Creating a Bowling Ball Bubbler
by Marilyn Miller & Shirley Dyer
A Bowling Ball Bubbler is fairly easy to make and can be an attractive addition to your pond and garden area.
Preparing the Materials
Select a decorative pot for your bubbler. It can be ceramic or made from composition material. If the pot has drainage holes, seal them with silicone sealant. Check the pot to make sure it is water tight. Use an electric drill with a long bit to drill though the bowling ball starting in the thumb hole. Make the hole big enough so a piece of flexible tubing that fits the outlet of your fountain pump can be threaded through it.
Assembling the Bubbler Using Bricks
Place the fountain pump at the bottom of the pot. Fit bricks around the pump so they will support the bowling ball about 1 to 2 inches below the top edge of the pot. Attach the tubing to the pump and measure the length you need to bring it all the way up through the hole in the bowling ball. Select a pizza pan or grill top that fits the diameter of the pot about 1 to 2 inches below the top edge of the pot. (If you use a pizza pan you may have to cut a hole in the center to accommodate the tubing.) Place the pan or grill on top of the bricks and under the bowling ball. That creates a tray to hold the smooth pebbles. Fill the pot with water. Test the bubbler to make sure the pump is working. Adjust the tubing so the water flows smoothly over the ball. If the pump is too strong you may get a fountain rather than a bubbler. Reduce the flow at the pump outlet if necessary. Place the pebbles around the bowling ball. Your bubbler is finished.
Assembling the Bubbler Using Rocks
Place the fountain pump at the bottom of the pot with the tubing attached to the pump outlet. Estimate the length of tubing you will need to go from the pump to the top of the pot and through the bowling ball. Cut the tubing a little longer than the length you will need. Invert the basket over the pump with the tubing threaded through the bottom of the basket. Fill the pot with small rocks up to 1 to 2 inches from the top. Place the bowling ball at the center of the pot with the tubing threaded through the drilled hole. Trim tubing even with the hole if needed. Fill the pot with water. Test the pump and adjust the tubing to get the flow rate you desire. Finish your bubbler by covering the rocks with smooth pebbles up to the top of the pot. ENJOY!