Originally Posted by ChickNanny13
I'm in-between chicks/chickens right now & been reading 😳 So much GREAT INFO on this site! I'm sold on Water Nipple concept but confused about the drill bit size, some say 3/8 others 11/32 with teflon tape. Have seen buckets, milk jugs, juice & soda used, does the thickness of the plastic make a difference besides durability?
Thank you in advance!
In my experience, the vertical nipples require an exacting drill bit size. You should ask the company/person you ordered from for the recommended bit size for your vertical nipples, if that is what you have.
AFAIK, all the horizontal nipples are from the same manufacturer, but marketed under different names. I have only used the ones marketed by Solway, found on ebay. A fairly common 3/8" bit works wonderfully for horizontal nipples. You could also use a bit slightly smaller or larger than 3/8". If you are unsure if your bit size will work, practice on a scrap piece, such as a quart size yogurt container. Especially on thin plastic like a yogurt container, do NOT over tighten the nipple.
I have used yogurt containers for chick waterers, but a solid heavy duty food grade plastic bucket will last you a long time for adults, especially if you can keep it out of direct sun. Using thin/cheap plastic may last for several months or longer, but eventually it will fail and you will hope that won't be when you are out of town for several days. You can get free food grade plastic buckets at a local restaurant or the bakery/deli at a grocery store.
Some tips for successful installation I have learned, regardless of vertical or horizontal nipples:
* Align your drill bit as perpendicular (90-degress) to the surface of the bucket as possible. Start with a smaller bit size to make a starter hole...1/8" is a good size.
* Once your hole is drilled, carefully clean off all edges (inside and out of the bucket) to remove any loose/trailing plastic pieces.
* When screwing in your nipple into the bucket, take care to keep the nipple perpendicular to the bucket surface.
* You'll need to push the nipple with mild-moderate pressure into the hole as you screw it in.
* Hand tighten each nipple until firmly snug, do not tighten as tight as possible or you may lose your seal.
* Vertical nipples usually require tefton tape, horizontal nipples do not.
* Install horizontal nipples 1.5" up from the bucket bottom edge for general use, or 3" up if you live in an especially cold climate (-20F or colder in winter) and will use a heat device in the bottom of the bucket.
Edited by pdirt - 5/11/16 at 2:23pm