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Working in the Canadian oil sands: 6 figures in 6 months!
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Atlantic Offline
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RE: Working in the Canadian oil sands: 6 figures in 6 months!
(01-18-2013 10:32 AM)Tresdus Wrote:  Wow, thanks for the write-up, sounds exciting...

Is a driller at all similar to MWD or how much hard work does drilling involve?

So from an operational stand point drilling is divided into two main groups:
the drilling crew and the engineers.

The drilling crew works on the actual rig and do all the physical manual work of putting pipe together, drilling it down and keeping the rig running.

The engineers don't work on the rig (or very little). 95% of their time is spent in separate shacks onsite about 100-200 meters from the rig. They study mud samples, project the course of the pipe underground, watch the computers and make reports. They do very little physical work and have it pretty handy. One downside is that they have a lot more responsibility if things go wrong.

The drilling floor works on a hierarchy system:

Leasehand to floorhand to roughneck to motormand to derrickman to driller.


The engineers work on a more even playing field. They consist of the directional driller, MWD and geologist. Most rigs will have 2 of both. One for the day shift and one for the night.

Above all these guys you have the company man, toolpush and rig supervisor. They are in charge of everyone and make all the big decisions.


So to answer your question a driller is a physical job that requires a lot of experience on the rig floor. It is also a very technical job and teaches people skills that if they wanted could be used to job over to being an MWD and then after a few more years a Direction Driller.

An MWD on the other hand is a very technical job requiring no real rig experience but an aptitude for technical work: engineering, science, maths etc. Although any rig experience is an asset.

To become a driller takes 2-5 years in the rigs and once in the position you are in charge of the drilling crew. You work 12 hours shift and have to, on top of running the rig floor, make sure to delegate to your rig crew all the necessary jobs that keep a rig running. So with the right mindset and persistence it is possible for anyone to become a driller.
01-19-2013 03:31 AM
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RE: Working in the Canadian oil sands: 6 figures in 6 months! - Atlantic - 01-19-2013 03:31 AM
Risks, opportunities, import/export - OSL - 03-16-2013, 06:58 AM