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DOWN BY THE OLD MILLSTREAM - ALMOST

This do-it-yourself grist mill project makes it easy to add the soothing sight and sound of falling water almost anywhere. Modeled on a mill built on the banks of a Tennessee creek in 1797, the project features a working waterwheel driven by a recirculating pump. Surrounded by a self-contained "pond," the mill features realistic details including stairs, a door and windows.

The project keeps the immediate area damp and cool - great for any surrounding plants - and the recirculating pump eliminates waste or drainage problems. The mill's removable roof provides access to an interior storage space.

Materials required for the project include two full sheets of plywood, two smaller pieces of scrap plywood, a pump with plastic tubing, shingles, assorted hardware and paint. Construction is simple, and many of the pieces are traced from full-sized patterns, so there's no guesswork when cutting out pieces.

The completed mill measures 48 inches long by 25 inches wide by 35 inches tall.

The Grist Mill plan, No. 456, is $9.95 and includes step-by-step directions with 12 photos, full-sized traceable patterns, construction diagrams, a shopping list and a toll-free help line.

A package of two waterwheel plans, No. C140, is $16.95 and includes this project plus a plan for a 4-foot freestanding waterwheel. A catalog picturing hundreds of do-it-yourself projects is $2. Please include $4 for postage and handling (except catalog-only orders) and allow about two weeks for delivery.

To order by mail, clip this article and send it with a check or money order to U-Bild Features, c/o St. Petersburg Times, 3800 Oceanic Drive, Suite 107, Oceanside, CA 92056. To order by credit card, call toll-free 1-800-828-2453. Visit U-Bild on the Web at u-bild.com.

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