Leonard Lee, the founder of Lee Valley Tools, has a talent with regards to promoting the tools his company sells. In their catalogue under the “Sliver Gripper” tweezers he wrote: “Some tools are hard to describe because they are so good that an accurate description sounds like a carnival snake-oil pitch”.
Now, after several seasons of extensive use, we believe that if Mr. Lee would have come across the Magna Grecia hoe and actually tried it out, he would place it on his list of tools fully deserving the “snake-oil pitch”. Of course, apart from design itself, a man of his caliber as “tool expert” would evaluate the material and temper-related properties of this uncommon groundbreaker.
You see, the quality line of the Falci’s hoes is made of special tool steel with extra silica content to provide high abrasion resistance, and then hardened to 52-53 RC. This can’t be said of many hoes on the Western market today, if it ever could… Note 1To
Although we “discovered” the Magna Grecia on the dusty shelf in a far away factory and were the first to test it out on Canadian soil, it is thanks to Joel Dufour of Earth Tools, KY (who purchased the entire lot of them from Italy) that they are, for now, available on this continent.
Besides Earth Tools another source within USA is Steve Leppold in Oregon who would prefer not to mail them but instead will offer them locally on a donation basis (with a check for the listed price made out to a nonprofit chosen by Steve that works toward food security). He may be contacted at steveleppold(at)yahoo(dot)com
In Canada they may be obtained from ScytheWorks, while supplies last.
The price per hoe (or handle) at each of these sources is the same. The shipping costs vary, of course, sometimes considerably. Still, it makes “ecological sense” to order from the geographically closest source.
Head only; $35 (from eye to points the prongs measure 30cm; head weight 1 1/4 kg. /1250 gm)
Handle; $15 (Hickory wood, 1 1/4 by 1 1/4 octagonal profile, 58 inch long
Retail sellers of this hoe in Europe: