FREE PVC PROJECT PLANS,
IDEAS AND SOLUTIONS
Some plans are in common PDF format.
To read, you'll need Adobe.com's free Reader.)
Bird-Safe, Easy-to-Make Vole Trap
One 1 1/4-inch PVC Tee
Assemble as shown in the left-hand photo above. No need to glue the pieces.
After seeing where the little varmint's trail is, remove a length of sod or dirt and place the trap into the runway with the 3-inch length of pipe set just above the ground line. (See right-hand photo.) Replace and tamp down the sod. Then insert rodenticide into the pipe. (See below.) Works great in gardens.
This clever vole trap plan is thanks to David at http://www.vegetablegardendjp.blogspot.com/
He uses a commercial pelletized rodenticide in the trap, which can be found at a farm supply center in your area. You'll want to experiment with what works best for you, but a farm supply center may be helpful for locating a product specific for this use and where you live. (Use the product only as directed.)
The trap has proved to be bird-safe for David. In addition, the PVC pipe keeps the runway open and helps prevent the rodenticide from being absorbed into the ground.
How to Make PVC Wind Chimes
One 10-foot length
of 1/2-inch PVC pipe (you'll have leftover)
Cut the pipe into 5 pieces as follows:
2 @14-inches, 1 @ 12-inches, 1 @ 10-inches, 1 @ 8-inches and 1 @ 7-inches long
Cut one end of each pipe at an angle, 45 degrees or so.
Drill 1/8-inch holes
into the center of each cap. Thread an equal length of
fishing line through each hole and tie off using a button.
Then glue a cap to each pipe. Paint each length of pipe/cap
whatever bright color suits you.
Thread the opposite end of each fishing line into the small holes and tie off using a button. You should now have six chimes hanging from the plywood board in random order.
Next, thread 4 short
lengths of nylon rope into each corner hole and tie off with
a knot. Tie the loose rope ends together and hang the chimes
wherever they'll catch the wind.
Alternative: make your Wind Chime with additional pieces of pipe, cut at different lengths to get a different sound. Also, experiment with 3/4 and 1-inch diameter PVC pipe.
Caster with threaded stem
Drill an appropriate size hole in the center of the cap. Fasten the caster with nut and lock washer. Make as many as needed for your project.
Attach a length of PVC pipe to the cap and slide over a chair leg to convert a stationary chair into a rolling chair. Or use it to turn a PVC project into one that rolls.
For more space under your bed, insert the bed legs into an appropriate diameter PVC pipe. Be careful not to raise the bed too high. A foot, or so, should be plenty. Now you've got more underneath space to store all your stuff. Use the above Caster Attachment, if you want to move your bed around.
Three-Inch Length of
1" PVC Pipe
Cut the lengths of pipe. Draw two lines lengthwise on the one-inch pipe, approximately one-inch apart. Cut the lines with a hand saw or Dremel tool. Sand smooth.
Apply glue to the 1/2-inch pipe with a Q-tip, and attach to the one-inch pipe.
For a different look, substitute a wooden dowel for the 1/2" PVC pipe. Or paint the project.
To keep squirrels out of your bird feeders try these two methods...
Method #1: Place a 4 x 4 post inside a length of PVC pipe and cement them in your yard. Leave about one foot of lumber exposed at the top. Then affix your feeder to the 4 x 4. Be sure to place the feeder far enough from tree limbs and buildings so the squirrels can’t jump across to the feeder.
Method #2: Set a four-inch PVC pipe in the ground, at least five feet high. Fasten your bird feeder to the top of the pipe. Then rub car polish on the pipe to make it even slicker.
Either method, it’s fun to watch the squirrels try to climb the PVC pipe.
Try it. It works!
Low-Cost Christmas Decoration Idea
Cut one-inch diameter (or 3/4-inch, if you prefer) PVC pipe into four-foot sections. Next, swirl red tape up the length to form candy canes. (Does duct tape come in red?)
Line your walkway and driveway for a cheery Holiday look.
A nice plus is you can use the "candy canes" year after year.
Ever hurt your hands
when moving your heavy table saw? If your saw has wheels,
maybe not. But a couple of weeks ago I bought a new saw and
gave my old, wheel-less one to my son. When moving it, we
grabbed sharp edges of the sheet metal on each side. Yow!
So, PVC pipe to the rescue!
6-1/2 foot length of
1" PVC Pipe
Cut the pipe to suit your, or your kid's, size. My cuts are as follows: 12-inches for the leg, 6-inches for the foot stand and 5-feet for the top piece. Glue the lengths to the Tee and glue on the End Caps.
Stilts provide hours of "non-tech" fun for everyone. Try it. It's addictive!
How to Color
PVC by Dying It!
Jamie in Rhode Island sent me this interesting idea. Dye PVC instead of painting it. Here's how:
Follow the easy directions on a package of RIT dye, which is available near the laundry soap section at your favorite supermarket. I chose a dark blue. The pipe and fitting on the left side in the above photo sat in a glass jar for 30 minutes. The ones on the right, 45 minutes with a pinch of salt added. Both came out with a slight mottled look.
I haven't yet tried a stronger solution or longer "soaking" time. That may make a difference in color. Also, I'm not sure how long the color lasts. So I've set the pipe outside for the winter. We'll see.
Actually, Jamie says she dyed her pipe black and uses it in her aquarium without any ill effect on the fish or plants.
If this idea works well, I don't know how cumbersome it'll be to dye longer lengths of pipe... and be consistent with color. Lots to test.
Let me know if you have any thoughts or experience regarding dying the Pipe. Thanks.
UPDATE, April 6, 2009: The pipe wintered for several months in ice, snow, rain and freezing temperatures. Looks like it did when I set it out. So, at least for one season, the dye seems to hold up well. Since we don't have hot sun in the Pacific NW, I'd love to have someone in AZ set out a dyed pipe for the summer and let me know how it did.
Light Stand with Home Made
If you live in an area where
there are plenty of deer and would like to feed them during
the cold months, consider making a simple feeder with PVC
pipe. Here's how...
4-foot length of 6-inch PVC
Cut a 45-degree angle at one end. Place the pipe erect and, with the Bungee cords, fasten it against a tree with the beveled end tip set on the ground.
Fill the pipe with corn and place the cap on the top.
The corn is accessed through the beveled end of the feeder.
This simple idea will work for other animals, as well.
Patio Umbrella Stand
If you want a decorative umbrella stand for your patio, deck or poolside, here's an idea...
Purchase a large, pretty terra-cotta flower pot from Home Depot, Lowe's or any gardening center. Cut an appropriate diameter PVC pipe to the height of the pot. Center the pipe and fill the pot with Quikrete®. Make sure the pipe is perfectly vertical.
Fill the cement to a few inches from the top. When set, insert your deck umbrella into the pipe then add a few small pots of flowers around the perimeter of the large pot.
Now, the Umbrella Stand will be heavy. To roll it around, you can build a nifty Flower Pot Caddy with PVC pipe. You'll find free plans on this page. (You may want to set the big pot on the stand first!)
Various sized PVC (flat) Caps
Swab a bit of PVC glue to the "sides" of the caps. Hold the caps together for a minute or two.
I use my organizer to hold loose screws (yes, I have loose screws). But... this organizer can be painted and used to hold bathroom stuff, hobby & craft materials, sewing things, kitchen ingredients and on and on.Add more caps to hold more stuff.
and Fertilize Too!
4 or 5-foot length
of 1-1/2" PVC pipe
Cut a point on one end of the pipe. Randomly drill several 3/8" holes up to about 12-inches from the pointed end. (See Photo #2.)
Drive the stake next to your tomato plant and tie it up (Photo #3). Now you can efficiently water the plant right near the roots AND add liquid fertilizer when needed.At the end of the season, remove the stake, knock out any dirt and store away for next year. Works like a charm.
Easy RV & Camper Storage
Grab a length of 4-inch PVC pipe and two end caps. Glue one cap to the pipe, leave the other unglued.
Mount the pipe under your RV with pipe strap. Now you can store extension cords, rolled-up outdoor carpet, fishing poles, whatever! And it gives you more room inside.
You can safely clean your gutters from ground level by vacuuming the debris with this handy attachment.
Cut a 10-foot thinwall PVC pipe to a comfortable length to reach your gutters. Then glue two PVC elbows to one end (so you can reach into the gutter). Attach the other end to your shop vac and you're ready to clean. Works great!
Do you have a floating cover to keep leaves out of your pool? If so, you can add a length of PVC pipe to the end of your shop vac hose to reach the leaves that pile up in the middle of the cover. That way, the vacuum doesn’t get too close to the pool. It’s lightweight and easy to hold. And safer.
Outdoor Foot Washer
to Glue Wood (and
Many crafters report excellent bonding results with the silicone adhesives Amazing Goop and E6000, which are available at most any craft supply outlet or online.
Follow the instructions on the containers. In general, for proper adhesion, make sure both surfaces to be glued together are cleaned with denatured alcohol or similar. Points of contact should be paint-free until after the adhesive has been cured.
Also, read the containers for mention of any materials that can not be cemented with the above adhesives.
Grow Celery in Your Garden? Shield It from the Sun this Way for Great Tasting Celery.
As you may know, celery needs to be a light green color so it won't be bitter. The more sun it gets, the darker the green.
So to shield the plant from the sun during the last half of summer, cut an appropriate length of 12-inch diameter PVC pipe (used for drainage) and place it over an individual plant.
The pipe is large enough for one plant, allows good air circulation, as well as creating the dark environment for proper development.
Then in September, you may just have to jump back from the Jack-in-the-Beanstalk-like growth!
If you're a gardener... try it.
Length of 1/2-inch PVC Pipe
Cut pipe to various lengths, depending on what kind of blades you're storing... jig saw, scroll saw, Sawzall, etc.
Glue on a cap at one end. Label the tubes with a permanent marker. Simple, easy-to-find blade storage and helps keep together blade types.
6 Uses for Scrap PVC Pipe
1. Drapery Rod
Hang a 3/4" length of pipe. Thread thru eye-hooks. Hide it behind a valance.
2. Time Capsule
Cut a length of 2 to 4-inch diameter pipe. Fill it with mementos. Cap the ends. Hide it away. Label the side so it doesn't get tossed away in a 100 years.
3. Electric Cord Control
Run several power cords thru a length of PVC pipe.
4. Lightweight C-Clamp
Cut several 1 to 2-inch lengths of 2" pipe. Slice the short sections lengthwise. Ideal for hobbyists.
5. Vacuum Hose Extender
Fasten a length of 1-1/4" or 1-1/2" pipe to your shop vac with duct tape. Use for hard-to-reach areas like ceiling corners & edges, ceiling fan blades, behind workbench, etc.
Cut a length of 2 to 4-inch pipe, cap one end. Fill with nails, screws, whatever. Label the side.
How to Cut
If you've got a problem location, such as inside a wall, where it's hard to use a saw or cutter - or if you find yourself without the proper tool - you can still easily cut the pipe.
Simply take a length of nylon string and begin "sawing" with a back and forth motion. This method took me less than a minute to cut through a half-inch pipe.
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