Project Credit: Bernzomatic Torchbearer Brittany Bailey
This is such a versatile project that can be used for your dinner table, a wedding centerpiece or a vase to hold flowers. If you wanted to alter the design, you could shorten the center pipe and use for a pencil holder. Regardless of how you use it, this DIY Copper Pipe Centerpiece is sure to be a conversation starter!
1. Cut your pipes to size (see cut list)
2. Dry fit your pieces together as shown.
3. Then piece the centerpiece together completely as shown below. (The 4″ section with elbows connects the base pieces.) Note: The two 5″ pipes will not sit completely inside the “T” fittings. This will provide wiggle room to line up and assemble the top parts with the base. Feel free to adjust the 4″ base pipe until you fit everything together.
4. Sand all pipe ends with sandpaper.
5. Use the speed square to make sure all the pipes and fittings are plumb
6. Apply a liberal amount of flux to all the connections.
7. Start your Bernzomatic TS4000 Trigger Start Torch with the easy trigger start button. Heat each connection until the flux melts. Then hold the solder at the connection until the solder begins to flow. (You may need to solder one spot at a time or re-heat the solder and tilt the piece to help it flow around the connection.)
8. Lift the base with gloves on or pliers and drop in the bucket of water to cool. Alternatively you can cool the pieces with a cold wet rag.
9. Set the base aside and join the top assembly (1- 7″ pipe, 2 – 5″ pipes and 1 – 90˚ T connector.) Repeat the process of applying flux, heating and spreading the solder.
At this point your parts should be assembled like this:
10. Slide the two “T” connectors onto your soldered top assembly. Slide the “T” connectors onto the base. Center the 7″ pipe and make sure it is plumb.
11. Solder the connections around the two side “T” connectors. Your soldering is now done. Cool off the centerpiece with a cold wet rag or in the bucket of water.
12. File any bumpy solder until smooth.
13. Wipe off the centerpiece with a wet rag to remove any metal shavings and dust. Paint Metal Effects Primer on all the soldered joints. Let the primer dry and add a second coat.
14. After the primer has dried, paint Metal Effects Copper Paint onto the primed solder joints. Feather the paint onto the copper pipes and cover any imperfections. Let dry and apply a second coat.
You are done! Time to show off your new DIY Copper Pipe Centerpiece! Add hand-dipped candles to the open fittings. For the center pipe, you’ll need to trim your candle and gently twist the candle into the pipe. If you want to use the centerpiece for a floral display, fill floral tubes with water and drop them into the openings. (Note: I slipped two 2″ copper pipe pieces into the shortest openings to hide the floral tubes. But, you could just add water to the centerpiece and put your flowers in directly.)