Multi-use Indestructible Garden Tool




About: relaxed pic

 Originally I  made one of these in the 1980's from a picture I saw in a magazine. I figured it would be a good item to enter into the Indestructible and Jury -rig it, Contests. It has many uses around the garden and lawn. The 2013 edition has been updated so that it could be made in about half a day and cost around $10. Also it can be made with a few hand tools and a power drill.
It can be used to rake, hoe, as an edger, as a mounder, a weeder, a trencher and a tamperer.

Step 1: Pictures of Original One and the New One

The Original one was cut out of 1/8' steel plate and the brackets were made out of angle iron.

Step 2: Shopping List

1- FixPlak44 plate in the colour of your choice, my Hardware/Home Inprovement store had about 5 different colours.
2-FixPlak33 used for the brackets.
1- 2" x 1/4" bolt
2- 3/4" x 1/4' bolts
3- 1/4" nuts
4- 1/4" lock washers
2 -1/4" fender washers, these are the large ones used between the handle and the brackets.See picture.
4- 1/4' x 1" diameter washers.
6- 1/4" flat washers
1- 1/2" x 6" rigid conduit nipple(Not EMT), aluminum or steel. I had Aluminum on hand so that is what I used.
2- 1/2'" rigid conduit couplings.
Optional extra length handle:
1- length of threaded (one end only) 1/2" rigid conduit, you choose the length you need, Most Home improvement stores can cut and thread it for you for a small charge.
Some tape for the end of the conduit handle.

Tools needed:
Power drill, hammer, center punch, hacksaw, pencil, marker, 1/8'', 1/4' drill bits, metal file, bench mounted metal vice, 7/16" socket and wrench.

Step 3: Mark Out the Plate and Handle Brackets.

Mark out the plate with a permanent marker and center punch holes to be drilled.
Mark brackets to be bent  for handles with a pencil.

Step 4: Drill Holes and Bend Handle Brackets.

Using the 1/8" bit drill pilot holes, I drilled all the holes  with it first, it  makes drilling larger holes easier with a pilot hole.
Using the 1/4" bit enlarge the 4 outside edge holes on the brackets and drill the handle bracket holes on the large plate. Also drill the hole at the bottom of the "V" cut out.
I forgot to take a picture when folding the brackets, so just put them in a vice just a bit above the pencil line you drew, tighten the vice and hammer them over to a 90 degree angle.
They should turn out like shown in the picture.
Screw the couplings tightly onto the 6" conduit nipple, 3/4' up from the bottom of one of them (see photo) center punch and drill a 1/4" hole straight though both sides.

Step 5: Cutting and Filing

Cut as indicated with a hacksaw and file all sharp/ ragged edges down.
Also file down the edge opposite the V cut out this is for the "edger"

Step 6: Assmembly

Take one of the 3/4" bolts add a flat washer, put through hole of plate, add one bracket, another washer, lock washer and nut. Tighten using a couple of 7/16' wrenches.
Do the same with the other bracket.
Take the 2" long bolt add a lock washer 1"washer, put though hole of one bracket, then through holes of the handle, another fender washer, through the other bracket hole add a 1" washer, lock washer and the nut. Tighten the nut up so that the handle stays in what ever position you move it to. If it is hard to move the handle that's how tight it should be. You can always place it on the floor to move the handle.
Alternatively you could mount the handle to the brackets then attach them to the plate, In hindsight this is how I should've done it but both ways work.

Step 7: Using the Garden Tool.

A rake,
A hoe opposite edge to the rake,
An edger fold handle so it is parallel to the plate, you can trim grass along a sidewalk with it,
A mound maker ( for lack of a better term).
A weeder, use the pointy edge that is the part between the "V" notch and the Rake.
A trenching tool, use the opposite  part of the "V" notch to dig a small trench or row.
A tamper to tamp down earth around a plant.

Indestructibles Contest

Second Prize in the
Indestructibles Contest

Jury Rig It! Contest

Participated in the
Jury Rig It! Contest



    • Planter Challenge

      Planter Challenge
    • Games Contest

      Games Contest
    • DIY Summer Camp Contest

      DIY Summer Camp Contest

    17 Discussions


    6 years ago on Introduction

    Cool, but, like others have said, how indestructible is it with those bolts? Still very cool though.


    6 years ago on Introduction

    Nice work, i think it would be better to use stainless steel nut/bolt and put double nut on every bolt to avoid any nut loose with the time.
    also a paint job is needed to avoid any coming rust specially because i always forget tools on my gerden when it start raining.
    very nice, keep it goin'

    1 reply
    john pedersenfadilos

    Reply 6 years ago on Introduction

    Thank you for your comment,
    The bolt and nut that attaches the handle to the rest of it is stainless steel, there are two lock nuts, one on each side of the handle bolt. The other bolts are just regular steel. I plan to paint it when it warms up outside. I use Rust-o-ileum and because of its contents only spray it outside.
    thanks again,


    I don't have access to a welder anymore, I thought the bolt together method would make it easier for others to make. Thanks for the complement.


    6 years ago on Step 6

    This is awesome! I can't wait to make my own. Thanks for sharing.

    1 reply

    6 years ago on Introduction

    Voted! Had one homemade of the kind, althoug suited more shovel-oriented, and i believe every tool designed as this is rock! Kudos

    1 reply

    Looks like one versatile tool, I need to try making one. Thanks for sharing.

    Something I would add would be a wingnut for the "joint" for ease of fastening.

    1 reply

    Thank you for your comment and suggestion, The wing nut would work as well, I found that with the number of washers that I used and their positioning along with tightening the nut and bolt quite tight makes changing position relatively easy and the handle stays in the position it is put in.