When our livestock are moved into the next paddock, or the trough needs a clean, the contents, up to 450 litres of water, are dumped into the pasture. While we’ve tended to hold a ‘survival-of-the-fittest’ mentality for our tree planting, we couldn’t help but feel that this water could be better directed on nearby seedlings. So, a little while ago, we whipped up our first attempt at a stock trough water diverter that would do just this.
Our first iteration of this design worked. Briefly. It was strong on reuse of materials, but in the end, it leaked in all the wrong places and our seedlings remained as dry as ever. With some ideas from readers Anthony and Greg, we had a go at Mark II. This one is permanently attached to the trough bung, so when it’s time to empty the trough, you simply fit the hose, open the valve and water races off to inundate your nearest future woodland.
Trough Hose Outlet Mark II (aka. THOM2) involves two 20mm brass hex nipples, one 20mm brass back nut, a 20mm ball valve, a standard hose outlet and a substantial amount of pink plumber’s tape. Firstly, we drilled a hole in the centre of the trough bung slightly smaller than the first 20mm nipple. Then we twisted one of the nipples into the hole, using it to cut a thread in the plastic. With a thread cut, we wrapped the nipple in plumber’s tape, threaded it through the hole from the front of the bung until the central hex thingy reached the plastic. We fixed it in place with a 20mm back nut on what will be the inside of the trough. On the outside, we attached the ball valve, another nipple and then the hole outlet, all generously wrapped in pink plumber’s tape. What’s more, it actually works. At the moment there are no leaks, but we’ll keep a close eye on it to check whether an additional seal between the back nut and bung might be required. Total cost: about 20 bucks.