On our family camping trip this year, My 12 year old daughter hit me with a challenge. we both watch Nate and Grant over at the king of random on youtube, she told me she wanted to build a vortex fountain while we were camping for this contest and Grant and Nate had a video. so here we go. Let me say first that there are much better ways to do this. This is how we managed it on about 2 hrs notice. we rode to town and hit a Hardware store and a local fish store and a wally world. based on how you do this your parts may very well vary some. for us we purchased a 5 gallon bucket with lid, a small aquarium pump, a few pieces of tubing, a pair of hose clamps, and what ever I had in my toolbox to use.
Step 1: Gather Your Stuff
item 1 a drink dispenser. for us it was a 1.75 gallon one from wally world.
item 2 was a 5 gallon bucket with lid from a hardware store.
item 3 and 4 are vinyl tube 1 size to fit the outlet on the water pump and the other for the fitting used in the fountain. in my case the 2 sizes worked out perfect as they slid together and didn't require anything else to connect them.
item 5 was a aquarium pump from a local fish store. I went with the cheapest one they had. I wish I had gone with a bigger one, the pump I got was only powerful enough to keep the water at a given level after it was filled. a larger pump would have been able to have the fountain look nicer with water coming over the edges too.
item 6 was a pack of 2 hose clamps.
Step 2: Lets Get Building.
I took a drill bit and drilled a hole in the center of the bucket lid. then 2 holes in the top sides of the bucket. 1 for the hose to fill the fountain and the other for the power cord to come out of the bucket.I attached the hose to the outlet on the pump and placed it in the bottom of the bucket, then routed the hose out thru the hole in the side then the power cord out thru the notch in the top of the bucket. then we put the lid on the bucket.
Step 3: Continuing the Mission.
Now we take the fountain and unscrew the tap on the side, then drill a hole in the center of the bottom, in the case with this fountain it has a top and a bottom so we drilled a hole in both so the water drains onto the bucket lid. the hole in the bucked lid will allow the water to drain back into the bucket to keep the flow going. now we need a nozzle to make the water go into the fountain and also to turn. we were going to take the tap and just remove the innards and put it back in backwards. this would allow the water to go into the fountain and start the vortex. in this case I found a water fitting in my tool box, I have no clue where I got it from. but since it was a even swap and I didn't have to tear the tap apart I used it instead. we put the fitting in but had the threads on the outside. the tubing fit right over the threads and I used a hose clamp to secure the host to the fitting, I turned the inside to one side so it would start the water turning.then we put the fountain on the bucket and connected it. we did not glue the fountain down, this is because this wasn't going to be permanent. we will re build it after we got home and she wants to add lights to it as well.
Step 4: Lets Turn It On.
We fill the fountain with a gallon of water, let it drain into the bucket, then add a second gallon of water. then we plugged it up. I had to plug the hole in the bottom of the fountain with my finger until the fountain filled, them pulled my finger out. and just watched. Also tickled since it actually worked. on a small bonus fact. if you look at the last few pictures. I placed the lid on the fountain and the vortex seemed to go faster and only came to the bottom of the lid. it just looked nifty. This was our first instructable. I promise they will be better done in the future. I hope you enjoyed it and a big thanks to Nate and Grant over at The King Of Random for making such a great channel. https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC1zZE_kJ8rQHgLTVfobLi_g