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January 7, 2011

Cold & Boring

Seriously it was freezing cold - 30 degrees was what my truck said because that is where I sat most of the time - and we were boring under the road to connect to field tiles!

Tile lines drain excess water from the fields to open ditches or creeks. This network of underground pipes needs maintenance, repair or complete replacement occasionally, in addition to new lines where needed. The original tiles in our area were made of clay sections, 12 to 24 inches each, many laid by hand several decades ago. New lines are plastic corrugated pipe, which are much more reliable. A good tile system dramatically improves a field by allowing earlier planting, in better conditions, preventing the crop from being waterlogged during rainy spells, preventing the young seedlings from "drowning out" in ponds of standing water, and help prevent erosion.

Yesterday we put in a new pipe under the road to connect our field tile to the main outlet across the road.


 They used the backhoe to dig big holes on each side of the road to connect the big long black pipe to the tile on each side.
 This is a boring machine - it takes those segments of pipes with a drill bit on the end and bores into the ground - they use this machine for pipes, wires anything that needs to be place underground - otherwise you would have to dig trenches.

As long as the guy was running the machine it would just keep grabbing a new section of pipe automatically.

 Here is the boring pipe in the pit that they dug.

Eventually this pipe laying across the road will be under the road.  He was moving it into place.

This gray box this guy has measures how deep the boring pipe is under the ground - he measured constantly so that it was always at the right depth and grade.

Once it broke thru on the other side of the road they removed the smaller bit and attached this bigger one that the boring machine would then pull back thru the and pull the pipe under the road.

 This bit was huge and had to be moved into place with the backhoe and took two guys to screw onto the boring pipe.

Then they pushed the tile pipe into the hole to hook up to the bit.


 Then they turned on the boring machine to check that the Benoite solution was coming out all the outlets of the bit - this is used to help stabilize the soil around the tunnel and keep it from just caving in.


All set and ready to go back in the other direction.


Here they all are waiting for the pipe to come thru - I am sitting in my truck - it was freezing out there - I did keep getting out and walking over there checking on the progress ready to take the dramatic picture of the bit emerging from the earth pulling the pipe - BUT then as the bit was working it's way towards the hole it broke lose the bank of the hole and knocked a lot of dirt down in the hole and so while I sat warm in my truck and they cleaned the dirt out and slowly inched the bit farther and when I thought they were close I braved the cold once again and this is what I saw -

the end of the pipe!  It was extremely anti-climatic - I am not really sure when it actually was done - go figure the guys didn't wave at me to come look, no one jumped up and down and cheered but when I finally ventured from my warm truck this is the final picture I took - they hooked it up to the field tiles on both ends, back filled the holes and everybody left!

I guess field tile is not exciting just practical!

4 comments :

  1. Good thing I became a dairyfarmer! Much more exciting! -:)

    Wwwmlittlemissbookwurm.blogspot.com

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  2. field tile does work so some fields do need it. We even used it where we build a new shed just to drain the water away.

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  3. Now that's a job that should have been on Dirty Jobs! We just tiled a 80 acre field this past Fall...tiling can be a huge money maker in our eyes...down the road, of course!

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  4. From the bits and pieces of conversation I am hearing, our tile guy, a good friend, is having trouble FINDING the tile to connect to in oneo fo our fields. I'm staying inside and away from all the "flowery" adjectives and adverbs flying around that area! Too much heat from the words ;-)

    GREAT PICTURES! You are going to have to become a photo-journalist and tell your story with pictures!

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