Your Diggers - Flat or Rounded bottom edge

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Your Diggers - Flat or Rounded bottom edge

Post by sweepstick47 » Fri Mar 23, 2018 11:24 pm

In yet another moment of idle curiosity 8-| I wondered which design of spade members find most practical and why? Is it:-

1. The 'rounded shield shaped design or
2. The 'flat' traditional spade design.

Thanks for your views ::g Regards ss47


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Re: Your Diggers - Flat or Rounded bottom edge

Post by Koala » Fri Mar 23, 2018 11:33 pm

Need one of each.

Point pushes stones out of the way

Point leaves soil in the corners which Cant be removed without a trowl

Stainless steel or high carbon steel ?

Away from salt water a high carbon steel blade is thinner for the same strength so glides into the ground easier.

Stainless steel is mandatory for the beach. But inland steel is normally better if less fashionable

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Re: Your Diggers - Flat or Rounded bottom edge

Post by KernowViking » Fri Mar 23, 2018 11:34 pm

I'm a shovel man myself. Pointed shield shape made for the job!
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Re: Your Diggers - Flat or Rounded bottom edge

Post by Phil2401 » Fri Mar 23, 2018 11:35 pm

A spade with some sort of point such as the 'shield' type, or a spade with a narrow blade, is more efficient in difficult, stony ground. In soft ground any sort of spade will do the job. The smaller the blade, the easier it is to get down to where you want to be - I seem to recall Fred having a preference for his narrow transplanting spade.. Any spade will damage artefacts, so another consideration is how confident you are at pinpointing your targets before you dig. Yes I've got nothing better to do either at the moment, so just random thoughts :)

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Re: Your Diggers - Flat or Rounded bottom edge

Post by Koala » Fri Mar 23, 2018 11:44 pm

I like the blade to be at an angle to the shaft.

When I forget to pick up my spade I can stand on the blade and the handle pops up I to my hand

:D :D :D

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Re: Your Diggers - Flat or Rounded bottom edge

Post by Ten pence! » Fri Mar 23, 2018 11:46 pm

Shield shaped for me, the ground in my area can be baked hard after the harvest and presenting a flat edge to the soil is very hard work.

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Re: Your Diggers - Flat or Rounded bottom edge

Post by Oxgirl36 » Fri Mar 23, 2018 11:50 pm

I have both but I seem to only ever use the shield shaped one.

I do however think the flat one is neater on pasture :D
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Re: Your Diggers - Flat or Rounded bottom edge

Post by fred » Fri Mar 23, 2018 11:52 pm

Phil2401 wrote:
Fri Mar 23, 2018 11:35 pm
A spade with some sort of point such as the 'shield' type, or a spade with a narrow blade, is more efficient in difficult, stony ground. In soft ground any sort of spade will do the job. The smaller the blade, the easier it is to get down to where you want to be - I seem to recall Fred having a preference for his narrow transplanting spade.. Any spade will damage artefacts, so another consideration is how confident you are at pinpointing your targets before you dig. Yes I've got nothing better to do either at the moment, so just random thoughts :)

Phil

Spot on. ::g My transplanting spade is about the same width as a border spade but a lot deeper and with a rounded cutting edge. If it works on compacted shingle, which it does, then it will work on anything. :D
Last edited by fred on Sat Mar 24, 2018 1:29 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Your Diggers - Flat or Rounded bottom edge

Post by chip » Fri Mar 23, 2018 11:57 pm

I have a shield shape, with none of those newfangled saw teeth running up the sides.
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Re: Your Diggers - Flat or Rounded bottom edge

Post by Phil2401 » Sat Mar 24, 2018 12:03 am

chip wrote:
Fri Mar 23, 2018 11:57 pm
I have a shield shape, with none of those newfangled saw teeth running up the sides.
I splashed out a while ago on one of those 'new fangled' stainless steel jobbies with teeth - the teeth are frankly pretty pointless unless digging through tree / shrub roots, in which case they do what they're supposed to do...

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Re: Your Diggers - Flat or Rounded bottom edge

Post by KernowViking » Sat Mar 24, 2018 1:09 am

Oxgirl36 wrote:
Fri Mar 23, 2018 11:50 pm
I do however think the flat one is neater on pasture :D
I agree with this! Not from a detecting perspective ( kept typing detective perspecting...) but from lifting turf in the garden
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Re: Your Diggers - Flat or Rounded bottom edge

Post by Dai » Sat Mar 24, 2018 9:14 am

I'd always favour a shield or pointed edge. Even if the ground is not too bad I find it cuts through the turf more easily. I tend to always cut out a round plug. Most of my detecting has been on pasture and am fairly proud of being able to put everything back neatly. I tried with a full size flat edged spade a few times when I'd misplaced my usual spade and found it very difficult and made a mess. I imagine everyone develops their own technique and becomes proficient with the tools they have.

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Re: Your Diggers - Flat or Rounded bottom edge

Post by cammann » Sat Mar 24, 2018 9:38 am

Ten pence! wrote:
Fri Mar 23, 2018 11:46 pm
Shield shaped for me, the ground in my area can be baked hard after the harvest and presenting a flat edge to the soil is very hard work.
Same here. After a dry summer it'd take a JCB to get a flat edge in the ground. For this reason I need a shield shape.
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Re: Your Diggers - Flat or Rounded bottom edge

Post by sweepstick47 » Sat Mar 24, 2018 9:46 am

Koala wrote:
Fri Mar 23, 2018 11:44 pm
I like the blade to be at an angle to the shaft.

When I forget to pick up my spade I can stand on the blade and the handle pops up I to my hand

:D :D :D
That's a brilliant consideration ::g ::g but I'm a bit of a fitness freak, so it's waaay tooo lazy for me.
Cheers 'Koala' ::g ss47
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Re: Your Diggers - Flat or Rounded bottom edge

Post by sweepstick47 » Sat Mar 24, 2018 10:14 am

Many thanks for all your declared choices and opinions, they all have equal merit so I may have to go for the 'one of each' choice ::g Cheers all and thanks again. Regards ss47 ::g
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Re: Your Diggers - Flat or Rounded bottom edge

Post by oldartefact » Sat Mar 24, 2018 11:26 am

There is obviously alot of science going on here..
looking at some of the variables that affect choice of spade
1. Whats in stock at your local store
2. Whether you are going to use it on a rally.
3. Whether your land has been cultivated or not
4. How impacted/stony the ground is
5. What you are used to
6. How much you want to spend
7. Whether or not you have the kit to put a point on

Me I just go for the least line of resistance ... a small square edged spade .. most stores stock them, great for soft sandy soil, fit in with my clubs rules, dont cost a fortune, and I dont have the kit to convert any way.
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Re: Your Diggers - Flat or Rounded bottom edge

Post by Dave The Slave » Sat Mar 24, 2018 1:49 pm

Stainless steel flat edge border spade.
Works well on compact stony ground and compressed beach pebbles.
Cheers, ::g
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Re: Your Diggers - Flat or Rounded bottom edge

Post by Rhumours » Sat Mar 24, 2018 2:17 pm

oldartefact wrote:
Sat Mar 24, 2018 11:26 am
There is obviously alot of science going on here..
looking at some of the variables that affect choice of spade
1. Whats in stock at your local store
2. Whether you are going to use it on a rally.
3. Whether your land has been cultivated or not
4. How impacted/stony the ground is
5. What you are used to
6. How much you want to spend
7. Whether or not you have the kit to put a point on

Me I just go for the least line of resistance ... a small square edged spade .. most stores stock them, great for soft sandy soil, fit in with my clubs rules, dont cost a fortune, and I dont have the kit to convert any way.
When I got mine I had already had to do a lot of forum reading as a guest here and elsewhere and already had a spade - bulldog forged - so thought it wouldn't be an issue. Left that till last. But .... by that point I'd watched u tube to death and the emphasis had been on forums .... the hand trowel ... so I must admit I was a bit research battle worn. And it was just after Christmas .... which always involves several weeks of trawling reviews to get the right version of the right gift. I just didn't have it in me to go through it all again for a shovel when I realised it was a key component ..... sorry bulldog. ... at which point I relied on those that have done it far longer for far longer and still do .... most US videos show them carting Lesche gear around. So I saved myself hours of pain on the Internet. Shield shaped, curved wiv teef. It cost the same as a small bribe to a council official .... but I'm telling myself that you spread that cost over years doing it. And the various people I watched are on their 2nd in 10 or so years with the first as a working spare ....
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Re: Your Diggers - Flat or Rounded bottom edge

Post by oldartefact » Sat Mar 24, 2018 2:30 pm

Rhumours wrote:
Sat Mar 24, 2018 2:17 pm
oldartefact wrote:
Sat Mar 24, 2018 11:26 am
There is obviously alot of science going on here..
looking at some of the variables that affect choice of spade
1. Whats in stock at your local store
2. Whether you are going to use it on a rally.
3. Whether your land has been cultivated or not
4. How impacted/stony the ground is
5. What you are used to
6. How much you want to spend
7. Whether or not you have the kit to put a point on

Me I just go for the least line of resistance ... a small square edged spade .. most stores stock them, great for soft sandy soil, fit in with my clubs rules, dont cost a fortune, and I dont have the kit to convert any way.
When I got mine I had already had to do a lot of forum reading as a guest here and elsewhere and already had a spade - bulldog forged - so thought it wouldn't be an issue. Left that till last. But .... by that point I'd watched u tube to death and the emphasis had been on forums .... the hand trowel ... so I must admit I was a bit research battle worn. And it was just after Christmas .... which always involves several weeks of trawling reviews to get the right version of the right gift. I just didn't have it in me to go through it all again for a shovel when I realised it was a key component ..... sorry bulldog. ... at which point I relied on those that have done it far longer for far longer and still do .... most US videos show them carting Lesche gear around. So I saved myself hours of pain on the Internet. Shield shaped, curved wiv teef. It cost the same as a small bribe to a council official .... but I'm telling myself that you spread that cost over years doing it. And the various people I watched are on their 2nd in 10 or so years with the first as a working spare ....
What you have described is a very well reason for detectorists giving up the hobby "death by youtube video" OooO OooO OooO As with many things in life .. the line of least resistance has alot going for it.
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Re: Your Diggers - Flat or Rounded bottom edge

Post by Rhumours » Sat Mar 24, 2018 3:38 pm

I totally get your point and sincerely with the greatest respect it's a terribly one dimensional and closed argument to make. I watched u tube because ..... you don't know. I took the line of least resistance because .... you don't know but may be assuming. In this instance I had a significantly I'll mother who was recovering from cancer. Now .... please don't think badly or 'whatever ... lol. She has recovered and all is good. But at the time it wasn't so ... and she was recovering with me looking after her. ' so .... honestly she was fascinated by it so she wanted to watch it as I had been bought one. As I wanted to know more than just what garret offered in the way of instruction I joined her watching it. I'm a visual learner and find it hard to learn from words alone. Show me one I remember for ever. So the line of least resistance it may be .... but the cause may well be beyond your imagination and therefore you may have assumed my motives.

I always say when the passenger of a car ... and the driver loses their rag about someone over taking. It may be they are rushing to the hospital to get to their loved one. Probably they are a dangly thing in all reality .... but I can't jump to conclusion's based on my limited exerpeince. I would.need to know more before I judged. That's just me and not always me I can assure you so don't take it the wrong way I really enjoy your posts. But I'll reign that thinking in sharply before it becomes runaway about me personally. ::g
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Re: Your Diggers - Flat or Rounded bottom edge

Post by Polyspaston » Sat Mar 24, 2018 4:02 pm

I have used flat spades in the past, but for me it is pointy every time. The blade can wriggle in between those Norfolk flints, which saves wear and tear on the wrists.
Yes, I have got one of those with saw teeth and it got me brownie points from my wife, after I dug a nice hole in rooty soil so she could plant a shrub.
Only fair really as she bought the spade as a Christmas present.

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