I recently purchased an Orbit four-spigot manifold to serve as a timed sprinkler system for my flower garden until I can properly plan an in-ground one. The Orbit product consists of two main parts -- the timer and the four-port manifold. The unit easily turns one outside house spigot into four by channeling the single water source to four spigots, each with a timed control valve for turning it on and off per a programmed schedule. The timing function, which allows independent control of each spigot, makes the system extremely flexible and time-efficient.
I bought three sprinkler hoses that I routed through the bushes and flowers and one regular hose for spot use when necessary. To check the coverage and control of the spigots, I screwed the four-port manifold on to the house spigot and tested the system. After moving the hoses around and tuning the flow rate for each hose, I figured I was in business with my ad hoc sprinkler system. All that was left was to unscrew the manifold from the house spigot and insert the timer control between the two.
I first attached the four-port manifold to the timer, since the two were easier to handle while loose. I then went to screw the timer to the house spigot, and this is where the Monkeys showed up -- the timer unit housing was too big to fit on to the spigot. The backside of the unit hit the brick wall before I could line up the spigot and the threaded connector. I tried multiple approaches, but the basics of geometry were not to be denied -- the unit would not fit.
The problem was fixed with two trips to the hardware store -- the first to buy multiple accessories for hoses/spigots with the hope that at least one would serve as a jury-rig fix, the second to return the options that I didn't need. Thanks to a two-inch extension, this problem only cost me an hour's drive time, gas, and $1.32. But for a product designed so well to serve a needed garden watering function, not designing a long enough connector to attach the unit to its source of water was an obvious oversight.
This entry was submitted by Clinton McDade and edited by Rob Spiegel.
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