Ram workshop San Juan la Laguna.


  • After the installation more and more people were enthused.
  • Together with Domingo I decided to start a small factory in Rampumps.
  • We agreed that I would pay per rampump, and they should be self organised.
  • I quickly trained 3 more people: Guillermo, Pedro and Angel. For the latter everything was new, the first two already worked in the Guatemala 1 project.
  • The training consisted of making the candle was rings, cutting car tires and making tiles. I had been very strict on quality demands and they now know quite well what good and what's not.
  • The problem however was cutting the car tires. They could not do it well, and they did not really follow my instructions.
  • New discovery was that cutting the sides goes very well with a machette.
  • All persons are member of the eco tourist guide service Rupalaj K'istalin.
  • This group rents a piece of land at the beach. Here they have a vivero to breed trees. Often the members of this group take part in (voluntarily) reforestation programs with school kids.
  • There's plenty of space on their piece of land to make a lot of rampumps.
  • To produce more efficient, we needed more tools. So I ordered 5 more candle wax ring molds at the carpenter. Bought more hammers and other tools.
  • Also I agreed that it would be more efficient to use 1" nails in the reinforcement of the tiles instead of cutting the car tires.

The start

  • Monday the 30th of july we started with the four people.
  • In the beginning work was mainly focussed on arranging the work shop, like buying tools, bringing the gravel, sand, and cement.
  • Wednesday the group had already grown to seven people with the addition of Raul, Santos, and Marcos; all members of Rupalaj.
  • By the end of the week they easily had finished their first ram pump, with only little help from my side.
  • Good thing was that (especially Domingo) insisted that everyone would learn every part of the production very well.
  • Also they agreed with each other that there's always work to do. There's always gravel to be crushed, there are always candle wax rings to be made.
  • In addition: for the moment there is an endless need for concrete tubes. We can catch up with the heart blocks and the bottles next week.
  • Another poin

  • It took them 265 hours in total to complete the job. I consider this to be too much.
  • They worked hard, and they also had to build experience, but they can work harder and more efficient.
  • We will negotiate a proper price for the ram pump, and in this I'm thinking of calculating 150 hours per pump.
  • All people are very excited to be teachers of this project in other places in the country. I will however not allow this when they do not completely master every part of the proces. I'm thinking of a kind of exam in which they have to show that they can make:
  • The compass.
  • The circle calibration molde for the rings
  • A wooden connection ring
  • Five candle wax rings (I'm thinking of asking them to put them in a range which one is the best and which one is not.)
  • A heart block in groups of two persons.
  • The concrete tubes yet have been proven to be mastered by all.
  • I'll need to make a short instruction form with measurements and examples of errors.

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