I have to say this project caused quite a bit of debate in our house as while agreed it was a cool object I wasn’t at all convinced there was anything we could do with it. My wife’s initial thought was that we could use it as a wash basin in the guest toilet but the tiny bowl and high water pressure had flooding written all over it so we moved on from that idea.
We finally settled on an indoor water feature and although I have to admit I wasn’t 100% convinced, credit where credits due the final result really works well and she was right as usual. Once we’d decided what we wanted to do I had a series of problems to solve to ensure I could fit the pump into the fountain and have it all sealed and water proof while at the same time having no wire’s or tubes trailing from the feature spoiling the look.
For the pump we used a small Aquarius Universal 440 indoor pump like this one. I’ve built a couple of water features and ponds in the past and I’ve always thought afterwards that I should have gone for a bigger pump but in fact this little 440 was more than powerful enough even when turned way down so you could probably go even smaller.
These small pumps sit in the water sucking in through a small sponge filter on the bottom and squirting it up out of the short pipe you can see on the top. My initial idea was to sit the pump upside down in the bowl with the rubber tube running down out of the hole in the bottom then looping back up behind the fountain. However, there were two problems with that. First I was worried about sealing the whole in the bottom without having leaks and also the loop of the tube coming out of the bottom didn’t look very nice.
In order to keep a clean look I decided to block the hole in the bowl. To do this I placed a metal and rubber washer on the outside of the bowl and ran a bolt through the hole and then placed another rubber washer followed by a metal one. When the whole thing was tightened up it clamped tight around the hole making a watertight seal. I then coated everything in Black Silicone to both hide the bolt and washers but to also help prevent any leaks.
My next problem was running the power cable and the water tube through the fountain to the back. As you can see in the picture below the fountain is made in two pieces so I was able to take it to pieces. I cut out a u-shaped notch from either side with a junior hacksaw and then used a file to smooth off any sharp edges. This allowed me to run the power and water behind the fountain without either being really visible.
The water tube simply runs up the back of the fountain and then out through the lions mouth but the power was a little more of a challenge. As I said earlier I didn’t want to have a cable running up or down the wall so I took it directly back and through the wall. I was in luck as directly behind the wall on which I mounted the fountain is a built in cupboard. I took a 8mm (5/16ths) drill bit which was very long 400mm (16 inch) and carefully drilled back into the cupboard. I then took the plug off of the cable passed it through the hole and refitted the plug.
It was all plain sailing from here really. I cut two wooden batons, which I painted black, and fixed to the wall with screws and wall plugs (screw anchors). This gave me a little place behind the fountain to run the water tube up to the lions head. Finally I attached the fountain to the batons with galvanised screws to ensure they didn’t rust form the moisture.
Thanks for reading The Shabby Side of Chic.