THE MESSAGE BOARD POINT CHATTER IS NOW CLOSED TO ALL NEW POSTS.
Different wiggles for different folks.! It's not always how much real estate a given tool can move,
But what the individual feels comfortable with for a 12 hour digging day.!
I have the MARK III pick with 3 different head styles.
All are made from cut down pry bars from Home Depot.
[ nary a leaf spring in sight ] The two lower, one handed tooth picks were made from the extra prybars after
being trimed for the larger W. pick.
Two on the left are just your standard TERRA TALONS.
Checkout MELVIN'S MAMMOTH MIDDEN MOVER [ MMMM ] front pg, top left. . .TJS DIG. Scroll down to the Tehauana dig party.
Top of the line, the VGTC MARK VII.
2 interchangeable wigglers.
2 handle lengths.
5 variable angle options.
Wow serious tools for serious diggers!Great ingenuity, did you weld(fusion) those,or braze them together?
Those 3 heads to your pick are removable, so I was wondering how solid it feels when you're digging? Do they slide around at all? Did you have the heads to those pry bars welded on so they could attach to the pick? I need some tools like this, tired of carrying around my big wiggle pick and clunky tools!
Here's some backup info for those interested. Mr Disney was one of my first teachers. .
" If you can dream it, you can do it, even if you cant weld "
The changeable heads on the yellowed handeled one is Jam fit, ZERO "sliding" around. Tap to remove.
You need to buy one pick for each head you plan to make [ Garden Dept of Home D or Lowes ]Sold as a pick / mattock.
Cut off ALL the mattock and grind smooth as thats where most of the hand stress will be. Tother pick end you might leave longer to beef up the new piece to be welded on. I drilled "lightening" holes just to make the iron work a fraction lighter.
There is a huge amount of shaping, grinding and cutoff work to be done. Just a simple hand grinder will do the whole job using cut off wheels and regular
iron work grinding disks.
There are many places that do light welding. Most shops have a minimum $20. for a fast weld. IF your iron work is ready to go, the guy can get 3 or 4 welds done on different tools withing the minimum cost.
The welders cost goes up significatly if you just hand him some iron and say " cut, shape, weld and finish grind these for me ! "
I'm guessing the cost would be no more than another certain wiggle pick on the market.
Here's a neat fact of making your WP. Note that the lower WP option has a quite wide blade [ you can almost make out the outline of the pry bar ] and its welded 90 degrees off axis.
All original WP were made this way, hence the nice curve from the automotive leaf spring.
For it's size it is actually much better than the 19
inch narrow pointed modern products.
Badger's pick is as described above but she ground it down to a very slender point. I call it a nail on a stick !
Nice tools there, They look like they could find the points for you.You sure put some thought into the design. Im thinking about sticking my wiggle picks point into some tool dip for added protection for those very rare triple base points that my last pick found/made. Anyway looks good and keep up the good work. I have down graded to a lighter wp as well. I used 1/2" insted of 3/4" pipe , turned out about a pound or two lighter.
That was really a unique point when you got through with it Melvin. lol.......This was a heart breaker for sure.
Sounds like you modified something nice Mel. Softer tools sounds good. You might try a dead cheap experiment next time out. . . . Take any old junk
screwdriver, put a point on it and bend it into a
hook. You may be pleasently surprised how much material you can move. Cant get anymore light weight than a screwdriver !
It's TJ's standard tool of choice, see his pic.
Frt pg, TJs Dig icon. Little depth marker on the right at about 45% down !
great job Hal. Good looking tools. Been too hot for me to dig so I've been making a few new tools myself. Try to post sometime soon
Gilbert, I just KNEW you would see this section, even from your workshop !
Well Hal, I just couldnt stand it any longer, I had to go by Home Depot today to look at those picks. So I bought one and plan to give it a try. I have a few spring steel points left over from another project so may as well put one of them to good use. Although, I like the feel of wood handles, that fiberglass/rubber gripped handle looks sturdy and should hold up to some good punishment. The idea of going light sounds good.. Especially for an old codger like me. I really like the one you said was used by the old timers. Looks like it would be good to dig underneath the productive zone and than work down from the top to break off a layer. I still have an original 1943 army pick that I used to use. The steel is very high quality. Lot of old diggers used them. One tip on welding spring steel. Use a high alloy rod. Helps to prevent breakage when welding tempered spring steel to mild steel. Anyways, enjoyed looking at your post. Very good job.
We have never met but I feel I know ya. You appear to be in a class all your own, while I appear to be in a world all my own. The name is Michael but I'm called NuHand on another board as I'm a new hand at this artifact diggin. I have greatly enjoyed your post. Thank you.
I have noticed in some of your post there is a 4 prong type rake that looks to have a few thousand miles on it.
Under the handle cover is that wood or steel ?
Did you just beef it up and modify it to your needs ?
Thanks again for your time, Michael
NuH, If I was exiled to a midden island and could only take one single digging
tool with me, , , it would be the rake. !
I have detailed the features in past posts but I dont remember anybody asking about the handle.
Here's the scoop. I always stress, you MUST start with a top quality tempered metal
long handled rake, About $15.
I discarded the entire wood handle and welded on a 1/2 inch galvanised pipe. . .Then Very laboriously hammered on a reinforced clear water hose
section [ used liquid detergent for lube ]
Lastly bent the last 4 inches of handle down.
I see places like Home Depot may have trimed their inventory. The good 4 tined rake I recently saw
was more like a "potato " rake,, , very long tines.
It's good tempered steel but the tines should be cut
I just made the top rake in the pic for someone.
Cut the tines and handle down...it will work fine.
I used the stock wood handled one in the beginning until I noticed how much effort I used in gripping
to pull through with the rakeing.
That little bit of a hook makes all the difference,
sorta like bolting a turbo charger on to up the HP !
Unlike the example with the turbo that might have seen thousands of MILES. . . . My unit has
really seen thousands of artifacts !
Nate, Gilbert is pretty closed mouthed about his digging inventions. He's got a machine shop
rigged out like Edisons laboratories where he's been working for years to perfect the ultimate
earth mover !
If Billy [ Mr Yell & Sell ] hadn't passed away, I think he was planning to have it marketed like
that epoxy that pulls trucks !
notice the piece of metal welded on the right hand tine. Thats a knife blade I shaped and welded on.
It is a SUPERB small root clipper. Works great
but I wont do it again as it ruins the metal temper
on the tine !
Not to worry Nate. I've copied a few ideas from Hal in the past. After all, he's the best. I especially like the bend he designed in his four prong cultivator. That's a great digging tool. Im presently making a prototype cultivator like his but with a wooden handle with two bends. Feels good from an ergonomic standpoint but I'm not quite finished yet. If it works OK, I'll post.
RH asked about the "iron bar".
We settled on "foot pick" for a name, other names were geriatrics crutch and fogies flint finder !
Most people hate it, its a whole nuther digging system mainly designed for old and feeble
diggers. No wiggle pick at all, just foot pick, rake and talon.
In the average 12 hour dig day it will move more dirt in less time with far less effort than a wiggler.
Pic shows 4 different weight / strength configurations.
all made from crow bar or pry bar stock. Breakdown for portability, use ASE or metric sockets as needed.
4 inch X 3/8th or 1/2 inch bolt stuck on 10 inches
One big negative that probably contributes to its lack of popularity. . . "insitus" are very rare.
Say your working a shallow wall like Buffalo just posted, you would stand on top and footpick down along 6 to 8 feet. In about 4 minutes you would have about 10 cubic feet of loose camp real estate to look
through. Thats precicely what the first pic shows of that Killer Perd I just found.
I blinked and it was there !
Pure Genius I tell you!Necessity has always been the Mother of Invention.Thanks for sharin the always awesome show Hal.
I like to have a good tool selection for any geology soil chalenges !
It's not unpresidented. . .How bout the bounty hunter in one of the spag westerns that pulled a rip cord on his horse and out unrolled about 10 weapons that he could make the perfect choice for the killing at hand !
Now THATS a wiggle pick!!!!
What a beauty, that came out great. Tks for taking the trouble to document the project with the before / after and weld price.
Almost seems a shame to get it dirty and lose that that new tool smell !
Great job Nate. What a deal you got on the welding. Is that point made of spring steel?
I guess i will go ahead and be the first to ask on this thread....who is selling?!?!?! I would love to get me two or three of those jobs.
I just wanna know where he got those wicked*** wood handles made!
p.s. GREAT THREAD!
Thanks guys for the interest and compliments on the tools. It really wasn't my intent to make them to sell. Just trying to make something more comfortable and effective for my wife and I to use on the few times we get to hunt. Most of the designs came from Has as well as a watching other diggers over the years. The wood handles, I made from hardwood ( maple, oak and walnut ) using a jig saw and sander. The cultivator tines I pulled from garden tools. Drill bits and hay hook were used on the single tines. Used a high strength epoxy for bonding handles. First time to use any of them was at this past weekend's Digfest. I'll try to put something special together for donation next year. By the way, it was a great outing. Had a wonderful time. Thanks to everyone that had a part in putting it together. My son came along and it was his first time hunting arrowheads. He spent some of his time walking around looking at the site and watching others dig. He was amazed at the whole process and interest that people have in searching for artifacts.
Hal, looks like I missspellled your name above . Sorry about that. I dont know anyone named Has
This post brought back for a new WP Q
Brought back 8/23/11 ( still valid )
You have come a long way! i remember when you used to just dig with a bank buster and only broke off the easy part of the wall. you used to leave clods everywhere! (some good points were left in those clods!) nice selection of stingers!