Intro: Upcycled Solar Powered Garden Fountain/ Bird Bath
I love to be outside in my garden. Here, in central Florida it gets HOT in the summer so I wanted a water feature to cool things down. I have a small garden so a pond was out, hence a fountain seemed to be just right. Not having the money to buy a fountain or do the electrical outlet for a plug, I decided to fabricate a one of a kind fountain and use a solar powered pump. I also wanted to use recycled items and make the fountain easy to break down for shipping....yes I will sell them!
small solar fountain pump
nylon washers and nuts
thrift store pieces and parts (glass and ceramic)
diamond hole saw bit (next size up from the threaded rod)
Step 1: Get Stuff, Go Shopping!
Go Shopping. Thrift stores, flea markets, grandma's attic. I look for pieces by shape and color. The top bowl should be fairly deep to hold the pump. In addition to the larger pieces, I look for smaller spacers, candle holders work well. The fun part for me is that I spend very little money and when I bring my finds home I get to play with them until I get the right look.
Step 2: Drill, Slowly
The base pieces of the fountain are held together with a threaded rod, nylon washers and nuts. So you will need to drill a hole to accept the rod.
Patience in the key here. Drilling through glass is a slow process. Use lots of water to keep the glass and bit cool and all will be well.
I use 1/4 inch threaded rod with a 5/16 bit (gives you a little wiggle room). Make sure you are as close to center as possible and have at it. It can take 5 minutes to drill one hole.
Step 3: Assemble the Base
Almost there! Put a washer and nut on one end of the threaded rod (cut to size, of course). Slide the rod through the pieces, using washers and nuts in-between the pieces if you like and are able. Snug everything together.
Step 4: The Bowl
The bowl needs to fit snugly into the base. For this fountain I glued a bud vase onto the bottom of the bowl, aquarium glue works well. The bud vase slips into the base and keeps the bowl steady. For other fountains I use the threaded rod all the way through the fountain and seal the hole in the bowl with the glue....just depends upon your components.
Step 5: Pump, Finish, and Listen, Ahhhhh!
Most importantly at this point is to find level ground and as sunny a place as possible for the solar panel. The fountain can be in partial shade as long as the panel is in the sun.
Okee dokes...set the fountain up, add water, set in the pump, cover the pump with glass gems (craft store) or rocks and enjoy!
I spent a grand total of $35 on this fountain. My neighbors are fighting over it.....going to the highest bidder :).