Maintenance Wooden Handpump

For some time now the wooden pump frame has been in a bad condition. Due to this pumping was not possible anymore. After a long time of lying around, this summer the components of the pump were dusted off and the renovation was a fact. Most of the wood was rotten and had to be replaced, although some components could be re-used. Nevertheless the renovated pump wasn’t to be as colourful as the old version, so the components that had not rotten still had to be cleared from their old coating. Instead of paint, the wood would now be stained. The steel piping and base plate also required some work, and were repainted in a colour best described as british racing green, or simply darkish green. With the use of the construction manual and old pictures the frame was assembled.

But before all this, the pump itself had to be checked and mounted. It turned out that the top of the pumping rod was missing. Therefore a piece of rod was cut at the right length and mounted to the existing rod. At this moment the pump seemed to be complete, and assembly of the pump was the logical next step.

Nevertheless it was evident quickly that the pumping did not go well. The water that was collected seemed to be flowing back into the well, so that all the pumping effort was in vain. The pomp was drawn from the well, and opened up for inspection. In order to open the pump, it had to be dissected, a system that proved inconvenient. When the pump was opened the piston valve turned out to be jammed. As it was loosened it was free to move again. Another interesting observation was the large amount of sand and debris in the system, this explained the jamming of the valve. Besides this the components appeared to be alright. After the pump was cleaned of dirt the gauze at the bottom of the pump was replaced with a finer grid gauze so that less debris would be able to enter. After this the pomp was assembled in a more convenient way than previous, using steel plumbing parts so that the pumping tube could be easily mounted to the pump. Now, finally, the pump could be installed.

And it worked! The water was slightly dirty at the beginning, but this problem solved itself quickly. One drawback of the system however is the fact that the well empties quickly. Whether this is because the pump is to high in the well or whether the sublime renovation made the pump to good for the well, is still subject of discussion.

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