Big Dig mod
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Stephen Barber
(grampa) - MLife

Locale: SoCal
Big Dig mod on 11/23/2012 14:26:04 MST Print View

Since I just took a photo of this and sent it to Rob Kelly, I thought I'd post it here as well.

We have a fair bit of hard clay soil in this area, and of course lots of tough roots everywhere. The thin ti of the Big Dig cuts through all that pretty well, but sometimes that same thin ti on the back of the handle wants to make a nasty little cut on the palm of your hand.

Enter Sugru, a moldable silicone putty! It comes in a little packette, and is moldable for a short but reasonable amount of time. Then it sets up and is permanent. It can still be cut or trimmed with a sharp knife, just like regular silicone, even when set.

I made a short string of Sugru, put it on the end of the handle, and flattened it just a bit. Not the most professional job, but it has held up quite well since early summer.

Total weight now it 18 g. Can't remember the original weight, but it's still darn light!

Big dig with Sugro

Jim Colten
(jcolten) - M

Locale: MN
Re: Big Dig mod on 11/23/2012 17:23:32 MST Print View

Thank you Stephen!

I'm gonna give that a try ... maybe extend a smaller bead doen each side of the handle too.

David Lutz
(davidlutz)

Locale: Bay Area
Sugru? on 11/23/2012 18:06:53 MST Print View

Where can I find Sugru?

Jim Colten
(jcolten) - M

Locale: MN
Re: Sugru? on 11/23/2012 18:38:50 MST Print View

Where can I find Sugru?

Just order some!

I did not find brick&mortar retail outlets (doesn't mean there aren't any)

Can be ordered from (also through) Amazon.com but after figuring shipping the best cost for the quantity 3x5 gram package was from ordering thru sugru.com ... might have best price for the 5x8gram package also but I did not check that.

Stephen Barber
(grampa) - MLife

Locale: SoCal
re handle edges on 11/23/2012 18:54:45 MST Print View

@ Jim: "I'm gonna give that a try ... maybe extend a smaller bead down each side of the handle too."

That's actually what I did first, but after using it a bit, I decided it didn't really add any functionality, so I cut the sides off....which is when I discovered that it's very easy to cut the silicone off!

Kenneth Jacobs
(f8less) - F

Locale: Midwest
Spectra Wrap on 11/24/2012 14:08:25 MST Print View

Steven-

I like the idea of the silicone on the end! Always wanted to play around with that stuff.

Here was how I modified my Big Dig. A good length of ZPacks 1.25mm Z-Line Spectra Cord. Serves as a handle and a holder of spare Spectra line if needed for anything. Comes in at 20g.

Love that the Big Dig cuts through roots easier than anything else I've ever used!

Big Dig

KJ

Edited by f8less on 11/24/2012 14:11:02 MST.

Stephen Barber
(grampa) - MLife

Locale: SoCal
re: Spectra Wrap on 11/24/2012 15:36:12 MST Print View

Nice! A little easier on the hands at the sides of the handle, plus some emergency cordage!

Great idea!

M B
(livingontheroad) - M
handle on 11/24/2012 16:57:54 MST Print View

wrapping handle momentarily with bandana is too complicated?

Eric Blumensaadt
(Danepacker) - MLife

Locale: Mojave Desert
Auto door edge trim + cord on 11/24/2012 17:10:36 MST Print View

One could wrap auto door edge trim or similar around the handle edge and then wrap it with para cord as shown or even use TripTease guy line cord to hold it on.

Ken Thompson
(kthompson) - MLife

Locale: Behind the Redwood Curtain
Re: Big Dig mod on 11/24/2012 17:55:46 MST Print View

Put more Plasti-dip on it.


http://www.plastidip.com/

Kenneth Jacobs
(f8less) - F

Locale: Midwest
Re: handle on 11/24/2012 18:10:56 MST Print View

MB

I don't carry a bandana. Just a few small Lightoad towels, and they would definitely wind up with cuts in them.

Plus, I don't want anything I'm wiping down my shelter interior or cook pot with to be around me or in my hands when taking care of and covering up "business".

KJ

Kenneth Jacobs
(f8less) - F

Locale: Midwest
Preference on 11/24/2012 18:19:31 MST Print View

I prefer not to add anything to the item when I may already have gear that can be dual purposed, since they're already being transported. Super light, strong thin cord that can be used to replace a guy line, medical, equipment repair, etc., now also becomes a really grippy trowel handle.

Great ideas all around! ...I'm just keepin' it frugal.

KJ

Robert Kelly
(QiWiz) - MLife

Locale: UL gear @ QiWiz.net
Big Dig mods; "handle-end enhancement" on 11/25/2012 08:19:28 MST Print View

@ ALL

Lots of great ideas here. I had heard of, and seen pictures of, cord wraps and tape wraps, but never Sugru before Stephen put me on to it. I'm going to get some and play with it, but it may add more weight than I (or you) want. An option not mentioned is to put a little piece of duct tape, Leukotape, or your personal favorite on the handle end.

However, I'm always interested in improving my designs. Ken's idea of more plasti-dip was worth trying, but just for the very end of the handle (so as not to add weight), and I like the results. See the photos. As of today, all trowels I ship will have this "handle-end enhancement" treatment. Added weight is negligible. The average Big Dig even with this beefed up handle end still weighs just 16 grams. Can you dig it?

handle end 1

handle end 2

Ken Thompson
(kthompson) - MLife

Locale: Behind the Redwood Curtain
Re: Big Dig mods; "handle-end enhancement" on 11/25/2012 08:25:02 MST Print View

I figured you were using it already. Just use some more. Thanks Robert.

Brandon Vidrine
(bvidrine82)
purchase? on 11/25/2012 11:33:49 MST Print View

NM, found it

Edited by bvidrine82 on 11/25/2012 11:35:50 MST.