HVCC Pump House

The Genesis
The following is from “Surface arrangement at bituminous mines” Copyright 1907 – “The coke puller requires from 3/4 to 1 hour to water down an oven and from 500 to 800 gallons of water …” – which requires something to pump that water. With eight ovens watered down each day that means there is a requirement for 8,000 to 6,400 gallons of water.

I needed a pump house.

I found the plans for a Pump House in ‘Railroad structure and estimates‘ pub 1918. The Pump House was on the M.St.P.&S.S.M.Ry.

The plans indicate it was built from Concrete Blocks. I decided to do it in brick .. specifically the distressed O scale brick from Rusty Stumps. Notice that they show the gasoline engine, exterior fuel tank and shaft to well. I wouldn’t need a well since my pump house would sit right beside the Caddo Creek and I liked the idea of an oil engine (compressed ignition) rather then a gasoline engine simply because I might be able to power my diesels using the same fuel.

First Design
Like I said, since my Pump House would be by the creek, it could draw from that instead of a well. Just sitting on the ground would be boring I figured, so put her on a tall foundation with left side will actually in the creek with the intake at the base. Since I planned to detail the interior I moved the door to the left and added a window on the front .. and duplicated the left side for the right. The foundation would be of concrete, the front would have a dec with stairs down to a road. I planned to put something on the left side leading down to the intake (sluice gage) .. prob a ladder and a door to access that area.

The 3d drawing to the left was created in Sketchup. This program is excellent for such work as you can see how something will work in three dimensions prior to actually constructing it.

I used Gatorfoam for the first time and quite like it. The biggest problem I ran into using this is where it is butt-joined as you are trying to bond the cut end which is basically foam to the hard skin of the Gatorfoam. I ended up using a caulk which worked pretty well (thanks for the hint from Dallas Mallerich)

Those little gluing clamps work great by the way. The magnets pull really hard against the other piece and hold everything aligned.

A spot for the structure
I evacuated a place for the pump house foundation. One of the nice things about using the builder’s Styrofoam is the ease that you can modify it. Here I just ‘whacked’ out a space for the foundation. That’s 3/4″ foam by the way .. the thickest I could find locally.

In case you are curious, the ‘water’ is just acrylics .. black and tans with a couple coats of Polycrylic. That’s a clear coating made for wood projects. Works pretty darn well.

.. and a test fit
The pump house in position so I could get an idea as to how it would look. It was pretty much as I had imagined and was happy at this point with the progress.
I cut a door at the bottom of the foundation along with an opening for a sluice gate. Figured that they needed access to this area if for no other reason then to clear out trash that would be collected from the river. Later on, I decided that I could put a generator in that area.


HVCC Pump House — 4 Comments

    • Hey Harold. Thanks. I ordered it from FoamBoardSource.com ..


      When you first look at it .. it resembles the Foamboard you buy at WalMart for projects. The difference is that Gatorfoam has a ‘skin’ of a resin I suppose instead of the cardboard that Foamboard has. This makes cutting the Gatorfoam more like cutting a wood product. I like that it is sturdy and doesn’t warp. The only downside that I see is that the foam is affected by solvent based paints etc. The trick there is to use a siliconized acrylic caulk (which I also like for attaching track to foam).

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