Bluefield Round Table: The Benefits of Remote Internal Collaboration

Aug 5, 2020 4:49:00 PM

This week, Bluefield launched webRE, our first free remote reliability support service. We modelled webRE on the way Bluefield has worked for many years. Going all the way back to our founding, Bluefield’s team members have had the ability to reach out via email to the entire team to ask technical questions, or for general support to find ways to get their work done smarter and more efficiently.

With the advent of remote collaboration tools like Microsoft Teams, our ability to work as a team by sharing technical information and helping each other out has been turbo-charged to the point where we wanted to make it available to the wider industry.

We asked a few of our team to share their experiences with remote collaboration by asking them the following question:

Share an example of how your Bluefield teammates helped you out with a technical query over Teams or a group email discussion.  How did it add value to the client?


James Owen

Whilst onsite conducting a Work Management Audit, the client asked what we expected for turnaround time on oil sample results. I was able to send out a Teams message, and within 10-15mins I had received multiple responses including some great discussion around improving turnaround time in remote areas.

I was then able to provide the client with a comprehensive email that provided him with some great insight and learnings. He said getting the feedback from so many sources so quickly, gave him confidence that his experiences at site were not uncommon, as well as giving him some good ideas on how to manage sampling turnaround differently.

Watch James’ series on materials management here.


Brent Boterhoek

Recently a client reached out asking for information on rebuilding tracks on a 4100 shovel. I had not seen tracks rebuilt so I followed up with a contact that advised that they cannot be rebuilt because they have a high amount of Manganese that work hardens to improve wear ability but this also prevents them being welded successfully.

I put together a pdf to show the failure mode to look for (cracking in the track ears) and how to trim them to extend life by re-profiling the engagement lugs and toe-nailing the shoes.

Also added some additional information for the client on the rollers which is another critical area to look at on the 4100XPC’s. I have seen 2 machines with early hour failure on the rollers as per the last photo in the attached doc. Target life according to the OEM is 60,000 hours for the rollers but they are showing signs of failure (spalling) as early as 30,000 hours. Worthwhile doing a check on a service day.


Peter Yates

The client did not know what regular maintenance meetings i.e. DRE shutdown, OEM monthly meetings were occurring, where or when which made it difficult for Managers, Superintendents, and peers to sit in on particular meetings, observe and support. I was asked by the client if I could help.

I posted a request to see if anyone had a maintenance meeting package, I must admit I wasn't confident. To my pleasant surprise a package came through (thanks Gerry) within an hour with a note ".... not saying it's perfect". And while it wasn't a perfect fit for my client and site it saved me so much time drafting from scratch.

I modified and added a couple of additional meetings and issued to the client. The feedback was very positive from the client "you guys know what you are doing".

Read Yatesy’s blog post about his experience in the mining industry here.