shovel: square vs round

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Between the wheel wells on my FJ40, I've mounted my jack and strapped to it a shovel and mattock/ax and handle. The local guys questioned my square tip shovel. I said it made sense since I wouldn't get stuck in hard ground only loose stuff that I could move with a square tip shovel. Also, I can't think of any time I would need a round tip except to dig and I have the mattock for that.

Any thoughts on square tip shovel vs. round tip shovel?
 
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The only time I use a square shovel is when stuck in snow.....you can shovel a path (or paths) for your tires to fit in easily with a square tip.....harder to do with a round tip.

Other than that, though, you're gonna find a round nose better in almost all situations off-road-related.....IMHO....
 
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I'd go with the round, pointy shovel. That way, you can pry at rocks to dislodge them. Likewise, if you camp or do anything other than ride in the woods, you'll find it better for digging firepits, latrines, etc with the round-nose shovel.
 
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I guess it depends on the ground. The red clay around here is so hard that the only way to dig is with a pick. A shovel is just for moving dirt. If I only had a shovel it would be a round tip but I carry both a mattock and shovel.
 

rusty_tlc

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Just make sure you don't leave the area. :grinpimp:


IMHO a short handle round point spade is best. All spades are shovels but not all shovels are spades.
A spade has a heavy blade and either a Tee or Dee shaped handle. It is specifically designed to be used to chop through hard soils and roots.

It also has a shorter handle which allows for use in tight quarters ie under a stuck truck. It's tough to swing a mattock under your truck, and easy to use a spade in the same place.
 
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I just picked up this short spade- very short. Specifically for when I need to get under the truck. Lots of hard packed stuff here so the pick is a good thing. I'm thinking the hoe will be good for dragging stuff out from under if needed. I also carry an squarish longer handle shovel in the winter. I think this one is German- its stamped 1965 and it looks like it will take a serious beating.

Pete
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I have that same German Spade. Works really well for what you'd expect out of an 18''(ish) handle, but I'm going to get a D handled 4' spade. If that's your only shovel, you'll be really under-shoveled :x
 
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A folding shovel like that (I have a couple of exactly that model) is considered a minimum piece of gear in all of our rigs. "latrine shovels" is what we have come to call them.

I have to agree with everyone else here. A square headed shovel (even if you find one with a short "D" hand;e) is a poor choice for the trail.

Okay for loose planting soil in a garden or maybe grain in a silo. For any sort of dirt or mud or anything you will ever be stuck in, they are pretty worthless.

A spade, and if you have the room/expect the serious digging, a pick/mattock.


Mark...
 
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On long expeditions or times I am stranded in the jungles I have found the pointed tipped shovel to be useful in hunting large game.

I could never spear anything with the flat one I used to carry, I used to have to just swing it like a bat. With the pointed one I can stay safely away and throw it like a spear.
 
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I've been stuck twice (I know, I'm not trying hard enough) once in sand and once on a wet clay and rock hill. The square shovel worked great in the sand. I was able to slope the sand to allow me to get out of the hole I sunk into. I used the mattock to loosen some dirt and rocks and then move them onto the trail with the shovel. A round shovel would have worked in the sand but without the mattock I think I would have had to turn back on the slick hill.
 

Devilmans Hand

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I like a full metal spade for dirt and mud. A buddy let me use his made by Ace Of Spades.
Square transfer shovel for snow and ice.
Round tipped shovel for gravel/rocks.

I carry an e-tool always. A pic in the spring/summer. A spade if I'm expecting mud. The transfer shovel in the winter.

They all have their place. A full size handle is nice to have.
 

80t0ylc

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.............Any thoughts on square tip shovel vs. round tip shovel?
I carry both, but I live in snow country and there is also areas of sand that I can encounter. I have used both and, as in most situations, the right tool for the job makes the job easier. Some "stucks" require you to get inventive and the more resources you have with you (up to a point), the better your chances of success. It's all part of the fun :hillbilly:.

Also, when I'm camping, both shovels will get used. So there's more than just "recovery" logic involved here. Just my .02
 
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I just picked up this short spade- very short. Specifically for when I need to get under the truck. Lots of hard packed stuff here so the pick is a good thing. I'm thinking the hoe will be good for dragging stuff out from under if needed. I also carry an squarish longer handle shovel in the winter. I think this one is German- its stamped 1965 and it looks like it will take a serious beating.

Pete

There was a bunch of these for sale at the Princess Auto here in Ottawa, but without the cover. I thought about purchasing one ($25), but wasn't sure if it would be all that useful on the trail.
 
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Round spade shovel, D-handle or staff is the way to go.

The only thing the square really is better for is cutting sod for a narrow trench in your lawn, that and cutting heads off of zombies. Well, at least I think they were zombies.
 

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