In an industry where an hour of downtime can cost thousands, a Sandvik 365 service agreement can save customers millions. At a remote Chinese mine it has created a win-win situation of reduced costs and improved, predictable productivity.
Following a 30-year-long business relationship, Guizhou Kailin Group Co. Ltd. (Kailin) chose a Sandvik 365 service solution to complement the company’s fleet of 65 Sandvik drill units in operation across its four mines in Jinzhong, in southwest China.
Since the agreement was signed in 2016, Sandvik has provided on-demand services that include on-site inspection, evaluation, maintenance and overhauling, and Sandvik technicians run a service exchange at the Kailin service yard in the center of Jinzhong. A Sandvik-branded maintenance container is equipped with professional maintenance tools, testing tools, original parts and a back-up drill to reduce downtime.
“Kailin and Sandvik have been cooperating for more than 30 years, so we know each other’s methods very well,” says Jun Chen, Sandvik Key Account Manager. “We have matched and aligned our operational method according to Kailin’s. Everything from the supplying of the parts to the operations to the after-market service is designed with customer satisfaction in mind.”
Increased pressure on equipment
As the mining operation expands, so does the pressure on the Sandvik fleet. In 2016, Kailin approached Sandvik with a need to improve maintenance routines.
“The container solution is designed to increase our ability to perform maintenance and repairs on site,” says Lin Ouyang, Vice Manager of Drilling at Kailin. “It helps us to reduce the likelihood of problems and fix the problems that do occur in a more efficient way. Before the regular maintenance was introduced, drilling a single blast hole could take up to 90 seconds. Now, with the machines properly serviced, the average is down to 60 seconds. The price we pay for this service contract is very small considering the efficiency improvements we are seeing.”
A flexible partnership
Xingfeng Lu is one of the Sandvik technicians based in Jinzhong. He says the convenience to the customer is the biggest benefit, but he notes that flexibility is required.
“The plan is to give the local technicians training whenever there is an issue with the rock drill, but in such remote areas we need to work together and be prepared to pitch in,” he says. “If the customer is short on staff, we can lead the maintenance activity with Kailin personnel providing support. It’s a very flexible arrangement.”