Jun 10, 2018

Weekend Project: 3D Print a Majestic Japanese Water Fountain

Add some relaxation to your office or home with a 3D printed Japanese Water Fountain. The Seattle-based maker and engineer Jeremy Elson recently became inspired by a Shishi Odoshi fountain, and decided to create his own 3D printed miniature version. 

In Japanese-style gardens across the world, Shishi Odoshi “Deer Scarer” water fountains create a soothing stream that can calm even the most cluttered of minds (unless, of course, you’re a deer). Usually made with bamboo and a water pump, the tranquil nature of these fountains make them the perfect addition to any garden, backyard or even work desk!

In fact, you can create a miniaturized version of this Japanese water fountain with your 3D printer, along with some other easy-to-source parts. Created by Seattle-based maker and engineer Jeremy Elson, his “Deer Scarer” Japanese water fountain uses a water pump and reservoir to create a mediative cycle of water.  As you can tell by the name, the practical application of this fountain is to scare away deer with the splashing water sound a noise, preventing them from chowing down on your garden.

This miniaturized version might not scare away garden predators, but it will make a great addition to your home or workplace. Let’s take a look at what you need to 3D print your own Shishi Odoshi water fountain.

Japanese Water Fountain: What You Need

There are four different parts that you’ll need to 3D print, including the base, fountain tube and supply line. The STL files for the fully functional Shishi Odoshi “Deer Scarer” Japanese Water Fountain can be download for free on Thingiverse. You might want to consider using PETG or a similar material that is water-proof. Other than that, here are the other parts you’ll need to complete this zen-like project:

Japanese Water Fountain: Putting it Together

Let’s start with the 3D printing process, which Elson details in his Thingiverse post. The maker suggests printing the main tube at around 70 percent infill, which is important because the bottom of the tube will act as a counterweight to the rest of the fountain. The rest of the 3D printed parts can be printed with 20 percent infill.

The assembly process is quite simple, but requires a few steps before your fountain will start running. First, you’ll place the 3D printed mounting bracket over the water pump and spread the silicone sealant around the outside of the pump’s inlet port. Next, insert the pump into the 3D printed reservoir, fastening it in with the M3x12mm screws through the outside of the base. There should by M3 washers placed in between the screw head and plastic base, as well as between the nut and pump bracket.

In order to keep water from leaking out, place more sealant around the inlet port. Next, take the vinyl tubing and cut a strip that’s about 10 inches in length. Push an end of the tube into the inlet hole deep enough that it’s securely mounted. Take some more sealant and distribute the sealant around the entrance where the vinyl tube has been inserted.

The following step is to place the square-shaped water ride tube into the top of the base, once again spreading sealant on the bottom of the riser. At this point, you’ll want to wait between 24 to 72 hours for the sealant to fully cure before moving on to the final stages of this project. Once the sealant is properly cured, attach the free end of the vinyl water tube to the outlet port on the pump. There are two 3D printed support struts that will be inserted into the side hinge holes of the main tube. Finally, cut the end of the power adapter off and strip the wires in order to attach them to the pump (blue=positive, brown=negative).

All that’s left now if filling the reservoir with water and plugging in the fountain! Sit back, relax, and enjoy the relaxing sounds of your DIY Japanese water fountain!

License: The text of "Weekend Project: 3D Print a Majestic Japanese Water Fountain" by All3DP is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.

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