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HydroVision International 2017
About six weeks later…
We are again in need of some assistance in
maintaining our plant. Tis past summer, we
discovered damage to the hot applied coal tar
lining of the penstock. It seems that while
we were unwatered, the exposed portion
of the penstock experienced unusual heat
exposure due to our bright sunshine. Te paint
sagged in some places and dropped down to
cover our penstock drain. Head gate leakage
is minimal but because this happened on a
weekend, we found the spiral case fooded
and required a local dive team to remove the
large paint fakes from the penstock drain.
Two wheelbarrows of paint were removed
before we could open the drain valve and dry
out the spiral case.
We need to know if there is a better coating that will not soften when the penstock is
exposed to heat. It should be a material that will
cure in the moist atmosphere of our penstock.
Te entire penstock requires recoating. While
we were in the process of patching the exposed
portions with the hot coal tar, we experienced
a fre. It seems that the little burner under
the paint pot was left unmonitored when the
painter had to attend to a call from nature.
Consequently, the paint ignited and the fre
spread to the penstock coating and burned all of
the paint of. Te fre stopped at the pool where
the vacuum breaker is and did not damage the
head gate. We will need a new rubber seal for
that vacuum breaker valve.
We would appreciate any assistance you
W. T. Heckawe
Two weeks later…
Sorry to hear about your problems. Due to
the holiday season (and our mail service),
I was unable to respond earlier. Tere is a
Seattle-area paint manufacturer that has a
polyurethane paint that should do the job. I
have ordered a new vacuum breaker seal for
you; it should be delivered within a week. Te
automated sand blaster we used originally is
being prepared for shipment and should be
there by early February. Do you still have the
rigging to move it up the penstock? You will
have to order more of the copper slag for the
Remember to close the manhole cover
at the top when the painting is fnished. We
had quite a food when that little aspect was
ignored on our frst flling. You have to get
better coordination between your rigging and
operations crews. Tat was more serious than
neglecting to remove the draft tube gate before
starting the station service unit. Tat fasco
caused quite a fountain on the draft tube deck.
My assistant Tom was responsible for that.
He released the clearances before checking
on responsibility for the gate removal.
Tom Spicher owns consulting company Hydro Y.E.S. and is
a member of the Hydro Review editorial advisory board. He
has “seen a lot” during his 40+ years of working in plants.