DIY winter weather survival gear for the handy

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The winter has been a doozy. Atlanta was frozen solid, the Northeast experienced widespread power outages, and the Polar Vortex made headlines with record low temperatures.

Steel-edged snow shovel

One thing people have found themselves doing plenty of this winter, aside from complaining about the cold, is shoveling snow. Shoveling snow isn’t easy, especially if your shovel is made of plastic. Ice can chip and crack a plastic shovel, making it a pain to work with.

One handy Instructables user, Phil Bohlken, has found a way to modify a fragile plastic shovel, making it more than capable of cracking through ice.

If you’re as handy as Phil, turning your plastic shovel into an ice-destroying super shovel shouldn’t be too difficult.

What you’ll need:

  • Steel (Phil used an old bed frame)
  • Bolts and nuts
  • Angle grinder
  • Measuring tools
  • Pliers
  • Keyhole saw
  • File
  • Welder
  • Wrenches

The basic idea is to replace the edge of the plastic shovel with a more durable edge made of steel. If it seems a bit complicated, don’t worry — Phil B’s instructions are clear and concise.

Of course, you can always buy a metal-edged snow shovel from most stores, if you’re not up to the challenge.

» Via: Instructables › Wear Edge for a Plastic Snow Shovel

Emergency crampons

Shoveling snow is difficult, yes, but what if you have to make a longer-than-expected trek in snow and ice? Winter weather complicates any emergency situation, especially if you’re unprepared.

Crampons can come in handy if you find yourself in a situation where walking through snow and ice is a necessity. Crampons help with traction, making your trudge a bit easier.

Crampons can sell for anywhere between $50 and $200 retail.

Why spend the money? Instructables user Hyperfocused72 managed to make a set of emergency crampons with little more than chain and chord. Though they’re not suitable for mountain climbing, they would come in handy in an emergency.

What you’ll need:

  • Paracord 550
  • #3 chain
  • Split rings (optional)
  • Split ring pliers (optional)
  • Carabiners (optional)
  • Scissors
  • Lighter
  • Wire snips

After assembling your crampons, they’re pretty easy to stick on a boot. Here’s a short example of how the crampons work.

» Via: Instructables › Emergency Crampons for Ice and Snow

About the Author

Will Flannigan is Farm and Dairy's online editor. He grew up in Salem, Ohio, and is new to the agricultural scene. Will enjoys hiking, community theater and learning new things. More Stories by Will Flannigan

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