mar 8 2013

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Re: Excavator Ripper

Hammers on an excavator are very hard on the framing under the turret.

I used one last year that had had a hammer on it and you could see the welds on the framing where the constant hammering has cracked it.

I am not sure what the answer would be to the frozen ground problem, but it could very well be something other than hammer or ripper, like blasting, or steam, or water perhaps. Of the three, blasting might be cheaper and faster.

I am familiar with the permafrost conditions in Alaska. Based on my limited experience in actually working the permafrost in Interior Alaska, I tend to think that working the frozen muck would be harder on any equipment than simply working in frozen gravels, simply because it is compacted more with less fracture opportunities.

Not much help I know, but just my thoughts on the problem.



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Jim_Alaska
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charlene91
18:54:25 Fri
Mar 8 2013

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Re: Excavator Ripper

HI YOU ALL AS MOST OF YOU KNOW I MINE IN ALASKA AND HAVE DEAL WITH PERAFROST AND HAVE FOUND THAT WATER UNDER PRESSURE WITH DO A LOT AND IT WILL ALSO WASH AWAY THE SILT ALL YOU NEED IS A SELLTING POND AND A PUMP POND IF THAT DOES NOT WORK THERE IS ALWAYS GUN POWER OR SOME PLASTIC

  
chickenminer
19:28:06 Fri
Mar 8 2013

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Re: Excavator Ripper

Quote: sabretooth at 17:57:23 Fri Mar 8 2013

Dick rippers are hard on the cylinder seals and hyd hammers do not work that well on frozen muck. Have a look at this.http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=K3CvOvA0L9U&list=UUaI1ds8kDMS3HhvoLMD8H6A&index=35 Look up Xcentric rippers


sabretooth ....
Thanks for that! Very interesting setup, I will have to get more info from that outfit.



---
Dick Hammond - Chicken, Alaska
Chicken / Stonehouse Creek Mining
Chickenminer.com
 
 
chickenminer
19:45:04 Fri
Mar 8 2013

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Re: Excavator Ripper

Jim ...
Blasting is out. The paperwork involved in explosives anymore does not appeal to me!

I agree. Using hydraulic giant(s) would be my prefered method. Unfortunately I am in a very narrow valley with no room for the settling ponds that would be required.



---
Dick Hammond - Chicken, Alaska
Chicken / Stonehouse Creek Mining
Chickenminer.com
 
 
dickb
20:55:49 Fri
Mar 8 2013

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Re: Excavator Ripper

All interesting answers, maybe the old way is still the only way steam pumped down into the ground. I just don't see that being economical to do. I was aware of what you faced with permafrost. Even here in IA, when it gets below 0 for a stretch, most guys wait it out for a warm spell so the frost thins down to a managable thickness. Usually 1' to about 1 1/2' is the most we have to deal with. That saves wear on the equipment.
Dickb

  
geowizard
23:04:06 Fri
Mar 8 2013

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Re: Excavator Ripper


Rippers are "he double L" on torque converters. :confused:

Mining in general is hard on equipment!. I mine on rubber!. So, everyone has an opinion about mining on rubber.

There are lots of hammers in use in the world on concrete. Lots of hardrock is hammered in quarries. It's part of the cost of mining.

It takes the same amount of energy to rip as it does to hammer. The nice thing about a hammer is that you can chisel into a slope that is not accessible with a ripper.

Incidently, at Ophir, we ripped two cuts and thawed. The reason I know about torque converters is watching a downed D8N sit idle for two weeks as the converter was pulled, flown out, rebuilt and flown back in.

- Geowizard
[1 edits; Last edit by geowizard at 23:09:34 Fri Mar 8 2013]

  
dredger
00:02:14 Sat
Mar 9 2013

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Re: Excavator Ripper

Hey Dick.
Perhaps a diamond rock / ice grinder,??, cheap enough if u can build it yourself, ??.



http://www.rocksaws.com/

300LC-3 with a ripper is in my opinion is a weapon, I would try that first, most probably your best choice,??.
:smile:

  
geowizard
00:39:04 Sat
Mar 9 2013

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Re: Excavator Ripper


All I can see is a tracked, cutter-head suction dredge coming my way! :smile:

- Geowizard

  
baub
16:05:49 Sat
Mar 9 2013

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Re: Excavator Ripper

Ok, here's some off the wall ideas.

1 Use a chain saw, at an angle, to cut grooves in the frozen muck in a circular pattern similar to cutting a core from an apple. Experiment with the angle of cut. Experiment with reversing the chain for longer chain life. Start with about a 4-5 ft circle.
Drive wedges in this cut as deep as possible. Use as many wedges as needed to get an even distribution of pressure while periodically tapping them further in. After a while this saucer shaped hunk of stuff may pop out.
Next step. Repeat above and get the resulting onion ring shaped piece out.
Keep doing this until you get the diameter of the hole you want plus enough to compensate for the angle you need to use.
Next layer is similar. Cut and pop the piece(s) out.
When you get to your desired depth, you can then drift which ever way you want.
You might make access easier by cutting steps or a ramp. The tiered pattern established by the cut and popping may be enough. A ladder, or at least a knotted rope would be prudent. Sledges, battery powered heaters, radios, a small solar recharger could come in handy. Hmm, do they have battery powered sledges?
Consider a heater down there. Lights too. Perhaps cover the entire thing to prevent freeze ups and keep it comfy and homey. Sat tv is just an antenna away. If you do decide to take a petro powered device down there, remember that the carbon monoxide will build up and most likely kill you. Put gensets some distance away and run hd extension cords if 110/220v electric is needed. Consider 12/18/24v devises and the needed recharging methods.
Food/water/tp/shovels/ bedding/a warm girlfriend. All nice to have around.
2 Talk to ice fishermen and get some input from them regarding ice cutting. Many years ago many people were kept employed cutting ice for commercial enterprises, rail cars, ice chests etc. Somewhere the knowledge still exists. The Russians have done this for a long time. Eskimos too.
3 Consider these new, non explosive options. Some use compressed air, suddenly released. Some use shotgun style explosives in drilled holes. You could use a pattern mentioned in number 1
4 I would not rule out a hydraulic hammer, used gently, with delicasy and finesse, to do this. Use an angled, circular pattern that allows the ice, muck etc to pop up. Everything I've heard about them supports what the prior posts have said. Lotsa maintenance.
5 Plan, experiment, rethink and improve.
6 I've never done this before. It would be wise to plan in some safety thoughts. Tell someone what your doing, where you'll be and when you will be back or when you'll check in with them. Dead men can't spend gold.

Good luck!!


  
shaftsinkerawc
16:25:46 Sat
Mar 9 2013

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Re: Excavator Ripper

You'll find that whatever you use, ripper or hammer that you have 2 beasts to deal with. My experience with a handheld jackhammer is that the muck will chip ralatively easy as long as you keep a hole open for it to pop into in chuncks. When you get to the gravel it will be another story. Hammer away with no progress. Drilling and blasting would be the fastest. Cold water thawing would be my choice if you have material to work this season already. During Bucketline dredging days, once the permafrost was thawed it only froze on the surface and thawed each year. Probably some variables there.

  
geowizard
17:02:12 Sat
Mar 9 2013

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Re: Excavator Ripper

The old-timers used steam. :welcome:

Have you ever wondered what it would cost to use steam points and thaw a piece of ground? :confused:

Well, here you go...

Let's use a 100 ft x 100 ft square area that we wish to strip. The muck is 6 ft deep.

The total cubic yards to be stripped = about 2000 cubic yards.

It takes 144 BTU to thaw one pound of ice. We can use that for a reference.

If 2000 cu yards = approx. 2000 tons = 4,000,000 pounds of muck

At 144 BTU per pound = 576 million BTU's.

One gallon of gasoline (equivalent) = 114,000 BTU

It would take 5053 US gallons of fuel. Assuming a cost of $4.00 (cheap) = approx. $20,000 cost.

PAY:

The pay might be based on 0.01 ounce per cubic yard. We will process 1000 cubic yards and at $1500 for the gold, receive payment in the amount of $15,000. :smile:

Added content:

Of course getting through the muck is half the fun!

You may have six feet of frozen gravel. It's about the same cost.

Chainsaw? Well, I just checked on ebay and a new Husqvarna 455, 18" is $217.95 plus shipping. I would imagine replacing the complete chainsaw with every cubic yard of muck. $217 x 2000 yds = big bucks. Not to mention the labor intensity i.e. a couple cu yds per day = 1000 days = 10 seasons.


- Geowizard

[2 edits; Last edit by geowizard at 17:18:12 Sat Mar 9 2013]

  
JOE_S_INDY
17:28:03 Sat
Mar 9 2013

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Re: Excavator Ripper

Years ago I worked construction in Anchorage and after freeze up started it was touch and go in trying to dig in freezing ground.

We used jack hammers to try to breach the frozen surface so that the equipment could, somehow break the frozen surface material. It was a 50 - 50 chance that we could do just that simple first cut.

Remember that frozen ground is not anything like just frozen water (ice).:devil:



---
Wiser Mining Through Endless Personal Mistakes
 
 
geowizard
17:59:02 Sat
Mar 9 2013

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Re: Excavator Ripper


I would comment also after ripping the two cuts at Ophir, about 5 acres total, the ripped frozen ground was like broken glass. The ripped pieces had sharp edges just like blasted granite or obsidian with edges like a knife.

The most remarkable observation I made was the dust. The ripping created ice dust. You have to see it to believe it.:confused:

- Geowizard
[1 edits; Last edit by geowizard at 18:00:15 Sat Mar 9 2013]

  
baub
18:33:09 Sat
Mar 9 2013

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Re: Excavator Ripper

Take two. Drilling.

Take the best drill for the purpose, say a backhoe with a pto mounted 4 inch drill and go down as far as possible with it. Quickly add an extention. Go an additional 6 feet or so. Repeat, quickly untill you find unfrozen material. Suck out the hole.
Repeat this in a pattern that would enable you to swiss cheese an area large enough to chunk out portions and remove them.
Create a work space.
Secure your gains with a cover over it, and perhaps some straw, wood or insulating material at the base of the hole.
Remember, if you're drifting, you may not need to remove much overhead material, just enough for access to the paydirt. Once inside the loose material zone, use the backhoe and a pulley setup to hoist samples out.
Asuming that you have good enough ore, then a ramp for ease of extraction would be justified. Simply tow the loaded carts,sleds, whatever out and stack for processing.


  
JOE_S_INDY
21:37:48 Sat
Mar 9 2013

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Re: Excavator Ripper

Bob,

Dick is trying to breach 15 feet of permafrost. Not a simple top layer of frozen surface material.

Dick, Blasting by a commercial outfit could well be the answer. Let the "Pros from Dover" (MASH reference, eh!) handle the paperwork for you so you can mine (you know - what you do best!).

Joe



---
Wiser Mining Through Endless Personal Mistakes
 
 
geowizard
22:18:03 Sat
Mar 9 2013

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Re: Excavator Ripper



I uploaded a youtube video of the D8 ripping permafrost at Ophir. This more directed toward the uninitiated.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ePPhJSSZ_ks

There are a few other videos of the Brooks DC-4.

I plan on more uploads in the future.

- Geowizard

  
baub
01:44:36 Sun
Mar 10 2013

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Re: Excavator Ripper

Take 3 There's a device called the lodrill. It's a heavy duty auger that will go thru solid rock. Solid rock. It can literally drill 100 plus feet deep, according to 2nd hand info. I've not seen it in action.
There are companies that use this corkscrew for concrete drilling and other difficult drilling. For anyone that wants more info, pls PM me and I will look up my source of info and get it to you.
Another miner in a claim near mine was going to use this for drilling into some granite that supposedly contained marketable amounts of metals. He was cancelled by the Forest Service because of a fire some 29 miles away. Long story.

Bob

  
dredger
05:29:07 Sun
Mar 10 2013

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Re: Excavator Ripper

Hey Dick,
Nice thread,: smile:
I was thinking the new guys may not be aware of a relevant factor concerning fitting a ripper to a 30 ton or any excavator,
That is the length of the boom and dipper arms, and the length or depth of the ripper, meaning if the machine is fitted a short stick ( dipper ) and a short boom, and short length ripper, the ripper will be at its maximum efficiency,
So if the or any machine is fitted with all long versions, it is not as efficient to rip , and you waste allot of time, so my suggestion if you are going mining with an excavator, do your home work,
Also new guys please note, LC refers to under carriage, or long or short track lenght, also track pads, or grouser plates also come in wide or not so wide, width. Final drive motors should be a good brand; some are not so strong,
Dick, I wonder if you can tell us about your machines, I think you share my feeling that there is nothing better than having a good size excavator, except having 2 excavators,
:smile:
And if you decide to rip, could you tell us the rest of your work plan, and how many other machines you are planning to use, ?? please.
And I am also wondering how much operating you plan on doing yourself, ??.
Phil.
:smile:

  
baub
20:58:56 Sun
Mar 10 2013

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Re: Excavator Ripper

Take 4

How much room do you have to operate a excavator/ripper/cat? Let's compare the area needed to rip up enough ground to get access via excavator. You need stacking room for say a 50 by 20 foot amount of material. You need turn around room for the machine and any support equipment. If you don't cover the hole, it may be necessary to re/rip every day. This means keeping heat on the engine block of the Cat or leaving it idle constantly. You have a cost/figure thats pretty high. My guess is that most Ak gravel is thin, maybe $25/ton.
You have to continously remove the top 15" to surface mine this stuff. You could have a lot of money in a ditch in the ground. My guess the cost would seriously dent the $25/ton payout. If you break and you stick the Cat, it gets even more expensive. Exponentialy more so. The overburden for a vertical hole and ramp would be in the tens of yards vs hundreds of yds via cat/exc.
Yes, it's 15 feet of overburden. Once a relatively small access point is worked thru the permafrost and a ramp fabricated, you would have less mess, less reclamation etc to deal with than the Cat/exc. This 15' foot thick roof offers protection from the elements. Make a ramp big enough and with a high enough ceiling, you could work entirely inside the drifted area. There have been many mines operated in this manner by less equipment rich miners.
I don't have a cat or exc, just a few backhoes so my idea is minimize the breakables. Chain saws and chains are cheaper than cats and lighter too. So I would try the easiest, cheapest method first.
If you're just dragging and stacking for later processing in the spring you would need to ventilate the cavern with a fan to reduce co2 etc.
Folks, you'll have to excuse my typing errors. 2 days ago I had my eye teeth pulled and I can't type worth a darn.
It's hard to see the keys without them.

b

  
dickb
21:03:19 Sun
Mar 10 2013

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Re: Excavator Ripper

I think that a large dozer is the better choice to do ripping, than a 30 ton track hoe. Agree with the short dipper and boom on the ripper hoe. Not sure if many realize the work involved with changing a bucket to a ripper tooth on a 30 ton hoe.
I used to do a lot of hole augering through frost with a hydraulic auger with down pressure. If I was working frozen loam, I could make reasonable progress. If there was much sand in the soil, I would wear out teeth quickly and progress was very slow. kinda like trying to drill a hole through a grinding wheel. I would be really scared to try and bid a job that tried to penetrate 15 feet of frozen ground. Just my thoughts.
dickb
[1 edits; Last edit by dickb at 21:21:17 Sun Mar 10 2013]

  
dmarks
05:55:49 Mon
Mar 11 2013

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Re: Excavator Ripper

chickenminer is a very experenced miner in the frozen north he is looking for some one experenced with a ripper not a chain saw. Ever triedripping permafrost we do it is tougher than rock.

  
baub
16:38:25 Mon
Mar 11 2013

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Re: Excavator Ripper

I have never ever worked with permafrost. I do however believe in brainstorming.
My interpretation of the request for ideas was that the conventional approach was too expensive to do and that the poster might be looking for outa da box ideas, of which I presented a number of possibilities, however naive.
The chainsaw idea, modified with an abrasive blade would work for a small area.
Nothing was mentioned about additional parameters other than the idea of close quarters. I based my ideas on this limitation. and a reluctance to blast and the expense of yellow iron.
I gave specific, detailed ideas to stimulate the thinking glands.
Most replies to them were either condesending or sarcastic.
I don't give a rats butt whether the ideas were bad or badly presented. What I dont like is ridicule.
Not one of you experts thanked me for my efforts. I see no reason to continue posting .


b

  
charlene91
17:42:08 Mon
Mar 11 2013

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Re: Excavator Ripper

Hi you all i have seen two things work with permforst one is clear off all possible stuff and let the sun thraw in and then push and wait ..and you could also clean the thewed stuff with water i have also seen a dozer with a ripper work the best way i have seen is to clear off all that you can in the fall and during break up with the melting snow and ice it will move a lot of the silt ..this what i have seen work

  
overtheedge
18:03:42 Mon
Mar 11 2013

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Re: Excavator Ripper

Dick, I think the best idea is hiring out the ripping.

Blasting is a great way to break rock. Having blasted a few thousand yards of icecrete and ice during by combat engineer years in Alaska, I can attest to its capacity to just spring rather than shatter.

Then drilling the gazillion holes for the ANFO 15+ feet deep would be a major undertaking. You would also need to be ready to push the overburden off right after blasting, else it will refreeze in a jumbled mess.

Can't think of any other methods for removing the massive yardage.

Were I faced with the task and had the money, I would hire a big dozer to rip and stockpile the overburden.
eric

PS. For small areas of frozen ground, covering it with clear plastic substantially increases the thaw rate by preventing evaporative cooling.

  
geowizard
19:43:54 Mon
Mar 11 2013

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Re: Excavator Ripper


I think ote has the right idea. That's what I'm seeing today.

However...

Ophir produced on the average, 1000 ounces of gold every year over a 70 year period. Much of that was in frozen ground. They only had a dragline and a cable dozer.. and...

Two hydraulik Giants! Hydrauliking was apparently a viable method. When I revisit the videos I uploaded, it makes me think that I might try the same process. I'm running the washed ground into an off waterway cut and suction dredging the cut.

The Giants can run 24 hours a day.

- Geowizard


  

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