General Question

arnbev959's avatar

Does anyone have any ideas for how to build a water tower?

Asked by arnbev959 (10906points) July 7th, 2008

I want to build a model water tower (10 to 14 feet tall) to put in my backyard. I’m planning on using PVC pipe for the legs, with one thick central pipe in the middle and four skinnier pipes on the sides. I’m thinking of using some kind of plastic or wooden barrel for the tank.
There will really be two tanks; an external tank that will make the thing look like a water tower, and an internal tank that will hold about a gallon of water.
Inside the central pipe I want to have two hoses, one to supply the internal tank, and one that will run down the central pipe and through a hole in the pipe.

Does anyone have any ideas on
-what to use for the external tank
-what to use for the internal tank
-how to attach the internal tank to the external tank
-how to improve the overall design?

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16 Answers

AstroChuck's avatar

First you’re going to need a lot of Legos.

ebenezer's avatar

are you making this to impress your neighbors? Is it supposed to work?

arnbev959's avatar

I’m making it for my sister, she really likes water towers.

It isn’t supposed to supply water to the house, but I want it to be able to store a small amount of water so that when I show it to people I can have water come out of it.

PupnTaco's avatar

Find plans online. Water is really heavy – PVC pipes aren’t engineered to support any weight.

And what condition do you want the stored water to be in? Clean and drinkable? Or stinky, algae-laden and possibly toxic?

PupnTaco's avatar

p.s. Are you building the world’s biggest bong?

ebenezer's avatar

pete- sounds like a fun project.

arnbev959's avatar

I can’t find any plans online. This isn’t the kind of project a lot of people try.

water is really heavy. That’s why I only want it to hold a gallon—a half gallon even.

I want the water to be drinkable initially, but if after a few months it turns green I won’t be too upset.

it’s not a bong!

PupnTaco's avatar

If it’s strictly a decorative thing, why not go with steel plumbing pipe? It’ll look more authentic. Maybe you can find an appropriately-sized wooden barrel and put a rainwater-collecting plastic jug inside.

Google “rainwater collection barrel” for some ideas.

arnbev959's avatar

The steel plumbing pipe might work, but it might be too heavy (then again, it would be sturdy). I’ll have to take a trip to home depot and look around.

The “rainwater collection barrel” google has given me a lot of ideas. Thanks Taco!

jrpowell's avatar

Have you thought about making a smaller one? You could start with one that is about three feet tall and used a normal gallon of water in a plastic jug. And with a smaller one she could keep it in her room and easily take it with her when she moves.

I would make it out of wood if you can get your hands on woodworking equipment.
This wouldn’t be that hard to make a smaller version of.

edit :: and if you were bad ass you could make a small one for the kitchen counter built around a Brita filter.

playthebanjo's avatar

um…do lots of people like water towers as a hobby?

Before you build a fifteen foot tall structure in your backyard you might give a call to your local permitting office. Unless you are in a pretty rural area.

waterskier2007's avatar

@play, unless he is building some serious foundations he shouldnt have any problem setting up a water tower of this size in his backyard

marinelife's avatar

Hey, PtP, perhaps this PDF will offer ideas on tank materials that you find useful:

“Plastic, or polyethylene, water tanks are now the biggest selling sector of the booming water tank market.”

Knotmyday's avatar

@marina, that was funny
Pete: Try starting with a half-barrel planter as the faux tank.
For the tower, I suggest a wooden ornamental windmill base. Hope that sparked the creative drive.

scamp's avatar

petethepothead Good luck on your project. Don’t forget to change the water frequently, because standing water is a perfect breeding ground for mosquitoes.

Bad_Wolf's avatar

so this is a rain collection system, not a sealed pump design?

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