Diesel Progress Goes Trenchless

In August of 2023 the Michael Byrne Mfg. D72-1.5M Auger Boring machine was called into action on the California Coast to alleviate HWY 1 washouts from the spring season storms.  Pacific Boring, located in Caruthers, California, was awarded the bid for this emergency job in Santa Barbara County.  The job required 140 ft. of 60″ casing be installed at a negative 15% slope through challenging ground conditions.

Diesel Progress magazine contributor Meredith Pierick was on site to observe the “Secret Weapon” being utilized to perform this difficult installation.  See the article that appeared in the Diesel Progress November/December 2023 issue: Diesel Progress November / December 2023 | Powered by Pocketmags

Michael Byrne Mfg. Names Kevin Slarb International Sales Manager

February 2021 – Kevin Slarb has been named Michael Byrne Mfg.’s Inside and International Sales Manager. Kevin has over 20 years experience in the trenchless technology industry. His knowledge of the underground industry, equipment, parts and service have made him a valuable resource to many contractors. Kevin was the go-to guy for many international customers while at American Augers and will continue that role with Michael Byrne Mfg. Kevin will work with Dave Miller in supporting sales for our expanding customer base. Michael Byrne Mfg. continues to strengthen their team and service capabilities with the addition of Kevin Slarb, welcome aboard.

Michael Byrne Mfg. Expands International Network with MORTEC Ltd.

Michael Byrne Mfg. announces the addition of MORTEC Ltd. to represent MBM products in Israel. MORTEC was established in 2007 and supplies equipment for the construction, infrastructure, agriculture, and recycling industries. MORTEC has widespread connections throughout the Israeli market providing the following services:

  • Advice and guidance in choosing the right tool for the job
  • Operational instruction and on job support
  • Mobile and shop repair services
  • Wear and maintenance parts supply

MORTEC will represent all Michael Byrne underground tooling products including: auger boring machines, auger, cutting heads, adapters, and HDD components.

Arnon Mor, CEO

Office: +972 (0)8 9352707

Mobile: +972 (0)50 5770295

E-mail: arnonmor@mortec.co.il

Website: https://mortec.co.il/


Michael Byrne Mfg. expands Canadian Network with Sub-Surface

Michael Byrne Manufacturing announces the addition of Sub-Surface Equipment and Mike Shannon to represent MBM products in Western Canada.  Mike has extensive background in the underground utility construction market with over 20 years providing equipment and tooling solutions to contractors.  Michael Byrne Mfg. continues to supply parts factory direct to contractors, ensuring the fastest turn around time and delivery to the customer.  Mike Shannon can be reached via e-mail at subsurface@telus.net or call 250-558-9716.

Contractor Bores 440 feet in Hard Caliche Rock

Horizontal Boring & Tunneling, of Phoenix, AZ, recently completed a 54″ diameter bore 440’ in length through hard, caliche rock. The project required a 24″ sewage line be installed under I-17 in Anthem, AZ. Horizontal Boring used a Michael Byrne Mfg. D72-1.5M auger boring machine and a 54” retractable, roller cone cutting head to complete the job.

The roller cone head features a spring-loaded overcut. This allows the cutting head to be retracted back through the casing for repair or for line & grade confirmation.

To combat the tough ground conditions the cutters on the roller cone were changed twice during the bore. Additionally, the cutting head was cooled with lubricant to prolong the life of the cutters and the bearings.

Roller cones are typically used in hard rock applications, where the rock hardness is between 10,000 – 40,000 psi.


As talk of an infrastructure stimulus bill increases, special focus will be on economic and environmentally friendly solutions.  Trenchless Technology should be strongly considered to reduce cost, reduce social impact and lower the carbon footprint of the construction efforts.  An article published in Trenchless Technology Magazine in April of 2015 outlines the benefits of trenchless solutions compared to open cut construction.  In Yuma, AZ a case study was done on a water line replacement project. Open cut and trenchless construction were used throughout the project and each were evaluated for environmental impact, traffic impact and productivity. The trenchless portion of the project was found to have significantly lower environmental and traffic impact as well as four times the productivity of the open cut projects. NASTT 2019 Hall of Famer Chris Macy’s speech at No-Dig 2019 detailed the many benefits of trenchless construction including the incredible cost and environmental savings compared to open cut for many underground projects.  Congress we all know we need an Infrastructure bill, GET IT DONE! 

Contractor Uses Live Swivel Head for Precision Bore Job

API Contracting/Cornerstone Boring used a Michael Byrne 42” live swivel cutting head for a very tight and low ground cover auger bore in Paducah, KY.   The bore crossed a highway and on-ramp with portions of the on ramp having only 2 feet of cover.  It was completed using the Akkerman 240 Guided Bore Machine to pilot the initial bore path. That pilot was followed with a conventional auger bore machine and the Michael Byrne 42” live swivel cutting head.

The 42” swivel head uses a threaded coupling that is attached to the pilot bore tubes. The needle of the cutting head is inserted into the adapter coupling and seated against the face of the cutting head 3” male hex.  The boring machine proceeds to bore in a typical auger bore method.  The swivel cutting head pushes the pilot tubes out of the exit pit as the cutting head follows the path of the pilot tubes opening the bore to the desired 42” diameter.  The cutting head is made with thrust bearings and can handle thrust and radial loading. Care must be used with this method of precision boring by letting the cutting teeth bore the hole and do the work. Putting too much thrust pressure on the head could damage the bearings.

42" Swivel Head in Casing
42″ Swivel Head in Casing

API/ Cornerstone has performed numerous precision auger bores using the live swivel head and the Akkerman guided bore system.  Underground work often runs into unforeseen obstacles, one of which is changing ground conditions. The live swivel lets you pull your cutting head and auger back to check the face of the bore. The tapered front needle of the swivel will let the head re-seat into the coupling attached to the pilot tubes and continue your bore.

Swivel head aligned with pilot tube

Pipelines Are The Safest Delivery Method

The delivery of Natural Gas via pipelines continues to be the most cost effective and safest delivery method. Studies continue to verify pipelines as the safest and most environmentally safe delivery method  https://www.aga.org/research/fact-sheets/pipeline-safety/.  The export of LNG has recently made the United States the number one exporter of LNG.  The export of LNG strengthens the US economy and provides a source for our Allies to source compared to competitive nations that are not friendly to the United States.  Natural Gas is also firing many of our electric generation plants and driving down the carbon footprint for these institutions making electric cars, LNG vehicles, and a whole new industry more environmentally friendly. The advances in trenchless technology as well as tried and trusted methods like auger boring used in conjunction with Guided Pilot Bore machines continue to make the installation and maintenance of pipelines among the safest ways to install and transport materials.

D48-950 performs successful bore through tough conditions in Fort McMurray, Alberta

Total Trenchless of Calgary, AB completed a difficult bore using an MBM D48-950 to install a 30″ drainage culvert under Highway 63 in Fort McMurray, AB. From Brett Stephens, Owner, “We put our new Micahel Byrne Mfg. D48-950 to work this past week! What a powerhouse of a machine! It wasn’t your typical bore pit, the launch pad was built up to install a 30” drainage culvert high on a slope. The Komatsu dozer isn’t your ordinary push block but it served the purpose! The MBM boring machine performed for us in the tough, boney ground under Highway 63, Fort McMurray Alberta. These rigs are built tough!”

Thanks to the Total Trenchless crew for Making Boring Great!

MBM D48-950