Bending The Hoe Arm Without A Howron

”Parsimony is the mother of invention.”
—Herrick Kimball

When I was developing the Planet Whizbang wheel hoe, I needed to bend the hoe arm so that it would hold an 8” stirrup hoe blade. The arm is made from a piece of 3/16” by 1-1/2” steel.

Lacking a fully-equipped metalworking shop ( I was a professional woodworker for 20+ years), I attempted to form the arm by clamping it in a bench vise, then manually bending and hammering it to the desired shape.

This proved to be a frustrating experience. I completely ruined several lengths of perfectly good steel before I came to the conclusion that, when it comes to bending steel, beauty and precision are not possible with a bench vise and a big hammer.

But I did not give up on this idea of bending my own blade arm. I simply approached it from a different angle. I fabricated a bending form using 2x lumber and wood screws. Using the makeshift form and a 20-ton hydraulic jack, I managed to bend two hoe arms with an accuracy that, after the previous frustration, was particularly satisfying.

If you are too thrifty or too poor to buy an already-formed hoe arm from me (Click Here For Details About Buying This Part) I offer the following photos as inspiration. Where there is a will, there is a way, and I wish you great success with your “from scratch” wheel hoe project.