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Alternate flume materials

While fiberglass flumes have become the norm due to their relatively low cost, corrosion resistance, and light weight, flumes can be made out of a number of different materials, including:

  • Aluminum (surface water)

aluminum cutthroat flume with staff gauge

  • Galvanized steel (irrigation / surface water)

galvanized steel H flumes for surface water flows

  • Stainless steel (industrial / mining)

stainless steel cuttthroat flumes for mining application

  • Lexan (laboratory / small flows)

lexan parshall flume measuring flow in a hydraulics laboratory

  • PVC (industrial / small flows)
  • Concrete (large suface water flows)

20-foot concrete parshall flume measuring flow on the Holbrook Canal

  • Wood (temporary surface water flows)

wooden 10-foot pashall flume measuring flow on Fort Bend Canal

So long as the flume under operation is of the correct dimensions (wood swells when wet), is installed correctly, and is watertight, material choice is then a matter of cost, available materials, and installation effort required. 

 

Image Credits:  Colorado State UniversityYoutube