Adaptations to Horticultural Tools

Prepared by: Linda L. Geoghegan and Jane A. Walsh, Recreation Therapist through a grant from the Virginia Assistive Technology System

UNIVERSAL CUFF WITH REGULAR AND ENLARGED POCKET SOURCE
ITEMS NEEDED SOURCE
1" cotton webbing - length dependent on size needed sewing/fabric store
1" X 3" each loop and hook closure tape sewing/fabric store
1 1" D ring fabric or craft store
1 1" rectangular metal or plastic ring fabric or craft store
Optional: 2" wide cotton webbing - length as needed fabric/sewing store

Construction

A) Cut 1" cotton webbing to wrap about 1-1/2 times around the hand (between base of forefinger and thumb).

B) Fold one end of webbing over flat side of "D" loop and stitch down.

C) Stitch either hook or loop section of tape next to "D" ring on webbing.

D) Stitch other piece of hook and loop tape next to above piece on webbing.

E) Slide rectangular ring onto webbing then stitch free end of webbing to one long edge of ring.

F) Pocket:

  1. Stitch 3" X 1" piece of webbing along same side as velcro is stitched, starting at rectangular metal ring.

  2. For larger pocket, use 2" wide webbing and stitch across 1" webbing, making a loop as large as needed for size of tool handle.

PVC HANDLE ON TOOLS

ITEMS NEEDEDSOURCE
"T" angle of PVC pipe (diameter of openings depends on size of tools to be used) plumbing/hardware store
2 adjustable hose clamps (size depends size of PVC pipe) automotive/hardware store
6" piece of 1" or 1-1/2" straight PVC pipe (size depends on size of outlet on "T" angle) plumbing/hardware store

Construction

A) With saw, cut "T" angle in half lengthwise leaving outlet whole.

B) Attach to handle of tool using hose clamps to fasten 2 halves of "T" angle together.

C) Insert 6" piece of pipe into "T" angle outlet to make a handle.

PURPOSE: To increase grip options on long-handled tools.
*For increased leverage or grip "ability," use of a universal cuff is recommend.


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PADDING FOR HANDLES OF TOOLS

ITEMS NEEDED SOURCE
3/8" X 6" closed cell foam pipe insulation hardware store
duct tape hardware store
tool to be padded or built up gardening store

Construction

A) Cut pipe insulation to length desired for the tool to be padded

B) Split pipe insulation along one side for the entire length to be used and place around handle of tool

C) Tape into place using the duct tape...tape may be placed at intervals instead of taping the entire length of insulation

PURPOSE: increased handle size for use by persons with decreased hand function/arthritis...softer grip for pain sensitivity


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HAND FORM TROWEL

ITEMS NEEDED SOURCE
hand form trowel Walter Nicke Company, Topsfield MA
16" X 2" cotton webbing fabric/sewing store
1 2" metal rectangular ring fabric or leathercraft store
2" X 2" hook and loop closure fabric store

Construction

A) Cut 3" section of 2" cotton webbing

B) Place 3" from one end of the left over cotton webbing

C) Sew sides of both together to form a tube or pocket

D) Sew rectangular ring to the shortest end (where pocket was formed) to the cotton webbing


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MOLDED CLIP FOR TROWEL OR SMALL DIGGING TOOL

ITEMS NEEDED SOURCE
10-1/2" X 1" X 1/8" strip of aluminum hardware store
1 can PLASTI-DIP coating hardware store
1 trowel or small digging tool hardware store
duct tape or other cloth strapping tape hardware store

Construction

A) Dip strip of aluminum in plastic coating substance according to instructions on the can...repeat at least four or five times for best results.

B) When plastic coating is completely dry, bend aluminum strip into an even-sided "U" shape.

C) Place one side of the "U" on the upper or top side of the tool handle with the open end of the "U" toward the end of the handle...tape securely onto the handle with the duct tape.

D) Clip can be make looser or tighter by bending it to accommodate various hand sizes.

PURPOSE: to secure hand to tool without straps or cuffs...to compensate for decreased strength and grip


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GLOVE GRIP FOR TROWEL OR TOOLS, WATERING WAND

ITEMS NEEDED SOURCE
1 pair biking gloves w/hook and loop fasteners variety store (Wal-Mart)
lightweight children's tools, watering wand, hand tools gardening store/variety store
1 4" X 2" adhesive-backed loop tape (velcro) fabric/sewing store
1 4" X 2" adhesive-backed hook tape (velcro)
2 plastic or metal 1" "D" rings leathercraft supply store/medical supply store
1 4" X 1" piece cotton/canvas webbing tape fabric/sewing store

NOTE: If "D" ring unavailable, increase length of 1" webbing to compensate

Construction

A) Measure and cut 4" X 2" hook tape (velcro) to fit diagonally across palm of biking glove, from heel of hand to space betqeen base of froefinger and thumb...it may be necessary to trim corners of tape for good fit.

B) Attach 4" X 2" loop (velcro) to tool to be used, placing the tape longitudinally (lengthwise) along shaft or handle of tool

C) Cut 4" X 1" tape into two 2" X 1" pieces...if using "D" ring, fold tape over flatside of "D" then stitch both ends of a 2" X 1" to the velcro fastener on the biking glove. If no "D" ring is used, increase the length of each tape to approximately 4" X 1", fold in half, and stitch both ends to glove. Either of these two procedures will extend the length of the glove's closure, making it easier to grip. Repeat for other glove.

PURPOSE: to compensate for decreased grip strength or motor control.

Click here or on each photo to take a closer look!