Underground Construction - November 2019 - 29

called Melfred Welding & Manufacturing), but it was Dick who truly
pioneered and advanced the HDD industry.
In the 1960s, Melsheimer developed the concept, equipment and
tools for the "cut-and-bore" method, using horizontal earth boring
to facilitate the rapid installation of underground gas and electrical
utilities. This was the original horizontal directional drilling method
using a pulling swivel and product pipe connected to a backreamer,
which would cut as it was pulled back towards the boring machine.
In the early 1970s, Melsheimer led a team that developed the first
electronic walkover locator for tracking the drill bit underground.
Melsheimer's innovations also greatly improved the safety of underground boring. In the 1960's, he developed insulated attachments
and tools that greatly reduced the electrical hazards of slurry boring.
In the late 1990s, he led the development of the Zapalert electrical
strike alarm, which became a standard feature on all horizontal
directional drills worldwide.
It would turn out that Melsheimer's early patents, which he kept
open in hopes others would continue to build off his initial work, also
proved instrumental in defending the industry against a major threat
in late 1990s. L.K. Comstock & Co. had purchased an HDD patent and
began efforts, including filing lawsuits, to stop alleged infringements
of its patent rights. Comstock was requiring contractors to negotiate
a license and royalty arrangement and even sued a manufacturer.
Melsheimer realized the threat to the growth of the HDD industry.
He produced many "prior art" records (photos, catalogs, drawings,
etc.) that showed Melfred Borzall had developed this method and
demonstrated the process to contractors decades earlier. He aided
court cases, defending contractors against the patent infringement
allegations. Comstock suddenly settled pending court cases (details
were private but apparently in favor of the contractor defendants)
and no further lawsuits were filed before the patent expired. There is
no doubt that Melsheimer's efforts helped thwart a serious threat to
the growing HDD industry.
Dedicated to keeping HDD technology moving forward,
Melsheimer has played an important role in multiple industry
associations. Melsheimer was a charter member of the Horizontal
Earth Boring Council of the Equipment Manufacturer's Institute
(now known as the Underground Equipment Council of AEM).
Melsheimer was a key contributor to the Council's early activities,
including development of safety signs for underground equipment.
He was also a charter member of the North American Society for
Trenchless Technology (NASTT).
To this day, when Melsheimer sees a contractor tearing up a road
to install some sort of utility, he stops to ask the crew, engineers,
and inspectors why they are doing it this way, and makes sure they
are aware of the benefits of horizontal directional drilling. He's not
trying to sell anything. He does it because he is passionate about
getting utilities underground in the most non-invasive, productive
and safest means possible.

Cherrington
For over 50 years, Martin Cherrington has created horizontal
drilling technologies and methodologies through ownership of
his HDD contracting entities Titan Contractors (1964-1979) and
Cherrington Corporation (1984-2009) and HDD manufacturing
entity Tidril Corporation (1976-2004). He is credited with
accomplishing the first HDD river-crossing in 1971 and first
frac resistant river- crossing in1978.
Cherrington has been granted 27 U.S. Patents relating to
directional drilling, and is a recipient of the NASTT Hall Of Fame

Dick Melsheimer testing one of his early hydraulic drills.

The 1971 HDD river crossing of the Pajaro River in California was
accomplished by Martin Cherrington (left) and his crew.

HDD Reunion, Hall of Fame Schedule
TUESDAY, JAN. 28
* HDD Educational Program @ UCT including the annual HDD
Contractors Roundtable
* Exhibition with HDD manufacturers/suppliers
WEDNESDAY, JAN. 29
* HDD Educational Program @ UCT
* HDD Hall of Fame Pioneers interactive panel
* HDD Reunion Networking Reception
* Formal Introduction of 2020 HDD Hall of Fame Class
Thursday, Jan. 30
* HDD Emerging Technologies @ UCT
For more information, go to uctonline.com, hddreunion2020 or
send an email to hddreunion2020@gmail.com.
UConOnline.com | NOVEMBER 2019

29


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Underground Construction - November 2019

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Underground Construction - November 2019

Contents
Underground Construction - November 2019 - FC
Underground Construction - November 2019 - IFC
Underground Construction - November 2019 - Contents
Underground Construction - November 2019 - 4
Underground Construction - November 2019 - 5
Underground Construction - November 2019 - 6
Underground Construction - November 2019 - 7
Underground Construction - November 2019 - 8
Underground Construction - November 2019 - 9
Underground Construction - November 2019 - 10
Underground Construction - November 2019 - 11
Underground Construction - November 2019 - 12
Underground Construction - November 2019 - 13
Underground Construction - November 2019 - 14
Underground Construction - November 2019 - 15
Underground Construction - November 2019 - 16
Underground Construction - November 2019 - 17
Underground Construction - November 2019 - 18
Underground Construction - November 2019 - 19
Underground Construction - November 2019 - 20
Underground Construction - November 2019 - 21
Underground Construction - November 2019 - 22
Underground Construction - November 2019 - 23
Underground Construction - November 2019 - 24
Underground Construction - November 2019 - 25
Underground Construction - November 2019 - 26
Underground Construction - November 2019 - 27
Underground Construction - November 2019 - 28
Underground Construction - November 2019 - 29
Underground Construction - November 2019 - 30
Underground Construction - November 2019 - 31
Underground Construction - November 2019 - 32
Underground Construction - November 2019 - 33
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Underground Construction - November 2019 - 35
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Underground Construction - November 2019 - 37
Underground Construction - November 2019 - 38
Underground Construction - November 2019 - 39
Underground Construction - November 2019 - 40
Underground Construction - November 2019 - 41
Underground Construction - November 2019 - 42
Underground Construction - November 2019 - 43
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Underground Construction - November 2019 - 46
Underground Construction - November 2019 - 47
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Underground Construction - November 2019 - 49
Underground Construction - November 2019 - 50
Underground Construction - November 2019 - IBC
Underground Construction - November 2019 - BC
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