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Impressed with the Air Mole

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  • Impressed with the Air Mole

    I had a 2" service to replace today but had to go under a train track of all things.




    I was in a bit of a confined area so a friend suggested I use his "Mole", For those who have never used one it is basically an Air driven slide hammer inside of a torpedo shaped piece of steel. It made a 3" hole about 20' long in about 5 minutes. I was impressed... (The Tool is made by HUDCO Manufacturing who call it a "Piercing Tool")

    Last edited by OkieBill; 11-16-2011, 10:17 PM.

  • #2
    Re: Impressed with the Air Mole

    Be a nice addition for My back Hoe, Any idea on cost ?
    I can build anything You want , if you draw a picture of it , on the back of a big enough check .

    Comment


    • #3
      Re: Impressed with the Air Mole

      I was told 3-7K depends on the size you want and how big an air compressor you have. (I used a 100 CFM tow behind compressor) I would have never believed until I saw it but if you pull the hose and rotate it about 90 degrees the thing will actually back itself out ...

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      • #4
        Re: Impressed with the Air Mole

        I have a 2.5" and a 4.5" and they are great except when they get stuck and won't go forward or reverse then you get to stress out lol.
        Seattle Drain Service

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        • #5
          Re: Impressed with the Air Mole

          I got to see the Grundomate piercing tool in action. It works great, TT Technologies makes it and lucky me they are local. Grundomat - Horizontal Boring and Directional Drilling Tool

          and here is a basic video of it working. TT Technologies Product Videos & Animations
          Last edited by SewerRatz; 11-17-2011, 01:03 AM.
          Ron Hasil Lic #058-160417
          A-Archer Sewer & Plumbing specializing in:
          Tankless Water Heaters | Drain and Sewer Cleaning
          Sump and Ejector Pumps | Backflow RPZ Testing

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          • #6
            Re: Impressed with the Air Mole

            That tool looks pretty slick! Hopefully you don't find any underground utilities or other surprises. Will it bore through rocks, slate, granite etc?
            We don't have preventative maintenance around here, we have CRISIS MANAGEMENT!

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            • #7
              Re: Impressed with the Air Mole

              Some rental yards may have them. Think so ?
              I can build anything You want , if you draw a picture of it , on the back of a big enough check .

              Comment


              • #8
                Re: Impressed with the Air Mole

                Rental yards have them but if you loose it you have to pay for it insurance doesn't cover loss. I have the grundomat in the large mole and it has a stepped head I can tell you it bores very straight I think it is the best design. I like to do hard soils it's the soft soils like sand that mess me up because the sand can fall in on the hole behind the mole and then the air has no where to go and thats when mine get stuck. Some newer models have a sonde so you can locate when this happens I plan on buying the smallest sonde I can find and putting it on the tail so I can find the mole when I do loose it. I also now try to stay on short runs 20 feet or less it's the 50ft ones that scare me.
                Seattle Drain Service

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                • #9
                  Re: Impressed with the Air Mole

                  Originally posted by Cuda View Post
                  Rental yards have them but if you loose it you have to pay for it insurance doesn't cover loss. I have the grundomat in the large mole and it has a stepped head I can tell you it bores very straight I think it is the best design. I like to do hard soils it's the soft soils like sand that mess me up because the sand can fall in on the hole behind the mole and then the air has no where to go and thats when mine get stuck. Some newer models have a sonde so you can locate when this happens I plan on buying the smallest sonde I can find and putting it on the tail so I can find the mole when I do loose it. I also now try to stay on short runs 20 feet or less it's the 50ft ones that scare me.
                  I was reading they have a jig that will pull pipe as it bores.

                  I would imagine that this type of tool is pretty slick but its use should be limited to somebody with proper training and experience to help avoid loosing the tool or tapping into one of them PG&E bombs.
                  We don't have preventative maintenance around here, we have CRISIS MANAGEMENT!

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Re: Impressed with the Air Mole

                    Originally posted by masterbeavis View Post
                    I was reading they have a jig that will pull pipe as it bores.

                    I would imagine that this type of tool is pretty slick but its use should be limited to somebody with proper training and experience to help avoid loosing the tool or tapping into one of them PG&E bombs.
                    You can read about it and take classes but actually using the mole is how you learn to not lose them. If they hit a rock and nose dive down that's when the fun begins. I own mine so I take great care with them but I have been at jobs where the workers just cut them loose. And a lot of us have seen gas lines moled right through the side sewer.
                    Seattle Drain Service

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                    • #11
                      Re: Impressed with the Air Mole

                      Does the tool give any warnings that it went off course?
                      We don't have preventative maintenance around here, we have CRISIS MANAGEMENT!

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Re: Impressed with the Air Mole

                        Originally posted by toolaholic View Post
                        Be a nice addition for My back Hoe, Any idea on cost ?
                        Hey Kevin.
                        You get one and I may have a job for you down my way.
                        HUDCO Manufacturing - Manufacturer of Compactors, Piercing Tools, & Installation Kits
                        Scott

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                        • #13
                          Re: Impressed with the Air Mole

                          Pneumatic boring is very cool. Big time saver. One danger of using it is that its basically point and pray. If you intersect another utility especially with a gas line some pretty dangerous situations can arise. For many of you on the forum here its well worth knowing about cross bores even if you don't do pneumatic boring yourself. Ya still may run into another contractor's mistake. A good reason to always camera a lateral when possible before cleaning ;-)

                          Photos Cross Bores & Explosions

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                          • #14
                            Re: Impressed with the Air Mole

                            We have a company around here installing and replacing new gas lines to existing older homes. They asked me to camera a sewer line and sure enough there was the gas line right through the clay sewer.. But it's sort of impossible to to camera a line that is stopped up and full of dirty water. I think there will be accidents in the future, big accidents.

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                            • #15
                              Re: Impressed with the Air Mole

                              Originally posted by ironranger View Post
                              and sure enough there was the gas line right through the clay sewer.. But it's sort of impossible to to camera a line that is stopped up and full of dirty water. I think there will be accidents in the future, big accidents.
                              Shortcuts are the wave of the future. Boy they are tempting to take especially when there is so much to gain if you don't get slammed by the F-up fairy. One in 100 screw ups will still save you a ton of cash if you have 99% success rate. Better than your survival rate on a hosp. operating table!
                              We don't have preventative maintenance around here, we have CRISIS MANAGEMENT!

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