Introduction: Hydro Hive
I have lived in the woods my entire life and have enjoyed nature all around. I have seen so many bees that have died in buckets, water puddles, and anything that has collected water that they were trying to get to. This is something that I have come up with on my 3D printer to help out some.
Step 1: CAD Design
Create a shape and size that will work for you. In the design have the pillars in the middle stager in height from one another. That way as the water goes down new pillars breaker the waters surface giving the bees islands to land on for the water.
Step 2: Box & Cast
Getting everything together for making a mold box and setting that up. Double back Duct tape is what I put on the base to anchor the part in with. I used some plexiglass and siliconed the seams together. Once that had a good amount of time for the silicone to cure, I used a universal mold release. Letting that set for about 15 minutes. Then casting a 1 by 1 part concrete rubber molding material. I let that set for about 5 hours. Then I pulled the part from the mold.
Step 3: Releasing & Concrete
When the mold is fully cured, I use a universal mold release again for inside the concrete rubber mold. Letting that set for about 5 minutes. Using a concrete patch repair mix is what I use next. Mixing that until it is a puddling like thickness with it. Casting that into the mold then a bit of shacking the mold to level the concrete out for a smooth bottom look, and that will help get any air bubbles out. I would let the mold set for about an hour. Then if the concrete was solid enough, I will tip it up and have a fan on it for the next 2 - 3 hours. After that amount of time it would be ready to pull from the mold.
Step 4: Drying & Sealing
After the part has been pulled from the mold I will tell it dry for 3 - 5 days. Once you can touch it and feel no moister its ready to seal. I feel that 2 coats of a non toxic sealer is the minimum. Apply the first coat and let that set for 24 hours. After that apply the second cost and let that set for the same amount of time, 24 hours.
Step 5: Hardware 1
So while everything with the part is setting, drying, and sealing putting together all of the hardware is something that can be done. I used some "S" clips to connect to the hanging hooks using a pair of needle nose pliers.
Step 6: Hardware 2
I built this jig for cutting the chains, and assembling the rest of the hardware together. I would measure a chain to the length that I needed it to be, and then hook another one beside it to then cut to length. I use 4 chains to 1 Hydro Hive. When I have the chains cut to length I then clip the hooks to the bar. Then I connect the ends of the chains to the "S" clip and then close it down with the needle nose pliers. There should now be 4 loose chains ends hanging. I use a key chain loop to connect the 4 chain ends together. At this point it is completed to place the Hydro Hive inside the chain hanger to place it outside where you want to put it.
Step 7: Done & Done
Have it outside hanging in the garden, filled with water. Good to go.