LCM-3D Mud Conditioner

Separating solids from liquid with a combination of hydrocyclones and an LCM-3D shale shaker.

Render of LCM-3D-Mud-Conditioner
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Merging hydrocyclone simplicity with rugged, dependable shaker performance

The Brandt LCM-3D Mud Conditioner uses a combination of hydrocyclones and an LCM-3D shale shaker to separate solids from liquid. The combination of hydrocyclones used is dependent on the specific application. Cone combinations typically consist of desander cones (10-in. or 12-in.) and desilter cones (4-in.) properly sized to handle over 125% of the flow rate.

The cones are mounted above the screen deck of the shale shaker. The drilling fluid (mud) is fed first through the hydrocyclones, where the discharge cascades down over the shale shaker screens. This reduces the amount of mud attached to the discharged cuttings. To further increase separation efficiency, an optional variable-frequency drive (VFD) G-Force Controller is available for the LCM-3D shaker to enable the operator to tune the G-forces exerted on the shaker bed to one of the three settings: 6.1 (NORM.), 6.5 (HIGH), and 7.1 (MAX.).

The screens used on the shale shaker determine the cut point for the LCM-3D Mud Conditioner unit. When weighted muds are used, screens are selected to ensure the majority of the weight material is returned to the mud system. Typically, API 170 screens (>82.5 to 98.0 microns) are used to reduce the amount of weight material discarded by the screens.


  • Cones constructed of lightweight, durable, polymeric material
    • Provides high-temperature tolerance, chemical and erosion resistance, and low-cost replacement
  • Cones connected to feed tube via preferred flange connections
    • Offer tight, leak-proof operation
  • Cones use involute feed entry
    • Separates solids more efficiently than conventional tangential entry, conserving fluid and reducing wear at the feed inlet
  • Wear-resistant ceramic insert molded into the underflow of 4-in. desilter cones
    • Resists abrasion to a higher degree than standard polymeric material, ensuring long-lasting life
  • Customized cone configurations
    • Ensures that customers receive the proper configuration for their application
  • Unique, durable shaker basket design
    • Provides optimal mud coverage of screen surface
  • Linear shaker motion
    • Separates and rapidly discharges solids
  • Patented drying deck of shaker
    • Reduces mud losses via a dry solids discharge
  • Exclusive shaker deck angles (0º, +5º, +5º, +5°)
    • Keeps mud pool volume small to increase screen life
  • Utilization of four repairable pretension screens on shakers
    • Offers 33.4 ft² (3.1 m²) of repairable screening, offering cost savings
  • Individual seals on every screen
    • Eliminate screen leakage
  • Patented pin-and-hole screen securing system
    • Secures screens to shaker basket snugly so they will not slip or slide once in place

Specifications and Dimensions

Hydrocyclones 12-in. 10-in. 4-in.
Nominal inner diameter 12 in. (305 mm) 10 in. (254 mm) 4 in. (101.6 mm)
Material Cast urethane Cast urethane Cast urethane
Capacity 500–600 gal/min (1893–2271 L/min) 400–500 gal/min (1514–1893 L/min) 50–65 gal/min (189–246 L/min)
D50 cut point in water 60–80 µm 50–70 µm 15–20 µm
D50 cut point in drilling fluid >200 µm 90–120 µm 35–70 µm
Weight each 105 lb (48 kg) 85 lb (39 kg) 13 lb (6 kg)

All hydrocyclones require 75 feet of head; D50 is dependent on the feed particle size. 2-inch cones are also available upon request.  

Shale Shaker LCM-3D
Dimensions (L x W x H) 12113∕16 × 80 × 53 in. (3094 × 2032 × 1346 mm)
Weir height 43 in. (1092 mm)
Weight 5,460 lb (2479 kg)
Screen quantity 4
Deck angle 0°, +5°, +5°, +5º
Basket angle Adjustable, -5 to +5°
Screen type Pretension, repairable
Screening area 33.4 ft² (3.1 m²)
G-force 6.1 Nominal G’s*
Motor type (2) Vibra-Motors
Motor power (each) 2.5 hp (1.9 kW)
Vibration motion Linear

*Optional VFD G-force controller is available offering three selectable G-force settings: 6.1 (NORM.), 6.5 (HIGH), and 7.1 (MAX.).  

Typical Mud Conditioner Configurations
  Quantity Desilter Quantity Desander  
  Cones (4-in.) Cones (12-in.) Hydrocyclone Capacity
LCM-3D 16/2 Mud Conditioner (low capacity) 16 2 1,000 gal/min (3785 L/min)
LCM-3D 24/3 Mud Conditioner (high capacity) 24 3 1,500 gal/min (5678 L/min)
Dimensions and Weights L × W × H Weir Height Weight
LCM-3D 16/2 Mud Conditioner (low capacity) 1211516 × 87¾ × 100½ in. (3097 × 2229 × 2553 mm) 43 in. (1092 mm) 7600 lb (3450 kg)
LCM-3D 24/3 Mud Conditioner (high capacity) 137916 × 90 × 110116 in. (3494 × 2286 × 2796 mm) 43 in. (1092 mm) 8900 lb (4041 kg)
  • BRANDT Mud Conditioner Headers Spec Sheet (English)
  • BRANDT Mud Conditioner Headers Spec Sheet (Portuguese)
  • BRANDT Mud Conditioner Headers Spec Sheet (Spanish)
  • BRANDT Mud Conditioner Headers Spec Sheet (French)
  • BRANDT Mud Conditioner Headers Spec Sheet (Arabic)

BRANDT Mud Conditioners

BRANDT mud conditioners are manufactured in Conroe, Texas, and are engineered to meet the specifications demanded by the application in most cases. Mud conditioners are just one of the many solids control and waste management offerings that BRANDT supplies to the oil and gas industry. NOV Quality Management System is ISO 9001-2000 certified.

Mud conditioners were first designed to remove fine-drilled solids from weighted muds without excessive loss of barite and fluid. Their primary purpose now is to desand weighted muds. Due to advancements in fine screening at the flowline, the mud conditioner’s use in the weighted hole section is much more limited than in previous decades. Consequently, the mud conditioner is used in this application to desand the mud until the primary shakers can maintain the sand content of the mud to a trace. The secondary use of a mud conditioner occurs when environmental conditions prohibit the use of a reserve pit. The mud conditioner is used to reclaim liquid from the hydrocyclone underflow while drilling hole sections with unweighted mud.

Typically, multiple desander cones (12- or 10-in.) and desilter cones (4-in.) are mounted above the screen deck of a shale shaker. The size of the solids (in microns) removed by these units is directly correlated to the size of the cone. The larger the cone, the larger the size of the particle removed and vice-versa. The mud is fed first through the hydrocyclones, where it subsequently cascades down over the shale shaker. The remaining solids, including barite, are returned to the mud system.

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