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Mechanical washing machine.

I work for a charity with Aboriginal Australians in the remote outback of Australia, a place called Arnhem land, it is worth a google. People need washing machines, they buy them, they break , even with warranty cover, they can not be fixed as no service men will come here to service them, we are too remote. 
Houses here have about 20 people living in them, there is no work here and people live on small government payments which are not enough to cover daily expenses. Due to the difficulty in accquiring and maintaining a working washing machine, health issues such as Crusted Scabies have taken hold here, and cause much suffering. We can't erradicate the disease here without getting working washing machines.
We need a solution, an easy to use, easy to fix washing machine. No electronics. Cold water only is fine. Possibly even hand operated, or wind operated (or other)  I found one which is a plastic  tub which turns with a handle and stands on two feet.  However the construction too flimsy, the tub not big enough for a bed sheet, it was green though. Didn't use electric power.
Anyone have any ideas? Know any other sites I could post on to get ideas? Thanks : )

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Wind powered and a home made compressor, use low pressure air and just bubble the water in, It will swirl the water and wash the clothes. You only need 2 psi to do that.
This might sound crazy but a big indestructible washing machine = concrete mixer
cant be any worse than a wonder washing machine shown here.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bvnXkT_ttWU
I remember that my husband told me he seen a washing machine powered by a bike...and people just pedal when needed! But I dont know how easy is to have a bike over there...
it would actually be a cool instructable too...
Wilmette3 years ago
It seems scabies can also be contained by sealing in plastic bags
cF;
http://www.cdc.gov/parasites/scabies/prevent.html
Ehow says contain in plastic for 2 weeks.
Wilmette3 years ago
I am sorry for the suffering.
I don't know that scabies prevention requires a washing machine. It does require hot water and borax
I have gone on minimalist kicks in the summer and have washed my clothes by hand with borax power as suggested in the link below . It doesn't work well with dress clothes, meaning they are sanitary, but look kind of dingy. But works the method is OK with work clothes, shorts, socks , and more darkly colored dockers and polos.
Wife never tried it
I used a mop wringer
Other people have used commercial salad spinners.

Commercial salad spinners are expensive ( around 150); ; fruit presses, which seem to be sturdier run some more. . But they can be built by hand

Here is the link to the scabies prevention I saw
http://www.scabiestreatment.org/2010/10/scabies-treatment-options/

I worked at a shelter once and we boiled everything in washtubs because of lice . No fun.

But the key is not agitation; it is chemicals and extraction.

niner333 years ago
Like this idea, wish i could get one
The Amish would be a good place to start looking.
Take a look here.

http://www.lehmans.com/store/Home_Goods___Laundry___Washing___Breathing_Hand_Washer___1138390#1138390


Lehmans is the best place for low tec/no tech and they will ship.
Toga_Dan3 years ago
One technique I read about is to load a 5 gallon bucket with clothes, water, detergent. Snap the lid on tight, and drive around with it in the back of the car.

Yes, I realize this presupposes ownership of a car, but maybe the bucket can be moved in some other way. Tie rope around it basket style so it can be suspended from ropes such that it rotates on a horizontal axis...

I have seen wash machines driven by bicycles. I don't know details. I can probably make inquiries of people who have made em.
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