Asked on Oct 25, 2015

Making a galvanized tub into a sink.

by Christine
Has anyone ever done this? What did you do to prevent rust? I'm losing my mind trying to find a bathroom sink deep enough, wide enough, and sturdy enough.
I detest "hammered" which is what all the non-stainless sinks seem to be, and, well, nothing else is speaking to me. I'm considering this but want to do it as wisely as possible. Got the tubs, faucets, and vanity, now just something to put the water in!
Don't worry. While posting this I'm already researching Pinterest, etc. But here's a photo from Pinterest for my idea.
Thanks for your thoughts.
  16 answers
  • Mish Volonino Mish Volonino on Oct 25, 2015
    I love this. I love any galvanized, aged thingie
  • Janet Pizaro Janet Pizaro on Oct 25, 2015
    Love the rustic look but I cannot find any info on the how tos just a lot of photos.
  • Jennifer Jennifer on Oct 25, 2015
    I love this idea and if I ever get my bathroom redone I am going to do this for the sinks. I have had the old water pump for awhile waiting.
  • Christine Christine on Oct 25, 2015
    That's the thing. :) I have my faucet, too. Bought it about 5 years ago and still love it! It's a bronze color, so I'd like to color the galvanized steel a little bit, too. (Rub 'n buff?) I love the pictures online, but the hows and whys and instructions are lacking. Perhaps because I'm over thinking it?
  • Linda Weaver Linda Weaver on Oct 26, 2015
    We made a bathroom sink out an enameled pan. I would think your bucket would be a similar install. The main problem is that the drain "grate" is higher than the bottom of the pan. Regular sinks have a depression for the "grate". We manage as it is in a seldom used 1/2 bath. Basically we punched a hole in the bottom using a manual electrical sheet metal punch. It consists of a die and hollow punch with a threaded rod through the middle. You drill a hole through the pan, stick the threaded rod through it, place the die on the bottom of the pan and the punch on the top surface. Hold one end of the rod and turn a nut down on the other end driving the punch into the die. After that just add a drain tail stock and finish the drain plumbing.
    • Linda Weaver Linda Weaver on Oct 29, 2015
      @Linda Weaver We couldn't bend down the bottom of our pan because it is enameled and cracks/chips VERY easily. It also made "punching" the hole tedious, but we made it. Depressing the bottom of a galvanized container should be relatively easily done.
  • Christine Christine on Oct 26, 2015
    Linda, that make sense. I was trying to figure out how to drill something that would fit my drain thingy. I read online somewhere, that someone did dent down the area where the drain was going to go. That's a detail that had never entered my mind. I'm glad you, too, mentioned it. I'm twirling this around in my noggin. Might not happen right away, but I'll figure it out! Thanks for the help.
    • B. Enne B. Enne on Oct 27, 2015
      @Christine The links I provided tell you how to put in a drain.
  • Terese Davis Terese Davis on Oct 28, 2015
    This would make a wonderful outdoor sink, too. There are always big things to wash in the garden.
  • Tag4reel Tag4reel on Oct 31, 2015
    I'm not sure if you found the answer to it rusting or not but I did find that it takes several years for anything galvanized to rust. This is apparently do to a process in coating it. It did mention though once its scratched deep enough the rusting will occur. The only time I could see this happening would be when you drilled & bent the area for your drain. Maybe taping the area while it's being bent may help? But when you silicone the drain in that should help seal the immediate area.
  • Christine Christine on Oct 31, 2015
    I think you're right, @Tracy Gilbert That was my thought, too. I am finding that most of my ideas seem to be right on target, which is reassuring. I appreciate you all taking the time to write.
  • CK CK on Nov 01, 2015
    From ---Galvanized metal does rust eventually, but it can take decades. Metal is galvanized by adding a thin layer of zinc to its surface. The zinc forms a barrier between atmospheric oxygen and the underlying iron or steel. This generally prevents rust. I know from experience growing up on a ranch, galvanized buckets & tubs are used because they don't rust quickly. Dent? Yes with enough a cow pushing up against it or stepping on a bucket. But I doubt your indoor use will create that issue ;-)
  • Hunter Hampton Hunter Hampton on Nov 03, 2015
    I used a teak salad bowl to make a sink in my Airstream. I used a Forstner bit to make the lip for the hole for the drain. They make boats out of teak and it works well.
  • Christine Christine on Nov 03, 2015
    Hunter, what an absolutely great idea for all those 70s and 80s salad bowls! I'm always open to suggestion, so now in my Reuse Travels, I'll be looking at these bowls with a different eye. Yours is a perfect shape! Thanks for writing.
    • See 1 previous
    • Nancy Nancy on Nov 05, 2015
      @Hunter Hampton Both you and Christine have helped me make up my mind what to do with my mom's salad bowl. I knew I wanted to keep it, but had no idea what to do with it. A sink is a great idea! I would use it for my bathroom sink. Thanks you guys.
  • Rhonda Ann Cox Rhonda Ann Cox on Oct 18, 2016
    how would you add a drain to this? it doesn't have a flat bottom?
  • Kaycia Woolsey Kaycia Woolsey on Jun 30, 2017

    I need some advice! I would like to use this pail for my whiskey barrel sink. It is the perfect size for what I need and my mother used this pail on her farm, so it has sentimental value as well. It does, however, already have a small amount of rust on it. Is there some kind of clear coat used on metal that I can paint over it to help prevent it from rusting further? Or do you think it will be ok like that?

    This is my first time making a tub into a sink, so ANY advice will be appreciated!

  • Shysue Shysue on Jul 17, 2017

    I can tell you the pail will not show rust for awhile. When we built our house, we made a sink out of a galvanized pail and it hasn't rusted yet after 30 years!