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close this book A training manual in conducting a workshop in the design, construction, operation, maintenance and repair of hydrams
close this folder Guidelines for users
View the document Workshop: tools, equipment, materials
View the document Hydram construction materials
View the document Sample worksheet for final materials list
View the document Suggested schedule for hydram workshop
Open this folder and view contents Construction of a PVC hydram time: 4-5 hours (for demonstration purposes)

Guidelines for users

A. Training Objectives: By the end of the workshop, participants will be able to:

· survey and evaluate sites for potential hydram projects;

· articulate and apply hydram theory;

· use correctly basic water and distance measurement techniques and formulas for proper sizing of hydrams;

· select proper ram design and size;

· list tasks and resources necessary to develop a water source site for hydram operations, and

· design water distribution system including storage tank, stand pipe, supply lines, etc.;

· construct a pipefitting and/or concrete hydram;

· operate, maintain, troubleshoot and repair hydrams;

· identify issues in training local community members in the installation, operation and maintenance of hydrams;

· identify physical, social and institutional requirements for the successful application of this technology; and

· describe an action plan for using this technology in their real life situation.

B. Training Activities: The workshop design requires the involvement of each participant, individually, in small groups, and the large group. The activities are designed to provide maximum opportunities for participants to practice the skills they're acquiring and consider issues specific to their sites.

Activities include:

· demonstrations

· problem-solving (individually, small group, large group)

· skill practice, guided construction (small group)

· group discussion (small and large group)

As the workshop evolves, participants are required to solve increasingly complex problems on paper and in skill practice. Throughout the workshop, participants are asked to identify key issues in hydram application and project development.

C. Manual Organization

The training sessions each include learning objectives, recommended time, suggested procedures, and the specific tools, materials and resources required. Notes to the trainer are in the right hand "margin" and space is provided there for additional notes.

All handouts appear twice in this manual. Once at the end of the session in which they are used and collectively as an appendix for easy duplication.

D. Preparation for Training

The following is a list of logistics and tasks that need to be completed during the planning process. Specific tasks that need to be completed before each session are listed within the session.

1. Become familiar with the training design, sessions and materials in the manual.

2. Gather information about the availability of skills, equipment and materials at or near the training location. The practical nature of this workshop requires the availability of basic carpentry, plumbing, and some metalworking tools, as well as parts and materials for the different ram constructions. A checklist is provided.

3. Based on the information gathered, and proposed applications, select the constructions that will be covered in depth.

Note: The concrete construction is easier to understand after participants have actually constructed a simple ram, i.e., pipefitting or clear PVC. The concrete construction must take place over at least 6 days in order to cure enough to operate.

4. Identify the training site. The ideal training site provides space for the full range of training activities within easy walking distance from each other:

· classroom space for small and large group work; chalkboard, newsprint, slide projector, table space;

· enough workshop space to accommodate all participants in construction activities; workbenches, tool storage, first aid station;

· field activities:

1) a stream/springs nearby where participants can practice Measuring water flow, distance, head;

2) an area where participants can take a number of measurements to determine an ideal location for a hydram. The site must offer a range of choices;

3) space where a demonstration ram can be installed easily, or proximity to an actual installation;

4) experimentation: space must be available for participants to operate and troubleshoot hydrams. These activities represent 2-3 days of the workshop. The space must provide sufficient stations for constructed rams - 1 station per 3-4 participants is recommended. The water source must supply a constant Q and variable H. An example experimental station is provided at the end of this section.

If these facilities are not near each other, then travel time must be included in the schedule and transportation arranged.

5. Determine number of trainers required. 1 trainer: 7 participants is an ideal ratio, but with a strong technical assistant trainer, a 1:10 ratio is manageable. The important thing is participant access to skilled resources during their practical work.

6. Announce the workshop and identify participants. Send each participant information on dates, logistics, a set of workshop objectives and the site information worksheet, included here in appendix of handouts. (1B, 2E)

7. With other trainers, develop norms for the training team, clarify roles and expectations, review status of steps 1-6 to date, develop a final schedule, make training and preparation assignments; decide when to do review exercises, and midpoint and final workshop evaluations.

8. Duplicate handouts.

9. Finalize materials list, based on number of participants and decision on types of construction. Order materials, and arrange for transport to training site.

10. Assemble handouts (pre-punch for ring binders if possible), chalkboard, chalk, newsprint, markers, tape, notebooks, ring binders, schedule.

11. Construct clear PVC ram if necessary for demonstration. The instructions are included here. Session 2 is readily understood with the assistance of this visual aid. If you determine that each participant should construct one, then schedule that early on in the workshop.

12. Certificates of completion add a nice touch, and should be designed and printed.

Workshop: tools, equipment, materials

Quantities vary according to training group size.

Approximately 1 complete set per 4 trainees.


On hand at training site

Can be borrowed from:

Can be purchased from

Approx. Cost:

Standard size buckets, e.g., 20 liter, 5 gal


2-3 55 gal drums


3-6 21" pipes 3/4" Diam. diameter


Lumber for molds, weirs, braces


Sight levels


Carpenters levels


Measuring tapes




Pipe Wrenches












Various size nails


Misc. hardware, nuts, bolts, washers, etc


Gasket material: rubber, cork


Rubber sheet 3/16" - ¼" thick can be inner tube


Steel plate 3/16" - 1/4" thick


Pipe joint compound or Teflon tape


Access to metal working Facility for cutting, drilling, grinding stall plate



Hydram construction materials

The specific construction materials vary, and there is a range of possible adaptations and variations. At a general level, we need to know what typical sizes of standard pipe and pipefittings are available and approximately what they cost.

Please indicate: (yes or no) if the parts are generally available, i.e., one could find them readily in a plumbing supply/hardware store; if they can be specially ordered, how much time is required; approximate unit cost for-the following:






Steel pipe, standard 3/4" length _ in/cm.







Pipe Tees *









Reducing Bushings *

2"x 1"


2"x 3/4


Sweep - 90°



Sweep - 45°



Female adapters





Male adapters 3/4"





* Pipe Tees

*Reducing Bushings






Clear PVC pipe



PVC cap

3 "


Gate valve



Foot valve



Check valve



A cement ram can also be made, reducing the need for many of the above parts, so please indicate approximate cost of cement:



This list is by no means all inclusive but represents key items. Detailed parts lists will be developed prior to the workshop.

Sample worksheet for final materials list

Materials List

Type of Ram :

No. of Rams to be built :






Suggested schedule for hydram workshop

Day One

Day Two

Day Three

Day Four

Day Five

Session 1

Sessions 3 & 4 Field

Session 7

Session 10 Part I, II

Mid workshop evaluation

Session 2


Session 8

Session 11

Session 13

Session 3 & 4 Theory

Session 5

Session 9

Session 12


Session 6


Day Six

Day Seven

Day Eight

Day Nine

Day Ten

Session 10, Part II - cont

Session 14

Session 16

Session 10 Assemble,

Session 19

Session 13 - present results

Session 15

Session 17

Operate Concrete ram

Session 20


Session 18 l


Construction of a PVC hydram time: 4-5 hours (for demonstration purposes)


To construct a hydram from clear PVC pipe-fittings and fabricated valves.


The PVC hydram is an excellent training tool because it enables trainees to see the hydram components moving while the ram is in operation, and to observe the directional flow of water as shown by suspended solids in the water. The PVC hydram is of limited use for actual water pumping, however, as it will last only about one month in continuous use. For this reason, it is suggested that one or more PVC hydrams be constructed prior to the workshop, and used to illustrate the introductory sessions (Session 1 & 2) on the first day Of the workshop itself. The construction could be part of a pre-workshop staff training program, if desired.


2 1¼ tees

1 ¼%" coupling


1 3/4" male adapters

4 ½ #6 sheet metal screws


1 1¼" cap

2 1"x ¼ x 20 bolts


1 14"x 1¼" pipe

1 2"x ¼ x 20 bolt


5 1¼"x 3/4" reducing


6 ¼ x 20 nuts

assorted washers


1 24"x 3/4" pipe



PVC cleaner, PVC glue, 1/8" sheet rubber, TFE tape


Heat source (such as propane torch, campfire, oven) ¼-20 tap, saw, miter box, electric or hand drill, 1/8" drill bit, 13/64" drill bit, screw driver, 7/16" wrench or adjustable wrench, knife, tape measure


This is presented in session format, in case it needs to be done with all participants, in addition to trainer preparation.





Warm up the middle 12" of the 24" long 3/4" PVC pipe, making sure it is heated evenly without scorching or blistering. After PVC is pliable bend it into a 90° angle with about a 5" to 6" radius. Allow it to cool, then cut 5" off each end. (See #3 and #8 on Attachment A.



Cut the 1¼" PVC into two pieces, one 12" long (#6) and one 2" long (#19), making certain that the ends are cut square and are de-burred.



Cut the 1¼" coupling (#13) into two cylindrical Pieces just to one side of the land. Cut of the bottom of one of the 1¼"x 3/4" reducing bushings, and sand it smooth on both sides to form a 3/8" thick PVC washer (#14), Glue the washer inside the piece of coupling without the land, flush with one end. Discard the other half of the coupling and the remainder of the bushing.



To make the valves, cut two circular pieces of rubber to the same outside diameter as the 1¼" PVC pipe. Cut out of each round a horseshoe shaped piece and a ¼" hole as shown in Attachment A#7.



Place four wraps of TFE tape around Note the 2 types of 1¼" PVC pipe. Lay on top of this one of the rubber valves you have cut out. Handout. Force this into the coupling half that has the PVC washer glued into it. Attach bolt (#12), nuts (#10) and washers (#15 & #16) as shown in Handout. Drill two 1/" holes (one on each side) through this impulse valve assembly and into of the 2" piece of 1¼" PVC. Then screw two sheet metal screws into these holes (#18).

Note the 2 types of stroke adjustment t illustrated in the handout. That labeled "alternate" is slightly more complicated to construct but provides easier adjuster. Materials required for the alternate stroke adjustment E .

¼ x 20 bolt and nut

½" wide x 2" long piece cut from PVC pipe

2½ #6 sheet metal screw


Cut ¼" off the bottom straight through leg of one of the tees (#1), making certain the cut is square and de-burred. Place four wraps of TFE tape around the male end of a 1¼" x 3/4" reducing bushing. Attach the 1" x ¼" bolt with nuts and washers to the remaining rubber valve as shown in the handout. Then place this rubber valve inside the bottom of the tee you just cut off. Force the TFE wrapped reducing bushing up to the rubber valve. Drill two 1/8" holes into this assembly and secure with 2 sheet metal screws.



Next, glue the rest of the pieces together as shown in the Attachment. Be sure to follow the instructions on the glue.



Drill a 13/64" hole through one of the flats on the reducing bushing just below the check valve, making certain that you also drill through the 3/4" pipe as well. Drill a 1/8" hole up from the bottom of this bushing, intersecting with the 13/64" hole. Tap the 13/64" hole with a ¼-20 tap then insert a 3/4" ¼-20 bolt with lock nut (#9 & #10).



After the hydram(s) have had time to dry, hook them up to a drive head and test them.


Attachment A : PVC Hydram - illustration

A PVC Hydram