View Full Version : 8 HP Leaf Loader??

LB Landscaping
11-01-2002, 11:45 PM
Anyone have or heard of a Billy Goat 8 hp leaf loader??? I was looking to buy a 16 or 20 hp next year because funds are limited this year. I ran across an 8 hp in good shape the guy is asking $750. I know that the more hp the better but is this worth looking into? Will clogging potential be a problem with the low hp? I do a significant amount of leaf clean-ups and it would make things alot easier. I would probably end up selling it next year and going to a bigger unit or maybe keep it as a back up. What do you think???

mdb landscaping
11-02-2002, 07:33 AM
i wouldnt even waste your time getting the 8 hp. i just purchased a 16 hp billygoat, and it works great. i have heard from several guys that the smaller unit you have the more it will clog. you said you do signifigant amount of cleanups, so i why sell yourself short. just bite the bullet and get a 16 hp unit or bigger now and you wont have to upgrade next year. i got mine for about $2900

AL Inc
11-02-2002, 08:21 AM
LB- MDB pretty much summed it up. I had a Giant Vac loader with an 8hp Kawi on it. It got me through two years, but was not nearly powerful enough. Clogging was a real problem, and we wouldn't even bother to use it when the leaves were wet.

I would hold off on the 8hp and roll that money into a 16hp or 20hp. Can you do without it this year and buy it next year? You won't have to worry about selling the smaller one.

One thing I definitely have learned is to go for larger, stronger, and more powerful with anything you buy because you may not need it now, but you WILL in the future. Good luck, Mike

LB Landscaping
11-02-2002, 11:21 AM
Thanks guys, I'll put the money towards a bigger unit next year. Looks like I'll be using the tarp for one more year.

11-02-2002, 12:50 PM
Originally posted by LB Landscaping
Thanks guys, I'll put the money towards a bigger unit next year. Looks like I'll be using the tarp for one more year.

I think you made the right choice! I know you'll be swearing us up in down while tarping this year, but I promise it is well worth waiting for at least a 16HP. I had a 9hp when I first started out, and it was great compared to tarping, but it would clog waay too much. I went with a 20HP the next year and the difference was unbelievable.

I lost a killing on the 9hp......but it was a lesson learned!

11-02-2002, 01:53 PM
If you have the option of tarping vs. using any loader, I would go with the loader, even at 8 HP it is still going to save your back trying to pull, push, drag, twist, turn upsidedown, etc., etc.... with tarps. If the Billy Goat 8 HP is in good condition, I would get it for this season and then either sell it or keep it as a back up or for a pick-up as a second smaller leaf truck next year when you have the finances to upgrade.

gene gls
11-02-2002, 08:37 PM

The 8 HP loader is better than no loader. I have used one for several years. Like any pice of equipment, you have to learn how to use it.


11-02-2002, 08:54 PM
LB- Why not use your Walker? Thats better,faster than a tarp and probably the 8hp, too.

LB Landscaping
11-02-2002, 10:42 PM
Greenman I use the Walker but up here (Maine) the leaves get to thick and dense to use the Walker. I use it as much as possible and your right it is quick and productive. I was also looking to use the loader to get the load from the Walker into the truck.

11-03-2002, 10:55 PM
I used a billy goat 8hp leaf loader last year instead of using tarps like the previous year. I purchased it from another local lco for $500 and it worked out great. It did clog, but dealing with it clogging a few times was a lot easier than dealing with tarping the leaves. I ended up working on the loader during the winter and then sold it this past month for $800. I took that money and applied it towards a new 16hp loader. I'd say go for it and then upgrade to a larger unit when its financially possible. You have to start somewhere, might as well be with an 8hp unit. Good luck

Bob Minney
11-04-2002, 01:05 PM
Originally posted by LB Landscaping
Thanks guys, I'll put the money towards a bigger unit next year. Looks like I'll be using the tarp for one more year.

If you change your mind and give it a try for $750 let us know how it works out. Doesn't sound like too big a risk since you will have something to sell afterward.

LB Landscaping
11-04-2002, 01:09 PM
I thought about it this weekend and read some of the other posts. I might put in a low offer if I get it I'll let you all know how it worked out. Like you said I can always sell it later anyway.

LB Landscaping
11-04-2002, 06:07 PM
I just talked with the guy. He is an Landscaper a few towns over from me. He is getting rid of it because he just bought an 11 HP. He needs to get rid of it because he has already gotten the 11. Says it has a brand new 12 ft hose and he had a new motor on it last year. Said it works great, starts right up with no problem. I'm going to take a look and try it out on Thursday. I'll let you know. Thanks for all the input.

11-04-2002, 07:00 PM
Go with a 11hp at the smallest or go with the 16hp!

11-04-2002, 07:38 PM
Try a Lesco 16hp $2000.00 works great

LB Landscaping
11-05-2002, 11:16 AM
Bigkat where can I get a lesco??? That sounds like a great deal. I don't have any lesco dealers near me.

Bob Minney
11-05-2002, 11:19 AM

has a store locater

LB Landscaping
11-05-2002, 11:38 AM
Thanks Bob I did a search and found out that there is a new dealer very close to me. Thanks!!!

11-05-2002, 12:38 PM
10+ years ago I bought an 11hp basically because it was the biggest one that I could still lift alone when I was mounting it. It works, which is why we still use it, but I would rather have a 16 or 20hp.

My 11hp Billy Goat has an 8" intake hose. If you get the 16hp, you may want to get at least a 10" intake hose, along with a larger impellor (fan) and overall larger unit. Some companies/dealers are simply putting larger motors on vacuum units designed for 11hp motors, which to me seems that you are not getting all that much more productivity, but just paying more for the unit and burning more gas.

11-05-2002, 10:48 PM
Call me crazy, for the last five years I have used a home made 5.5 HP sucker mounted to the top of my dump truck, it has worked great, last year I ran with 6" hose and I did notice it cloged once and a while, expecially when it was wet. This year I went with an 8" hose and it made all of the difference in the world. The biggist influence on the leaves cloging is the angle and material the intake goes into the box, A 8" angled intake is much better than just the flexed hose. You guys can blow 2000.00 on 300 hp engines, but for what. Most clean ups we have been doing for the last 5 years, we usually charge 40.00 per man hour, or go with the previous year quote, which ever is greater. We blow with a Fradan blower, then use a leaf plow to push to the truck, one guy sucks, the other uses the walker. It has been a proven way to make 800-1000 prer day.

LB Landscaping
11-06-2002, 12:12 AM
For those of you that have loaders (any size) is there a difference in the ability to suck up the leaves whether or not the are mulched?? What will a loader handle better, leaves I blow into a pile using my back pack blower or leaves I collect with my Walker? Would the leaves collected by the Walker be more likely to clog or would the pile of leaves that are not broken up?

11-06-2002, 12:25 AM
It's not really whether they're mulched or not....

It's all about how wet and stuck together they are. And sticks w/ cause cloging also.

Currinson has a very good point... the straighter the shot to the impeller, the less clogging. Meaning, you are most likely to clog up if you pull the hose over to the side of the machine (rather than right out in front). A boom support helps but it has to be adjusted correctly.

On edit- the machine may work slightly harder on a pile from the walker, but you are sucking up so many more leaves all at once so that is to be expected, but I notice no more clogs from whole or mulched... dry that is!! Like I said... add moisture and sure, more clogs from a mulched pile

mdb landscaping
11-06-2002, 07:32 AM
if they arent wet, the mulched up leaves will suck through a little bit better. when its wet, you suck up a little and give the impellar a second to do its work before you keep going. if its finely mulched, you will be able to suck it up a little easier.

Bob Minney
11-06-2002, 09:45 AM
Will you share pics and/or design info with us? What did you use for impeller? What type of hose?

11-06-2002, 10:34 AM
I saw someones post about the 16hp lesco being $2000. They are selling them for $2195, yes they did increase the price over the last few years.

11-06-2002, 04:36 PM
I will take a picture of my leaf set up and post it for those interested. I have been purchasing suction hose from IHOZs.com, we have been using them for the last few years. When you go to their web site, click on Agricultural, select the dia and the length, the prices are great, and I have recieved the product in a timely mannor in mint shape. Let me know if you have any other questions, I will get that pic.


LB Landscaping
11-08-2002, 04:15 PM
OK I've shopped around. Why is Lesco so much cheaper than Billy Goat? I can get a Lesco 16 HP for $2195, Billy Goat is $2750, both are 16 HP units. Leasco's swing away hitch is also about $200 cheaper than Billy Goats. What gives????

11-08-2002, 06:46 PM
Just got a 8hp echo vac, not sure if its the same as you guys are talking about, but its great. Just used it today and had not a single problem. But I have heard that echo only did it for 2 years and someone else made it for them. better than raking or blowing.

11-08-2002, 07:32 PM
And the lesco model has a substantially higher cfm rating.

LB Landscaping
11-08-2002, 08:19 PM
So why are Lesco's soooo much cheaper????

11-08-2002, 10:00 PM
I bought this one direct from Hi-Way, for 1449.00 delivered to my door. They probably don't have any more though, you could check the web site out. Its 16 hp, tailgate setup, but I made a mount for it to set on and it goes in my reese hich. I have it set up to swivel out of the way.

11-08-2002, 10:08 PM
Good question, they are very nice units. They are made by Salsco which also sells them. Their company is in Ct. I priced the same unit, only its orange paint (they paint them green for Lesco) and they gave me same price as Lesco. You can get all the details on them at www.salsco.com they are the EXACT same unit just green.

11-08-2002, 10:09 PM
I bought this one direct from Hi-Way, for 1449.00 delivered to my door. They probably don't have any more though, you could check the web site out. Its 16 hp, tailgate setup, but I made a mount for it to set on and it goes in my reese hich. I have it set up to swivel out of the way.

LB Landscaping
11-08-2002, 10:25 PM
Thanks KL looks like they are wll built!!! I am looking at the BG tomorrow morning, if I buy the unit and swing awau hitch BG will take $250 off of the price. Still more than the Lesco though.