What I was envisioning is something similar to this but roughly 60 to 100 feet deep and lined with cement rings. One curiosity I have regards filling the well to capacity in order to take advantage of the pressures generated by the well. I am unsure how long the water levels will remain but I suppose I could provide a pump to refill the well from a ground aquifer if needed.
Cooling This was the most obvious other than a reservoir of water. I have heard that similar systems cool at 1/10th the cost of electricity compared to the energy required of compressors found in air conditioning units. I cannot confirm this number but if it is true, I could see this as an interesting design element for a home obviously but also a root cellar or large insulated walk in refrigerator. This can also employ a compressed air mechanism in place of water as a flowing liquid. At 100 ft depth the pressure can reach nearly 60 psi which will compress the air and release heat into the environment (the well water and ground).
This is fascinating to me also although I've never hand dug a well. I have thought about digging one and applying ferrocement-- portland, sand & chicken wire-- as I dig down. Is it harder to breathe as you get deeper? I don't know the physics of many aspects of a, say 60' hole. Thanks for bringing up this topic!
Location: Melbourne FL, USA - Pine and Palmetto Flatland, Sandy and Acidic
posted 7 years ago
It is dangerous! The deeper you go the less oxygen is available so you will need to pump fresh air. Cave-ins are very possible, but there are techniques to mediate this risk. It takes a lot of labor to build one so I am debating in my head if it is worth it. Also there is the complication of water depth where if I leave the well open, or simply dig a deep cylinder and seal it off so that I can store water at a desired depth. If the well is open and not sealed, any water I put in will level off directly to the aquifer depth, hence lowering the water depth of the well.
I had an uncle who dug his own well to over 60 feet deep. I believe it took on and off a couple months, but it was very impressive that he did that with a shovel and pick ax alone!
Those who hammer their swords into plows will plow for those who don't!
Hello, Just a quick thought/note. If you do start this endeavor be very aware of cave ins, Do not do this alone! It will not take much to leave you stranded under alot of earth! This can be a very dangerous hobby/improvement. Always work with another and do every thing you can to reinforce your safety
Location: Ozarks zone 7 alluvial,black,deep clay/loam with few rocks, wonderful creek bottom!
posted 7 years ago
At an old house site on our land there is a hand dug well about two feet or so across and twenty feet deep and a hand dug cistern about six or seven feet across and sixteen feet deep. Both are lined with stone. We siphoned all of the water out of the cistern once and saw that it is a beautiful cone shape and rock lined all of the way to the bottom.
The obvious labor that these required is such a wonderful tribute to homesteaders from the past who built so skillfully for survival with the materials at hand.
"We're all just walking each other home." -Ram Dass
"Be a lamp, or a lifeboat, or a ladder."-Rumi
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