During my travels in Northern India and Nepal, while watching local farmers and their children using sickles, it occurred to me that a scythe would enable them to accomplish the task much faster and with less exertion.
Upon return to Canada and subsequent research I eventually connected with Chris Evans of Himalayan Permaculture Centre -- and my vision began to take shape...
First, a brief note on existence in rural Nepal.
Life in the remote mountainous areas of Nepal is physically very demanding. It was so for generations, but it is becoming ever more difficult for these hard-working people -- whose primary source of livelihood is small scale agriculture -- to make ends meet. In recent years some of the young, have left the family farms to seek some less strenuous future in the cities, and thus the land-working hands became fewer.
Many families now live continuously on the edge of bare sustenance; inclement weather during harvest can easily tip that balance between having enough to eat, or not. With the intensifying effects of climate change, unpredictable weather patterns are becoming more frequent.
A means to speed up the harvest would be of decided benefit to these people.
The village blacksmith with the first locally produced scythe blade.
Here are a few photos from rural Nepal.