Tanzania News – 7 december 2011 – First training outside Tanzania

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The last couple of months we get more and more questions from people of countries bordering Tanzania, like Kenya, Uganda and Malawi. Sometimes the question is about a training in the local town of the interested person or NGO. In that case we are not sure if the building materials can be procured locally. However, for the question of a training in a small town outside of Kampala, Uganda, we decided to go for it.

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Because Uganda is landlocked, in theory it would be more difficult to get all the materials. But when going into all the different areas of Kampala we found all materials smoothly, which was even a bit to our surprise. We were even more surprised to find these items equally priced as the best prices we know from Dar Es Salaam. Of course it could be, that on this first shopping experience in Uganda we might have got some inferior quality, which is sometimes very difficult to see in the shop itself. For example: how well galvanized is the rope wire? we will see in about one year time how fast some rust is moving in.

The challenge in Kampala was big, because we were restricted to one week only in which we needed to do everything. Moreover, the brand new workshop was empty when I arrived… We also needed to buy all the workshop tools. Power cuts at the moment of writing are very severe in Uganda. You can easily be without power for about 16 hours. Therefore we made a lot use of a generator.

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On the last day, the turbine was ready to be erected on the new 12 meter guy-wired tower. When the participants were soldering the last joints of the electronics board, I needed to rush to the airport to catch my flight. One day later I got an e-mail confirming that the turbine is spinning nicely in the top of the tower. So, one might be tempted to conclude that you can manufacture and install a Piggott-turbine completely from scratch starting with an empty workshop within 7 working days. However, I must comment that this is really too hectic and not recommendable from an educational point of view :-)