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boundary adjuster

Adjust boundaries
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(+2, -1)
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Boundaries seem to be fairly fixed but this idea explains a mechanical method for adjusting them.

Consider a field boundary, formed by a hedge. Suppose you want to enroach a little on the neighbouring field. Well this device attaches to the rear of your tractor. It cuts a square U shaped slot down this side of the hedge, along underneath the hedge, and up the other side of the hedge.

Now the clever bit is this. If the slot on your side is cut, say, an inch wide, and an inch's width of soil were to be removed from the other side and was inserted into the cut on this side, then Q.E.D the hedge would have been shifted one inch towards the other side, making the other side field a wee bit smaller and your side field a wee bit bigger. But only one inch, which your neighbouring landowner is unlikely to cotton on to, and so you can get away with it.

You could do this once a week or once a month and after a few years you will have made a significant difference to your own landholdings.

Now the clever bit. Obviously the easy way to get the excess soil out of the far side slot and into your side slot is over the top, but that is a bit blatant. So, the U shaped cutting face is cleverly designed with soil transporting conveyors within its thickness. As it cuts, soil is transported rapidly away from the cutting face and deposited from the trailing edge of the near side vertical cutting blade.

I see no reason why this device should not be scaled up and used for walls, buildings and roads. Now you can drive your tractor slowly and carefully alongside the M1 and shift it a little sideyways.

pocmloc, Aug 03 2020


       The HEDGE moves away from your tractor. The SOIL will be transported towards your tractor. (Now that I read it again, you actually mention both directions at different places...).
Small-scale, I think it could work as a tractor- mounted/driven device; but bigger would require self-power under the ground (counter-rotating screws probably...).
neutrinos_shadow, Aug 03 2020

       If the amount of movement could be adjusted along the length of the cut, and the machine has a sufficiently wide "span", this could be used to re-align runways to compensate for the annoying tendency of the magnetic poles to go wandering away from the geographic pole in a sort of unsolicited drunkard's walk.   

       Really, if you can't be bothered to look after your planet properly, you shouldn't be allowed to have one.
8th of 7, Aug 03 2020

       You'd say that about any planet that has a solid surface below escape velocity.   

       I think it might be most useful to move the boundary in the neighbor's favor. Now he has to explain the shallow graves on his side of the fence.
lurch, Aug 04 2020

       //Now that I read it again, you actually mention both directions at different places// Yes I think my brain went a bit funny trying to work out which was the thin slot and which was the thick one.   

       //shallow graves// I think there is a problem with this but I can't quite put my finger on it. See comment above.
pocmloc, Aug 04 2020

       Ah yes, subtle boundary adjustment, and the resulting court action between neighbours, one of the finest British traditions.   

       Do not be taken aback when the U-shaped trench digger meets less resistance than expected - it is merely undoing the boundary adjustment work of your rival, who had the foresight to get started before you did, and will now permanently remain in the lead. Perhaps by investing in a German or Swiss boundary adjuster, that works in metric inches (as opposed to the imperial inches of a home-grown unit) you might be able to cream off the difference in your favour as the hedge oscillates back and forth. Progress would be slower, but it's worth fighting for.
mitxela, Aug 04 2020

       // a German ... boundary adjuster, //   

       Presumably pre-configured to acquire Alsace-Lorraine, then Austria, the Sudetenland, the western half of Poland...   

       Or you could buy a Russian model, which shows equally ruthless traits.   

       // Progress would be slower, but it's worth fighting for. //   

       Yes, that's probably what they told all the poor devils that froze and starved to death at Stalingrad...
8th of 7, Aug 04 2020

       I think those models need a tractor on each side?
pocmloc, Aug 04 2020

       Tracked vehicles, certainly. The turret and gun are no doubt just decorative details.
8th of 7, Aug 04 2020

       // Presumably pre-configured to acquire Alsace-Lorraine, then Austria, the Sudetenland, the western half of Poland... //   

       In big wars, as in little wars...   

       If you're not willing to fight tooth-and-nail for twenty years over the three inch strip of land the bastards nextdoor stole, you're not worthy of being called a land owner.   

       Some enterprising individuals can consider the settlement payments a healthy revenue stream. The trick is to be so obnoxious that the neighbours give up and relocate, allowing the stunt to be repeated with the next inhabitants.
mitxela, Aug 04 2020

       My neighbours would probably notice me driving a massive tractor very slowly around the edge of my back garden.

Having said that though, this idea reminds me that we recently acquired a couple of square metres of land from our neighbours as a result of a fence being replaced...
hippo, Aug 04 2020

       //My neighbours would probably notice// Habituation. Start with a small tractor quite fast, one of those middle-class ride-on lawnmower things should do the job. If that's even too big, find a nephew or niece to come with a plastic toy pushalong to start with. Trade up every year and drive slower. After a few years you can have the biggest shiniest machine and go as slow as you like and they won't bat an eyelid.
pocmloc, Aug 04 2020

       Lol, your idea can have a proxy [+] from me just for that last anno [poc] ;D
Skewed, Aug 04 2020

       Yes, of course, tractor habituation - why didn't I think of that? A side-effect would be that after a few years of tractor habituation with successively bigger tractors until you're able to adjust the boundary, if you then take all your tractors away your neighbours will, for a time, see a sort of after-image anti-tractor driving round your garden.
hippo, Aug 04 2020


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