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Pumps and how they work - or don't


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I find it very frustrating that my dupes can spend tons of time learning how to make things work, and yet the things don't work because there's nothing telling ME how to make them work. 

I have been fighting through three colonies now with trying to get the co2 air scrubber that uses water to work, and am still at zero, because when it doesn't work, it doesn't tell me what I'm doing wrong.  Theoretically the dupe has already researched this, so a "stick the pipe into the water" or "you need more power before it will function" sort of note on the pop-up would not be amiss.  All I ever get is "the pipe is empty" and that means nothing at all.

Is there a place where there is some sort of info on how the darn machines are supposed to work?  Just something that says "it needs a power intake of ____ and two pipes.  Both pipes should be submerged in water.  The output will be contaminated, so take that into consideration when choosing where to stick it."

I know I'm old, but I usually can figure out where to stick it.

Auntie Bea

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Thank you very much for your responses!

My concern is as much "how am I supposed to know?", considering my dupes should know - or be able to find out.  There should be something in game to help, shouldn't there?  The game can't just assume I'm a plumber / HVAC specialist.  And if it's supposed to be trial and effort, why are the dupes doing all the research?  I'd be more willing to jack around if I can start on it from day 1. 

As far as I could figure, the "pipe is empty" issue was something to do with the outflow pipe, since the pump had started to bring up water, then stopped, and nothing else happened.  Is the outflow pipe supposed to be submerged?  In air?  I tried it both ways and neither worked.

[Now I want to be able to move things - just shove them around a bit.  I haven't found any way to do that, either, except taking them apart and putting them back together.  How silly.]

Auntie Bea

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Ok, you likely need an outlet on the outflow pipe, the pipe itself will never let anything drip out unless you put an outlet on it.  And it needs to be outside of liquid typically, I think it can be submerged but anything over 1kg of pressure on it will cause it to not spit anything out.

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Thank you, I will try that!

But - how would I ever find this out, in game? 
That's my ultimate question. 

Obviously I can search the web, and watch youtube videos, and ask here, but shouldn't the answer be in the game somewhere, since there is such an emphasis placed on the dupes doing the research to be able to put stuff together?  I shouldn't HAVE to either turn off the game or step to another computer, when there should be some kind of data or hint available.

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