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Sometimes A Generator Ain't The Answer....

Post in 'The Inglenook' started by BrotherBart, Jul 16, 2013.

  1. BrotherBart

    BrotherBart Hearth.com LLC Mid-Atlantic Division Staff Member

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  2. Lake Girl

    Lake Girl Minister of Fire

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    One of the perks of living at the lake - we have frequent power outages but we always have water. Little more difficult in the winter but that's what augers and saws are for ;lol
    Backwoods Savage likes this.
  3. Retired Guy

    Retired Guy Feeling the Heat

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    Isn't that the same area where a water main break caused serious flash flooding a few years back?
  4. Adios Pantalones

    Adios Pantalones Minister of Fire

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    It's the answer when you're on well water. There's a trade where living in a city is greener as far as individual impact, but you are relying on it all working as designed
    Shadow&Flame and Jack Fate like this.
  5. BrotherBart

    BrotherBart Hearth.com LLC Mid-Atlantic Division Staff Member

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    Gonna be easy to tell if you have a Prince Georges resident in your office for a few days. >>
    firebroad and Joful like this.
  6. peakbagger

    peakbagger Minister of Fire

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    I used to work for a water utility years ago, they had multiple parallel supply lines but the weak point was the valves. It was a gravity system with no pumps. They generally did not operate the big valves required to isolate a major line and would just hope that when they did they would work. Back about 15 years ago, they lost the entire regions water supply when a 30 inch line broke. It took them a couple of days to figure out where the leak was as the leak was in a swollen tidal creek and everyone just assumed the flow was from the original flash floods that caused the line to break. They subsequently installed lots of sensors to figure out where the water was going. Even if the valves work, they have to close them quite slowly as the momentum of flowing water can cause a lot of damage if closed too quickly, on a big line it may take 8 to 12 hours. One of our jobs was to test fire hydrants, the repair crews basically followed us around chasing after the leaks and weak spots that inevitably would appear after we cranked them full bore.

    There is lots of old buried infrastructure in the US that when it fails is going to raise a lot of havoc. I have an artesian well plus an old surface well that I can use a bucket on.
    Adios Pantalones likes this.
  7. Jags

    Jags Moderate Moderator Staff Member

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    Old farm well here. Still have the hand pump if need be, but as long as the genny and the pump runs, I gotz water.
  8. firefighterjake

    firefighterjake Minister of Fire

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    A bit off topic here . . . but at the fire museum here in town they still have some of the old wooden water mains on display . . . neat to see . . . logs with holes bored through them to carry the water.
  9. begreen

    begreen Mooderator Staff Member

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    If we lose water we will have to shlep it. Fortunately there are some year round active springs nearby.
  10. Seasoned Oak

    Seasoned Oak Minister of Fire

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    This just makes the case for a rainwater recovery system.Im putting one together right now for my storage building and workshop where if i hook up city water service i have to pay high minimum bills and very high sewer fee rates. All for just running a sink to wash hands or some pressure washing now and then. Not worth $1000 a year for that.
  11. Joful

    Joful Minister of Fire

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    On display? We still have them in use in Philly! Lost a big one just a few years ago... major havoc.


    Any idea how to locate an old one that's been possibly buried? I know this 1773 farm must have had one, but no idea where it would've been. Perhaps under the new addition, which would explain why water shoots up thru the floor in one particular spot, when it rains hard. ;lol
  12. Seasoned Oak

    Seasoned Oak Minister of Fire

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    How did they fashion a joint between logs? At least one that did not leak profusely.
  13. Joful

    Joful Minister of Fire

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    wee02.jpg

    pia04.JPG

    Still got log pipes feeding the spring house at my uncle's 1740 farm. They're set deep enough in the clay, that apparently they don't rot. I've never gone inspecting them myself... that spring house probably hasn't been opened in 50 years... snake haven!
  14. begreen

    begreen Mooderator Staff Member

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    Similar to plastic pipe. The end was slightly smaller in diameter for several inches. That slipped into the next section's end that was recessed to receive the skinnier end. Seal with pitch or tar before connecting.
    Wooden-Water-Pipe.gif
  15. peakbagger

    peakbagger Minister of Fire

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    Our plant in Berlin NH had several wood stave pipelines. Some of the them were 16 feet in diameter. There were three used as penstocks to feed a hydro electric plant. They typically lasted 50 years unless someone pulled a vacuum on them. On rare occasions an operator would make a mistake and pull a vacuum on the pipe which would pull in stave and then the entire line would collapse in on itself.

    The hydro ones were replaced with steel but there is still 70 year a buried 5 foot diameter line in service. Someone hit it 10 years ago and when we went to excavate it, the supplier saw the condition of the line and told us it was condemned and not to dig it out anymore. Its still running but when it does fail its going to create quite a mess as it is tapped off a major river and it would take awhile to shut off. .

    Wood staves used to be used as they were the least cost method of building large pipelines using local materials. The bands and fitting could be fabbed on site and whatever local trees were available cout be sawn into staves on a portable sawmill with a downstream planer head.
  16. Seasoned Oak

    Seasoned Oak Minister of Fire

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    One problem i see is contaminated water entering the pipe through a joint during a pressure drop inside the pipe. I cant see those joints as being 100% all the time.
  17. BrotherBart

    BrotherBart Hearth.com LLC Mid-Atlantic Division Staff Member

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    Update. At the last minute four guys were able to get an old valve open and test a line and able to bypass the failing line and keep everybody's water on during the repair. They didn't think they would be able to open the old valve and didn't believe the bypass would hold the pressure and flow. So they didn't consider it an option. But it is working. Now the utility is catching hell for that after telling residents and businesses they were going to be without water.

    Damned if they do. Damned if they don't.

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