The Holey-Moley Digger Equipment Requirement provides some helpful hints on useful tools for assembling the Holey-Moley Digger Kit and some useful ideas on selecting a shop vacuum to power the Holey-Moley Digger.

Holey-Moley Digger Equipment Requirement – Saws to cut pipe

When cutting six-inch and 2-inch PVC pipe, various cutting tools are helpful. As a minimum, you want to have a hacksaw or a straight saw. These work very well to get straight cuts. If you go to a pipe yard to pick up a 20-foot section of six-inch pipe, you will want a 25-foot tape measure and Sharpie marker and a Sawzall with a long blade to make quick cuts to shorten the pipe to more manageable lengths. A hand saw works but a Sawzall significantly reduces the time.


Figure 1 Useful tools for cutting pipe

Holey-Moley Digger Equipment Requirement – Drill and Drill Bits

The most important tool on your Holey-Moley Digger Equipment Requirement list is an electric drill with a 1/8-inch drill bit for drilling rivet holes and for removing rivets. Rivets and a 1/8-inch drill bit are included in the Holey-Moley Kit along with a rivet gun. An extra 1/8 drill bit is helpful in case you loose or break the one supplied in the kit.

If you have purchased a kit that requires assembly, you will need additional drill bits for drilling holes for the handle assembly. Four ½ inch holes will be required and several starter drill bits will be very helpful. These include ¼ inch, 3/8 inch, and ½” bits. Any drill bit that is longer than six inches will be helpful in aligning two holes through the center of the six-inch coupling.


Figure 2 Electric drill with a selection of drill bits up to 1/2 inch

Holey-Moley Digger Equipment Requirement – Helpful Tools

A few helpful tools that should be on your  Holey-Moley Digger Equipment Requirement list are hammers, mallets, and a block of wood to help in attaching and removing the six-inch plastic couplings from the digger pipe. This operation is done multiple times and using a mallet and wood block prevents damage to the couplings.

A file will help in removing rough edges after drilling holes. A pair of vice grips is necessary to assemble and rivet the digger head. A pair of channel locks is also helpful. The channel locks and crescent wrench are necessary to tighten the ½ inch nuts on the handle assembly. These inexpensive tools complete the tools part of your Holey-Moley Digger Shop Vac & Tool Requirement.


Figure 3 Useful tools for assembly and disassembly

Holey-Moley Digger Equipment Requirement – Shop Vacuum

A good shop vacuum is required to operate the Holey-Moley Digger and is the most important item on your Holey-Moley Digger Equipment Requirement.  Most shop vacuums with airflow rates in the range of 100 CFM to 200 CFM will work fine. When looking at differences do not use horsepower (hp) as criteria as this is misleading. Look for the amperage. A 12-amp vacuum uses twice the power of a 6-amp unit. The greater the wattage (volts x amps) and the greater the airflow rating (CFM) the faster dirt can be removed from a hole. Hose diameter makes a big difference on dirt removal rate. If you have a choice, choose the vacuum with the larger hose diameter. Typical hose diameters available on larger shop vacuums are 2-inch and 2.5-inch. Select the larger hose diameter. You will need at least 8-feet of hose.

A one-foot deep hole will produce about 3 gallons of dirt and will weigh about 50 pounds. In many cases, a smaller shop vacuum will work just fine. A five-gallon shop vacuum is usually relatively easy to lift for dumping into a wheelbarrow. If you are digging a five-foot deep hole, you will produce roughly 15 gallons of dirt and it will weigh in at over 250 pounds. This starts pushing the structural integrity of most vacuums.

Rule of thumb – Use whatever Shop Vacuum you have first before deciding if you need a larger one. If you are digging deeper holes, a larger shop vacuum may be desirable especially if they have a handle and wheels. Normally when purchasing a shop vacuum with larger wheels and a handle, they are classified as contractor or professional models. The following shop vacuums have good ratings and reviews and should do very well powering a Holey-Moley Digger.


Figure 4 Shop Vac Contractor model 90L650A, 6.5 hp, 180 CFM, 14 gal, $120, Lowes


Figure 5 Rigid model WD1851 6.5 hp, 203 CFM, 16 gal, $160-$240, Home Depot


Figure 6 Shop Vac 587-66-00, 6.5 hp, 210 CFM, 16 gal, $179, Menards


Figure 7 Vacmaster VJ1412P, 6.5 hp, 229 CFM, 16 gal, $117-$240, Home Garden


Figure 8 ShopVac 941810, 6.5 hp, 250 CFM, 18 gal, $375, Sears

Portable Engine Driven Shop Vacuum System
Portable Engine Driven Shop Vacuum System


This powerful Portable Engine Driven Shop Vacuum System runs all day on 1 gallon of gasoline. No mixed oil/gas required. Producing 365 CFM, this unit outperforms all available standard shop-vacuums. This system gets by the problem of hauling an expensive generator to power an electric shop vacuum into remote locations. The unit comes with 10 feet of tough 3-inch vacuum hose. At $425.00, this system provides the most CFM per dollar of any comparable system.