crappy hose clean outs lately
crete 09-28-2015 comment profile send pm notify

Running 3" hose/pipe on a trailer pump. Procedure for washing out is as follows. Disconnect hose from pump.clean out the hopper cylinders etc.Insert a ball into the hose and use the pump to clean out hose. Brand new cutting ring and wear plate. Seems lately water is pushing past the sponge and rock packing the system so I have to break down hoses and rinse one at a time.

Ive never wrapped the sponge in a plastic baggie.  going to try that later this wk. Usually doing this with 150' or so of hose. Do you think I don't think I'm trying to clean to much system am I? Any ideas? Terry

greenguy 09-28-2015 reply profile send pm notify

Try a harder sponge ball.   If that doesn't work, use a soft sponge That's 1" bigger than the line size you are using.  

you also might want to check that your sponge supplier didn't recently change vendors.   Not all sponges of a given size and firmness are created equal.   You might just have a cheap/bad batch.   

TooTall 09-28-2015 reply profile send pm notify

Sounds like whatever you're using for a sponge is open cell sponge material. A good rule of thumb... If you can blow air through a sponge, It's only good for washing your wheels. When I'm looking for a good sponge (rabit/pig) I actually hold it to my mouth and blow. Single cell sponge material doesn't allow air to pass through it. Or water for that matter. Schwing balls are best but expensive and can't be bought at Fred Meyer. NERF footballs work great because they are single cell material. In a bind, a good wad of news paper soaked in water and rolled to fit snug into whatever size system your blowing out works good. Snug meaning you should have to use your thumbs to push it into the end, then use your hammer handle to push the paper wad far enough in to put your sponge behind it. This way if any water passes through or past your sponge, it won't separate and rock off your system. 

TooTall 09-28-2015 reply profile send pm notify

A lot of sponge balls have a rubber coating on the outside that wears off over time allowing water and air to pass through and ruin your day. 

TooTall 09-28-2015 reply profile send pm notify

There's a number of commercial pipe pigging suppliers online. has a good variety of affordable products. 

Sandstar 09-28-2015 reply profile send pm notify

I'd just pump dn till u get air rinse dn hopper fill with water and pump on water wash works every time keep it simple. If u want to use a sponge u have to pump slow as possible with water in front of sponge but water wash is easiest every time easy .

Dipstick 09-29-2015 reply profile send pm notify

For as far as I can see you have just been lucky that it worked before. Cleanout with water works great but you need the right ball or plugg to do it. Just a soft ball with a plastick bag might not be enough. And for the guys that just fill the hopper with water and wash out without a ball I would really like to see that some time. Seems like a recipe for a big mess to me.

One thing I have learned in my years as a pumper is : don't believe operators that say they ''NEVER'' have a problem or ''WORKS EVERY TIME'' Their customers tell me different stories Wink

Sandstar 09-29-2015 reply profile send pm notify

 No different than blowing a boom pump down fill ur hopper with water and pump on! I guess ive just had 15 yrs of luck. I even somtine throw on a wall hook I made that's extra long drag hose back to truck hookup and blow back into mixer. To keep it clean on site  not saying  u couldn't plug any things possible But vary rare. but If u want to clean hose again u can if u have enough water on board. I never use a sponge unless I'm running wet to another job I'll suck a sponge rinse my hoses and go. 

Dipstick 09-29-2015 reply profile send pm notify

I don't get it. When I try that i am garanteed to end up with a line full of rock and water and one big disaster. The water washes out and seperates the concrete. Even with several balls and a plastick bag round them nothing helps. Ok the first 20 meters maybe but no further..

What does work is go-devils in steal line. We push out over 500meters of line that way without any problems but we really need good tight go-devils.

What is it that makes it work for you and not for us? The concrete? We mostly have very high slump concrete with lots of chemicals and little water.. 

What is the longest line you have ever done without any ball? Is there any rocks left in the hoses afterwards?

Beast 09-29-2015 reply profile send pm notify

I only water wash line pumps if I am using a pea gravel mix with small line and I always push a hopper full of water first then insert a sponge

BCCP 09-29-2015 reply profile send pm notify

Doesn't anybody use air? I just blow the hoses back into the hopper with any kind of sponge. Unless it's a really shitty mix it works everytime and the hoses are clean enough to put away with no water. I do spray the ends off with water and the first hose off the pump usually needs to be sprayed out a little bit. 300' is the most I've done this way.

crete 09-30-2015 reply profile send pm notify

I guess my first step is going to buy a new hard ball and wrap it in a baggie. I've got a wheelbarrow type compressor (hoping that will be enough air) All of the proper connections came with the pump as far as a ball catcher and air connection with a relief valve,might even give that a try.

  I would try washing water with out a sponge,but it seems like a disaster waiting to happen. I've alaways pump the sponge though on full throttle at the highest strokes per min. is this correct? Terry

Sandstar 09-30-2015 reply profile send pm notify

I water wash everything I run a 38 meter that I either blow out on site or back into the mixer truck. I do the same with my line pump. I've got at tk70 that I do the exact same pump dn till blow air then fill hopper with water pump on! do not wash the hopper at this point so u don't get chucks of build up from sides ect.  This could plug u. u will have very little sand in lines still but when u break them and carry back to the truck u can do a quick rinse most will fall out when u lift the hose.I run 2.5" line and only pea gravel 50/50 6 sack mixs. If I'm doing exposed I go to 3" hose. It sounds like ur just starting out I'd suggest u not use air unless Somone shows u. U don't just full bore put air in the hose would b like a cannon. When u find what works u do the same every time it will keep u outa trouble!!

Sandstar 09-30-2015 reply profile send pm notify

1 more thing if u needed to wrap a sponge in a Baggie they would come with them or sell them? That guy just found somthing that works for him so he does the same thing every time. Like I said when u find somthing that works stick with it. Water works for me so I stick with it. Try and pump dn till u blow air out of the hose make sure ur pointing hose in a safe direction so u don't blow rock on someone. Fill hopper with water pump on It's easy as that but u have to pump dn till u blow air then water!!  then pack ur stuff up move truck to desired area open hopper door and clean out the hopper. 

ericICF 09-30-2015 reply profile send pm notify

Newsprint works.Ball it up as hard as you want. If it plugs in there, it wil soon deteriorate, so its not a problem.

Beast 10-01-2015 reply profile send pm notify

water wash will work on booms , but when I have done it with regular rock on linepumps 4" line , I always get rock jammed ,water washing booms is totally different because you have gravity , 2.5" line and pea gravel 25 years and I have never had one issue , and like sandstar said a quick roll and dump usually gets you clean as a whistle.

crete 10-02-2015 reply profile send pm notify

Well.. Experimented a little bit yesterday. I had 1 25' lenght of hose off the pump 100' of pipe and then 50' of hose.

Used a wheelbarrow type compressor with a wet paper wad and a sponge behind that. It started to move but then stopped,it would move if we kept beating of the last length of hose. I relieved the pressure and got it to clean out the first hose and pipe. It didn't come out with the explossive blast I would it would. Just a small pop. I think I'm on the right path if I want to air clean out. I'm thinking my smaller compressor doesn't have enough volume the keep the sponge moving as it would then stop and then move again. For safety sake I did use a ball catcher on the last hose. I think I may be on the right path if I want to try air again what do you think? Terry


sherpa 10-02-2015 reply profile send pm notify

Terry if you inexperienced with air blowout id advise you to be EXTREMELY careful while doing this. There are many measures you can make to do this alot safer as peoples life's are at risk with an air blowout. I know how the American pumpers feel about air and i agree if precautions aren't taken air is very very dangerous, unfortunately in Australia water wash isn't really allowed so it has to be air alot of the time. So a few things to keep in mind, you must be either in radio phone or talking contact the entire time with the man on the valves the man on the end of the rubber and the man following the line checking where the ball is. Probably the best way to do it is to blow nearly until the end of the line, say 15-30 feet back and dump the pressure empty the last bit of hose by hand then reconnect and blow the ball out of the last section of rubber that is already empty. If you can a remote setup is also ideal (as long as it has an automatic air release on loss if signal) but i know not many people have this. Never blow a ball directly into the concrete itself as this can cause it to explode concrete everywhere, never point the hose up to blow upwards this is just crazy, use a wheel barrow to blow against and keep the hose in a straight line behind the person on the hose so it doesn't whip. Always dump pressure as the ball nears the end of the hose NEVER just leave the line pressurized and allow it to blow out. Of course linesman should be wearing PPE. Be careful this is EXTREMELY dangerous if done wrong

Dipstick 10-02-2015 reply profile send pm notify

What you had sounds like worst case senarion for risking a big accident. Bal stuck at the end. Very wise to not keep the pressure on and try to beat the ball out. Even if its only 5 or 8 bar you will push a hell of a lot of air in that hose and all that air wants to come out when the ball reaches the end.

Maybe you had a to big ball? Don't overdo it with that. Use the right size ball and no hard balls.. On such short lines it should work with a smal compressor also.. I always push until the ball reaches 2/3rd of the distance and then stop the compressor and wait untill the flow almost stop. Than push a bit again and stop again. Repeat untll the ball comes out..

b-alto 10-03-2015 reply profile send pm notify

Terry i haven't even considerd using water since the first time a blew with air. Are you using a large air hose? it needs to be a 3/8" ID minimum. I've never not hand enough air pressure. Also have a dump valve and keep letting the pressure off. 3 inch hose doesn't explode like the smaller hoses do. Be careful with 2" and 2.5" it shoots hard but i blow out every time. Buy 3 " poof nerf balls they work best. I blow one through then dump five gallons water in and blow another ball. Fun and easy : )

ericICF 10-04-2015 reply profile send pm notify

Terry you are on the right path, and the guys here are giving sound advice ! Your compressor is around 5 cfm at 120 psi, and that is lots of air for 3 inch line. Remember compressed air is like a coiled spring, the more air you deliver to your system the greater the re-action in the hose. If the ball stops..that means the resistance is greater and it will take more air at higher pressure for action to occur. Action equals re-action. More pressure is required for rubber than for steel. More preseure is required for lower slump as the friction resistance is higher. Give yourself a better chance by wetting down the last few hopper fulls if you can. And try to find the video of Calvin Coates on youtube doing it Aussi style. Those guys have small line air cleanouts dialed.

crete 10-04-2015 reply profile send pm notify

Hi Eric and Brian, Do you think I'm trying much much lenght of system at this time? Also to move to 3'8" fittings they much be the pressure washer style?

sherpa 10-04-2015 reply profile send pm notify

Terry i have blown air through lines as long as 400 feet (with a small petrol 5.5 hp air compressor), the longer the line the more air volume and more pressure, so when releasing you need to dump air alot earlier to drop the same amount of pressure. I use a 1/2 inch air line to my blow out cap and a 1 inch release valve (the bigger the release valve the better as to drop pressure faster)

b-alto 10-04-2015 reply profile send pm notify

 3/8 ID or 1/2 inch ID im not sure what mine is but large like you have to use for an impact wrench. I usually pump the hopper empty and push as much concrete out as possible. Then hook up my blow out cap and crank the air once the mud starts moving release the pressure use just enough to move the mud, when you think its getting ready for the ball to come out release the pressure. Practice by putting the hose out in a cleared area. 3 inch is easy. I have had the smaller hoses blow the little foot ball 100 yards out in a lake..

crete 10-04-2015 reply profile send pm notify

To Brian how long of a push have you did? I would buy some 1/2" hose I believe the quick connects for this would be 3/8'?  Do you think a 5.5 hp makes enough volume for me to try?

b-alto 10-04-2015 reply profile send pm notify

I have pushed a couple hundred and still would. But once a blew 200ft of 2.5" and i couldn't see the end of the hose so i turned it on ran down and held the end hose. BLAMM..  shot it out of my hands and made a mess, don't do that. Its good to see the end and try to relieve the pressure when it speeds up. Its not a bad idea to only push under 150 feet. Yes 3/8" coupler and 1/2 hose makes all the difference, and a good wet ball. And yeah all i use is a wheel barrow type like you have.

crete 10-04-2015 reply profile send pm notify

Alright then going to give another try next week. FWIW I did use a nerf ball from Walmart wrapped in a baggie, maybe try it with out the baggie this time.

crete 10-14-2015 reply profile send pm notify

Welll! I might be on to something. I little bit bigger air line and fittings were maybe all I needed. Had 50' of hose and 100' of pipe and pushed it clean with no problems. Not even a big explosion and the end, ball just popped out maybe 10' at the most.  Used a nerf ball wrapped in a plastic bag the first time, then a sloppy wet sponge the 2nd time at things are clean as a whistle.  Woo Hooo!!

b-alto 10-14-2015 reply profile send pm notify

Glad to hear it! Today i blew out a 125' of 2" i used a racket ball that just fits in the hose. Then i stood on the hose and ran suficent air. It poped out and flew about 100 feet. 

DIGGER 10-14-2015 reply profile send pm notify

We have been selling remote controlled air blow out kits. Just about ever pump sold now orders the radio remote blow out. You are at the end of the hose, letting air in and controlling the outlet speed.

Once used to it the ball just drops in to your hand.

sherpa 10-15-2015 reply profile send pm notify

Digger, where do you buy these remote setups from? I really want one , I was going to make my own (with the help of an electronics guy) but if there is an off the shelf solution that's not too pricy I would opt for that

ericICF 10-15-2015 reply profile send pm notify

Sherpa : Digger is the owner/ manufacturer/engineer of Trancrete Concrete Pumps amd one of the early developers of the S-tube. We are very lucky to have his input and experience replyimg on this board. I didn't know his blow-out kits were available in North America , but I have seen them operate and they are fantastic.


sherpa 10-16-2015 reply profile send pm notify

EricICF: ah didn't know digger was Ian hay, feel.a little silly now. Well Ian I'll have to give you a call. We met briefly once when I brought this unit Round and you tested the hydraulic cartridge for me and helped me out on short notice ( thanks again).

crete 10-16-2015 reply profile send pm notify

WOW!  This is really the world wide web.