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Air Powers This Steel Post Driver
Ovis Snider can drive in fifty steel posts and not have blisters on his hands or sore muscles in his arms, thanks to the air-powered steel post driver which he designed.
"Even in dry, hard packed ground, I can drive in posts in 30 seconds or less stopping only to move the air compressor," says Snider, of Seymour, Mo.
"Air is supplied by an air compressor mounted on my truck and powered off the fan belt, although any pto-powered or gear generator compressor would work," Snider reports.
The ability to power the driver with air, limited only by the length of air hose from the driver to the compressor, also makes Snider's invention ideal for areas too difficult to reach with tractor-mounted drivers.
He built it using scrap items found in his farm shop. Weights for the driver unit are old truck axles and the outer framework is from school bus seats. The actual post driver unit is a truck axle hub.
He built the pressure chamber out of 1 in. electrical conduit the only component purchased new. Airbrake valves from a semi tractor-trailer control the driver's up and down movement. The bottom valve fills the lower half of the chamber, pushing the driver up about 22 in. This valve then releases and the top valve pushes the driver down with an 80 lb. psi force.
The driver only fits standard studded "T" posts but Snider plans to modify it to drive round posts used for cyclone fencing.
He points out that the driver has two other features that he likes: He can slide the driver on and off the post horizontally without having to lift it up and over the top of the post, and the "T"-shaped chamber prevents the post from twisting out of position if it should hit a rock.
For safety, Snider equipped the driver with two "fail safe" levers one controls the air and the other acts as a safety brake so, to drive a post, you must have a hand on each lever.
Snider plans on making his air powered post driver available commercially. He says it'll weigh about 42 lbs. and sell for approximately $300.
For more information, contact: FARM SHOW Followup, Ovis Snider, Rt. 3, Box 327, Seymour, Mo. 65746 (ph 417 935-4016).

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1985 - Volume #9, Issue #3