Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast
Results 1 to 10 of 13
  1. #1
    Veteran Member hunterridgefarm's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2005
    Posts
    1,998
    Location
    Western NC
    Tractor
    Kubota L3130DT, Kubota L185DT, JD LX277

    Default Home Made Ram Pump

    1)Refer to this link Use a hydraulic ram pump to continuously pump water

    2)Scroll down to Hydraulic Ram Pump Links

    3) Click on "Build your on Ram Pump" (Clemson University)

    Has anyone ever used a system like this? It basically runs off the water flow. I was talking to a few older gentlemen about pumping water from a creek that flows at the upper edge of my river bottom. They told me growing up they would use a ram pump that would "run" off the flow of the creek and actually pump water up hill. When they told me it used no gas or electricity it caught my attention.

    I have a couple of water barrels I can fill from this creek and the ram pump would be ideal if I can get it to work. I have a decent flow on a down hill grade that should provide the pressure needed to pump the water. I could turn it on when needed fill my barrels or irrigate a section of the field if the flow was sufficient.

    I do have a river that flows the entire length of the bottom but it is about a 10' drop from the bank. I was going to buy a gas operated pump for the river but if the ram pump works it would be a lot better since it does on use a power source other than the water itself.

    It will be 3-4 weeks before I have time to build one from the plans on the web site and I'll let you know if it works.

    Has anyone ever heard of one or used one?

    David

  2. #2
    Super Star Member EddieWalker's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Posts
    15,281
    Location
    Tyler, Texas
    Tractor
    Several, all used and abused.

    Default Re: Home Made Ram Pump

    David,

    No personal experience, but I spent some time researching them. You might want to do a search on here with "Ram Pump" going back a few years. We had some discussion on it in my pond building thread "Creating a Lake" that might help.

    A few keys to making them work is the amount of fall that you have in your creek. From where the water enters the pipe, to where the pump is located, there has to be a certain amount of fall. I think it was two feet over 60 feet distance, but I'm not sure. I was trying to figure out how to put in a partial dam to gain the needed change in height if I was going to build one.

    Another concern is that there is maintenance involved. They have a tendancy to loose their prime and stop working. The more I looked into it, the more this seemed to come up. Those who are selling them, or promoting them don't mention this.

    Finally, my main reason for abandoning the idea was that even with the largest pipes possible, I couldn't get enough water out of it to make it worth the effort. My reason for wanting it was to add water to my pond. At ten million gallons and 4 acres of surface water, a few hundred gallons a day was about the best I could hope for.

    The bigger the pipe, the more water it will pump. You have to use galvanized pipe for the inflow line. PVC has too much flex and it's important to have a rigid line.

    Love to hear about somebody actually doing this and how it works out.

    Eddie

  3. #3
    Veteran Member hunterridgefarm's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2005
    Posts
    1,998
    Location
    Western NC
    Tractor
    Kubota L3130DT, Kubota L185DT, JD LX277

    Default Re: Home Made Ram Pump

    Thanks for the info Eddie. I'll do a search and read the thread.

    I have an old road bed at one end of my field. It was used in the 1940's before they re-routed the road. On this section of old road bed I have a "A" frame culvert that is 3-4' wide and 3' tall at the peek, solid concrete, that the creek flows thru. It is 12-15 foot long. The culvert is big enough I could crawl thru it with no problem. There is about a 3 foot drop from the upper end of the culvert to the lower end and a 1-2 foot drop to the creek bed at the lower end.

    My original idea was to take a 3" PVC pipe with a "rectangle" type funnel to one end. Slide it to the top of the culvert to catch part of the flow and and have the other end raised enough to allow me to fill water barrels. I think this will work but have not had time to do the actual measurement to know for sure. I am not to the point of needing to irrigate the entire field yet.

    I'll try to take a picture this weekend of the culvert.

    I thought the ram pump would be easier since I could leave the barrels there and have them fill overnight. I'll use which ever one works .

    I was able to get some 30 gal plastic/PVC barrels from a local car wash for $20.00 each. I plan to add the faucet near the bottom for a hose connection and use it for simple drip irrigation. I have an old 3-pt fertilizer spreader that the cone was rusted with holes in it. I removed the cone and the barrels fit inside the 3-pt part so I can transport them easy. So now I have a 3-pt hitch water barrel.

  4. #4
    Veteran Member hunterridgefarm's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2005
    Posts
    1,998
    Location
    Western NC
    Tractor
    Kubota L3130DT, Kubota L185DT, JD LX277

    Default Re: Home Made Ram Pump

    Here is a sketch of what I am trying to do with the PVC pipe.
    Attached Files Attached Files

  5. #5
    Veteran Member
    Join Date
    Jan 2002
    Posts
    2,264
    Location
    SE Wa

    Default Re: Home Made Ram Pump

    BAck when I was a kid, our neighbor had one. Pumped all the water they used for both house and garden. No pressure, of course but a big barrel overflowed 24/7. The drop in the creek was not all that much but then I don't know how long the infeed pipe was. Rise to the house had to be at least 50 ft and I suspect more.

    Maintenance? They did mention having to do some, but didn't seem to be any more than normal maintenance on a well system takes. Ain't much to go wrong with them.

    Don't get the 'lose prime' bit as everything runs flooded with water. You could lose the air bubble I suppose which shouldbe a simple job to let in more air.

    Harry K

  6. #6
    Epic Contributor MossRoad's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2001
    Posts
    23,747
    Location
    South Bend, Indiana (near)
    Tractor
    Power Trac PT425 2001 Model Year

    Default Re: Home Made Ram Pump

    Those things run off of water pressure. The more fall they have, the more water they can pump uphill. I have a friend that has one on his farm. They diverted a small trickling spring stream into a pipe that dropped about 10' into one of these and it was able to pump water uphill to a tank about 50' higher than the spring. It was a small, 1/2" hose that just ran at a trickle... 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. It makes a click sound every few seconds as the valves open and close inside it. I think he called it a water hammer pump or something like that. The neat thing is, it uses no power except for the falling water.

    There are some charts on that website(which I have looked at before) that tell you how much water flow is needed to pump water a given height at a given flow rate. Before you build one of these, make sure you have enough drop, or fall, in your supply to make the thing work.

    Even if you can only get a few gallons an hour out of the thing, that is 72 gallons a day that you do not have to haul manually.

    Interesting project. Best of luck.
    MossRoad

    Click On My Little Tractor
    To See Pictures And Videos
    Of It In Action!!!


  7. #7
    Elite Member SPIKER's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2002
    Posts
    4,352
    Location
    Ohio, Jeromesville, Ashland County
    Tractor
    Jinma 284

    Default Re: Home Made Ram Pump

    I buy some summer veggies from a local Amish place that uses one. It seems to work well for them, no electric for regular pumping but they actually had a goof flow of water out/over the little concrete basin they used for drinking/irrigation water out of the well, the stream out back is where the pump was getting the source water flow from...

    I bet the over flow was close to 5gpm
    as far as rest of system I don't know how where or actual flow at either location but lady said it worked great...



    mark M
    I may remember why I went to the other end of the shop, I'm just afraid once I get there I'll forget how to get back!

  8. #8
    Veteran Member
    Join Date
    Jul 2005
    Posts
    1,924
    Location
    NH seacoast & Coos County
    Tractor
    Kioti DK45S

    Default Re: Home Made Ram Pump

    David, Here's The Spiral Pump: A High Lift, Slow Turning Pump another option for water powered pump. MikeD74T

  9. #9
    Elite Member Skyco's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    Posts
    2,718
    Location
    SC/NC

    Default Re: Home Made Ram Pump

    I'm very interested in these self powered pumps also, and have studued them a little bit. My NC mountain property has a small spring that usually keeps a small, 1/4 acre maybe, pond filled during normal weather. Lately though the drought has caused problems with the spring stopping at times of extended no rain. Last summer for the first time in 3 years we've owned the place the pond actually lost visible water with just mud left in the bottom. The area was 19" short on rainfall last year!
    Anyway I want to be able to fill a 1000 gallon water tank I plan to install. It will be higher than the spring, maybe 20 ft or so higher, hard to tell by eye, it will also be 500 +- feet away on a ridge above the area we "camp" in. No power available on site except generator or battery.
    I am part way through making a battery powered boat bilge pump in a 5 gallon or so catch bucket that runs when full to pump the water 5 ft or so vertically uphill to a nearby intermediate tank of 50-100 gallons. I'll then pump water from that to the main tank there using a small gas powered pump I have, when I'm there of course. The spring flows up to 10 gallons a minute at good times or nothing at drought times...when it is doing 10 gpm and I happen to be there it would be no problem to transfer water to the big storage tank. The idea is to capture, say a weekends worth of water during the week when I'm not there and ideally do it for free.
    I'd sure love to make something that required no power. The battery thing will work but I'll have to incorporate a low voltage cutoff to not damage the battery then charge it with a generator when I am there. PITA.
    Last edited by Skyco; 05-08-2008 at 07:05 AM.

  10. #10
    Veteran Member hunterridgefarm's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2005
    Posts
    1,998
    Location
    Western NC
    Tractor
    Kubota L3130DT, Kubota L185DT, JD LX277

    Default Re: Home Made Ram Pump

    I tried putting a 1" piece of PVC pipe I had thru the culvert to the top end. Even though it was'nt ridged enough I was able to get a good flow up to about a foot off the creek bed.

    I only need the pump to get the water high enough to fill a barrel and then maybe a 250-500 gal holding tank. The amount of flow is not that important since I will let it run continuously with a return flow to the creek should it fill before I use it.

    It does not cost much to make one so I'll give it a try in a few weeks when things slow down...after I get the field planted.

    I'll let you know the results.

Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •  
© 2014 TractorByNet.com. TractorByNet is a registered trademark of IMC Digital Universe, Inc. Other trademarks on this page are the property of their respective owners.