The power of collaboration

collaboration

Powerscreen’s machines have been a critical asset to the Hunter Valley mining industry.

Both critical cogs in the mining supply chain, Lincom and Daracon have forged a strong rapport over the years. As the mining industry continues to evolve, the relationship keeps blooming.

Lincom has established a reputation for its work in the mining supply chain, delivering machinery from the likes of McLanahan, Thor Global and Powerscreen to mining companies and contractors.

The company recently distributed a fleet of Powerscreen crushers and screeners to New South Wales’ Daracon Group to supply road base, gravel and stemming materials at mines in the Hunter Valley.

Powerscreen’s Premiertrak 400X jaw crusher, Maxtrak 1300 cone crusher and Chieftain 2100X 3-deck screener have enabled mining operations to remain on track, exceeding expectations and highlighting the importance of relationships and cooperation along the way.

According to Daracon maintenance operations manager Mick Hingerty, the machines went through a judicious selection process before being selected for use, which included considering whole-of-life costs.

Powerscreen is a familiar original equipment manufacturer (OEM) to Daracon, and while a recognisable name always helps, the power of collaboration in the supply chain cannot be understated.

This is where Daracon’s strong connection with Lincom has proved vital.

“From our perspective, the Powerscreen product is well known to us. We’ve got a great depth of knowledge about the product and we’ve been on a bit of a journey over the last couple of years where Lincom have really partnered with us to provide direct feedback back to the factory,” Hingerty says.

“We’re really trying to create that continual improvement through Lincom to Powerscreen and we’re starting to see some of those initiatives flow back through some of the machines. There’s a lot of product improvements that we’d flagged with the manufacturer.

“We’re seeing some good payback in terms of the effort we’ve collectively put in.”

Hingerty believes that across the journey, Lincom has become more than just a supplier to Daracon. In an industry as scrupulous as mining, the importance of optimising productivity, safety and everything between has seen relations elevate beyond just a transactional connection.

“When you’ve got a big reliance on a supplier like Lincom like we do, you’ve got to treat them as more than a supplier; they definitely have to become a partner,” Hingerty says.

“They’re a part of our business. We have monthly supplier meetings – we’re very disciplined on that. We have actions out of every meeting and every person that participates in those meetings has one thing in mind and that’s to improve the Powerscreen products, and increase efficiency and uptime for Daracon.”

A key consideration in the continual improvement of Powerscreen’s machines is the need to ensure they are compliant with a constantly evolving and demanding mining industry.

Lincom’s equipment is mine spec compliant to Australian Standards, as well as MDG 15 compliant on all Hunter Valley mine sites.

This further consolidates the importance of collaboration and communication between more than one party.

“You cannot work on a mine site without meeting various regulations. Those three machines are probably among the first machines in the crushing industry at least that are fit-for-purpose, out of the box,” Hingerty says.

“Lincom has learned a lot over the last couple of years. The company is very proficient and knowledgeable about the mine site compliance requirements.

“A lot of the initiatives we are seeing Lincom present with its new machines now are all a result of us working together and us educating them on what we require.”

Daracon contract crushing manager Wayne Roberts says improving conveyor guarding is one part of this development process, again with mine spec compliance as the ultimate goal.

Each of Powerscreen’s Premiertrak 400X, Maxtrak 1300 and Chieftain 2100X 3-deck machines have conveyor guards which are installed to protect workers, whether it be from rogue material flying off the fast-paced machinery or to prevent employees from entering the danger zone.

“One of the big things about working with Lincom and Powerscreen is that we can have these guards put in place, but unless they’re in the correct place, most times they’re only going to be a hindrance to the actual operation,” Roberts says.

“So over time we’ve been able to work with Lincom and Powerscreen and have these guards designed so they’re fully compliant with safety.”

Roberts says that not only have the companies collaborated to redesign guards to ensure safety, but adjustments are being made end-to-end, spanning components such as belt covers, skirting, dust suppression and beyond.

Both family-owned businesses, Daracon and Lincom share the humility and understanding to enable open communication and collaboration. It’s a relationship of constant improvement and development. Not always is an objective achieved first go.

But it’s only inevitable a likeminded partnership will achieve the desired outcome, and Daracon and Lincom have that down to a tee.  

This feature appeared in the February issue of Australian Mining.

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