For a fun and interesting project this spring and summer, why not replace your old humdrum gutter spouts with rain chains? They’re easy to build and not only add pizzazz to your outdoor environment, they can also improve your health.

Rain chains are beautiful to look at, they create therapeutic white noise, ionize the surrounding air (just like a water fountain or Himalayan pink salt lamp), reduce soil erosion and prevent damage to the foundation of your home. Best of all, if you get bored with one rain chain, you can easily swap it out for a new one.

Tools You Will Need:

Before getting started, you’ll want to gather up a few tools which you will require to complete your project.

Tape Measure – to gauge exactly how long your rain chain needs to be.

Socket Wrench – to remove the old downspout. You may also need a can of rust remover to loosen any old stubborn bolts.

Wire Cutters – for shaping chains and other metal objects as needed. (This combination wire-cutter / locking wrench made by Irwin Tools works great if you don’t already have these tools lying around the house!)

Drill – to add strategically-placed holes into any objects which lack them.

V-Hook – to fasten your new rain chain under the gutter.

Gloves – to protect your hands from sharp metal parts.

Metal File or Sand Paper – for dulling sharp edges and / or removing corrosion.

Nuts, Bolts, Wire, Chain – for linking together the pieces of your new rain chain.

Step Ladder – to give you a boost up to the top of the gutter spout.

Some Neat Old Stuff – which you will turn into a fascinating and stylish rain-chaining work of art.

Rain chains can be made out of a wide variety of different materials. Some of them are more resistant to the elements than others, but you can make a rain chain from just about anything. Here are some of the most common materials used for this purpose, plus what to expect as far as lifespan and behaviour of your new rain chain and some examples to inspire you.

Copper Rain Chains


Of all of the metals you can use to make your new rain chain, copper oxidizes most easily and – in my opinion – most beautifully. Should you choose to make your new chain using copper pieces, you can wait for time to alter the metal naturally or do it yourself using common household items such as cooked eggs or baking soda for brown oxidation or use a solution vinegar, salt and ammonia for green patina.

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