Unearthing next generation hard rock solutions

Keech team with the 680 series KOBRA cast lip fitted with KEESHARP GET.

Keech Australia has supplied products to the mining industry for than 80 years, with the Australian-made KOBRA series of cast lips making their way to the market earlier this year.

As a third-generation family-owned business, Keech has been designing and manufacturing steel castings in Australia for more than 85 years.

The company has a clear philosophy of pushing the boundaries with its industrial solutions that cover the mining, agricultural, rail and defence industries to customers locally and globally.

“We have a very strong focus on innovation and customer service,” Keech Australia general manager sales & marketing Paul Ferguson tells Australian Mining.

“We have heavily invested in not just modernising our operations, but in research and design so we can create and develop new products for the mining industry.”

Among its latest offerings for mining is the Keech KOBRA cast lip range for hard rock mining.

Featuring a streamlined profile with an improved nose design for enhanced bucket filling and emptying rates and a mechanically attached integrated wear cap for longer lip life, the KOBRA cast lips are a no-nonsense choice for hard rock mining applications.

The KOBRA series combines increased productivity, reduced maintenance costs, improved penetration and long wear life into a single, locally designed and manufactured package.

Ferguson says the KOBRA design is the result of benchmarking against previous Keech cast lips that were supplied to an original equipment manufacturer (OEM).

“We have benchmarked this design off previous Keech lips and a range of other cast lips in the market,” he says.

“This next generation of cast lip brings a 15 per cent reduction in peak stress combined with a 10 per cent reduction in mass.

“It also includes a greater lip coverage and more aggressive spade (attack) angle combined with under- lip protection for the lip shrouds during back blading operations.”

With the KOBRA series designed, manufactured and tested in Australia, Keech has achieved the optimal suitability for Australia’s hard rock mining conditions with the KOBRA.

“Designing and trialling the products initially in the Australian mining landscape allowed us
to develop the products for the hard-digging conditions generally experienced in our mining sector,” Ferguson says.

“There is also benefit of employing local people and returning the benefits back into the local economy.”

A key feature to the KOBRA series is its Keelock retention system, which is designed by Keech for faster changeouts and less downtime.

The patented Keelock system is a completely hammerless, single piece retention system.

“There is also the added bonus of Keelock having commonality across a number of lip sizes, resulting in less inventory,” Ferguson says.

The KOBRA 660 cast lip, the first product under the Keech KOBRA brand, has this year been supplied to a major coal mine in the Hunter Valley.

As the KOBRA series is manufactured locally, Ferguson says parts are readily available for customers, a major factor in their decision to make the purchase.

“The fact that it was locally manufactured also meant that the critical consumable parts are readily available for the end user,” he says.

“We’ve had a long-term relationship with this mine so their confidence in our product quality, reliability and ongoing high level of customer service aided them in their decision-making process.

“We have a local technical representative within the region who will be doing the monitoring and measuring on a regular basis.

“At the moment it’s being welded into the bucket so it’s in the initial stage of being installed in preparation for going into operation.”

Keech also offers its KEESHARP system for 120- to 350-tonne excavators and 70- to 100-millimetre lips on wheel loaders.

“The KEESHARP bucket teeth and bucket edge systems offer an increase in reliability through six platforms,” Ferguson says.

“These are new nose design, new superior steel, increased strength, integrated wear cap, new hammerless locking system and dynamic profile.”

The KEESHARP system features Keech’s proprietary steel, which makes it tougher, longer lasting and a reliable product manufactured in Australia. This proprietary steel was developed through a collaboration between the Keech technical team and world-class third-party research facilities.

Keech’s KOBRA and KEESHARP ranges are available now with fast and local delivery.

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