Pros: Works great in mud.
Cons: Works ok in sand.
We have had three of the Ames Perforated Rice Shovels sitting in our garage for years. In fact that is mostly what I have used for various digging projects around the house but never knew what they were called until about three years ago.
These shovels measure about 47 inches long and the blade is about 9 inches x 11 inches with three holes drilled into it. You will notice that one of the holes is just under the shank and the other two are drilled perpendicular to each other just under the heel.
The blade is made out of tempered steel. That is done with heat and makes for a much stronger piece of metal. The shovels we have never have broken on us and they have been used a lot over the years.
The handle is made out of ash and is screwed into the shank. Ash is a very strong wood so it will resist breakage far longer that most other woods. If the handle does break they do sell replacement handles.
The handle is small enough to fit a woman?s hand comfortably without being too small for a man to use. It?s easy to grip so that you aren?t fumbling with it.
For those that don?t know, the shank is where the handle fits in and kind of protrudes a little from the blade. The heel is the area that is folded over and that is where you place your foot to help push the shovel into the ground.
I really wanted to know why this particular shovel was called a rice shovel because I couldn?t see any real use for it in the rice fields since they are covered with water and everything would flow through the holes.
The reason it is called a rice shovel is because they do use it in the rice fields but not for scooping rice but for digging in the mud and working on the levies so that the water can be contained.
I knew from being a child that when using a shovel in very wet ground that sometimes the shovel would form a vacuum and get stuck therefore causing the person digging to have to resort to getting another shovel to free the first shovel.
With the three holes in the Ames Perforated Rice Shovel that is virtually eliminated. The holes do not let a vacuum form, which is extremely nice therefore shortening the digging time.
I have used this shovel in helping clear out ditches so that water could run off and it does and excellent job. I am able to scoop a large amount of mud; with some falling through the holes, at a time.
Even though digging is by no means an easy task the Ames Perforated Rice Shovel does make it easier by not getting stuck in the mud and having to resort to different things to free it.
The blade of the Ames Perforated Rice Shovel is sharp but not razor sharp so if there are some small roots in the way it will cut through them with ease. After several digging jobs my husband does smooth the edge so it will remain sharp.
With the Ames Perforated Rice Shovel you also can use it for other digging projects as it does very well. I don?t recommend you using it with sand as that will just flow through and you will be left with another mound to remove.
If you do live in an area like we do that you have to dig in water or only dig down a few inches and strike water then the Ames Perforated Rice Shovel is one of the best tools you can have in your collection of garden tools.
You can accomplish most of your digging needs with this tool and not have to have a separate instrument for each project.
The next time you are in need of a shovel check out the Ames Perforated Rice Shovel. It could be the one and only shovel you will ever need.
Thanks for reading.