Step 2: File Away The Sharp Edges

Back in Step 1 of this tutorial I introduced you to the metal wheel hoe parts that come in the Planet Whizbang Metal Parts Kit. The metal components have been cut or sheared to size by my friend Carl Webber at his metal fabrication shop. Then I had the necessary holes precisely drilled by Felbax Machine Shop, which is a rural, husband and wife, home-based business here in my town. It takes a community to build a Planet Whizbang wheel hoe.

The parts in the kit are raw metal, which means they are not painted. As a result, they are somewhat grimy and may have some oily residue on them. You may even encounter little splotches of surface oxidation. None of this is any problem because you will prepare the surfaces and paint the parts in the next step of this tutorial. But, before you can do that, you need to smooth away all the sharp edges.

None of the parts have been de-burred after cutting or shearing them to size. Some of the edges are sharp enough to cut you. Handle With Care.

If you have a die grinder, or Dremel tool with a grinder bit, you can use these tools to remove the sharp edges. Or you can simply use a sharp metal file. Myself, I like the metal file.

Specifically, I suggest you use a 10” or 12” General Purpose file. The bigger files have a more aggressive cut than the smaller ones. Get yourself a nice new file (because new files are sharper than old files) and put a handle on it (half a corn cob will do the job). This same file can be used to re-sharpen your hoe blade after it gets some wear on it. Here’s a picture of the file:

Use the file to smooth and slightly round over all sharp corners on the metal pieces of the hoe.

Here is a before-filing and after-filing picture:

Click Here To Go To The Next Step (Step 3) Of This Tutorial