Home-built Lawn Aerator and Roller Combo – Part 1

Posted by admin on June 20, 2011

*** Warning***
***This post has absolutely nothing to do with wood but hopefully it is interesting enough to read anyway ***

I’ve decided to try something wacky and build my own lawn aerator.  In addition to poking some holes in the grass, I am hoping that it can smash down the mole tunnels at the same time due to the weight of it after it is filled with concrete.  Best yet, I nearly have all the stuff laying around that I need to build it except a piece or two that I can pick up at the local Home Depot… or salvage from my brother’s scrap steel.

I’m sure the design isn’t the most “safe” configuration, but we’ll let the moles worry about that.

Yeah, it sure looks scary to me.

I used a drill equipped with a fairly small bit and randomly drilled holes all around the concrete form.  I am not too concerned about the cardboard deteriorating.  I figure I have the nails embedded deep enough that they won’t slip out on their own.   Here’s a view from the top to give you an idea of what I mean.

The nails are far enough into the cavity to hopefully stay put. They’re a size larger than a regular 16d framing nail so they are pretty hefty.

In order to prep the cylinder for pouring I cut a piece of rigid foam into a circle and marked the center.  I stuck a piece of 1/2″ CPVC in the center of it, pulled it out and then stuck it into the concrete form.

Bottom side with foam plug

Here’s what will be the bottom side when pouring in the concrete. It serves a few purposes. To hold the CPVC tube in the center when pouring all the concrete in as well as keep all the concrete from running out the bottom.

Here it is flipped over and ready for the concrete to be added.  I also made another circular foam cutout to hold the top side of the CPVC in the center.

Here is the tub with the CPVC pipe in place.

I moved it outside and grabbed the concrete bags out of the garage.  All the stuff I’ve used so far has been leftovers from other projects.  I prefer to ignore the fact that I may have “over-purchased” on previous jobs and choose to believe all the stuff is “free” at this point.  😉

Ok ok.. I was sweating too much and my hands were a little too dirty to pick up the camera while mixing up the concrete and filling the form. I do think a flat bottom shovel really helps get it mixed thoroughly and a lot easier.

Here it is with it chalk full of concrete and the top foam piece in place.

Filled with concrete

A wee bit of the concrete bled out of the bottom.  I stuck a plastic bag under it just in case, but that really didn’t help at all.

I ended up buying a small ball hitch and a piece of round rod for the axle and welded it all together in my brother’s garage.  Unfortunately I didn’t take any pictures over there during the assembly, but next post I make, I’ll try to take some of the finished product and have it hooked up to my riding lawnmower.


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