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About Henniker Directional Drilling

As your local expert in horizontal directional drilling, Henniker Directional Drilling provides business owners and communities with long-lasting pipe and conduit. Our process does not require excavation, which preserves critical infrastructure and reduces time and costs. We belong to the NH Good Roads Association, Northeast Trenchless Association, The Granite State Rural Water Association, and The Northeast Gas Association. The Henniker Directional Drilling crew is certified in pipe fusion. Our 21 years of industry experience make us the right choice for pipeline and conduit services.

Our Team’s Vision


Our founders Jeff Martin, Danielle Martin, and Rick Patenaude saw directional drilling as a complement to the well company's services. Throughout New England, directional drilling is in demand to make utility connections and road crossings for the growing commercial and housing markets. Directional drilling helps preserve the region's established road infrastructure and is often the best option to keep traffic moving.

Jeff worked at Ingersoll Rand for 15 years, bringing his expertise to HDD that influences the tools the crews choose and use in the field. He is known for successfully completing challenging projects others have been reluctant to accept. He has been involved in specialized drilling projects since 1986 with Ingersoll Rand, Versa Drill, and Atlas Copco thru 2008. Henniker Directional Drilling has completed bores 2000 feet in length, up to 30" pipe, and in rock and soil conditions.

HDD is focused on safety, accuracy, and completion on a timely-manner.

What is HDD?

Directional drilling has traditionally been applied in telecommunications, electric installations, oil, forced water, sewer lines, and gas distribution. More recently, HDD has been applied to horizontal environmental wells and geothermal systems. Contractors are developing new HDD applications every day.

The directionally controlled horizontal drilling process was developed in the U.S. and is commonly used for crossing under natural or manmade obstacles, especially river crossings. This method has revolutionized complicated river crossings for pipelines, which were initially done by conventional dredging methods or were rerouted through long distances and crossed over at a bridge location.

This method is an outgrowth of the oil well drilling technology, developed in the early seventies by Titan Construction, Sacramento, California, U.S.A. The first installation was accomplished in 1971 for Pacific Gas and Electric Company, which involved the installation of approximately 600 LF (180 m) of 4-inch (100 mm) diameter steel pipe under the Pajaro River near Watsonville, California. Prior to 1979, the method was limited to the installation of short lengths. Since 1979, the method has advanced tremendously, enabling long crossings with a wide variety of pipe sizes.

Directional drills are relatively compact with a small footprint, allowing them to get into tight spaces and situate on the side of the road without impeding traffic. A small crew is required: a drill operator, mud mixer/vacuum operator, and a tracking equipment operator. The tracking operator electronically tracks the progress of the drill head beneath the surface using a handheld tracker. We then gather data from the sonde located in the drill head just behind the drill bit. The sonde collects data, which include location, depth, roll angle, pitch, and temperature to help the driller adjust the direction of the bit and control the bore path.

To prepare for the installation, the drill operator must first calculate the route, or bore path, of the pipe along a shallow, underground arc. The operator must also estimate the load applied to the pipe during pullback and select an appropriate pipe for the project. While boring the path, a bentonite polymer mix is injected into the hole to stabilize the hole, remove cuttings, reduce torque, lubricate the pipe, and cool the bit.

When the pilot hole has been bored and the bit emerges in the exit pit, we then remove the drill bit, then place the reamer on the end of the pipe string, and pull back to enlarge the borehole. Generally, the reamed hole is about 50% larger than the pipe.

Lengths of polyethylene pipe are then fused together. The pipe is heated and the molecules are transformed into a crystalline state that enables a seamless joining of the pipe. This results in a fusion joint that is as strong or stronger than the pipe itself. Strong fusions are essential, as the service pipe is subject to soil loads without side support from the surrounding hole. This load requirement is a major difference between HDD pipe and pipe installed in a trench.

Who We Serve

We serve all businesses and municipalities in Connecticut, New Hampshire, Massachusetts, Maine, and Vermont. We also serve communities under development as well as established neighborhoods and rural areas.

What We Provide

Traditionally, the installation of underground utilities involved open trenching. The contractor had to excavate around existing utilities to get to the depth required to install the conduit. Costly sidewalks, pavement, brick paving, sod, and other surfaces had to be open cut and replaced. There was always a risk of hitting existing underground utilities during excavation. Additionally, the excavation usually causes interruption of traffic and inconvenience to nearby businesses. Our range of services encompasses any conduit or pipe that contains fluid, gas, and cables or fibers. Consult our team whenever you need:


Contact Henniker Directional Drilling Today

For more details about our services, who we serve, and how we can help your business or community grow, get in touch with us at Henniker Directional Drilling.