Sunrise Dam is a West Australian gold mine owned by AngloGold Ashanti. PumpEng has supplied dewatering pumps and parts to this site over several years. In this site report, we speak with a representative of the Stores section about that experience and why some parts that may appear the same can perform very differently in the field. We also speak with a Pump Fitter about the work environment and pump back-up service.
Underground Gold Mine
We're a gold mine. It's an underground operation. We are currently contracted to our client, which is AngloGold Ashanti. We provide all of the underground mining services for them.
Pump Parts Crew Prefer
Primarily we've got all of the parts set up with PumpEng, but every now and then our inventory team will review what we've got catalogued. They might select something different on the basis of cost. I don't really get too much of a say in what we get to stock and what we don't. But I can tell you that our pump crew definitely prefer the PumpEng parts.
We find that it's always best to use the parts from PumpEng because they're compatible and they last longer. We've actually had our pump crew ask us to stop buying from other companies because they prefer to use the PumpEng parts. They're definitely a favourite with the crew.
No Compatibility Issues
Sometimes other suppliers will give us parts that are technically compatible with the kind of pump we use. We find that there are slight differences between the quality of PumpEng parts over those supplied by their competitors. Even though they appear to be only small differences, they end up being important ones.
Better Mechanical Seal Quality
I can give you an example relating to the 8-kilowatt or 20-kilowatt pump repair kits we buy from PumpEng. The mechanical seals in them are much better. They're much easier to apply. They last a lot longer. This is why the pump crew always specifically request PumpEng parts when they're putting orders through to us.
Better Customer Service
We mostly deal with one person at PumpEng, and he gives us great customer service. He bends over backwards to get us out of trouble if we have any dramas. He also frequently checks in to see how we're going or if there's anything that can be improved. As a company, they are always looking at how to make the process a little bit easier for us. To give you an example we had some issues last week. He rep drove from his office to drop extra pumps out to our warehouse to get them there in time for our trucks. He does go the extra mile to make sure we're all good.
PumpEng Have Our Back
I'd absolutely recommend PumpEng. We've been with them for several years, and I think that there's a good reason for that. There are a lot of different suppliers out there on the market. I get lots of visits from them. They're all coming in and trying to give me the old pitch and tell me their parts are cheaper, their service is better. We stick with PumpEng because of the quality of pump parts and standard of service. If anything goes pear-shaped, we know that they've got our back.
This is an interview we talk with a recent Pump Fitter at Sunrise Dam. This discussion covers the pumps on-site, the pumping environment and his experience with backup and support for those pumps.
Dewatering At Sunrise Dam
I’ve been working as a pump fitter at Sunrise Dam. In that role, I was responsible for all the underground pumping equipment. We were running the 8 and 20-kilowatt pumps. PumpEng supply the majority of the pumps on this site. There was other machinery or tooling that needed to be done for them in the underground work environment, like cable tensioners and diaphragm pumps.
It’s a tough environment for pumps because the water is very salty on the site. It is seven times saltier than seawater. The pumps are also sucking up mud or small rock particles with that water.
I found the PumpEng customer service really good. Our PumpEng guy helped a lot. He’d go out of his way to make sure that we had everything we needed. When I’d request stuff he’d say, "Look, let me make a call. We will try to get something up to you as soon as possible.” He'd deliver on that and was interested in any feedback I had to offer.
If you are thinking of switching over to PumpEng I’d say, “It's all to do with the backup. I think PumpEng supplied a good backup service. In general, everything is available and they do their utmost to get parts to you when you need them. We have had a good experience working with them."