The Walden Effect: Farming, simple living, permaculture, and invention.

Post driver

Anna with her new post driver and Lucy in the background

We purchased a new post driver recently for the new pig pasture.

They had one with a spring, but we decided to skip the pogo version.

I've thought about welding some weight to the top to increase the pounding factor.

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About us: Anna Hess and Mark Hamilton spent over a decade living self-sufficiently in the mountains of Virginia before moving north to start over from scratch in the foothills of Ohio. They've experimented with permaculture, no-till gardening, trailersteading, home-based microbusinesses and much more, writing about their adventures in both blogs and books.

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I have one of those to drive T posts around my trees. Works great, but I have to put in earplugs because of the super loud ringing from it.

I used to just use a 5 pound maul. The driver is well worth the money.

Comment by Fritz Tue Apr 30 10:10:01 2013
I have one that looks about like yours, and I'm glad it doesn't weigh any more than it does. I seem to be built about like Anna (though I'm sure she is stronger than I am because of her regular farm work) and I'd find it too exhausting to do many posts with a heavier one. We have a bigger one that I can barely even lift in that position- all upper body strength!
Comment by Heather Wed May 1 13:49:06 2013

If you want more impact and if you are tall enough, weld an extra piece of pipe to the bottom. A longer pipe gives more mass and a longer drop height and more time for you to propel the driver downwards

Consider that the potential energy of just dropping the driver is the mass times the earth's gravity times the height: m·g·h. You would have to double the weight or the drop height to double the energy to put into the post.

The kinetic energy if you shove it down is ½ times the mass times the square of the speed: ½·m·v². So if you are able to double the speed, the energy quadruples.

For maximum impact it would probably be best to hoist a big weight up along a guide, and then let it fall down upon the post. That way you have more time to get energy into the weight (by hoisting it slowly) which would be less tiring.

Comment by Roland_Smith Wed May 1 17:43:57 2013

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