Driving T-posts is a lot easier with the Hammer Head, a spring recoil post driver from Shep’s Mfg. Jack Sheperson made his first recoil driver in the late 1990’s (Vol. 26, No. 4). He says the new driver is much improved and, unlike his first model, he has applied for a patent to keep it American-made.
“When I started building my first model, local farmers liked it, and I sold several hundred,” says Sheperson. “When a large farm supply company started contracting with me in 2004, the business took off.”
Unfortunately for Sheperson, he had no patent, and after a few years, the farm supplier moved production to China.
“About a year ago, I was reading reviews of their driver on the internet, and it was rated only 2 out of 5 stars due to resistance from the spring,” says Sheperson. “I redesigned it so that after the first cycle, it lifts the 13 1/2-lb. driver up on the recoil. The user only has to concentrate on pulling it back down.”
Sheperson is confident the new design will be a big help to the elderly and less physically able. It also has an optional add-on weight (2 1/2 lbs.) for even greater down pressure.
“The spring will wear out eventually, but it’s easy to replace,” says Sheperson. “My supplier suggests it should last for several thousand cycles without any problem.”
Sheperson notes that a key feature of the recoiling driver, aside from speed and ease of use, is its safety. With a manual driver, the user tends to lift it to the same height as when they start with a post. That can result in the driver being lifted off the post and falling back on the user.
“With the Hammer Head, being raised above the post is not a problem,” says Sheperson. “Unlike a fully manual driver, the recoil driver is constantly adjusting to the ever-shorter post.”
Suggested retail price is $80. Check with Sheperson for availability.
Contact: FARM SHOW Followup, Shep’s Mfg., 205 Rollertown Rd., Gravel Switch, Ky. 40328 (ph 270-692-6024; firstname.lastname@example.org).