How our two leading water well rigs compare

Diamondback and TH60 are uniquely designed to provide customers a customized rig for their particular application

Epiroc offers a solid line of hydraulic top-drive water well rigs, a market we’ve trail-blazed for over 50 years. While we have a many water well rigs drilling all across the globe, the U.S. market seems to set the standard for top of the line, quality rigs that produce results. Our most popular rigs for the U.S. market have become the TH60 and the Diamondback. With good reason – they offer safety, reliability, and are made to meet specific customer needs.

The TH60, known for its dependability and time-proven design, has been our legacy drill over the years. With electric over hydraulic controls and our electronic air regulation system (EARS), the TH60 set the industry standard on control systems and is one of the reasons many manufactures have since updated their control systems to electric over hydraulic controls.  

On our water well rigs we take a balanced approach and keep what works well and only add technology where it makes sense and where there is a clear advantage. On the Diamondback we have further advanced our controls with a programmable computer on board. This adds logic and safety checks that allows us to add automated features and keep the driller informed with a large screen at the driller’s console showing system pressures, gauges, and troubleshooting screens for quick diagnostics.

When considering which may be right for you, drilling down to their unique features might help.


Built with similarities

  • 40,000 lb pullback models
  • 1,070 cfm air options with 350 psi
  • Load sense design – on-demand hydraulics to get the power you need on the fly
  • Electronic Air Regulation System – puts out the flow required and not more
  • Options include winch, Peterbilt or International truck, water injection and mud pump offerings

Contrasts in features

While the TH60 and Diamondback have a few important similarities, there are considerable differences. The Diamondback DB80 has more lifting power with 80,000 lbs pullback, while the TH60 is a close second with 70,000 lbs pullback.

The towers themselves are also different. The Diamondback has a 38-foot and 34-foot tubular tower design that offers more room around the table. The rotary head can also slide out to either side of the tower for picking up pipe or moving out of the way when bringing in large diameter casing, up to 24 inch diameter. The TH60 has a lattice-style tower known for its robust design that houses the carousel inside the tower for more room on deck and around the rod box. This allows for quick exchange of getting pipe from the carousel to the rotary head.

The Diamondback is less weight than the TH60 if configured similarly and the Diamondback has smaller airend options with 550 cfm / 200 psi. The Diamondback also has some improved designs with a cyclone hydraulic tank design, a T-shaped PTO transfer case with direct mounting pumps, dump angle mast, hands free rod loader, and wireless remote options for the helper.

Differences in operating

At the end of the day, it is up to the driller and how they run their operation to see what rig will better fit their needs. The TH60 is hard working and easy to maintain, while the Diamondback has enhanced performance, more options, and advancements in controls. Either one makes a great investment for any water well business who is looking for a drilling rig that will increase their production and put them a step up from their competition.


Quality you can count on

As specialists in the drilling industry, we know the importance of a drill rig going to work day in and day out without constant upkeep or repairs. To ensure our rigs meet our high standards, we start with the parts from our suppliers. We hold our suppliers to a higher standard because we know our end product must hold up in the most extreme conditions.

Our Epiroc employees are well trained industry professionals who take pride in each build. We have over 23 factories worldwide and, as a company, we have perfected our manufacturing process, knowing just what it takes to instill quality at every step of the build. After assembly, the Diamondback and TH60 are both run through vigorous testing at our Garland, Texas, plant to ensure they are performing at the highest standard and are ready for delivery so our customers will get the best product available in the industry.

Now, and into the future

Going into 2021, we have made some improvements to the TH60 design and have done several customer special orders on TH60s this year to incorporate new ideas and options. We have also launched a deck engine version of the Diamondback with a multi-purpose dump angle tower. This can be a Tier 3 or Tier 4 deck engine rig, with multiple trucks available, depending on the region requirements and customer preferences. We are always looking for ways to innovate and grow our products while staying true to our basics and what has proven to work well for our customers.

Looking ahead, the trends for water well rigs will continue to be hands-free for safety and advancements with technology. With our hands-free rod loader, hands-free breakout system, and a handheld wireless remote control for the winch, we are laser focused on making our drills ready for the specifications and market demands that lie ahead.

I thoroughly enjoy the water well industry and the type of men and women who make this industry what it is. Most people do not even have a clue what goes into preserving and supplying a precious commodity like clean water into their everyday lives. It is a pleasure to work alongside these great companies and contribute to this great industry through the products we design, build, and support.

If you are interested in more information on Epiroc and our products, please contact your local Epiroc dealer who can set up a demo or go over specific details in person.

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