I broke the handle on my primary shovel the other day. I wasn’t even working the thing very hard. When it snapped, the handle wasn’t bent much, and it broke cleanly and suddenly away from the blade. I looked at the point of break and noticed bit of dry rot!
Oh, what I would give to have the hardened steel and fiberglass shovel I had back in the U.S. If such a shovel can be purchased in New Zealand, I’d buy two of them, almost regardless of price. I might actually look into getting this Nupla shovel imported. It looks like el ultimo.
Having a tool as basic as this break is a serious, “Oh shit!” moment. It’s unthinkable, really. Until it happens. I have a backup shovel, but it’s a similar design, just made out of slightly better materials. It is not sufficient. Please, don’t wait to get your tools.
General Hint on Shovels: If the nose of the shovel is pinned to the handle, just forget it. I’ve broken two shovels, one in the U.S. and one here in New Zealand. Both had blades that were pinned to wooden handles. I’m ready to say “forget it” to wood handled shovels as well. Whatever shovel you buy, choose it like your life is on the line. Then buy two or three of them. The same goes for wheelbarrows.
Related: Nupla Tools