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Do-It-Yourself Hoop Benders
Through his business, Build My Own Greenhouse, Loy Robinson sells hoop benders that he designs and manufactures. Along with snap clamps and a variety of other products, customers can purchase parts or entire kits to build tunnels, greenhouses, portable chicken coops, and whatever creative structure they can think of.
  The Mineola, Texas, business owner explains that it all started when he wanted to build a greenhouse for his herb business. He created a tool to bend electrical conduit to shape the frame. By customers’ requests he started building and selling greenhouses and was featured on the Discovery Channel in the late 1990’s. When shipping entire greenhouse kits became too expensive, Robinson started selling his hoop bending tool.
  “The bender is so simple to use, and customers can buy the conduit and poly covering locally,” he explains.
  Because he didn’t patent his design, other companies now make and sell the bender. But Robinson notes it’s been good for his business because he can offer very competitive pricing.
  The Build My Own Greenhouse website includes several videos showing how to bend and assemble various units. Since they are fixed radius bending tools, several models are available to create various widths (3, 4 and 6-ft. low tunnel) with different EMT conduit sizes (1/2, 3/4 and 1-in. dia.).
  The concept of low tunnels became especially popular when garden writer Eliot Coleman learned about Robinson’s hoop bender and praised it for its simplicity, efficiency and affordability.
  “The hoops can go straight in the ground,” Robinson says. Or, they can be made into 10-ft. long portable sections with easy-to-assemble connector kits he offers.
  Hoop benders for low tunnels start at $29.99 for 3, 4 and 6-ft. wide tunnels. Bending tools are also available to make high tunnels 8 to 24 ft. wide. Additional kits can be purchased that include snap clamp connectors and coverings.
  Contact: FARM SHOW Followup, Build My Own Greenhouse.com, 245 CR 2651, Mineola, Texas 75773 (ph 903 497-1158; www.buildmyowngreenhouse.com; info@hoopbenders.net).

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2018 - Volume #42, Issue #4