I'm using my Dad's wheelbarrow. It's well over 55 years old. That's no exageration. It's solid metal throughout and has a solid rubber tire. Until now, nothing has ever had to be repaired and never a flat, of course. This past year though, a tiny 1/8" hole has rusted through the bottom. I inherited it when he died ('86). Because it's solid steel it's very heavy. The very thing that makes it so durable also makes your job harder when using it. Often the load I'm carrying is lighter than the weight of the wheelbarrow. My arms practically drag the ground after a day using it. I'm a senior citizen myself now and it's time to get a new lighter one. I'm looking for one that's a traditional wheelbarrow type, with a solid rubber tire, durable but light. Does any one even make anything like that? I work as a Master Gardener volunteer at our local botanical garden. They have wheelbarrows galore, but they are all falling apart in some way or other or they get a flat tire.
Any help or suggestions?
CoreHHI - General gardening use and building an ever expanding rock garden. I would categorize it as moderate use. My DH surprised me at Christmas by getting me a two wheeled Rubbermaid wheelbarrow. So, like you recommended, two wheels are better than one and a plastic or plastic composite material is better and lighter than metal, although the tires aren't solid rubber. He also said the look on the face of the clerk at Home Depot where he bought it was priceless when he told the clerk that he was giving his wife a wheelbarrow for Christmas. Only true gardeners understand. I'm thrilled. It looks a little odd sitting under the tree, but all I see is spring, the possibilities and fewer aches and pains. Now that's a gift!
Best investment in a wheelbarrow I ever made: a two wheeler I bought at Sam's Club with heavy-duty poly tub! Best part: I can now push my wheelbarrow around with a full load...using only one hand if need be! Can't wait for spring...
I asked for the medium one for Christmas in 07 and 'Santa' obliged. The older I get the weirder my Christmas List becomes - this year I asked for, and received, a kayak. Old age isn't for sissies and I intend to enjoy life with the proper tools! Seriously, the garden cart with these bicycle wheels makes it extremely easy to handle. I can load up several bags of topsoil, manure, mulch, whatever and still push it around...and we do not have a level piece of ground so sometimes I'm pushing a bit uphill.
And I want something rougher and tougher than my Garden Cart, something not made of wood, for really heavy duty work. Any suggestions? A lot of the reviews I read on Amazon say various carts aren't as heavyduty as the reviewer expected. I wonder if I need a metal wheelbarrow for really tough work. I'd like something I can toss rocks into or dump bags of sand into without being careful. But metal rusts; plastic doesn't seem as tough. And I'd Iike it to be easy to dump. And relatively easy to maneuver -- we have a hilly lot with a number of garden stairs and uneven paths. And of course there are storage issues -- I'd like to be able to hang it from the wall inside our garage. Any thoughts?
I couldn't live without this cart. I'm on my third set of wheels! I hauled 12 tons of flagstone in it that was delivered to our driveway and laid in paths, rock garden, patio and pond edging. It's has stood up to punishing abuse. Unlike metal it doesn't dent or rust. Despite all the heavy flagstone tossed in it, it barely shows any scratches. Because it's an open framework you can't haul loose dirt. I do have a Rubbermaid wheelbarrow for that. Because the "milk crate" design readily lets water through it's perfect for hosing off all the pond filters and other pond stuff. I just chuck the filters in it and rinse everything off. I wheel it around the various gardens so that the pond gunk runoff waters and fertilizes. It's usually takes just one load from the car to the gardens with mulch or plants or whatever you drag home from the garden center. As long as I can find wheels for this thing I'm going to keep it going. It's 8yrs old now. The body, handle and axels are in excellent condition.
Thank you! I'm tempted -- but it may not work for me as we have a very hilly property, so anything with 4 wheels can be cumbersome to move around. I love the idea of the open framework -- until reading your post it hadn't occurred to me how handy that could be to rinse off stuff.
we LOVE our 2 wheelbarrow from SAMS!!! It has a HUGE basin, and hauls LOTS of stuff, so even I can manuver it around when full. Just finished moving compost around, and I was putting 15-18 shovels full in it... hubby can move more, but its easier than a one wheel one!
OH, and with 2 wheels, it won't tip over as easily... so it's a winner for me.
I bought the ames two wheeler with the huge poly tub. Love the huge tub, hate the two wheels. If I had it to do over again I wouldn't get this one. You can load lots of lighter stuff in it but the axle is not strong enough for a lot of weight, I've already warped mine hauling soil. And the two wheels make for a bumpy uneven trip that strews stuff if it's piled much above the tub.
I'm going to buy a one wheeler next spring for heavy stuff and just use this one to mix my potting soil in. It works great for that.
I'm a little late to this party but I have several that I like for specific uses. I mostly use the largewheeled garden cart. I just recently replaced the sides, which were oriented strand board, with aluminum diamond plate l. I like the kind you see on trucks so i don't expect to be replacing it any time some. My next most favorite barrow is the one wheeled one with wooden handles and a steel tub. I use the one-wheeled barrow for everything heavy from concrete to dort and potting soil. I have a wheelbarrow my grandfather used and it is also a one wheeled one with a flat wooden bed and a verticle stop just before the wheel. I use it for bagged goods and its great for firewood. I bought a 4-wheeled cart but I don't use it much, I like it, I just don't seem to use it since the others do so many good jobs.
That must be a very large storage shed you have to keep all those 'barrows! I have three different kinds now myself. It seems that , for the dedicated gardener, there really isn't one "Holy Grail" wheel barrow. A collection is necessary.
Yeah Snapple45, I have two barns and while there are a couple of tractors and a truck in one the other one is pretty empty so I can find a spot for my wheelbarrows somehow. One I keep in the nursery, one I keep in the woodshed and the other lands wherever I've been working last.
Spinners CoreHHI? Nope no spinners but I've been considering a couple of chrome stacks and CB antennas, maybe even a KW badge or a bulldog! ;-)
This discussion is so helpful to me. I am using my father-in-law's 4 Cu steel wheelbarrow with a totally shot wheel. It is a "Tru-Temper."
Now, I was taught to always buy the heaviest-duty tool there is, for my outdoor needs.
Looking at all the wheelbarrows out there, considering my bad back, and these comments, as well as reviews, makes me run back to my old wheelbarrow. I also MUST buy U.S.A. made, for philosophical reasons.
I thought that I'd need a much bigger basin, but you know, after removing sod with gravel under it, and throwing in a couple of rained-on bags of compost into that small, decomposing but still sturdy Tru-Temper, makes me appreciate what I have.
Bigger would most probably mean more stress on my back, as I'd fill it more.
And, honestly, I don't have the luxury of owning more than one wheelbarrow/garden cart. I don't remember the last time I did ANYTHING medium-or-light weight outdoors! LOL!
My solution to all the flat tires on the danged wheelbarrows... was to learn to fix a flat. I bought one of those cigarette-lighter air compressors -- no holes, just the air leaked out. Worked like a charm.
I absolutely prefer a plastic bed and double wheels. Makes for a lighter and steadier load.
A firend of mine has a different sort, 2 bicycle tires on either side of the deep bed so the tires carry the WEIGHT of the load. But mine was $60 and hers was $200, so I'll just dream a little dream about that one.
Thanks for the good ideas on this thread (although disconcerting to have the "PM" run-over yelling at me the whole way through...)
My old single wheel metal barrow is about rusted through and I will need to replace it soon. The links and comments here have been helpful. Still ruminating. No rush, I'll likely wait until fall close-outs or spring-sales.
bonehead - I still use my Dad's old wheelbarrow, even after getting a new model for Christmas (see previous posts). Although two wheels do distribute the weight better and the composite plastic is durable and light, the new one is not nearly as maneuverable in and of tight spaces or turning a corner.
Good luck on your quest. I would just love to replace my 70 yr. old 'barrow with one just like it. It may be heavier, but I now think its worth the extra workout when using it.