Handy Devices

Easy-to-build ideas make your work easier.

Dan Miller
By  Dan Miller , Progressive Farmer Senior Editor
Drive-up ramp, Image by Ralph A. Mark

Dale Gerholz, Gaylord, Minnesota, found that store-bought, drive-up ramps didn’t work. For truck and equipment maintenance, the ramps were prone to collapse. But, he found a solution in the steel concave grates he salvaged from an old combine. He welded a short approach ramp to the grates. For traction, he welded steel bars crossways onto the approach--each about 4 inches from the other. Onto the grate itself, he welded a larger piece of steel bar just past the peak of rounded grate. That piece holds tires to the top of the ramps.

Close It Off:

Needing to anchor a fenceline, Bryan Hawley, Arcadia, Nebraska, spied a worn-out StirAtor from his drying bin and saw the answer. He cut the rod into 3-foot lengths and welded a 10-inch piece of sucker rod onto the end of each to serve as a handle. He welded a single length of chain onto each handle. The link secures anchor lines tied to the fence. Twisted into the ground, the StirAtor pulls the fencing down into hard-to-block dips.

Knock It Down:

Salvaging wood is a bit easier with a tool fashioned by Bob Huett, Henderson, Arkansas. It is a combination of two tools: a crowbar and a hammer. Huett removed the head of a hammer from its handle. He welded the hammerhead to the shaft of the crowbar. Now, he can back nails out of the wood to be salvaged with the hammer, and he can pry boards loose with the crowbar, both without changing tools.

WINNING IDEAS: Win $150 if your idea is chosen as the month’s “Editor’s Choice” Handy Device. Win $50 for other ideas used on this page. To submit a Handy Device, please send clear photographs, detailed drawings and a complete explanation of your idea. With each entry, include your name, address and telephone number. If your entry is chosen, you will receive in the mail a Federal Tax Form W-9. This form must be completed and returned to The Progressive Farmer before payment can be made. Send Handy Device entries to The Progressive Farmer, 2204 Lakeshore Dr., Suite 415, Birmingham, AL 35209.

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