MacLean Engineering recently shipped the first of its 30th anniversary 900 Series bolters from the company’s main manufacturing facility in Collingwood, Ontario. The unit, a 975 Omnia scissor bolter, was sold to a contractor working at an underground gold mine in northwest British Columbia. The first commercialized 900 Series unit was sold in the early 1990s to a then INCO-owned mine in the Sudbury basin. Three decades later, the mining vehicle that helped bring about a bolting safety and productivity paradigm change in Canadian hard rock mining, will soon reach its 500-unit manufacturing milestone, according to the company.
“This piece of mobile mining equipment has propelled the shift over three decades from manual to semi-mechanized bolting, with all the accompanying safety and productivity benefits that move brought about,” said Steve Denomme, global product line manager for bolting at MacLean. “Reaching this production milestone for the MacLean bolting system is significant in and of itself and, it also sets up the next chapter in MacLean ground support solutions — fully automated, robotics-integrated bolting.”
Designed for a single operator, always working under protected ground, with a full shift’s worth of storage space for bolting consumables, the MacLean provides the flexibility to put in any type of ground support.
“The importance of this product for the company and its contribution to the industry is worthy of marking, but we’re not standing still,” MacLean President Kevin MacLean said. “We are now hard at work in the product development and testing phase for the next generation of Maclean bolters that will follow in the footsteps of the original Maclean paradigm-changer, but also forge its own path by introducing robotics to our bolting philosophy and engineered design. Stay tuned because exciting things are on the horizon.”
Founder Don MacLean thanked the Canadian mining industry for its decades-long support. “When I designed the first MacLean scissor bolter all those years ago with my original senior engineer, we thought that the very best case was a market potential of a few hundred units,” MacLean said. “I was wrong, and this production milestone is proof that the 900 Series solution was sound. I can’t wait to introduce the next generation of MacLean bolting that will be our foundation for global market growth over the next 30 years.”