We’ve covered manually-operated water pumps several times previously, and for good reason: without a dependable source of water, nothing lives – including you and your family. You can’t have a self-reliant homestead without an absolutely reliable source of water. For some folks that may mean a sweet, clear spring; it may mean a nearby stream and a good filtration system; it may mean a cistern with an efficient rain collection system. For most of us though, the best choice is having our own well with a non-electric pump.
The WaterBuck Pump is a pump unlike anything you’ve ever seen before. It doesn’t look like your grandparents’ hand pump, and it doesn’t pump like it either. When you need to pump the quantity of water that it takes to water a large garden, supply livestock, and keep your home and family supplied with lots of pure fresh water, it’s hard to imagine anything better than the WaterBuck Pump, except for maybe a windmill if you have a site suitable for one. Is it the best choice for every situation? No, of course not – but then neither is any other method of pumping water. I am very pleased with our Bison stainless steel water pump and our Dempster cast iron pump, and have no plans to ever replace them. Every situation is different and has different requirements. The WaterBuck fills a need that simply had not been effectively met before its introduction, as far as I can tell.
I have never actually seen the WaterBuck Pump, so this is not a product review – only an introduction to a new product that may be of interest to Southern homesteaders. Now that we’ve gotten that out of the way, let’s look at the WaterBuck Pump. First of all, it is massive – 370 pounds. On one end of the scale are the medium-term water pump solutions made of PVC pipe glued together along with some metal bolts and fasteners. The WaterBuck is on the opposite end of the scale – or even off the scale.
A major factor in reliability is ease of maintenance and ease of repair should that ever be needed. I asked Darren (the developer of the WaterBuck Pump) about this: “Simple maintenance consists of greasing bearings and lubricating chain. The mechanics of my machine are much different than that used for windmills and common hand pumps. The machine has four points of mechanical advantage for ease of operation and maximum discharge. These are light, medium, heavy and heavy duty.”
Although the WaterBuck Pump is a brand new product, the developer of the pump is no newcomer to applying technology to muscle power. Their first product was the WaterBoy Well Bucket. Another unique product is their Pedal Powered PTO, scheduled for release at the end of May, 2013.
You can find more information about the WaterBuck Pump on their website.