2007 - Volume #31, Issue #6, Page #11[ Sample Stories From This Issue | List of All Stories In This Issue | Print this story | Read this issue]
Drainage Pipe Made From Recycled Barrels
"I made 150 ft. of large diameter drainage pipe using 55-gal. black plastic drums. They had been used for transporting chlorine and were being thrown away," McCann says. "They rinsed them out thoroughly and were more than happy to give them to me so they didn't have to go to the further expense of destroying the heavy duty, crosslink plastic drums."
He cut off the top one-third of the barrels because of of the way they bowed out in the middle. It helped them fit together tighter. At the bottom of the barrels, McCann cut off the outer plastic ring, leaving an inner plastic lip for strength. McCann then joined the 50 barrel tubes together, fastening them with 2-in. long by 1/2-in. dia. galvanized bolts and washers (two at each joint).
Using just two bolts lets the huge pipe snake down the steep but rolling embankment. The pipe diverts runoff and minimizes erosion.
He was also able to turn the leftover 1/3 barrel ends into a marketable product by cutting out handles in the sides. He sold them to a local bamboo producer who grew bamboo plants in them for sale.
"My drainage pipe works well to stop erosion of the hillside from heavy downpours," McCann says. "To protect it from UV damage, I stretched chicken wire over the pipe, hooking it on the bolts that stick out, so that the natural vegetation could get a foothold. Vines quickly grew right over it, and the pipe blends into its surroundings as a result."
McCann is willing to provide plans and advice for a fee if there's interest.
Contact: FARM SHOW Followup, Scott McCann, Box 1854, Freedom, Calif. 95019 (ph 831 316-8087 or 831 722-4504; firstname.lastname@example.org).
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