Retractable Poopshovel




Introduction: Retractable Poopshovel

A dog is a man’s best friend they say, but if you have a dog you know that accidents do happen while walking out. No problem for some, just take out a dog waste bag, clean up the poop and throw it in the garbage bin. But what if you are in a wheelchair or just can’t bend down easily enough to reach the poop with just a bag?

This project shows you how to make a retractable poopshovel that is small to carry around but makes it easy to clean up your dogs poop. It was designed especially for Jaak, a wheelchair user who has a trained dog to help him around. And to make the tool even handier for him, we completed it with a hook and a magnet so he can pull things closer or get something from hard to reach places.

Evidently, this tool would be helpful for other wheelchair users with a dog too or even for people with bag or knee problems.

This project features a lot of hacks, so with some creativity, you can easily tweak this tool to make it even better for your needs.

This tool is the result of a project by 3 students Industrial Design at the University of Ghent in cooperation with Hachiko vzw, who educate assistance dogs.

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Step 1: Materials & Tools


  • Monopod/ telescopic pole (we bought ours for about €9 on amazon)
  • Swiffer duster XXL
  • Cat litter shovel (preferably one with the back side under an angle)
  • F16 polyurethane resin (about 100 g of each component)
  • Pigment in preferred colour (optional)
  • square aluminium tube (15 mm width)
  • 2 strong magnets
  • 1 Hook
  • Dog waste bags


  • Cutter knife
  • Dremel
  • multiplex and MDF leftovers for the mold
  • Tape
  • Glue
  • Plasteline
  • Cups to prepare the F16
  • Saw or belt saw
  • Sanding belt or sanding paper to finish rough edges

Step 2: Preparing the Parts

Before we can start to put everything together, the items we bought, need some preparation.


First take the shovel and remove the grid on the inside. This can easily be done with a dremel. Be sure that the remainng surface in the front is not too small.

After that remove the handle. Because the plastic is quite thin, you can do this with a simple cutter knife or use a dremel. Use sandpaper to smoothen all the sharp edges.

Make a few holes at the back of the shovel (see picture above). This will later on help to make a stronger connection.


We only need the joint of the Swiffer and a small part of the tube to make the connection with the monopod.

saw the parts that are not needed with a dremel or handsaw. Use the dremel again to make the upper part a bit smaller and hollow (see picture above).

Step 3: Making the First Connection

What you'll need:

  • Swiffer joint
  • The hook
  • One magnet
  • Approximately 6cm of the aluminium profile
  • F16 resin
  • Pigment if preferred
  • Mold release wax
  • Wooden plate for the mold surface
  • Tape
  • Glue

Glue the hook to the outside of the white part of the Swiffer joint with the head against the joint itself. This doesn't need to be too secure because it will later be embedded in the F16 resin.

To make the mold, stick the magnet to the wooden surface with a little piece of tape. Then take the aluminium profile, rub the inside with mold release wax and place it around the magnet. To secure the profile, tape it to the wooden surface and use some plastiline to secure it even more if needed. If there are any holes, the resin will flow out of the mold. Now place the white part of the Swiffer joint in the profile.

Take a small amount of both the F16 components. If you would like to colour it, put in one drop of the pigment in the white F16 component and stir. When stirred properly, mix the two components and stir again. When the resin is mixed properly, pour it in the mold very carefully. It will harden in 5 to 15 minutes. Because of the wax it should be easy to remove the part from the profile.

Step 4: Making the Main Mold

What you'll need:

  • shovel
  • Aluminium profile
  • One magnet
  • Pieces of wood
  • Tape
  • Plastiline
  • Saw or belt saw

This step is the most difficult.

Take a 6 cm piece of aluminium profile and tape a second magnet to the bottom of it. The magnet has to be on the inside of the tube. Like this, connection part 1 will fit in this part perfectly and the magnets will keep it in place. Then tape the profile to the back of the shovel where the molded part is going to be.

Take a thick wooden plank and saw out a rectangle that is as wide as you want the connection piece to be (1 on the sketch). Then make a wooden piece with a 45° angle that fits right in the rectangle slot (2 on the sketch). After that take some smaller planks and make the sides with that same 45° angle. On the bottom there are some cutouts so it fits perectly over the shovel (3 on the sketch). Last take another plank and place it vertically as the last side of the mold (4 on the sketch).

Now place the shovel in the mold and tape everything together. Use tape on all the wooden surfaces on the inside of the mold. This will act as a mold release. Use some plastiline to seal all cracks and splits. If needed, use a clamp to put some more pressure on the construction.

The mold should now look something like the pictures above.

Step 5: Making the Second Connection

What you'll need:

  • F16 resin
  • Pigment (if preferred)
  • Sandpaper

Now that you have you're mold you can make the second connection part.

Take about 40 g of both F16 components. Again, if you want to give the part a colour, stir in one or two drops of pigment in the white F16 component. After this you can bring both components together and stir until the resin is well mixed.

Pour the resin in the mold and stop when the holes in the scoop are completely covered. Let it harden out completely (10-15 min.) and then you can disassemble your mold so you can take out the part.

Use some sandpaper to get smooth edges

Step 6: Making the Third Connection

What you'll need:

  • F16 resin
  • Swiffer joint
  • Monopod
  • Little piece of wood
  • Plastiline.

Now we will connect the Swiffer joint with the monopod.

First stop up the tube of the Swiffer part with a wooden circle that fits as snug as possible and put some plastiline on top of it. This is necessary because the resin we will pour in the tube can not make contact with the joint itself else the joint won't work anymore.

Take another small amount of both F16 components and mix them together. Then pour the resin in the Swiffer tube about three quarters full. position the end of the monopod in the Swiffer tube and use a clamp or other support to keep it in place. After 10-15 minutes, the resin will be hard.

Now you can put all the pieces together and you have your finished product.

Step 7: Finished Product

You now have a retractable poopshovel with additional hook and magnet that takes very little place when folded. Place a waste bag trough the hole in the shovel and fold it over the edges. The shovel is also easy to take off if you only need the hook or magnet.

More information on this project can be found on our blog:

We want to thank Jaak for his time and suggestions.

Project by:

Derumeaux Asha, Simoens Thibaut, Vercruysse Willem

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    6 Discussions


    5 years ago on Introduction

    I love it! Creative reuse, multi-tasking tools, increasing access for wheelchair users.

    Thank you, Jaak! And thank you Derumeaux for such detailed build instructions.

    Akin Yildiz
    Akin Yildiz

    5 years ago on Introduction

    sir, this is incredible..! maybe we can also make a suction cup attachment for the top, have removable tops. with a suction cup you can pick up more stuff rather than just magnetized items. just amazing, also love the model you are working on :)


    Reply 5 years ago on Introduction

    I guess suction cups are a bit big to use as an attachment, but you could certainly try :). However, if you use the same method of the square profile and the magnet, you could make lots of different removable tops, anything that strikes your fancy:)


    5 years ago

    Cool idea! I gotta ask though, is the guy in the pic trying to poop scoop the fire extinguisher sign? Lol


    Reply 5 years ago on Introduction

    Thanks. In the picture he is using the hook attached to get a key that is too high for him to use. :)