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#415872 06/17/15 07:16 PM
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I have a 50ft hand dug well on my property that was dug back in 1912. It has not been used in many years, but I would like to rehab it and bring it back to life. It has mud washed into it so now it is only about 25ft deep and there is water at 15ft. Does anyone have any ideas on how I can clean this out? It is about 3ft across and lined as far as I could see down with stacked rocks. I want to climb down there and clean it by bucket but I'm a little concerned about the safety of being 30ft down in a one hundred year old hole.

Someone out there has got to have some good ideas!


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Originally Posted By: captwho
I have a 50ft hand dug well on my property that was dug back in 1912. It has not been used in many years, but I would like to rehab it and bring it back to life. It has mud washed into it so now it is only about 25ft deep and there is water at 15ft. Does anyone have any ideas on how I can clean this out? It is about 3ft across and lined as far as I could see down with stacked rocks. I want to climb down there and clean it by bucket but I'm a little concerned about the safety of being 30ft down in a one hundred year old hole.

Someone out there has got to have some good ideas!


I would use a dredge and stay out of the hole!


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Thought about it for a while.

My errant thoughts:

Make sure that whoever is at the top stays sober.

Make sure that you owe him $$$$$$$$$.

Other than that I will say to peck on the sides a little bit as you go down. Aw heck, I wouldn't have the guts to go down there. 3 ft is a pretty narrow hole to go down and work in.


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When I was a boy my friends father dug a well lined with rocks. So I have always wondered do you dig a well all the way down to water and then line it with rocks? That really seems dangerous from a collapse of the earth happening but I don't see any other way of doing it. I always wondered about this but didn't know who to ask.


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I have a 3" trash pump. Any rednecks out there have any idea how I could jet with it and raise the mud to the top and expel it?


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I sure wouldn't crawl down there.

There was a posts by DiverCody not to long ago about making a dredge/pump type setup. Go to his post history and see if you can find it. If you can't, let me know and I will see if I can locate it. Sorry, need to get going....

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Originally Posted By: captwho
I have a 3" trash pump. Any rednecks out there have any idea how I could jet with it and raise the mud to the top and expel it?


IIRC a problem might be the inlet hose length with a trash pump. IIRC the inlet hose length is limited to about 20 feet so I doubt you can reach the depth you're looking to get.


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FWIW -Here is my experience. 16 years ago I built a modern day version of what you have with the HUGE exception of my "wishing well" only being 18' down. We needed a water source. I brought in a trackhoe and my contractor dug an 18' deep hole. Then he took a 20' double walled, 4' diameter, polymer culvert and stood up into the hole. The culvert stands two feet out of the ground. It is grated with aluminum, covered, and boxed. There is virtually no way somebody could fall in and almost zero chance of a wall collapse....to your project

1912 construction, WOW very cool, and WOW very old. My first move would be Safety first. I would get a good solid "casing" down that hole. And make sure it protrudes above the ground and is covered. This will help protect against somebody inadvertently falling in and wall collapse. When you start removing material there is no way to know what the rest of the structure will do. With a casing in pace, if the sides do collapse you will still have your well. Look up the story of baby Jessica (1987?)and it will send shivers down your spine.

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https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WoNtbl-NbOk

This is what you need. So easy and completely safe.

Cheers Don.


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If anyone has watched the documentaries or the searching for the treasure on Oak Island. You see a deep shaft maybe 4 to 6 feet in diameter going down maybe 180 feet, lined and supposedly build in the 15 or 16 hundreds. I have no idea how they could line that shaft that deep that is hand dug.

http://www.activemind.com/Mysterious/topics/oakisland/story.html


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When digging a trench and hole to install sewer drain and a septic tank, I hit something really solid and heavy with the backhoe. It turned out to be a concrete cap, 6' under dirt that was bolcking a hand dug, rock lined well, also 50' deep. It was impressive just how tightly the stones where stacked. Since there was another hand dug well that was built on an old homesite (built in 1904), there is no telling how old the well was that I uncovered.

It was right where I'd intended to put the septic tank, and time was running on the backhoe rental, so I filled in the well to a depth of 15' and put in my tank. To this day, I wished I had explored the bottom. It was roughly a 4' diameter, and with each rock being triangular shaped and interwoven, outer pressure only made the casing seal better.

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Just think of the treasures that could have been down there! Perhaps some antique coins that would have paid for that new system. smile Wouldn't want to dig it up now.

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Or antique bottles.


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Don, That vacuum idea is at the top of my list so far. I'm sure my local rental yard has some kind of vacuum that could work, and I don't have to climb in the hole. Thanks


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Or bones!! Eeww


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