Instructables

KidWash 2 : PVC Sprinkler Water Toy

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Picture of KidWash 2 : PVC Sprinkler Water Toy
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Fun toy with mister jets helps kids beat the heat.

This project owes a big debt to the original KidWash instructable by discontinuity. When I saw it I knew right away it was going on the "must build" list for summer. A great combination: simple project, lots of fun for the kids!

I headed down to the PVC section of the local home improvement store to pick up supplies. While browsing the adjacent sections for interesting stuff I noticed the micro-irrigation section and inspiration struck: KidWash with mister jets!

The modification worked great. We turned it on and kids from up and down the block started showing up to help with the testing. It's a lot of fun on foot, but my kids also get a blast out of riding their bikes through it (just like dad at the carwash).

Pictures courtesy of J. Good Photography
 
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Step 1: Get your parts

Head to your local hardware store for the following 3/4" pipe and fittings:

2 ten foot lengths of PVC
3 end caps
1 threaded female hose connector (slip fit)
2 elbow joints (90 degree)
2 T connections
1 pack quarter circle mister jets (12 count)

If the option of chaining your KidWash with other water toys interests you, just pick two end caps and add:

1 threaded male hose connector (slip fit)
1 hose cap

Note: you want the PVC hose connectors, not the more expensive metal fittings. Don't give up if they're not with the other PVC fittings, I found them by the sprinkler parts.

The misters used here are from www.mrlandscaper.com, a brand carried by Lowes.

Step 2: Get your tools

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You need:

measuring device
pen or pencil
saw
PVC cement
drill
5/32" drill bit

Step 3: Cut pipes

Time to cut. You will need the following sections and sizes:

2 at 5 feet
1 at 4 feet
4 at 18 inches

Cut one of the 10' lengths in half so that you have two 5' sections.

Then, cut a 4' section from the second one. Cut the remaining 6' section in half and then each of the 3' sections in half.

Step 4: Make a center line

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We want all the misters pointing more or less in the same direction, so start out by making a center line on the three longest pieces of pipe. Hold two pieces of pipe next to one another and use one as a guide to mark the other. The angle you hold your pen/pencil at isn't important, just keep it the same and you'll end up with a straight line.

Step 5: Mark locations for misters

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I had 12 misters, so I decided to put four on each side and four along the top. If you've got the same setup, measure 9" from the end of each pipe, mark it, and then mark three more locations at 10" intervals. This will center the four misters along the top, and provide nice coverage on the sides.

Step 6: Drill holes

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I found that a 5/32" hole was perfect for my mister jets, but check yours before drilling holes. The mister jets have threads and a taper that increases as they go in. The bit should leave a hole that allows the bottom to slide in easily, but engages the threads where they start. With the right combination you'll need to bear down to get the first threads to "bite", but after the first or second turn they'll cut their own threads into the pipe for a tight fit.

Step 7: Assemble upright pipes

Make sure there are no PVC chips or other debris in the pipes before assembly. Fit the drilled pipes together to form a "U" shape with all the drilled holes facing up. The drilled holes on the side pieces should be closest to the end with elbow joint (near cross piece). Once you're satisfied glue up the "U", making sure the holes stay facing up.

Step 8: Screw in mister jets

Screw the mister jets into the holes. You'll need to bear down at first to get the mister jet threads to bite, but after a turn or two they'll burrow into the pipe just fine. When you get down to the last turn or so, align the jet so it faces inwards. Angle the jets near the corners towards the center so that the water goes where the action is.

Step 10: Attach base

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Assemble the "U" and the base without glue. Make sure the base pieces are parallel with each other, and perpendicular to the plane of the "U". You can place the base pieces on either edge of a sidewalk for a handy reference before gluing it up. Line the "T" pieces up with each side of a crack, then make the base pieces parallel to the edges of the sidewalk and you're ready for glue.

Step 11: Try it out

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Let the glue dry before testing. I know, it's hard. Clean up while you wait, it'll be dry in no time.

Turn the water on low enough that you get a little spray from all the misters. Check and adjust the direction of the misters to direct the water towards the center.

Turn it on full and look for leaks around the base of the misters. If you find one, you can use a wrap of teflon tape around the base of the mister to stop it.

This project uses 12 misters rated at 10 gallons per hour, for a total of 120 gallons per hour. I don't know how that compares with other water toys, but in an era of increasing water restrictions, getting the most out of the water you do use is a good thing.

Step 12: KidWash times two -- optional chaining

If one kid wash is fun, then two must be more fun, right?

The pictures below show a hose connecting the two, but if you want them right next to one another you can connect them directly together. If you're going this route, make sure the connectors are going to match up before gluing the base to the second unit.
net normy9 months ago
Where can I get thesemister nozzles? I live in LaCrosse WW and can"t find them at ACE HOME DEPOT or MENARDS
I had to order them direct from the manufacturer.

http://secured.misterlandscaper.com/products/328-drip-irrigation-mister-sprayer-angle-90-corners.aspx
StriderNL9 months ago
Built mine today - went nearly perfect! There was an iffy point when I had glued the 90 degree to the wrong pipe, man that glue dries fast!

I added the chaining parts, and also added an on/off valve so I could turn it off without disconnecting it. Went perfectly.
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flyboysgu10 months ago
This was awesome! Thanks for sharing. I chose to make two and chain them together as well. To make the hook-up easy, I purchased a "Gilmour Poly Faucet Quick Connect" from Lowes. That makes it super easy to attach the hoses.
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lyle494011 months ago
How do you attach the quarter circle mister jets to the PVC?
jnewquist2 years ago
True, HD does not have these exact misters. They did have Rainbird misters in a 10 pack that I purchased and they worked just fine.
You can say that again aha, what a poor summer this has been in terms of weather.
Seriusly, i don't see the point of wasting so much wather just for fun, there's so many places in the world where people are literaly dying for the lack of water.

Wow, I would think there would be a rule or two on this site on not trolling. Its Florida they could install a kid wash every ten square feet and still have flood problems. This is great idea don't be a downer man.
That's why my play sand is free-range organic desert sand. My purchase goes toward water recovery projects there, enabling me to use my water here with a free conscience. *WINK* Saving a little water here does not magically make it show up in a drought-region. We saw that with the drought in Texas, when Louisiana was in a flood state.

Seriously though, it just rained hard enough here to flood my basement. Somebody please turn on their mister so I can dry off. Thank you.

Nice build, I'm going to make a couple of these, maybe make it pulse the misters to cut down on water use and to vary the misting. Makes it more interactive too, kind of like those funny water displays.
That's why there are misters on it. It saves water. Far worse to turn on a hose, with or without a nozzle, to let the kids play.
Jimytapialazo I agree it is sad many lack for water in the world. However until we figure out a way to move the water to those people we are not going to be able to help them. I wouldn't recommend using this device in a drought stricken area but if you live somewhere where the water is plentiful there is no harm in playing with this.
I think is a matter of awareness, we can't act irresponsibly sayin that if we can't do anyting we'll be having the same behavior as nothing happens.
i wont reply any other response because a don't want an off-topic disscution here.
I don't think punishing kids is the proper way to raise awareness. You want to teach them to conserve water, that's fine, but destroying their fun isn't the proper way to do it. It just makes for sad kids.
If you did not want an off topic discussion then why did you bring it up? Also it is a toy. You can say the same thing about meat. Why do we eat meat when if we all went vegetarian we could solve world hunger. Yes there are thirsty people in the world but honestly, can't our children be children before they save the world? Let them at least know what they want the rest of the world to have?? Geesh.
Seriously???
It is definitely about awareness so this is the perfect tool to teach your kids about it, explain to them how other places are short on water and stuff then explain how using it for only X amount of minutes is the right thing to do because of that, who knows they might tell you to not use it at all!

Kids will not learn anything if you don't show them.  If you try to just talk to them they will probably put you on "mute" and just nod "ok" or "u huh" then move along (most likely) .

Of-course if you live in a drought area then doing it at all would be wrong.

My 2-Cents
Do you flush a toilet?
There should be one on ever street!  With all the budget cuts, most of the city pools are closed. Leaky toilets waste water, not giving kids giggles is far worse.
amdivoff rjkola3 years ago
LOL totally agree! im for more kiddos with smiles :)
rjkola amdivoff3 years ago
yo
There should be one on ever street!  With all the budget cuts, most of the city pools are closed. Leaky toilets waste water, not giving kids giggles is far worse.
sanchez051 year ago
I dod this for my kids today it took me about an hour or so maybe less i wasn't keeping track of time. I followed your instructions to the T, the only thing I am thinking of changeing is add cement to 3 pcs. of the legs for more stability or just add 2 parts for chanining to add 2 10ft. pvc with misters. to make it longer I will up load pics soon maybe 2 days. but after all THANKS FOR THIS INSTRUCTABLE, I paid a total of 17 bucks for 3 hrs of fun for my kids.
wrksnfx2 years ago

DO NOT USE PVC OR CPVC BECAUSE IT IS TOXIC USE PEX INSTEAD AND IS AVAILABLE AT MOST HOME IMPROVEMENT STORES!

http://www.greenpeace.org/usa/en/news-and-blogs/news/how-to-find-and-avoid-toxic-vi/

http:// http://www.calpipes.org/ProtectingCalifornians_CPVC.asp
Can you affix the mister nozzles to the PEX in the same manner? I have never had the chance to use PEX but this might be the perfect opportunity!
I would check at your local hardware store they should have the answers your looking for.
bkenney wrksnfx2 years ago
CPVC is NOT TOXIC. CPVC is commonly used for hot and cold lines in homes. PVC should not be used for potable waters, but this project is not for drinking.
wrksnfx bkenney2 years ago
If cpvc is exposed long term to direct sunlight it can leech toxins and show me any kid when their outside and hot won't drink the water coming from it when going through it; remember our generation drank from pvc garden hoses......Maybe this why today's kids are so messed up.
nononono NO...todays kids are so messed up because someone down the line decided that spanking your child to adjust their attitude was not appropriate ESPECIALLY in public so now every time you spank your child you risk having CPS called on us because those tree huggin anti disciplin people out there think that they should let their child "express themselves"...well when your kid is holding a gun to his head and my child is standin there tryin to convince your child to not pull the trigger, you let me know how letting them "express themselves"...but i can tell you now that gettin a spanking will straighten EVERY ill behaved child out...i remember when i was younger, my father took me out to the garage cause of something i did...and the next thing i know, his belt was off and he told me to bend over. as soon as i did he wopped me with that belt and it turned my life around.
I do agree with corporal punishment when a child misbehaves but, a belt is too excessive it can cause welts and even cause the skin to rupture and bleed which is then classified as abuse; I grew up in that same generation where if you got caught doing something by a neighbor the spanked you and then they called your parents and when you got home you got it again.
i wouldnt personally use a belt. just my hand. i got much worse than a blet tho...i got spanked with racecar tracks for hotwheels, wooden spoons, the old school fly-swatters (u kno the ones with the wire)...you name it ive prolly been spanked by it.

oh and i wasnt directing the post at you btw. i was making a scenario. sorry if you thought that...i wrote it at 0200 in the morn where i live...lol
No prob no offense taken.
nforge wrksnfx2 years ago
Those two groups are the same ones that forced companies to include a: "this product could cause birth defects" sticker on every light fixture now. not sure I'm trusting them. Not to say pex is a bad idea, but i guarantee you wont' die or experience any harmful effects if you use pvc.
CrazyNick1 year ago
Can't buy the jets around here (Pittsburgh) either.... I'm looking at substituting these instead (plus would save on drilling...) Any thoughts or experience using these?
i forgot that this site blocks certain websites... search "Orbit 10112W 1/2-Inch PVC Splitter With Mist Nozzle" and click the amazon link.
B Hislip1 year ago
If you live in a place that gets cold, and you'll be leaving this outside, you may want to consider adding a clean-out that will allow you to drain leftover water from the assembly. I got a 90 degree elbow with a removable cap, and put it opposite my hose connection - hose at bottom left, clean-out at upper right. Now (if I remember to drain it!) this thing won't get busted by ice formation - like my first one!
drsteevo1 year ago
Thanks for this great instructable. My kids love it!
zaphodX2 years ago
I am totally sold on this idea.. looks a lot of fun and plan to do this in summer.

Has anybody put this together for 7 yr old kids?

My boy just doesn't want water, he wants something he can do while he is getting drenched.. like some sport/game or activity that involves more water.. He likes water guns, crazy sprinklers etc..

Are there any ideas on rigging this with additional fun-activity things on this toy?
OCLVig2 years ago
Great instructable! As far as "wasting water" goes; If I don't mind paying the bill, I'll use as much water as I want. Anybody remember playing in the sprinkler as a kid?... same thing. Just have fun and relax.
mitchelt2 years ago
Awesome...easy to build and my little girl loved it! Thank you so much for sharing this wonderful project with us.
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akarabinis2 years ago
So I just built this for my girlfriend's kids and it seems the misters on the post farthest away from the connector to the hose are just squirting out a small stream of water and not a mist. Has anybody else encountered this problem? The kids will love it when they come home and I just want it finished in time. Thanks.
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