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close this bookSoil Block Presses (GTZ, 1988, 38 p.)
View the document(introduction...)
View the documentAcknowledgements
View the documentTechnology
View the documentEquipment
View the documentCriteria for selection and purchase
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Vs CINVA ram

Manual Block Presses Produced in Africa 2

Sohanpal Metal Works Ltd.
P.O. Box 904
Tel. 411 58, 28 93


The VS Cinva Ram, which was developed by Thomas Kuby, GATE, is a modified version of the famous Latin American machine, it was named after. The modifications were developed on the basis of observations of local working conditions in Tanzania and problems encountered with other blockmaking machines. The main design objectives of the VS Cinva Ram were high resistance to rough use, prevention of overloading and simplification of manual operations.

The all-steel block press is designed to incorporate components that can be made in local workshops equipped with flame cutter, arc welder, metal saw, drill and lathe. Repairs can thus be carried out in any local metal workshop.

Some interesting details are, for instance, the absence of a latch to hold together the lever arm and yoke, which instead has a handle on one side to pull the yoke and lever arm onto the mould cover. A short handle on tine' mould cover makes it easy to swing it back for filling. A welded-on stop, however, prevents it from being turned too far back, in which position distortion and breakage are inevitable.

The lever arm is a length of pipe with one end curved, to avoid inserting the wrong end into the socket and minimize the risk of injuries associated with straight projecting parts with sharp corners. Transportation is greatly facilitated to pushing the lever arm through two projecting rings at the side of the press. The machine is carried between two workers, each holding one end of the lever with one hand, and a handle at the side of the mould box with the other.

Operating the VS Cinva Ram

The manual operations of this machine are the same as those of the original CINVA-Ram, except that the lever arm and yoke need not be held together with a latch.

Apart from frequent oiling of the mould, regular lubrication of all moving parts and daily cleaning, no special maintenance is required.

Technical Details

Size of machine (length x width x height)

45 x 30 x 70 cm (18 x 12 x 28 in)

Weight of machine

71 kg

Size of crate for shipment

60 x 40 x 80 cm (24 x 16 x 32 in)

Weight of packed machine

100 kg

Standard block size (single mould)

30 x 14 x 12 cm (11.8 x 5.5 x 4.7 in)

Maximum nominal compaction force

8 tonnes

Nominal compaction pressure

1.9 N/mm² (280 p.s.i.)

Compression ratio

1.50: 1

Energy input/transmission


No. of blocks per cycle/output rate

1 /40 blocks per hour

Labour force required (incl. excavation and mixing)

6 men

Price (ex works) valid June 1988

VS Cinva Ram (depending on size of order)

300 - 400 US$