The earth doesn’t yield up its treasures without a fight, which is why the mining industry is a tough business, run by tough people who demand uncompromising standards of quality and reliability in their machines and equipment.

Pilot Crushtec International has spent more than two decades serving the local and international industry and during this time has earned a justifiable reputation for the quality of its crushing, screening and ancillary equipment, all of which are backed by world-class after sales service and support.

The Jet Park-based company’s alignment with renowned Finnish manufacturer Metso, is seen by many industry players as a logical development for both organisations and it is a strategy that is already bearing fruit both in local and sub-Saharan African markets.

Recent examples of the synergies that can be achieved with the combination of a thoroughly professional marketing operation and, arguably, one of the leading producers of heavy-duty crushing and screening equipment, is illustrated at two widely divergent mining operations.

Mining manganese is extremely lucrative, but it exerts a severe toll on equipment. In fact, the material in its purest form is so hard and brittle that it is impossible to machine. A crushing contractor, recently awarded a contract from a mining house to process ore-bearing waste, specifically opted for a Metso jaw crusher, as experience had proved that Metso products possess the strength and reliability to perform exacting tasks.

“The customer who is operating at a site in the Northern Cape had enjoyed considerable success using Metso products in the past and when this particularly testing contract became a reality, a Metso crusher was the obvious choice. Thanks to the close working relationship we enjoy with Metso, we were able to accurately assess the customer’s needs and supply a Lokotrack LT120 mobile jaw crusher from our strategic stock of mining products,” says Pilot Crushtec international CEO Sandro Scherf.

The contract in question requires not only the processing of this notoriously difficult material but a consistently high level of output for which the LT120 is ideally suited. This jaw crusher can reliably accommodate a feed size of up to 700 mm and is fitted standard with a remotely operated rock breaker for any oversize material, while delivering a 0-150 mm product.

Confidence in equipment is a prerequisite in the contracting business and in this instance the operator is secure in the knowledge that the Metso LT120 is backed by an extended warranty, providing cover for up to five years or 10 000 hours. What’s more, the Pilot Crushtec International technical team has recommended this durable jaw crusher for further use in a whole set of arduous applications, including granite, dolerite and iron ore.

Head north to Zimbabwe for another success story involving Metso Lokotrack products – this time, a fleet of ST2.8 scalpers, also supplied by Pilot Crushtec International.

The process began around 18 months ago, when the customer entered a project to extract a high value alluvial ore in a remote rural area. Reliability and cost effectiveness were the major criteria and based upon Pilot Crushtec International’s extensive African experience, an order was placed for three of these heavy-duty scalpers.

Metso products have a reputation for delivering world-class performance in even the most challenging environments and this case proved to be no exception.

Scherf describes the working environment and the product attributes that encouraged the operator to subsequently increase the size of his fleet.

“The ore is found in thick clay above a layer of bedrock as much as two metres below the surface. The terrain is particularly difficult, rules out the possibility of bush clearance and there are the added problems of seasonal rainfall accompanied by the danger of flash floods.

“The scalpers, however, excelled under these conditions. They have an aggressive screen box providing a throw some 50% more powerful than comparative products. This benefit, accompanied by the ability to fine tune the scalper to suit a variety of soil and surface conditions, enabled our customer to consistently achieve an output of more than 300 tph an hour, comfortably meeting expectations, both in terms of productivity and operational costs.

” He adds: “The robust construction of the Metso Lokotrack ST2.8 scalper, combined with energy saving features, like the ability to remove the third conveyor when not required, has paid major dividends in respect of both cost effectiveness and operational safety. This is no idle boast as, within a few months of operation, the customer placed an order to double his fleet which means we now have the impressive sight of six scalpers, extracting value together, in a single remote location.

” These two examples demonstrate the services both companies provide to mining companies, right across Africa.

However, there is more to come. Pilot Crushtec International recently introduced its Technical Analysis Service that provides Metso owners with an in-depth analysis of their machine’s condition and capabilities, on site and at their convenience.