Shovel: 60 photos of the main garden tool and features of modern choice
In our age of high technology, the most common shovel is still an indispensable tool for gardening. Despite the apparent simplicity of the design, modern manufacturers have learned to use the achievements of progress to produce a variety of models.
There are options on the market that differ in material, bucket size and blade shape. This makes each shovel suitable for performing a certain type of work: digging, snow removal, harvesting. Using a suitable inventory will allow you to do this faster and more efficiently.
You can try to make a homemade shovel, but now let's try to figure out how to choose the optimal model among the assortment offered by the stores.
Even such a seemingly simple tool should be chosen wisely. A suitable shovel will allow you to work faster and get tired less, it will serve faithfully for a long time.
This hand tool is a handle connected to a bucket (tray, scoop) and a steel handle. The bucket ends with a blade that can have a very different shape.
Most types of gardening work are carried out with a bayonet shovel. With its help, you can easily process the beds or dig a hole. It has a pointed blade that allows you to dig up solid soil and cut the roots. The sickle-shaped bayonet is convenient for lawn work, the processing of clay soil is more efficiently performed with a bayonet with furrows.
The "American" stands out with a curved handle and blade. Due to this, its shape resembles a spoon (as you can see by looking at the photo of this shovel). It is easier to use it than direct alternatives, since such a configuration reduces the load on the back.
If you have not met this model before, be careful: not everyone finds this design convenient. If possible, try out the "American" in advance, for example, by borrowing from a neighbor.
The shovel for earthworks is designed for digging holes and trenches. It will show itself equally well on stony, clay and hard soil. It stands out with an elongated pointed blade with a shortened stalk.
The model with a rectangular blade is ideal for working with soft soil. It allows you to capture a large volume of soil. But she can't handle solid ground. It will be quite difficult to stick it into the soil, besides, you risk damaging the tool and your own back.
With sand, cement and other loose and viscous materials, it is most convenient to work with a deep shovel. It is ineffective in front of solid soil, but it has no equal in shoveling.
A shovel with a rounded blade copes perfectly with loose earth.
A blade with large teeth, resembling a saw, will demonstrate its best sides during the processing of virgin land and neglected, root-riddled soil.
Wide snow shovels are used for snow removal.
What material should I choose?
The first thing to pay attention to is that rust should not appear on the blade. In this regard, materials such as stainless steel and titanium have become the most widespread today.
Stainless steel is a classic option, loved by many. Quite durable, not afraid of rust. Disadvantages: the price, the ground sticks to the bayonet. Check the material before buying.
Tap on the blade: quality steel should ring. A dull ringing will give out the poor quality of the product. An excellent budget option even for an experienced summer resident.
Titanium shovels are also made of titanium and aluminum alloy. They appeared recently, but have already won their audience due to the lightness, strength and reliability of the resulting inventory.
Unfortunately, it is not without drawbacks: the bayonet does not bend, so high loads can break it. The price is also not attractive: it is 5 times higher than steel. A kind of "premium class", so in the off-season, take care of the decent storage of such a shovel.
Due to the low price, steel continues to be a fairly common material. It has a number of disadvantages: heavy weight, low strength, susceptibility to rust.
Suitable if the shovel is used rarely and little.
The bucket made of spring (rail) steel is durable and reliable, characterized by moderate bayonet flexibility. However, the weight and price of rail steel is higher than the previous version, and its sharpening is difficult. It will withstand high loads, so it will be a good choice for active use for many seasons.
Today there are models with cuttings made of metal, plastic and other materials, but wood is not without reason considered the best option.
Pine stands out for its low price and is therefore widely used. The consequence of cheapness is low quality and short-lived. Pine cuttings can be poorly dried and knotty.
Acacia is much stronger and more reliable, but at the same time more expensive.
Oak surpasses acacia in quality; such a shovel handle will last for more than one year. Disadvantages of oak – high price and weight.
Larch, ash, beech surpass even oak cuttings. You will have to fork out for larch, but you can be sure that the shovel bucket will wear out rather than the stalk.
A shovel with a handle is easier to wield than a classic model: the hands will not slip, which means that the load on the brush will also decrease. The handle is a T-shaped or triangular nozzle on the handle. Relying on it, you will conveniently dig a trench. A triangular handle will fit a shovel, but when harvesting the nozzle will be ineffective.
Tips for choosing
Of course, it is not always advisable to store the entire arsenal of existing types of shovels. If you have a small plot, most likely, a bayonet shovel will be the best option.
It is not difficult to find a suitable one, because this design remains the most common one. Its versatility covers almost the entire range of gardening work: digging planting pits, digging out plants for the winter, harvesting.
When choosing an important role is played by the type of soil on the site. Different blades are suitable for their type of soil: loose earth, sand are dug up with a shovel with a rectangular blade.
Rounded and pointed will show itself better on hard and clay ground.
The thickness of the metal should be at least 1.5 mm, and the blade should be sharpened. Put the tool in the working position and press down on the bucket: it should not bend.
The American woman allows you to bend down less, which reduces back tension and facilitates the workflow. The stalk and the bucket of such a shovel are connected at a slight angle, while the stalk is slightly curved. For some people, this configuration may seem unusual and therefore less convenient.
Pick up inventory for your own growth. The optimal height corresponds to the level of the owner's shoulders. In some cases (when working with heavy soil), it should be shorter, up to the bend of the elbow joint. Just cut off the extra part.
Massive models with a long, wide bucket are suitable for men; light options are better used by women and teenagers.
Don't forget to get a holder. In order not to puzzle over which one is better to choose, make it with your own hands: you can find a lot of ideas on the Internet.
That's all the simple tips. We hope that the chosen shovel will serve you faithfully for more than one year.
Photo of a shovel