A shovel is an all-around practical tool for your outdoor adventures. Whether it’s for camping, gardening or hiking, a good shovel can be a versatile tool and you may find it extremely handy in different situations. Shovels can be used to dig a fire pit or to bury a left-over meal when camping or to dig a trench to redirect rainwater away from the campsite. Having a good, sturdy shovel as part of your gear will make camping easier and more enjoyable.
Unlike traditional shovels, modern shovels are designed to be compact so get the utility of a shovel without having to carry around a one-meter tool when camping. These foldable shovels may even come with additional features and tools so you can be prepared for any given situation.
However, choosing the right shovel can be a difficult process considering the variety of shovels available on the market, which is why we have included a buying guide with our list of the best folding shovels which can help you in the selection process. Check out our list of the 10 Best Folding Shovels in 2020 to find the best folding shovels for all your outdoor activities.
How To Choose A Folding Shovel – Buying Guide
When it comes to choosing the best folding shovel, there are many different designs and features for you to choose from. The best folding shovel will provide a durable body and compact design that can be used for multiple camping trips. Even if you are camping with a car, a shovel can be a useful tool and will be a useful addition to your camping gear.
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It is important to invest in a folding shovel that has a high-quality build and construction. The blade of your shovel should be made of one solid piece, rather than sheets, and be anti-corrosive. The handle should be made of a durable material and connected to the blade with a hinge, which makes the design a folding shovel. When purchasing a folding shovel you want the shovel to be durable so that it won’t dent. If you accidentally hit a rock while digging, your shovel shouldn’t dent, chip, or break.
The best camping shovel will be made of a sturdy, durable material. Common materials that are long-lasting and used for shovel blades are stainless steel or high carbon steel. Most of the metal will be coated with black oxide paint to help prevent corrosion. The handle should be made of metal or hard plastic, to ensure it is also durable.
There are three designs that are popular for a folding shovel. The first is a tri-fold shovel, where the blade and grip can be folded down. The second is a two-piece folding shovel, which is the standard design. A two-piece folding shovel will have one hinge to fold the shovel into a compact design. The third is a telescoping design that extends and collapses the handle to save space and make it portable.
It is important for your folding shovel to be portable. The most portable folding shovels will be durable, lightweight, and compact. An all-metal handle might be heavier, but if it comes with a good compact design, it can be worth the extra pounds because it will be durable and long-lasting. Shovels that are made of lighter and less expensive materials tend to have a shorter life span.
Ease of Use
A folding shovel should be easy to use, but certain features can make it easier to handle and operate. Shovels that have a D or T grip handle tend to provide extra support, over a straight handle design. Adjustable shovel handles may help prevent you from having to bend down too much. You should consider different features and determine whether they would make your folding shovel easier to use and benefit your needs.
Most shovels are used for digging, but some manufacturers include extras features like a sawing capability in their design. Other shovels have multiple tools, or a compass included in the design. You shouldn’t spend money on extra features if you know you won’t put them to use but consider them if you want a few added extras in your folding shovel.
There are many different sizes, but the best folding shovel will be small and compact. You should find a design that combines a decent sized blade, so you can get the job done, with a compact design so it can be easily transported.
The best folding shovel will be lightweight. You shouldn’t have to carry around an unnecessarily heavy shovel. You should find a design that is durable, but lightweight. However, be prepared to sacrifice saving some weight for a truly durable and long-lasting folding shovel.
If you want more out of a shovel, you should consider a folding shovel design that can be used as a saw and ax too. Some folding shovels feature the ability to saw or cut through various materials, so you can carry fewer tools. Additionally, a shovel can be used to start a fire and dig a small hole so you can use fire starters to get a flame ignited. A shovel can also be useful to help pound in your tent stakes, eliminating the need for a hammer or trying to use a rock. Essential wild camping guides will tell you shovels are key for personal hygiene while camping and backpacking. If you are camping with beginners, you can teach them the important leave no trace principle to ensure the trails stay garbage free.
The handle should be made of durable metal or hardened plastic because it will bear a lot of force. It would be frustrating to have a handle snap on your trip, so ensure you have a strong one to get the job done.
Folding shovels do a lot of hard work. For that reason, finding a durable design is extremely important. Your shovel shouldn’t be a one-time use tool. The best folding shovel will last you throughout multiple trips, while still delivering high-performance.
If your shovel does not automatically come with a carrying case, you should invest in a one. A carrying case can help you pack your shovel easier and help protect it. Most importantly, a good carrying case can prevent water damage, which stops the possibility of rust developing.
Q: How should I care for my folding shovel?
Water is your folding shovel’s enemy. Water can lead to rust, which can make your shovel hard to use and prone to breakage. The best way to care for your shovel is to always clean it after each use and ensure it is stored bone dry.
Q: Can I get my shovel sharpened?
Yes. Your shovel should be able to be re-sharpened by yourself or a professional. The best you can do is reference the user’s manual for information regarding sharpening.
Q: What should I do if I can’t fold and unfold my shovel?
This is most likely due to damage or rust, but it could also be a design flaw. To defeat the rust, you can try putting some oil on the hinge to loosen it up. You should make sure your shovel is clean and dry when stored. If it is a manufacturer’s issue, check to see if you have a warranty.
Q: What are the benefits of using a folding shovel?
A folding shovel can be used for a variety of tasks around the campsite. From digging small or large holes to full trenches, a folding shovel may be able to save you in unexpected situations. A shovel can also be used for other tasks like cutting and chopping. A folding shovel really is a great multi-use camping tool.
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The best folding shovel will make life at your campsite easier and can be essential for setting up a campsite. No matter the type of folding shovel, you should feel confident that you have such a versatile tool at your fingertips. If you know exactly what you want or need, you can save time and money by investing in a top-rated folding shovel.
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Do you own one of the folding shovels that made it onto our list? Let us know how it has worked for your outdoor needs in the comments section below.