Finding gold in the compost bin

There I was digging out a compost bin and the spade hit something rather solid which was a bit unexpected but not necessarily unusual. When emptying a compost bin – you never know what you will find but it seems on this occasion it was going to be a pair of very rough secateurs but what was even better – they were not mine for a change!  Anyway, question is can we rescue and restore this gardening artefact to its former glory?

So they were fished out from the bottom of the bin – I think they must have been there pretty much all year and they were not looking very good but it is a good brand and so worth a bit of time to see if they can be brought back into service again.

Here is roughly what they looked like after being pulled out and run under a tap…

Oh dear, they are looking very sorry for themselves so now to see if we can take them apart and give them a bit of a clean.

This is what the main blade looked like…

I have seen better swords from the Iron Age but there is just enough blade left to work with so I carry on with the clean up and then put it all back together again giving it a good oiling as we are going and this is what we end up with…

OK, I know I know they look slightly better than before but let’s be honest still not great and pretty much all of us would turn our noses up at them however let’s see if we can get that blade sorted..

So with a lovely little tool for sharpening and grinding down blades and a small bit of work, the blade was now astonishingly sharp and once all back together we have some secateurs that have been rescued from the compost bin of doom – result!

Reality check

OK so before we get too excited… yes, the secateurs have been rescued (it was disappointing that the manufacturer doesn’t offer replacement blades) however they wouldn’t be my day to day secateurs  – why… because the pitting to the blade is just too bad. 

If you just going to use them for is hacking away at brambles and the like then these will be fine but all that pitting (on the blade that can’t be replaced) means they will be very difficult to keep clean and there are only two things you need from a pair of secateurs – that they are sharp and that they are clean. 

It doesn’t matter if they cost £5 or £150 – sharp and clean are always the most important things you are looking for from your secateurs so they will be handed back to the client along with the advice above (oh and be more careful next time!).

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