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Gizmo
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Posted: 25 October 2011 at 4:04pm | IP Logged Copy link to clipboard   Quote Gizmo

OK, I've got a block of land with a running creek. I need to get water to my planned house pad. Bore water is the common approach, its clean and usually drinkable, filtered through the rocks. I got a price to put down a bore, its a bit expensive at the moment, about $5,000 plus, depending on depth, 30 plus meters.

What about the creek? Its running, but I will need to filter it before I can use it for drinking water. No problem, I have two 5,000 liter tanks. I'll pump the creek water into one, and use a filter to clean the water as it enters the 2nd tank. Tank 1 will be for toilet, irrigation. Tank 2 for drinking, washing, etc.

How do I get the water up from the creek? Hydraulic ram, yeah, but I would prefer to use the creek flow for a small hydro generator. I do have the old farm windmill, which I had planned to use on the bore. I could use it to pump air, and feed the air into a air driven pump in the creek. The windmill will be about 100 meters away from the creek, and most likely 7 meters above the creek water level, so it wont be able to suck up the water.

You can buy air driven pumps, about $2,600. Is there a cheaper way, or could I make one? Form what I've read, they have a chamber with a float inside. The chamber is under the water level. On start up, water enters the chamber through a check valve, then compressed air pushes the water out a 2nd check valve, up into my tank. When the water level gets low, a float closes off the incoming air, and opens a vent to let the air inside the chamber escape. The chamber refills with water, and either the same or another float switches the air valves back, and the cycle starts again.

Now I'm drawing little diagrams of float operated air valves that flick open and close, but I wonder if there is something out there I dont know about that would work for this application.

Glenn

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Posted: 25 October 2011 at 5:28pm | IP Logged Copy link to clipboard   Quote Gizmo

Here's a basic pic.



The whole thing is under water. A float slides up and down a push rod thats attached to a 2 way valve via its control lever. The push rod has two stops, one above and one below the float. The air valve has two positions, when down it lets air out of the chamber, so it fills with water. When up, it lets compressed air into the chamber, forcing the water out through the check valve.

The spring is to snap the valve from one position to the other, and thats the bit I'm wondering if is commerically available, or I need to make something.

Glenn

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Posted: 25 October 2011 at 6:07pm | IP Logged Copy link to clipboard   Quote Gizmo

Just thinking of another way. A small tank to store the incoming air, and once it reaches a preset pressure, releases the air into the water filled chamber. This forces the water out and up the pipe. A bleed hole or float valve would then release the air in the chamber and let it fill up again.

This could send some air up the water pipe, not really a problem, but could be a bit noisy at the tank, it would be farting!

Glenn

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Posted: 25 October 2011 at 6:12pm | IP Logged Copy link to clipboard   Quote Oscar4u

Hello Glen
How much wind would you get at the creek? If you build a twelve or so meter tower? Seven meters is not much of a height difference. A windpump is very easy to make. See my recent photos. Cheers Oscar

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Posted: 25 October 2011 at 6:38pm | IP Logged Copy link to clipboard   Quote VK4AYQ

Hi Glen

I would use the windmill you have restored and mount it up where the wind is good then run a cable down to the pump jack at the creek, I have used this before and is very effective simple and foolproof.

All the best

Bob

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Posted: 25 October 2011 at 7:18pm | IP Logged Copy link to clipboard   Quote Bryan1

Hi Glenn,
What I did to test those 3" bores on my place was make up a pipe arrangement and used compressed air to raise the water. Basically all it is, a fine mesh filter to keep any crap out then just above the filter drill a hole in the gal pipe and put in a bronze air baffle (like what is used in pneumatics). Then at the end of the pipe I put some 1-1/2" green line poly pipe to come to the surface. Due to the depth being 60 metres I put 70 psi down and after about a minute water came pulsing out. The ides is the smaller the bubbles the greater surface area they give so better efficiency is with tiny bubbles.
Some where in my backup files is a pdf of using air to pump water from the depths but in your situation you won't need a very high psi pressure to bring the water up.

I'll try to explain in words how I made my setup. I got a 1 metre length of 2" gal pipe with screwed ends. On the lower end I put the fine mesh inlet filter. About 12" above the filter I drilled a hole to fit the bronze air baffle and used fitting to get it in the centre of the pipe. On the other end I used rural fitting to fit the poly pipe then fixed some 6mm SS wire on for raising it back out.

Give that way a go mate, provided you can keep atleast 1/2 of the pipe in the water it should work a treat.

Cheers Bryan
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Posted: 26 October 2011 at 3:22pm | IP Logged Copy link to clipboard   Quote Gizmo

Thanks for the idea's fella's, all good.

I've been scribbling diagrams on bits of paper for the last day and I think I've come up with a pump that will work with one moving part. It should work in 300mm of water depth and pump as high and as quickly as the air pressure can force it. I'll see if I can build a prototype in the next couple of days.

The long term plan is to build a windmill, probably a vertical made from 44 gallon drums, to drive an old air compressor I have.

Glenn

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Posted: 26 October 2011 at 6:11pm | IP Logged Copy link to clipboard   Quote norcold

Don`t know about using compressed air for pumping. Very inefficient. Why not a floating solar pump(just the pump to cut suction height.)Solar panels mounted on frame out of creek. Depending on the amount of water you want to pump those cheap($60-100) Chinese diagprahm pumps on ebay pump about 17l/min@40psi with 200watt of solar and controller(Choice Elect) and seem to give about 2years of service before the bearings need replacing or go with something like a Lorentz(expensive but the bees Knees). Or place your windmill on creek bank with pump as low as possible and run suction to creek possibly a floating suction valve. Could be just me Glenn but have not seen much success from compressed air water pumps.

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Posted: 26 October 2011 at 6:36pm | IP Logged Copy link to clipboard   Quote Oscar4u

Hello Glenn
what is to stop you putting the windmill at the creek? That seems the easiest. Cheers Oscar

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Posted: 26 October 2011 at 6:47pm | IP Logged Copy link to clipboard   Quote Gizmo

The creek floods. Its been known to go over the bank and flow about 100m overland, fast flow. I would prefer not to have the windmill in flood water, incase a log takes it out or the footings get washed out.

An 12v DC electric pump is a good idea, but I'm keen to see if I can make this pump work now.

Glenn

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Posted: 27 October 2011 at 10:00am | IP Logged Copy link to clipboard   Quote MacGyver

Glen

If you should decide on the displacement technique using compressed air, there is a ball valve that's called an "Ortega Valve" which might be handy. Basically it's a "T" valve and the handle shuttles water either left or right of the tee.

To use it in your application, water could be let into the tank with the valve shifted to the left while at the same time a linkage uncorks an air vent. When the float signals the tank is full, the valve slides to the right letting in compressed air while another linkage opens the discharge port. One valve, two linkages, a 12-volt solenoid or two and a couple corks!




Just an idea.


. . . . . Mac (retired plumber)

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Posted: 27 October 2011 at 11:18am | IP Logged Copy link to clipboard   Quote mac46

Hi Glen,
I don't know you'r lands lay...but you should be able to locate an area of suitable ground water fairly close to the surface. It may not have a large capacity for perminate long term use, but generaly speeking the subsurfice ground layers are'nt level, leaveing bowl shaped depressions here and there that retain water.
Water barrels from runoff...ofcourse you already have them, ect. ect.
Kind reguards...Mac46

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