Like we explained last week, the MFMA is now signed, allowing us to start the deployment of the artificial reefs. MCC staff and volunteers are now on board to build the 987 concrete blocks that we will need in the next months.
In the past 2 weeks, we've built 36 blocks. Thanks to the concrete mixer we bought a couple of months ago, the process is now way faster than what it was! We don't have to mix the cement by hands anymore, making our life easier. We also designed steel moulds, to avoid the easily breakable wood moulds. So far, we are able to produce 9 blocks in one afternoon, waiting for additional steels moulds.
The recipe is extremely simple :
- Assemble the moulds.
- Cut 18 PVC pipes pieces.
- Mix the cement, using our island sand, salt water, and concrete.
- Start filling the moulds with cement.
- Place the PVC pipes pieces 15 cm at each end of the block (so we can assemble the structure underwater thanks to rebar)
- When the mold is half full, put chain, to strengthen the block.
- Fill the mould until the end.
- Wait for the blocks to dry.
And as a little bonus, the volunteers are carving the names of the people who gave 20$ to our crowdfunding campaign! If you're interested, you can participate until the 1st of march here: https://www.generosity.com/community-fundraising/save-kep-archipelago-the-dying-jewel-of-cambodia/x/17032708
LOADING ON THE BIG BOAT
Once the blocks are dry and out of the moulds, this is the moment to load them on the big boat. Designed to be movable without heavy machines, the only thing you need is 8 fit and determined persons. Again, the procedure we have so far is simple and efficient. In one morning, we were able to load 24 blocks on the boat, which can easily carry 40 of them :
- 3 people are loading 2 blocks at the time on the trolly
- 5 people are transferring them from the pier to the medium boat
- When the boat is loaded with 8 blocks, we travel to the big boat to do a second transfer.
- Repeat the same operation, 3 times!
The blocks are now ready to be deployed underwater, by our scuba diving team! At present, we are waiting for good conditions to drop and assemble our first official structure.
Stay tuned for the next underwater steps!