Creston Valley horse owner and millwright create scratch-built manure spreader

Web Lead

  • Sep. 20, 2015 5:00 a.m.

(Above) Bob Domenjoz (left) and Don Stace-Smith with the manure spreader; (below) the gears and flails; (below story

When Bob Domenjoz wanted a new manure spreader, he did something better than simply buying a new one — he enlisted the help of longtime friend Don Stace-Smith to build one from scratch.

“It’s better than one that’s manufactured,” Domenjoz said. “It’s stronger. It won’t bend or twist.”

It was cheaper, too, said Domenjoz, owner of two miniature horses and a quarter horse. A new manufactured spreader would have been about $4,000 for one; this one was under $2,000.

Stace-Smith, a journeyman millwright, appreciated the opportunity to create something new. He built a boat when he was 14, and project in the decades since have included a crossbow pistol and geodesic dome.

“I’ve made all kinds of ‘weird things, strange and wonderful,’ my sister says,” said Stace-Smith.

He prefers to create only one of everything, though.

“The challenge is for the first one,” said Stace-Smith. “After that, you’re like a machine.”

Part of the challenge for this was to figure out the drive system, which required the wheels to propel the spreader forward, while the track in the bed and flails at the rear turn the opposite direction to spread the manure. The result is a complicated — at least, to the layperson — system of gears and chains.

“There’s a lot of little finicky work,” said Domenjoz (who has himself built a four-wheeled buggy — and wants to build an artillery tank).

“Even making square holes with a file takes time,” added Stace-Smith.

Altogether, the project took about two months of weekends and some evenings before it was completed Sept. 11.

Domenjoz laughed when he admitted to some surprise during the early stages of construction when he saw that the frame looked nothing like what he’d imagined.

“I had the frame upside-down and he couldn’t figure out what was going on,” said Stace-Smith.

“Now, I can take it apart and put it back together,” added Domenjoz.

The project turned out to be a success, and with the quad painted a slick red and black, matching the quad used to pull it, Domenjoz has found the scratch-built manure spreader to be quite a time saver. It holds about a ton, and it takes him 10 minutes load it and five to unload it.

“For me, it’s a miracle,” said Domenjoz. “I don’t have to shovel anymore.

“I just put it in gear and away I go.”

Just Posted

Mobile breast cancer screening coming to Creston

To book a screening mammogram call 1-800-663-9203. A doctor’s referral is not required.

Call a foul on cancer with the Pink Whistle Campaign

Local basketball referees are raising money for cancer research

Free farm succession planning workshop in Creston

The one-day workshop provides an overview of the succession planning process followed by detailed presentations by farm succession experts in accounting, law, insurance, and financing.

Teachers’ Association protests committee appointment process

Newly elected school trustee Al Gribbin’s request to sit on the Kootenay… Continue reading

Biologists discover another female calf in depleted South Purcell Mountain Caribou herd

Calf will be moved to Revelstoke maternity pens, then released

WATCH: Historic night in Red Deer as 2019 Canada Winter Games kicks off

Star-studded Opening Ceremony features athletes from across Canada

Eight cases of measles confirmed in Vancouver outbreak

Coastal Health official say the cases stem from the French-language Ecole Jules Verne Secondary

Plecas won’t run in next election if B.C. legislature oversight reforms pass

B.C. Speaker and Abbotsford South MLA says he feels ‘great sympathy’ for Jody Wilson-Raybould

Workshop with ‘accent reduction’ training cancelled at UBC

The workshop was cancelled the same day as an email was sent out to international students

Former B.C. premier Gordon Campbell accused of sexual touching

Accuser went to police, interviewed by Britian’s Daily Telegraph

Judge rules Abbotsford home must be sold after son tries to evict mom

Mom to get back down payment and initial expenses

Trump officially declares national emergency to build border wall

President plans to siphon billions from federal military construction and counterdrug efforts

Snow turns to slush, rain as it warms up across B.C.’s south coast

Some areas are already covered by more than half a metre of snow following three separate storms

Father to be charged with first-degree murder in Amber Alert case

11-year-old Riya Rajkumar was found dead in her father’s home in Brampton, Ontario

Most Read