Garden Hose Water Gun for Hero Dads




Introduction: Garden Hose Water Gun for Hero Dads

I love me some 40 schedule 1/2 PVC so when it got super hot today I decided to make one of those customizable PVC lawn sprinklers.  Then I thought "hey, it would be fun to make a pvc water gun that connects to the hose".  I happened to have a sprayer attachment that had a threaded end so I tried my pvc hose connector on it and batta boom batta bing we were in business.  This "ible" is not super detailed cuz it was a rush job but as all you hero dads* know time is of the essence when you are trying to entertain and inspire your kids.

Materials (this is for the triple barrel version)
 Approx 20 inches of schedule 40 1/2 PVC (usually it comes pre-cut length of either 2 or 4 feet)
1 cross slip connector
1 "t" slip connector
4 1/2 slip caps
1 garden hose 1/2" PVC connector (threaded one side and slip on the other. I got mine at Lowes next to the sprinkler heads)
sprayer with a threaded end
Hack saw for cutting the pvc
Drill with 1/8 bit

*Hero Dad: is any dad trying to impress his kids with some type of act or service - in this case (in the footsteps of my dad) it's building something really cool

Step 1: Drill the End Caps

Drill holes in the caps that will go on the end of the barrel.  I experimented with several configurations.  This came in handy because eventually we went from single barrel to the triple barrel

Step 2: Set Up the Pieces

You'll have to cut these to the varying lengths (I did not show me cutting PVC cuz I am assuming everyone knows how to do that.)  None of this was glued together.  I purposely just hand fitted all these pieces because it was fun making up new configurations with the various pieces.  

one note with drilling:  I used a fine drill bit (1/8th) to make the holes.  The smaller the bit the stronger the stream will be as well as the stronger the pressure.

Step 3: Slip All Pieces Together

Slip all the pieces together and screw it onto the sprayer gun.  You'll have to be careful not to put the hose on full blast because most guns will come apart if you do (the pressure is too strong).   If you really like a particular configuration you can always glue this baby together and then you'll really be able to crank up the water pressure.

Step 4: Alt Set Up: Rocket Launcher

As we experimented with different pvc configurations we realized that if you attach a cap (with no holes drilled in it) to the end of a pvc and then hold onto the straight piece while cranking the water on the cap blasts off like a rocket.  

Step 5: Upright Sprinkler

Of course this can also be adapted to a fun lawn sprinkler (there are many other "ibles" on this but I thought I'd just mention it)



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27 Discussions

I love the lego like aspect of this!!! The hose would keep me entertained for hours as a kid! This would only triple the creative joy!!!!!

you should hold on to the straight piece because it too might fly off. :)

Love This, Going to build with daughters this weekend!! I love how you show it as a ground sprinkler as well.

1 reply

Cool! Ya my intent was to make a versatile backyard water toy for summer. Also, beaware that you'll have to experiement a bit with the configuration, especially with the holes in the capped end pieces. Reason being if too much pressure buids up some pieces can pop off (there is no glue involved so all the pieces are just held together by friction fit.)

have fun!


It is definitely a fun project and play with your kids! Awesome quality time! Thanks for sharing!

Hello, I don't want to criticize your design at all, for it seems to appear rather flawless, but I would however like to take the time to criticize the general idea behind the design. Is a hose not already a "water gun" on it's own? For the basic principle of a gun is that it uses some sort of propulsion system to shoot a projectile at a given target, in this case, water being the projectile, and an unhappy, now soaked child being the target. Would it not have just been easier to have three hoses on hand? This also limits the distance in which the user can travel with his gun, where as if you had just gone out, and purchased your child a nice portable water gun, that problem, and also the issue of his friends thinking lesser of him due to the essential "cool" factor associated with brand name water shooting devices available at any toy store, or for roll backs, and reasonable prices, a Walmart. I must say that it is nice that you, unlike my father, took the time to sit down with your son, and create an object of fun, that would have also given him some much needed instructions on basic engineering, but I will just stick to the replacable, cheap, and time-saving water guns you can get from just about any store. Just thought I'd comment, I hope you don't take this too negatively.

4 replies

True that, three water hoses would be cool too, but few homes have three hoses in the backyard. This idea was spawned from other "ibles" that were essentially homemade sprinkers made from pvc (we all loved running through a sprinker as a kid). What I tried to do was take the cool customizable sprinkler and make into a hand held blaster (i.e. three barrels, each with a different end cap hole pattern). All kids love using the pistol grip sprayer because it's cool to see the water blast out at full force (way better than a Wal-mart squirt gun) so why not make the sprayer better? thanx for your comments!

My house had 1 faucet in the back yard so I added a "T" and ran a second line to the other side of my deck. Both of those have 4-way splitters mounted to them. Then, I added another "T" and installed an outdoor sink. (Also made a retroactive Instructable on that.)
Since this was all on a 1/2 inch pipe, pressure dropped to the point where I was using 3 hoses to refill my spa.
I ran another line (3/4") from inside the house, over to the property line and 50 feet-or-so along the fence. There are 3 faucets on this one, the last of which is at ground level for easy draining in the fall. I use this one mostly for running sprinklers but the spa fills much faster now.
I guess my point is, I have 12 faucet connections in my back yard. Overkill? YES! Convenient? Absolutely! Crazy? Sure! I'm an Instuctabalien! (Is that what we're called?)

Jeff (and others) I see your point about efficiency, as it is probably easier to grab a 3 pack of water pistols in a box store. But I feel like the value of this site is less about true practicality and more about looking at things in new ways and feeding the urge to BUILD.

Also: anything we can do as parents to model healthy behaviors, e.g. "wonder if I could create something fun to do in the yard, rather than buy it at Walmart,?" and not being concerned with impressing one's peers with a brand name water gun is probably more valuable than many other things we give our kids. The guts to be a crafty geek is the greatest gift of all!

Long live Hero Dads (and Moms)!

The author said to go to Lowes to get the hose adapter which he also said had the words "Arizona Mist"written on it. I went to the 2 Lowes stores in my city and they couldn't find it anywhere in their store database. So I went to Lowes online and again came up with nothing listed under Arizona Mist. Anyway what I finally discovered was the hose connector is made by Orbit Irrigation Products and if you go to their web site you will find that part shown. I was able to using the Orbit name to go to lowes website and pull up a list of Orbit products Lowes carries and found the connector. What it is is a "1/2 inch Slip X FHT 3/4 inch PVC fitting". From what I gather few Lowes stores carry the item and even though I live in the 2nd largest city in Michigan had to travel 37 miles away to a smaller town which had a Lowes that did carry the part. I bought all 15 pieces they had and was told that Lowes was discontinueing that item going instead to a 3/4 inch straight PVC fitting. This would still work but you would just need a reducer of build the gun out of 3/4 inch pipe. Orbit is based out in Bountiful, Utah and going to their website you might be able to have them help you find the fitting the author used.
Also one other item I chose to change in this great project was the water sprayer costs $5 to 6 dollars if you don't have that style laying around. I went to Menards and bought a 1/2 inch slip fitting 1/4 turnning valve for less than $2 and glued it in line aftwer the hose fitting so I can disconnect and take the water gun to anybodys house without needing to have a special water sprayer. This a nice simple project that I've already had students build at a group party this "heat wave" summer. Thanks!

That's pretty slick... but instead of using the pistol type valve which restricts the flow quite a bit... you may want to try something like this:

Then you could get more flow from it and reach further.


I'm not sure what the benefit is over just using the sprayer since you are are tied to the hose anyway.

5 replies

Yikes!! I think you and JeffDroog have missed to point all together. This isn't about the perfect water gun. It's about a Dad doing something cool with his son and passing on the spirit of creativity. Good on you Brent! My son and I are going to craft one of the babies this weekend. He will think it is by far more cool than the water guns he already has, even if he can only travel 50 feet with it.

You're right. I didn't mean to offend anyone. It's the technical side of me that tends to focus on the details. I totally overlooked the main objective spend quality time with your child. I'm not quite there yet, but we have one in the oven and I look forward to many hours spent building projects such as this in the near future.

Near Future Hero Dad ;-)

Good on you too skinz! Keep the oven warm & happy. You won't believe what your little monkey will have you doing and you will love every minute of it. Logic goes to the wind and things like water fights (with goofy water guns :)) will take on a whole new meaning. Enjoy! Cheers to all.

cool! the hardest thing to find is the hose converter piece. did you find one yet? I got mine at Lowers and it says "Arizona Mist" on the side. good luck and have fun!

the benefit is the normal garden-variety sprayer is transformed into a triple barrelled water blaster. It is also customizable to whatever configuration the child (or the adult child) can dream up.

Yeah HERO DAD, that's what i try to do. Sounds like it could be a whole new website.