Sunday, 13 August 2017

Fixing up the tank part 1

One of the effects of the bushfire was that our water tank got fried.  At a glance it looked OK apart from a scorched overflow pipe.
However the NRMA Insurance assessor (from A J Grant) said that at a later stage we needed to get the tank checked as the liner may have been damaged by the heat.  On getting it checked by the tank installer (David Robinson of Region Tanks of Cooma) he found that not only was the liner damaged but the tank infrastructure was heat affected.  He felt that the tank was not not likely to last long and recommended it be replaced.  This was accepted by NRMA and the demolition of the old tank starts tomorrow.

Before that be done the water has to be drained out of the tank.  The essential aspect of this was to get the water well away from the work area, and preferably without creating an erosion gully the size of the Grand Canyon.  Ideally we'd to get it down near our dam roughly along the yellow line shown here. (The vegetation in that image is no longer there!)
But how?  While I used to have some poly pipe that did not survive the fire.  Fortunately David - very helpful as always - was able to supply some hoses.
 Not only did they fit nicely on my sack trolley but they also reached nicely to the target area.

Checking the distance from tank to dam on Google Earth, knowing that the hoses are close to 60m long and making a guess at how much I strayed from a straight line I was able to enlist Uncle Pythagorus to calculate that the vertical distance from the tank to the dam was 22m.  (Google Earth suggests its only 8m but I think it unreasonable to expect much precision over a short distance when being measured from a satellite.  Later, I looked back and the tank is lower than the huge Yellow Box on the lawn, so 22m is too much - perhaps split the difference and say 15m!

Here is the outlet from the tank.
Here is the outlet again, slightly modified by the alloy coupling being installed and the flat hose connected.
It was a tad fiddly to get the clips shut due to the nearness of the inlet pipe, but nothing some lubricant (thanks David) and a tap with the stilsons couldn't fix.

Then it was "hi ho, go with the flow"!
It did need a bit of walking up and down the hill to remove kinks from the hose but by about 1630 it was running very well.

About 20:45 I went to check on things and it was still running well.
On going up to the tank the hose was looking a little flatter than it had earlier but the tank was about half empty after 4 hours.  Its got another 11 hours to finish the job!

By 0645 on 14 August there was no water coming out of the hose.  On going up to the tank the float was still at about half full, which was a worry.  However tapping the float dropped it down.
Looking inside the tank a few holes were visible and I suspect those creases were probably not intentional.
Whatever: it is as required for Dave to work his wonders on Monday.

This has caused us to think back to our time in Tanzania.  There was a block next to us in which some locals were living.  I suspect they were squatting and certainly didn't have water connected.  Whenever it rained they'd put a large number of buckets out to catch the run off from the roof.  Unfortunately I couldn't find a photo of this, but when it didn't rain they had to buy water from a barrow boy.
If they could live like that permanently I reckon we can get by for a couple of days.  Of course in Tanzania we mzungu didn't have a great issue as our landlord sent a truck round with water every couple of days!


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