A trowel is one of several similar
hand tools used for digging, smoothing, or otherwise moving around small amounts of viscous or particulate material.
gardening, a trowel is a tool with a pointed, scoop-shaped metal bladeand a handle. It is used for breaking up earth, digging small holes, especially for plantingand weeding, mixing in fertilizeror other additives, and transferring plants to pots.
A bricklayer's trowel (also known as a pointing trowel) is a flat-bladed tool with a handle and flat metal blade, used by masons for leveling, spreading, or shaping substances such as
cement, plaster, or mortar, as well as for breaking bricks to shape them or smoothing a mold. A tuck pointing trowel is longer and thinner, designed for packing mortar between bricks. Brick trowels are traditionally made of carbon steel, but some newer versions are made of cast stainless steel, which has longer wear and is rust-free.
archaeologybrick or pointing trowels (usually 4" steel trowels) are used to scratch the strata in an excavationand allow the colours of the soil to be clear, so that the different strata can be identified, processed and excavated. In the United States, the Marshalltown trowelis favoured, but in the British Islesthe WHS 4" pointing trowel is the traditional tool.
Several types of trowel are used in
concreteconstruction. The float trowel or finishing trowel is usually rectangular, used to smooth, level, or texture the top layer of hardening concrete. A flooring trowel has one rectangular end and one pointed end, made to fit corners.
A gauging trowel has a rounded tip, used to mix measured proportions of the ingredients for quick set
A pool trowel is a flat-bladed tool with rounded ends used to apply coatings to
concrete, especially on swimming pooldecks.
Margin trowels and notched trowels are used to apply adhesive and
groutwhen applying ceramic or stone tileto a surface.
A smaller but similarly shaped tool called the
palette knifeis used in oil painting.
power trowelis a type of Light Construction Equipment, used by construction companies and contractors, serving as a finishing equipment for concrete works.
The trowel is an important symbol in
In 1978, Mr Edward Welfare, himself a freemason and scout-master, opened what was believed to be the UK's first dedicated trowel museum in Norfolk.
The trowel is the nearest that the archaeological profession has to a uniform symbol. It is incorporated into the designs of many archaeological association logos and publications.
* [http://www.shef.ac.uk/assem/2/2trowel2.html A history of the Sheffield made WHS trowel]
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