Hydro Hive

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Introduction: Hydro Hive

About: I am a business owner. I have been making and building things longer than I can remember. I love to work for fun and work to build the next project. I am a beekeeper. The work involved in that is nothing mor...

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.

Step 8:

Concrete & Casting Contest

Runner Up in the
Concrete & Casting Contest

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37 Discussions

It's wonderful to see the site's comment policy being used to inspire instructables:

"We have a bee nice comment policy.
Please bee positive and constructive."

1 reply

I dig it! Got to love this site. A lot of my friends and coworkers are getting accounts set up on here just because to the structure of it.

Thank you. I have some more things I plan to build for the same cause as well as i get the time to. 3D printers are great, but they do need a lot on babying at times lol .

Really nice Dylan, Would you share the stl files for the print on thingiverse or similar? Thx for sharing.

1 reply

I would love to but the one in the pic had some problems that I wanted to fix. So i deleted the STL. And the new I have looks great though the filter is pulling parts off of it. I am trying to work with Nettfab right now to repair it. If i can get that going I post an STL for sure in Thingiverse hands down.

More than welcome. I would say look them up and see what one looks like it would best for you and your needs.

Are 3D printers extremely expensive? I love your projects results.

1 reply

They have come down a lot, and are getting more and more lower in cost these days. There are some kits out there that are really good to play with for a lot less in cost.

Great idea! Fortunately for ME, my son and daughter own a 3D printer they're willing to use for Mom's projects. I'd love do have them make me a hydro hive like yours! If I get it done, I'll send pics!

Cool idea :) might have to make one for my cousin/neighbor if/when I get my hands on a 3d printer

Very cool tutorial! It also has great info for casting other items out of silicon using concrete. Any chance you could provide the CAD drawing/3D printer file or a link where we could order one from you?