Hope Construction Materials Ltd recent takeover of Dowlow Quarry near Buxton ensured the continued supply of high quality limestone material to their neighbour, Omya.
The extracted material is of a very high grade and as such demand at a premium with the final product being used in the manufacture of pharmaceutical products as well as the plastic industry.
Hope construction Materials Limited has a policy of continued improvement and to this aim made the decision that the original C21 conveyor was nearing the end of its working life and replacement was due.
Early considerations regarding any replacement were accessibility, the poor terrain of the site and minimal downtime of the conveyor. The traditional method of complete removal of the conveyor, civil preparation and installation of a replacement were not a feasible option in this case. In addition there was the complication of a multitude of cables running along the old conveyor steelwork which provided supplies to equipment in the lower part of the quarry.
Wright Engineering worked very closely with Hope Construction Materials Limited at an early stage. The project was deemed to fall within the requirements of CDM and with the regulations receiving an update in 2015 the responsibilities for the project were clarified.
Wright Engineering was to work as Principle Designer and Principle Contractor. In addition they were to oversee both the civil and electrical requirements of the project.
One of the first priorities was to carry out a cleanup around the original installation in order to make access safe for a survey and to relieve the load on the original conveyor structure.
A detailed survey of the original conveyor was carried out using the latest EDM technology in order to ensure accuracy. In addition Taylorwright Electrical Services, a division of Wright Engineering, carried out a full and detailed electrical survey of the conveyor and of the numerous cables which weaved along the original structures.
The design of the replacement conveyor was such as to allow for all civil preparations to be carried out without disturbance to the original conveyor. This proved to be quite a challenge. New base pads were excavated and cast again having been set out using laser technology to ensure pinpoint accuracy.
Following completion of the concrete bases a further EDM setting out was made to determine the true centre line of the replacement conveyor as well as to mark out the drilling positions for the new support trestles.
Redundant electrical cables were stripped from the conveyor all in preparation for the forthcoming shutdown period when the old conveyor would be removed and replaced.
During this period the manufacture and assembly of the replacement conveyor was in progress at Wright Engineering’s new fabrication facility located in Haworth. All conveyor sections were pre assembled with conveyor components prior to despatch to site in order to minimise downtime.
A full time presence on site was established and a carefully planned installation programme prepared. All plant and equipment was organised and a definitive shutdown date confirmed. Hope Construction Materials Limited had agreed to a period of two working weeks for the conveyor replacement. Phased deliveries into site helped to prevent choking of the work area and careful organisation allowed for each section to be offloaded and erected.
Much to the relief of Hope Construction Materials Limited, the complete conveyor, approximately 100 mts in length was removed, installed, electrically reconnected and commissioned within the allocated shutdown period.
Production was restarted and stone supplied once more to replenish depleted stock. The project was completed without accident or incident. Following an inspection by Senior Management and the CEO of Hope Construction Materials Limited, Wright Engineering has been invited to further assist with the replacement of infrastructure on the Dowlow site.