PDA

View Full Version : Equipment photos


Pages : 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 [8] 9 10 11 12 13

syzer
10-05-2009, 09:58 PM
You are about the 20th person that has told me that. I'm very curious to see how these out perform a fully dedicated track machine.

You will love them like neuswede said, early December tires will be on and it will be pushing snow.

http://www.precision-aquatics.com/gallery/albums/album07/IMG_0380.sized.jpg

etwman
10-06-2009, 08:52 PM
Chris,

Once you get familiar with the set-up and it get good at it, how long does it take you to switch out the tires for tracks or vice versa. Guys are telling me about an hour.

Junior M
10-06-2009, 09:17 PM
Chris,

Once you get familiar with the set-up and it get good at it, how long does it take you to switch out the tires for tracks or vice versa. Guys are telling me about an hour.
Have another machine on handy to help put the tracks in position, thats one of the tips I know of..

syzer
10-06-2009, 09:20 PM
Chris,

Once you get familiar with the set-up and it get good at it, how long does it take you to switch out the tires for tracks or vice versa. Guys are telling me about an hour.

Well I haven't switched them out once they were put on, but it took me less than one hour to install them originally with a helper and our other machine. Dale has directions that helped a good bit cut the learning curve, do a search for it. I would imagine 45 minutes to an hour to go back to tires would be accurate.

twward
10-06-2009, 10:10 PM
Jarod,

Even though you just purchased a 262 as well as the VTS system, this might be worth looking at too:

http://www2.ironplanet.com/jsp/s/item/232408?h=405,3387

I know that the machine is not as clean as you would like, but for the opening bid of $8,000, it might be something to consider. Atleast you could have it as a "back-up."

The machine is sitting at the Caterpillar's (Gregory Poole) Fayetteville, NC repo yard.
If I remember correctly, you have bought trucks from NC so this wouldn't be too far out of your way.

Anyway, just food for thought.

Take Care!

etwman
10-07-2009, 09:16 AM
It will be very interesting to see what that goes for, stuff is so soft right now. If I had to guess I'd say you might be able to get that machine for around $13k maybe? I don't need another one. It is incredibly tempting right now to be able to buy equipment at such great deals.

The silver bullet in all this is to be able to buy the equipment at these low prices right before this economy roars back. Who knows when that will be. After it comes back these deals will be gone for a long time.

etwman
10-07-2009, 05:52 PM
Pulling out Friday. Finishing the walkway tomorrow and punch list. Guys did a great job with this one. All that's left is are special pier caps which are on order. Onto the next one.

wurkn with amish
10-07-2009, 06:20 PM
no plantings?

blsmonroe
10-07-2009, 07:40 PM
Looks great. Is that paver product CST Ridgestone?

etwman
10-07-2009, 08:06 PM
Very minor plantings, mostly sod and seeding. Most will go in next week. We were hired by a GC to do all the brickwork, walls, flatwork, and fencing.

No, its not CST Ridgestone.

lukemelo216
10-07-2009, 11:36 PM
just curious, I noticed that you said a few posts back that you guys do some of the maintenance after these landscapes are installed. What are some of the things that you do, just wondering seeing as I know your out of the maintenance side of the business basically.

etwman
10-08-2009, 07:37 AM
Iím going to choose not to go into a lot of details on how we maintain or what we do or donít do. In the past 6 months we have introduced a comprehensive maintenance program to our new build clients who have done sizeable installs with us. It has been very well received, protects our reputation, and truly stands us apart from other companies. We really had to think outside the box on this one, but it is one that Iím not going to go into details on. It works great and reinforces to our clients that they have chosen the right company. You canít play the game the way everyone else does if you are truly going to win in this industry.

P.Services
10-08-2009, 12:52 PM
I belive the vast majority of high end landscape operations always contiune maintaining their installs for years to come. Every company I respect and admire I know for a fact that they maintain them. Marty grunder is huge into this, he preaches about this. The maintenance side is a constant and dependible flow of cash into your biz. The new construction could very well come to a complete hault where even mr.etw man has no work to do. It could, will it? Probly not but it could. If it did....... You would still have cash flowing in. I belive its a vital part of keeping your work top notch for years and years, keeping the publics perseption of you top notch. The landscape looks the best 3-5 years after it has been installed but if "mikes lawn and landscape" comes in and throws down red mulch over your nice hardwood and prunes this, cuts that, moves this, tops that then it is on a steep downward spiral. If you are maintaining the property you can keep things on the up and up, maybe a tree does need to be moved, maybe we want to change this or change that to keep things working in perfect harmony with one another. A whole other side to the importance is keeping a constant flow of communication with the client. This is a highly important aspect because you want to be johny on the spot when they do need more work but it also allows you to work referals out of this client. Keep them in the loop.
Posted via Mobile Device

cleancutccl
10-08-2009, 04:51 PM
Maintenance after the install is definitely a good move. We are thinking of even offering lifetime warranty on plants with our maintenance agreement, as long as customer adds bug sprays, fungicides if needed. Like said before, you can install a beautiful landscape and someone can destroy it in 1 season by not knowing what they are doing.
Cheers

ohiogreenworks
10-08-2009, 05:42 PM
I belive the vast majority of high end landscape operations always contiune maintaining their installs for years to come. Every company I respect and admire I know for a fact that they maintain them. Marty grunder is huge into this, he preaches about this. The maintenance side is a constant and dependible flow of cash into your biz. The new construction could very well come to a complete hault where even mr.etw man has no work to do. It could, will it? Probly not but it could. If it did....... You would still have cash flowing in. I belive its a vital part of keeping your work top notch for years and years, keeping the publics perseption of you top notch. The landscape looks the best 3-5 years after it has been installed but if "mikes lawn and landscape" comes in and throws down red mulch over your nice hardwood and prunes this, cuts that, moves this, tops that then it is on a steep downward spiral. If you are maintaining the property you can keep things on the up and up, maybe a tree does need to be moved, maybe we want to change this or change that to keep things working in perfect harmony with one another. A whole other side to the importance is keeping a constant flow of communication with the client. This is a highly important aspect because you want to be johny on the spot when they do need more work but it also allows you to work referals out of this client. Keep them in the loop.
Posted via Mobile Device

I have read this whole thread twice and admire everything Jarod has said and shown in these pages. I have learned a lot from everything and love seeing the pics and updates!

I usually try to not clutter threads with simple replies but I like your reference to Marty Grunder. I see a lot about him on this site and I can tell you that his operation and him are first class. They do a great job, present themselves well, and have a great reputation. I feel lucky to be in his area as they are a pretty cool inspiration.

P.Services
10-08-2009, 06:24 PM
Yeah I agree, like I said grunder is one of them that always looks after the landscape well into the future. He even has a trademarked name for that service. I just can't remeber it. Landcare maybe? Its on his website.
Posted via Mobile Device

ohiogreenworks
10-08-2009, 10:39 PM
[QUOTE=Picasso;3220710]Yeah I agree, like I said grunder is one of them that always looks after the landscape well into the future. He even has a trademarked name for that service. I just can't remeber it. Landcare maybe? Its on his website.
Posted via Mobile Device[/QUOT

He calls it Landkeeping. Pretty ingenious.

P.Services
10-08-2009, 11:30 PM
Oh yeah!! He is a very wise man. "Landkeeping" I love it, now that is thinking outside the box, being the first to step out....shut the lid.... And sit on top of it so the others can't get out!!!!
Posted via Mobile Device

buffalonick
10-09-2009, 02:31 PM
I just wish at some point in my career my business can be as productive, classy and as big as yours.

etwman
10-09-2009, 06:34 PM
There is alot of good information in the posts above. The bottom line, or summary of all of it is you have to make sure your customers are taken care of, better than your competitor. Do that and your businesses will grow.

etwman
10-14-2009, 03:37 PM
Syzer -

1 hour with straps, tow motor, and an air gun. Piece of cake. Use nylon straps, loop them through the track and hang them from forks on a tow motor. This way you can move them into place alot easier. Put 4 or so lugs on the front hub, move it forward with the controller, then put the backs on.

I decided to take it out in the field to see exactly what everyone raves about with this Loegering System. After about 15 seconds of plowing into a pile of dirt I quickly figured it out. It just bites into anything and pushes the world. I was into some clay with rock. I'll guarantee you that you could very quickly get yourself in a predicament with this thing on a hill. It will climb and push anything, the commercials on the website don't lie. I would say hands down it is the best track machine set up I have ever run. Whatever Loegering did, they figured it out, and did it right. Granted ride comfort isn't what a fully dedicated CAT is, but it makes up for it in push and stability. With this setup you have the best of both worlds.

syzer
10-14-2009, 06:49 PM
Congrats, glad to hear it all worked out. Very similar to how we installed them though I used our 1840 with forks pushed tight together in the middle of the track.

They are incredible aren't they? I just couldn't believe the machine was doing what it was doing with just the tracks on there. You can almost go straight up and feel comfortable with no thoughts of flipping =).

Junior M
10-14-2009, 08:52 PM
Woah, the bucket actually sets flat on the ground, most machines I've seen with VTS dont..

etwman
10-14-2009, 09:12 PM
Congrats, glad to hear it all worked out. Very similar to how we installed them though I used our 1840 with forks pushed tight together in the middle of the track.

They are incredible aren't they? I just couldn't believe the machine was doing what it was doing with just the tracks on there. You can almost go straight up and feel comfortable with no thoughts of flipping =).

Its got something to do with the overalllweight and track footprint on these things. They weight about 1100 lbs a side so you're adding a ton to the machine. It is like night and day going from wheels to tracks on these things. The other thing with these VTS tracks is they are pretty much idiot free. After we put them on I'm looking around for "okay now what needs maintenance on these things." No grease fittings, sealed bearings, and one tension adjuster, that's it. Take a 1.5" wrench with you and that's all you need.

That bucket won't stay. Its only a 72" and doesn't work with the VTS system. I have a 84" tooth bucket coming very shortly.

P.Services
10-14-2009, 09:43 PM
do you like it more then the 332?

etwman
10-15-2009, 07:07 AM
Personally I do, but I'll let my guys judge it when it heads to the field shortly.

CertPro
10-15-2009, 07:19 AM
Thought you bought that as a shop machine

P.Services
10-15-2009, 12:54 PM
He got sick of paying deere to rent theirs. He just didn't wana tell us that!

What are the reasons you like it more then the 332?
Posted via Mobile Device

etwman
10-15-2009, 04:03 PM
We still have Deere's on rent, and will long term. This will be a shop machine and will go to the sites on occassion.

The stability and climbing capability of the CAT/Loegering setup is superior to the Deere. In addition, I can see right away the the VTS will be alot easier to clean in the winter if we get mud in the sides.

PlatinumLandCon
10-15-2009, 04:14 PM
We still have Deere's on rent, and will long term. This will be a shop machine and will go to the sites on occassion.

The stability and climbing capability of the CAT/Loegering setup is superior to the Deere. In addition, I can see right away the the VTS will be alot easier to clean in the winter if we get mud in the sides.

I would say the cleaning is a big part. If you are working in 20/30's temps, the quick clean will really help keep the machine active and in good working order.

In terms of using it as a shop machine, what sort of tasks would it be used for? How many hours would you put on it a week?
Posted via Mobile Device

etwman
10-15-2009, 04:20 PM
We backhaul fill and debris on occasion to our property out back and have to level it off/grade it once a week.

We average 5-10 running hours a week on mostly all of our machines, in our out of the field. We've never run up alot of hours.

etwman
10-18-2009, 02:55 PM
I thought I had witnessed it all from inexpensive equipment rental until last week when I received a flyer from a local equipment dealer. Skid loader, new or close to new, $400/month rental which includes 40 running hours. They are basically doing this for snow removal customers. Full size back hoe's are all $600/month. All units have enclosed cabs with heat.

Construction dealerships are getting pretty desperate to try and find some way to obtain cash flow on all this heavy metal.

cleancutccl
10-18-2009, 04:08 PM
I saw that for a case 430, its for smaller models. But for what they want for a month you could hardly buy a machine for that.

etwman
10-18-2009, 04:22 PM
I think the days of walking into the local equipment rental store and renting a skidloader for $195/day are gone ....or if they are going to assume they can still get that, their equiment will be sitting for quite some time. We'll look back on this post in 5 years and think...wow. It's like looking back on off road diesel fuel at 85 cents a gallon.

EagleLandscape
10-18-2009, 08:31 PM
DANG ETW!!! I have a tracked skid out right now for $2400 a month. I wish we were hurting as bad down here and rental places would go down to 400 bucks. We are putting maybe 10 hours on it a week. It's been sitting in the mud for 10 days until 2 days ago. Pouring down rain, sitting in a backyard. We have a site with an 18* slope to the backyard. it's hard enough to just walk to the backyard, have to use the machine for just about anything, even moving flats of perennials. Going through 20 pallets of mulch later this week, that thing will be a back saver:)

Supper Grassy
10-19-2009, 09:45 PM
The Tracks look nice on the skid.

lukemelo216
10-23-2009, 01:55 PM
hey jared, have you guys ever used or looked into using the unilock elements stuff? Was working on a design with a customer and looking through one of the books and stumbled across the pre-built grills etc. Just wondering what your opinion was on them, if you have had any experience with them.

Thanks

etwman
10-23-2009, 03:16 PM
I have not used unilock but have seen their fireplaces and kitchen sectionals up close. I think they are decent for the price. For us we usually design the kitchen with cabinetry or fireplace around what they really want and make it flow. From there we figure out how we are going to build it. To try and do a kitchen off a predetermined template is limiting on what you can do. Add to that I'm an advocate of putting the footers in, blocking up, then veneering and knowing for sure that think will never go anywhere. The idea behind a floating veneer cabinet on top of pavers just makes me a little nervous, maybe I'm old school. Down south that may work, but in the north with frost heave lines I think your asking for trouble.

For the small client, with a budget who wants something like that, they are perfect. No doubt about it. For our clients most of it is custom.

lukemelo216
10-23-2009, 11:30 PM
alright thanks a lot. I like doing it the old fashion way too, but just wanted some opinions on the matter, and figured you would be the first one I would ask.

Thanks again.

etwman
10-24-2009, 03:27 PM
New project job sign layout. Spanish cedar, aluminum edge, for our long term projects. We have two coming up, one of which will be real neat.

oakhillslandscaping
10-24-2009, 03:48 PM
i hope you are going to pay TTHOMAS for that idea hahaha jk. sign looks stunning , i like how its a natural landscape in the background and how it fades enough to make the name pop

etwman
10-24-2009, 04:07 PM
One must give credit to Todd on this one. I will owe him dinner when we get together later this fall. I was back and forth on what I wanted to do with the design and played with it for awhile, finally settling on this.

mrusk
10-24-2009, 05:14 PM
Man I had big job site signs way before anyone else thought of them.

nnj18
10-24-2009, 06:08 PM
too bad you dont have an excavator like Matt does to place it hahaha guess you're sh!t outta luck.....seriously though, this is HILARIOUS, gotta be the funniest things I've seen.

etwman
10-24-2009, 09:19 PM
My small site sign is 3.5 feet tall and 1.5 feet wide. I can stick it in the ground in 5 minutes. It does not require a wide load permit to deliver the site, three days to set with an excavator, concrete sub-footers with 3GTM sub steel welded supports, hurricane resistant framing, a storm water management analysis, FAA beacon light, and economic stimulus money. It doesnít make the sun set three hours earlier over the clientís house, nor prevent other potential customers from seeing what is transpiring on the site.

It works, itís simple, professional, and delivers the message. Thanks Todd. There's my evening humor moment.

Supper Grassy
10-24-2009, 09:25 PM
Nice Sign!
are they made yet?

etwman
10-24-2009, 09:27 PM
In the making. They should be done sometime in the next week or so.

jg244888
10-24-2009, 09:37 PM
back on post 1664 Page 167 you have these amazing gas flames on either side of the hot tub what make are they? if you could tell me its be great!!
thanks

syzer
10-25-2009, 10:05 AM
My small site sign is 3.5 feet tall and 1.5 feet wide. I can stick it in the ground in 5 minutes. It does not require a wide load permit to deliver the site, three days to set with an excavator, concrete sub-footers with 3GTM sub steel welded supports, hurricane resistant framing, a storm water management analysis, FAA beacon light, and economic stimulus money. It doesnít make the sun set three hours earlier over the clientís house, nor prevent other potential customers from seeing what is transpiring on the site.

It works, itís simple, professional, and delivers the message. Thanks Todd. There's my evening humor moment.

:laugh:

If you worked for the government it would =).

EagleLandscape
10-25-2009, 04:14 PM
My small site sign is 3.5 feet tall and 1.5 feet wide. I can stick it in the ground in 5 minutes. It does not require a wide load permit to deliver the site, three days to set with an excavator, concrete sub-footers with 3GTM sub steel welded supports, hurricane resistant framing, a storm water management analysis, FAA beacon light, and economic stimulus money. It doesnít make the sun set three hours earlier over the clientís house, nor prevent other potential customers from seeing what is transpiring on the site.

It works, itís simple, professional, and delivers the message. Thanks Todd. There's my evening humor moment.

Don't forget to bring the crane to set the sign:)

tthomass
10-28-2009, 10:40 PM
haha, Todd +1

I do like the addition of aluminum wrap.........modern industrial-ish]

NY Strip, medium.........baked potatoe

ryansbob
10-28-2009, 11:13 PM
Pavers look great " better change the clearance sign in post #1009 to 8 ft 9 inchs from 9feet since the paver overlay has been done

etwman
10-29-2009, 07:01 PM
I'm sniffing around for a good used 500 gallon double walled skid mounted diesel fuel tank to put behind my shop. I really don't want to buy a new one since I'm pretty sure right now there are some sitting around....not being used. If you, or anyone you know wants to sell one PM me. If its close enough I'll come get it. Thanks!

P.Services
10-29-2009, 08:43 PM
dont you get them for free when you buy the fuel from a company? just like tthomas did?

etwman
11-11-2009, 04:27 PM
We picked up two Kage 10 ft. systems for a couple commercial snow sites we picked up for this upcoming winter. They are a pretty slick system for skid loaders. Expensive but well built. Kageinnovation.com

lukemelo216
11-12-2009, 08:32 AM
are these for those existing accounts you have kept on in the past or did you get some brand new ones too? If they are new accounts what made you decide to move back towards snow removal? Any new pics or updates on some jobs you have going on right now?

etwman
11-12-2009, 01:46 PM
They are for existing commercial accounts we've had for 10 years. They are very close to each other and the clients have our undivided attention. We have the equipment and it gives us something to do when we have snowpack. We don't advertise this service or solicit other accounts.

Here's a shot of the two Kage's.

I have to scan in a couple of projects that we'll be starting soon. One is really, really neat. We'll be on that one for about 6-8 months.

lukemelo216
11-12-2009, 02:18 PM
those look pretty neat. Whats the second one going on that small loader you have? How much snow do you guys generally average per year? will the equipment sit on site or will you guys just truck it there as needed?

oakhillslandscaping
11-12-2009, 04:47 PM
i am looking into that same system could you PM with the cost of yours if at all possible i want to see if it worth my time thanks

NNJLandman
11-12-2009, 04:55 PM
I was looking at the Kage site the other day, thats a really great system. You get the best of both worlds with that device.

syzer
11-12-2009, 08:30 PM
Nice set up! We have been looking into the Kage Innovations plows, Horst Snow Wing, and Degelman Speedwing. What made you decide on going with the Kage over the other options?

Also, does that edge trip?

etwman
11-13-2009, 06:12 PM
Well to be completely honest I didn't do a whole of searching around. I looked at the video, checked some forums, and did some figuring. By the time i bought a steel trip edge plow for the skidder, pusher, and light material bucket I was there. There I have three pieces instead of one. Add to that the thing has a two year warranty on it so I decided how can I really go wrong.

I looked at the sectionals, way too many moving parts, sorry. The last thing you want in a storm is tons of moving parts. Simpler the better.

Yes it has a steel trip edge.

syzer
11-13-2009, 07:17 PM
Well to be completely honest I didn't do a whole of searching around. I looked at the video, checked some forums, and did some figuring. By the time i bought a steel trip edge plow for the skidder, pusher, and light material bucket I was there. There I have three pieces instead of one. Add to that the thing has a two year warranty on it so I decided how can I really go wrong.

I looked at the sectionals, way too many moving parts, sorry. The last thing you want in a storm is tons of moving parts. Simpler the better.

Yes it has a steel trip edge.

Yeah the sectional is nice, and the company is one of the largest in the world. Did you watch their 1 mile long equipment line up video?

We need to pick a few up, but 6k for the Kage is much more enticing than the 9-10k horst/degelmens. Then again, the 15' wide plow is also a pretty incredible feature, but as you said, now its getting back to complicated set ups. It doesn't get much more simple than the Kage.

Best of luck!

etwman
11-18-2009, 09:13 AM
The beginnings of Project F. This project will be a neat post and beam house out in the country with additional structures on site. Alot of natural stone walls, plantings, fireplace, etc. It'll be a neat project when all is said and done. It'll be mid-next year by the time we are all complete.

Here is the first load of trees that came in today. We want to use larger plant material and this is the time of the year to get as much in the ground as possible.

I'll try and scan in the master plan for the property and post it sometime in the near future.

jg244888
11-18-2009, 09:55 AM
looks like it will be an interesting project to follow!! what type of trees are those?
thanks

etwman
11-18-2009, 10:57 AM
Cleveland Select Pairs 4"-4.5" Cal. Tree pricing right now in volume is crazy low, never seen deals like this before. These came out of North Carolina.

lawnangel1
11-18-2009, 11:30 AM
Cleveland Selects are my favorite tree. Great Shape, Great Foliage, Great Blooms.

wurkn with amish
11-18-2009, 03:03 PM
Are you not worried about growing southern raised trees in a northern climate? Of course between where your at and where you got them in N.C. there might not be a big zone difference.

highlander316
11-18-2009, 04:16 PM
on average, how long does it take to plan out a job of this caliber, from the initial meet with the customer until the final plan where the customer says go? Obviously, things may change over time as you start the project, but I was just wondering. Also, is the customer ok when you tell them, that it may be two or three months before it is started?

Dountman
11-18-2009, 06:12 PM
Jarod, do you remove a portion of the wire basket, all of it, or none at all?

tthomass
11-18-2009, 07:58 PM
Okay, so of course the truck got my attention the most.....clean rig.

Supper Grassy
11-18-2009, 08:03 PM
So all the trees are being planted now or an on site nursery?

JRSlawn
11-18-2009, 08:20 PM
yeah that rig is clean. Even Jareds deliveries come on clean trucks wth!

Captain Brendan
11-18-2009, 08:33 PM
Wow guys great thread. Took me awhile to read threw all the pages but interesting to watch your company grow over the last 7 Years. Great job and nice work.

etwman
11-18-2009, 09:26 PM
on average, how long does it take to plan out a job of this caliber, from the initial meet with the customer until the final plan where the customer says go? Obviously, things may change over time as you start the project, but I was just wondering. Also, is the customer ok when you tell them, that it may be two or three months before it is started?

Cleveland Select Pairs grow all over the place up here so bringing them from NC should not be a problem. We're planting what we can plant now, the rest will go in an onsite nursery. The more we can get in the ground the better.

Our average large project is usually in the drawing stages for 2-4 months. We've never had a customer complain about the time frame as they realize what all is involved in our process. They want it done and done right. If it takes a little longer in the planning stages that's fine. You have to understand most are making a sizable investment, they want to make sure everything is included that they want.

lukemelo216
11-18-2009, 11:52 PM
Jarod, do you remove a portion of the wire basket, all of it, or none at all?

I cant answer if he does or not but you should. Especially with larger trees. because when the roots get bigger they can get girdled buy that wire cage. The best way to plant and b&b tree that has the wire cage on it is to cut the wire back and fold it all down to its flat on the bottom of the hole. Then continuing to plant it normally after that. Remove the top half of the burlap and some of the soil plant it so the root flare is above the ground 2-3 inches. etc. Here is an awesome article on planting trees properly...............

http://www.treesaregood.com/treecare/tree_planting.aspx

so many times i have seen trees that were not planted correctly and then it dies usually 10 or so years later. The problems arent noticeable immediately but they will be later on. Now I always remove the string on b&b trees. Most trees are sprayed with anti-decay treatments since they sit out for so long and those strings wont decay and then that harms the roots later on. I always take the extra time to remove all the string, cage, burlap and some of the soil on trees just so its right. I try to make all my customers customers for life and by spending the extra time to do things right and not be worried about getting the most jobs in during the day really helps.

P.Services
11-19-2009, 12:14 AM
Preach it luke! Your spot on.
Posted via Mobile Device

etwman
11-19-2009, 04:41 PM
Yes the cages were cut down, I agree with that.

Here's our new signs up.

lukemelo216
11-19-2009, 11:44 PM
so some of the landscaping is being done prior to the house actually being built? what is there right now just the foundation of the home? Looks good so far cant wait to see it develop.

etwman
11-20-2009, 07:24 AM
We get involved with new home construction very early on and do what we call "site the house" or develop the master plan. We'll actually meet with the homeowner, builder, township reps, etc and find the best place on the property for the house, layout the driveway, buildings, and begin to do some preliminaries of the walkways, patio, and plantings. There is nothing more frustrating than showing up when a house is done, driveway is too narrow, sewer system is smack in the middle of the backyard where the patio should go, electrical box in on the side of the house where the patio is going, topsoil is gone, etc. All this can be avoided and it really does save money. When I pull up to a home I can tell you within 5 minutes if a LA was involved from the start. It makes everything flow so much nicer and the project look like a million bucks, even when it doesn't cost that.

This allows us to plant perimeter trees early, determine how much topsoil we want left on site, examine boulders that come from excavation. All because we have a master plan already done. There are good builders out there but they often don't look beyond the four walls of the house.

We are currently siting three other projects for the spring. This is why alot of our plans may be in the drawing stages for 4-6 months before we push ground. Alot is involved.

PORTER 05
11-20-2009, 09:11 AM
man you guys are good!

meets1
11-22-2009, 02:45 AM
Exactly - builders may be good but the walls are what there concerned about. If I am able to get in on the ground floor with a few homeowners prior to construction - time management is of the essence. My extra fee or charge up front out weights the "latter" outcome - being the excavator man took off with to much soil, construction crew filled there dumpster and threw all the junk on the yard for a while which in turn become bad soil, water is under a walkway/driveway/patio, etc. We see this - others just see the plan and think that is set in stone.

etwman
11-23-2009, 01:24 PM
I think one of my biggest pet peeves is downspouts not buried and extended. Now tell me, when building a house and having the place torn to snot, how hard is it to extend the things to a swail 10 feet from the house. Better yet take them all, tie them together, and take them to the corner of the property somewhere. One more thing that can be avoided with being involved early on.

mrusk
11-23-2009, 06:48 PM
I think one of my biggest pet peeves is downspouts not buried and extended. Now tell me, when building a house and having the place torn to snot, how hard is it to extend the things to a swail 10 feet from the house. Better yet take them all, tie them together, and take them to the corner of the property somewhere. One more thing that can be avoided with being involved early on.

In NJ the towns all have zero run off policies. Every new house must have all downspouts and drains piped to sepage pits.

etwman
12-01-2009, 02:40 PM
Opening up another job. We had three projects come in for the fall and will attempt to get all three in. It has poured rain for basically the last week. We have two machines onsite. The 208 to dig in downspouts and the CAT with the VTS for site excavation. The wheeled machine gets nowhere in the sloppy surface mud. If you ever wonder why tracks are superior to wheels this site would be a prime example. We would have lost another two days without a machine like the CAT. I inquired today with the guys and they told me the CAT with the VTS will outperform the Deere with a dedicated track system. When were done the VTS will clean out better too.

Other huge benefits, and those of you who've been there know what I'm talking about, is the "vacant lot" next door. Great staging opportunites without messing up roads.

Happy Holidays Everyone.

RLS24
12-01-2009, 04:09 PM
you do a lot of good work man. Its really neat to see how far your business has come!

P.Services
12-01-2009, 07:08 PM
what are the reasons that they vote the cat as a superior machine to the deere?

etwman
12-01-2009, 07:17 PM
In talking with my foreman on site, traction for one, horsepower #2. The VTS is a wider, heavier track system, which adds alot of traction. It's my opinion when you get alot of mud wedged into a dedicated track system with tons of bogey wheels (that doesn't self clean easily) it starves the machine for horsepower. Loegering eliminated alot of ways mud can pack in there.

I guess its not fair to say CAT is superior to the Deere because you could put a VTS on a Deere. Though the CAT is nicer to run with the pilot controls. We will most likely rent Deere's again very soon as we'll need them on another job.

tthomass
12-10-2009, 11:10 PM
Are you building a patio on the side of the house?

Drove a 232 (I think) CAT the other day w/ pilot controls. Nice machine, smooth.

etwman
12-11-2009, 01:31 PM
It'll have two patio areas, one where the firepit will go. A three tier deck in the back, and about 430 landscape pieces, with some cool lighting when all is done. Not sure if we'll get the plants in this year, 18 degrees this morning. Years past we pushed up to the New Years, but that might not be the case this year. All the hardscape is done here now and all the topsoil staged for planting.

highlander316
12-11-2009, 01:41 PM
Do you wait to tamp everything in when all the block is laid? Or do you do it in sections? Just curious because of the scope of some of your projects. I've only done small stuff (where the block only took 1-2 days max to lay), so I'm curious on stuff that takes a lot longer?

etwman
12-11-2009, 02:02 PM
Usually if they don't have rain incoming, they'll let it go until the end to do an initial compaction. If there's rain they'll compact in sections. If we are doing a large section, and need to drive a skidloader accross, initial compaction will be done and plywood laid.

Final compaction obviously is done right after sanding.

S&MLL
12-13-2009, 06:46 PM
Cool lighting?

riverwalklandscaping
12-22-2009, 10:01 PM
Don't let the osha guys see that last picture lol

Lawn Man Dave
12-22-2009, 10:07 PM
Nice looking work..... I must say though..... the chop saw near the foot is asking for a hospital visit and workers comp............

JRSlawn
12-22-2009, 10:45 PM
Have you guys ever herd of steel toe boots lol. The rubber in the front of my work boots are gone from making little cuts

syzer
12-23-2009, 02:47 AM
How did those Kage plows hold up on this last storm?

etwman
12-23-2009, 07:57 AM
My guys said they never want to plow with a pickup truck again. The things are phenominal.

KrayzKajun
12-23-2009, 11:59 AM
Jared,

everytime i see some of yur work or pics of yur equipment it makes me go out and work a lil harder.

you are truly an inspiration in this industry.

oakhillslandscaping
12-23-2009, 01:36 PM
Jared,

everytime i see some of yur work or pics of yur equipment it makes me go out and work a lil harder.

you are truly an inspiration in this industry.

i second that Thumbs Up

etwman
12-23-2009, 01:57 PM
I do thank you for the kind words. In our family Christmas letter that went out to many friends I wrote a line that said, "We pray that God will use us as tools of encouragement to other business owners who are experiencing the full impact of the recession. We hate to see any one of them struggle and we hope theyíll all emerge stronger when this is all done."

I wish each and every one of you the very best of holiday's and a solid 2010. Be strong, work hard, and stay focused.

Daniel's Lawn Care
12-23-2009, 11:18 PM
I just finished looking at all 186 pages of your thread here. All I can say is: WOW!!! You have the kind of business that I am striving for. There is a great need in the area that I live and work in for a professional, educated landscape designer and installer. Right now we have a lot of people running around calling themselves landscapers because they can dig a hole, drop a plant in, and cover it with mulch and call it landscaping. It is and has been an up hill battle for me to separate myself from the rest of the "landscapers" in the minds of my perspective customers.

Enough about me though because I have a question for you. I have looked at this entire thread, your website, and read your mission statement. Next to the Grace of God and the honest, hard working, christian principles of business, what would you consider the top five reasons for your success in this industry? I want you to think long and hard before you answer me. Thanks, God bless, and have a Merry Christmas.

Swampy
12-24-2009, 08:43 AM
My guys said they never want to plow with a pickup truck again. The things are phenominal.

Those look pretty slick. Though it probably cost a pretty dime. We've had good luck with our Blizzard 810 on the front of the New Holland but I'd bet it would be better with one of those.

etwman
12-24-2009, 09:06 AM
In no particular order:

Employees. Over the years we have been blessed with some of the best employees a company could ask for. Right now we have a great core group that has the potential to take us places that weíve never gone before. They are hardworking, trustworthy, and see the vision of the company.

Marketing: Constantly working outside the box, so far outside the box that people think were nuts at times. Doing things that competitors donít. Separating ourselves and taking care of the client all while delivering a premium service.

Staying Focused: And this one may cause a little controversy but itís just my opinion. I donít want to be a company of 100 different services. Itís too much diversification and you lose control over your business. Pick one, two or three services and do them right and know your numbers. Companies with tons of services, with few employees, canít stay focused and learn everything there is to do.

Efficiency: This is no surprise to many that we strive to have this. Inefficiency in the field or office will kill you in this industry. Having too much leveraged equipment that doesnít work for you or not using it to its full potential will result in a slow death. The larger trucks have been a huge asset to us and I canít imagine going to anything else.

Consulting with other business owners. Over the years I have developed some great relationships with other business owners who have the same value systems. Some are in this industry, some are not. We all rely heavily on each otherís opinions as our businesses grow. You will never know everything there is to know in business ownership. The minute you think you do, youíre done. I wouldnít be where I am today without the insight from other great business owners who have helped us work through some challenging decisions.

These are five. There could be more Iím sure but these were the first five that came to mind. Hope this answers some of your questions.

mikewhit1010
12-24-2009, 11:09 PM
Took me almost all day but since its the holidays I had a chance to take a look at it.

After being called a dork by my family, I have to say it was time well spent.

whitebp1
12-25-2009, 09:01 AM
[QUOTE=etwman;3332849]In no particular order:



Marketing: Constantly working outside the box, so far outside the box that people think were nuts at times. Doing things that competitors don’t. Separating ourselves and taking care of the client all while delivering a premium service.

[QUOTE]

So give us some ideas into the insight on the outside the box things. what kind of things are you doing? esp the ones where people think you are crazy.... whats going on over there?

whitebp1
12-25-2009, 09:19 AM
When doing these projects do you have a financial institution that you work with for financing projects like these or do you leave that strictly up to the customer. I know some people probally pay cash outright but some of them have to be getting financed somewhere. how do you utilize that. Also what kind of downpayment requirements do you have when going to a project like this DO you use apayment schedule while the project is going on or what?

etwman
12-25-2009, 08:10 PM
I'm not going to go indepth in an online public forum and discuss some of our marketing techniques that have successfully worked for us. I will say that things we have done have proven successful, not everything, but a decent amount. In talking with industry professionals in other states that have assured me that "no one is doing what you are doing."

Same thing with our clients financial means for their projects, I'm not going there. That stays confidential as well. Alot of our projects are different. Time frame, materials, location, etc. will all dictate deposits and progress draws.

GroundScapesIncorporated
12-28-2009, 08:52 PM
I'm not going to go indepth in an online public forum and discuss some of our marketing techniques that have successfully worked for us. I will say that things we have done have proven successful, not everything, but a decent amount. In talking with industry professionals in other states that have assured me that "no one is doing what you are doing."

Same thing with our clients financial means for their projects, I'm not going there. That stays confidential as well. Alot of our projects are different. Time frame, materials, location, etc. will all dictate deposits and progress draws.

I assure you that your not doing something that "NO ONE ELSE IS DOING". Not trying to bust your bubble, just stating a fact. Sure your doing things different than most companies, just not all companies. You simply take your work and your company very seriously resulting in well thought out plans, much like MANY other successful companies. Please dont take this the wrong way just stating a fact.

ryansbob
12-29-2009, 09:04 AM
I assure you that your not doing something that "NO ONE ELSE IS DOING". Not trying to bust your bubble, just stating a fact. Sure your doing things different than most companies, just not all companies. You simply take your work and your company very seriously resulting in well thought out plans, much like MANY other successful companies. Please dont take this the wrong way just stating a fact.


Why do people like this have to put in their 2 Cents and ruin a perfectly good thread?? This quote is pointless the way it is worded

Greenboy24
12-29-2009, 04:24 PM
I think you took things a little to literally groudscapes

GroundScapesIncorporated
12-29-2009, 05:53 PM
I think you took things a little to literally groudscapes

I did, you are correct.

J&R Landscaping
12-30-2009, 11:03 PM
Nice work as usual Jarod! BTW, Have you talked or heard from Tim Wright at all recently? I talked to him about a year ago but not since then and haven't seen him on the forums??

yardworks, inc.
01-02-2010, 06:40 PM
ETWMan thank you for posting so much of your companies information on this site. We run a install and maintenance company. The information you put out has been a invaluable asset in helping us make decisions. Our markets are quite a bit different but alot of things still crossover. I was wondering if you have did a job on time and material. We our able to do this alot of times with certain customers and it seems to work out for both parties involved. Just wanted to get your professional opinion.

Penscape Landscaping
01-03-2010, 04:23 PM
Cleveland Select Pairs 4"-4.5" Cal. Tree pricing right now in volume is crazy low, never seen deals like this before. These came out of North Carolina.

What part of NC? Some great ones in the foothill! Great work

riverwalklandscaping
01-05-2010, 08:18 PM
The last concept you mentioned about working with other companies/suppliers to build good relationship reminds me a lot of a key strategy Wal-Mart employs (virtual integration & 'co-opetition')... i.e., working to help suppliers lower costs so you can in turn get stuff from them for cheaper, and taking a less competitive, more cooperative approach. It has been a big part of the companies massive growth and success

etwman
01-05-2010, 08:31 PM
I was wondering if you have did a job on time and material. We our able to do this alot of times with certain customers and it seems to work out for both parties involved. Just wanted to get your professional opinion.

I have not forgotten about this post, I've been debating how I want to respond to it. It is a valid question. Time and material is a double edged sword. In my honest opinion it is only as good as the company is efficient. Let me give you an example. The client needs 10 trees installed and two companies agree to do it on T/M. Company A shows up with two shovels and two guys with an hourly rate of $40/hour. He ends up having 80 man hours in it. Company B shows up with two guys with a skidloader and auger with an hourly rate of $65/hour an has 20 hours in it. Now I will tell you first hand that if the client did his homework Company B would be the better solution.

It is my opinion that if you are going to do work on T/M you need to do everything possilbe to make sure that you are treating the client the best you can. That client is trusting you that you are going to do your best to be the most efficient and quality driven you can be.

Now to answer your question. I don't think there's a company out there who hasn't at one time or another done something on T/M. If you are going to go that route for certain phase(s) of a project I feel you need to educate the client very thoroughly on how this is going to be done. Sometimes its best to have a T/M with a do not exceed number on it.

I do know that some states are really clamping down on T/M work from contractors (PA and others) and are implementing laws against this type of work. It is my belief that there are contractors out there who have taken advantage of this and the states are trying to protect the consumer.

This is my two cents on this issue. It all boils down to a trust issue between the client and the company. I do believe it is okay to do T/M in some instances, as it treats the client fairly.

EagleLandscape
01-05-2010, 10:10 PM
We are on a T+M job right now. Just rolled over $100,000 the other week. There was absolutely no way to bid the job at a fixed cost, because we would be writing 2-3 change orders a day.

I feel T+M jobs require a mutual understanding and respect from both parties. Contractor: to treat the customer fairly, Customer: to trust the contractor enough to get it done as quickly as possible.

I typically prefer T+M jobs. We don't end up making as much money, but the amount of stress is saves just knowing that we aren't having to rush all the time to hit our target labor amounts and not go over.

I have found that after a year or two or working with a customer on smaller jobs, we usually end up with T+M jobs from then on out, and sometimes with a NTE amount.

mikewhit1010
01-06-2010, 09:52 AM
We are on a T+M job right now. Just rolled over $100,000 the other week. There was absolutely no way to bid the job at a fixed cost, because we would be writing 2-3 change orders a day.

I feel T+M jobs require a mutual understanding and respect from both parties. Contractor: to treat the customer fairly, Customer: to trust the contractor enough to get it done as quickly as possible.

I typically prefer T+M jobs. We don't end up making as much money, but the amount of stress is saves just knowing that we aren't having to rush all the time to hit our target labor amounts and not go over.

I have found that after a year or two or working with a customer on smaller jobs, we usually end up with T+M jobs from then on out, and sometimes with a NTE amount.

Whats is T+M and NTE. Sorry if this is a dumb question.

etwman
01-06-2010, 11:16 AM
Time and Material
Not to exceed (usually a dollar amount on the time and material phase)

You're 100% on your post John.

CertPro
01-06-2010, 05:46 PM
I believe that with Pa's new HIC laws you can no longer do T&M jobs over $600 dollars. Everything must be a contract price with extras being T&M if applicable. Check into it.

etwman
01-06-2010, 06:07 PM
I'm fully aware of the new contractor laws.

Ch2008
01-06-2010, 06:22 PM
You can still do jobs t +m, and any job over $600.00 has to have a written contract, whether t+m, contract, or nte. With t+m jobs you are not allowed to take a deposit but can do progressive billing daily if you like. Also any extras must be spelled out with a price or t+m specified with the specific cost of the material on a change order form and signed by both parties. They could not ban t+m work with this law, there are just some jobs that have to be done this way and law makers realized that.

etwman
01-06-2010, 06:26 PM
That is correct.

DVS Hardscaper
01-06-2010, 07:28 PM
I believe that with Pa's new HIC laws you can no longer do T&M jobs over $600 dollars. Everything must be a contract price with extras being T&M if applicable. Check into it.


I didn't know Chris Savage became a lawyer!

EagleLandscape
01-06-2010, 08:34 PM
I'm sure glad I don't live in PA... Sheesh!

yardworks, inc.
01-06-2010, 09:42 PM
Thank you for your answer etwman on the question about T/M jobs. I prefer to bid the job upfront because it seems like we run more efficiently that way. Also I don't have to worry about workers slacking when me or my partner are not around and the homeowner watching. This is always my biggest concern because most customers don't mind paying for quality work but they do want their moneys worth. Thank you again.

etwman
01-08-2010, 04:42 PM
The little bit of advertising that we do.

mrusk
01-08-2010, 05:16 PM
magazine ad i assume?

highlander316
01-08-2010, 05:19 PM
i saw pics from one of the jobs you guys did (I believe it was that big picture in your ad) in Total Landscape Care magazine last month. Looked real good! Congrats on your success.

PlatinumLandCon
01-08-2010, 07:05 PM
magazine ad i assume?

Well it doesn't look like a door hanger....

CertPro
01-09-2010, 12:12 PM
That job turned out really nice! Well done!

danlawnser
01-09-2010, 03:27 PM
I am designing a patio right now that requires a tv. What does your customers do in the winter? Do they just take it inside or did you buy a casing for it? hope this isn't a stupid question.

etwman
01-09-2010, 03:44 PM
We have three outdoor projects that either are requiring, or have required outdoor televisions. There is only 1 manufacturer in the world that constructs a true large screen outdoor plasma that is designed to endure all the elements and temps down to 0 degrees.

Option two is to is you design a space, remove the television and take it inside when inclemate weather or colder temperatures arise.

danlawnser
01-09-2010, 05:03 PM
The Main reason I am wondering is because they want to sit in the hot tub in the winter (not nearly as cold as it is in pa) and watch tv from a distance. I was also curious in your researching how cold is too cold for a tv. The large job (gorgeous) with the tv in the mantle is that just removable? I am very appreciative for guys like you who are an inspiration to others but also are just genuine to others and always extremely helpful.

etwman
01-09-2010, 08:18 PM
Do your research for the tv near the hot tub from a local electronics place where you are planning on getting it. They should be able to tell you if its weather resistant. Alot of new hot tubs come with a pop up tv as an option.

The one on that job is a permenant mount, designed to be out there all year long for all weather conditions.

EagleLandscape
01-09-2010, 09:24 PM
Go cowboys!!!

etwman
01-09-2010, 09:47 PM
Just when you thought the Eagles couldn't do anything dumb(er).

NEWGUYRI
01-09-2010, 10:24 PM
I like the use of photoshop in that pic.

The nice little crescent moon adds a nice touch.

yardworks, inc.
01-10-2010, 06:35 PM
I was wondering if you have sent any of your employees to the Pavetech School for pavers or SRW installation. If you haven't, what schools do you use. Thanks

etwman
01-10-2010, 06:52 PM
I posted this in another thread but copied it over here, modifying it a little to answer your question a little more indepth. Excuse the repitition if you've already read it.

We made a decision this year to do something totally different. In years past we've gone to the basic educational seminars. You can run yourself ragged going to all these hardscape vendor shows, sitting in groups of 100 people, hearing all the barking about how "their product is best" and listen to the sand versus stone dust debate for the 1000th time. In the meantime you attempt to extract vital information that will help you grow as a company and sharpen all your hardscape skills. You end up walking away with a few good things, a pile of catalogs, sample kit, and a couple shirts.

This year we're bringing it all in house. We will have some of the top industry consultants come and spend some time with my guys at our facility. Ahead of time I've had my guys compile a lenghty list of things they want to discuss, learn, and we can use our own project pics, plans, etc to discuss constuction techniques and questions. In doing this we'll get to the meat of the hard core, advanced hardscape and business questions. Is it costly? Yes. Will it prove the right move. No doubt. We have the industry's best, one on one, for the whole day. If we want to work with our own tools, products, etc. they are all at our fingertips

KrayzKajun
01-10-2010, 06:56 PM
I posted this in another thread but copied it over here, modifying it a little to answer your question a little more indepth. Excuse the repitition if you've already read it.

We made a decision this year to do something totally different. In years past we've gone to the basic educational seminars. You can run yourself ragged going to all these hardscape vendor shows, sitting in groups of 100 people, hearing all the barking about how "their product is best" and listen to the sand versus stone dust debate for the 1000th time. In the meantime you attempt to extract vital information that will help you grow as a company and sharpen all your hardscape skills. You end up walking away with a few good things, a pile of catalogs, sample kit, and a couple shirts.

This year we're bringing it all in house. We will have some of the top industry consultants come and spend some time with my guys at our facility. Ahead of time I've had my guys compile a lenghty list of things they want to discuss, learn, and we can use our own project pics, plans, etc to discuss constuction techniques and questions. In doing this we'll get to the meat of the hard core, advanced hardscape and business questions. Is it costly? Yes. Will it prove the right move. No doubt. We have the industry's best, one on one, for the whole day. If we want to work with our own tools, products, etc. they are all at our fingertips


now tht is thinking outside of the box! my hats off to you. your employees are lucky to work for someone who thinks and takes pride like you do!

etwman
01-11-2010, 01:24 PM
The first of several in house training events. A full day of discussing critical hardscape construction as it pertains to our projects. Some of you may recognize Paul Cimini from MAHTS several years ago in Atlantic City. Paul brings over 25 years experience to this industry. He came and spent an entire day with us covering alot of key material, unbias to any one manufacturer. We had a catered lunch and enjoyed a great day, obtaining much more out of this than manufacturers shows.

KJent
01-11-2010, 01:37 PM
your guys look real happy.

Supper Grassy
01-11-2010, 09:10 PM
Looks like an informative event
ETW those hoodies look great

yardworks, inc.
01-12-2010, 10:44 PM
Thank you for your reply on the school subject. If you don't mind me asking how much does it cost to bring a expert in for a day of training? Also is it based on the number of employees or a flat rate. If you do not wish to disclose the amount maybe you could give some contact information. Thank you again.

yardworks, inc.
01-12-2010, 11:03 PM
ETWman, is the Paul Cimini in the pictures you posted with Thunder Hill Partners, LLC? I googled his name and it came up with this information but I could not find any website for his company or any contact information.

etwman
01-13-2010, 07:52 AM
I will send you a pm regarding the answers to you questions.

yardworks, inc.
01-13-2010, 09:56 AM
Thanks for the info

Z-master man
01-15-2010, 05:16 PM
Do you have any new pics of the equipment working in the snow? Or of the kage systems you have?

PLS214
01-15-2010, 09:58 PM
Looks like you run a serious operation. Looks great.

etwman
01-29-2010, 08:33 AM
Okay everyone. Over the past couple years I seem to get flooded with questions (tons of PM’s) about how to put together a truck set up similar to ours. I’m going to compose a post here with the critical information, some of this is buried in this thread but you have to dig around to find it. In the future if I get questions I’ll just tell people to go look at this post as a reference.

First thing: Our cab and chassis are all 186" (cab to axle) and 252” Wheel Base. Two of them are 6 speed, the other is a 10 speed with a splitter. Pick your option, both are good. You have to chop about 6 feet of frame rail off that back if the truck has a van body on it.

Horsepower: Two older ones are 210 hp, the new one is 250 hp. More is always better, but I wouldn’t go less than 210.

How much is too much mileage? All my trucks have over 150,000 at this point. Is that too much mileage? We put about 8k miles a year on them and these trucks are designed to go 300,000 +, so I’m not that worried about mileage on them. That would give me 20 years left of life in them if I wanted to push them that far. Tell me a smaller truck that will give you that?

What GVW do I go? Our oldest is 26k, and the two newer ones are 33k. Our payload capacity in #3 is 5 ton, and #4 & #5 are both around 8 ton. Yes you will need a CDL for the larger ones. Is it worth it? You need to decide how much you need to haul. All my guys have their CDL. If I had to buy another one it would be a 33k. My suggestion here is go bigger than you think you need, you'll always grow into it if your business if growing.

What make should I go with? We originally looked at International but I couldn’t find the set up I wanted. Once we went with Freightliner we stayed there, all three engines are the same and we can get a box of filters, etc. Do your research, there are all types of good brands out there.

Truck box behind cab: Okay here’s the deal with these. We’ve now built 5 of these things. I came up with the design and had a local one man welder guy construct it. The first two were re-weld nightmares, constant scabbing. These boxes will flex when the frame flexes, it’s natural, but alluminum doesn't like flex. Steel will be alot heavier, thus less payload capacity. The last few, with the additions of gussets, cross members in the right places, etc. are dead on. Todd has the latest one and I don’t think he has too many problems with it. Can you build one on your own? Sure, but I’ve seen some back attempts at duplication out there. Will you have to go through everything we went through, YES!. Are you going to save much? Probably not. Are there any formal plans on paper I can give you? NO. Can my welder guy make one for you? Most likely yes, you’ll be in to it between $4k ish and it will be done right. You need to decide if you want to attempt to reinvent the wheel. I don’t make any money off of them so you won’t hurt my feeling with your decision.

How much is too much mileage? All my trucks have over 150,000 at this point. Is that too much mileage? We put about 8k miles a year on them and these trucks are designed to go 300,000 +, so I’m not that worried about mileage on them. That would give me 20 years left of life in them if I wanted to push them that far.

What GVW do I go? Our oldest is 26k, and the two newer ones are 33k. Our payload capacity in #3 is 5 ton, and #4 & #5 are both around 8 ton. Yes you will need a CDL for the larger ones. Is it worth it? You need to decide how much you need to haul. All my guys have their CDL. If I had to buy another one it would be a 33k.

How much is it going to cost to put a set up together? It’s a loaded question. Right now trucks are cheap. It depends on how much “bling” you want to do to them as well. The last truck cost us about $38k to put on the road, that was with NO bodies. That’s truck, SNG system, box behind cab, under body boxes, all the tools, fabrication of hitch, airlines, paint, brake controllers, lettering, etc. Road ready. Still cost per mile to operate the bigger trucks is far less, they will last longer, and are safer. If you went with a new truck on this add about $25k to the above number.

Where can I find trucks? Ebay, trucktrader online, Penske lease, there are hundreds of places.

What size SNG? The biggest one they have. The guys at SNG know our trucks and can easily help you duplicate the system.

I hope all this information in one spot helps some and I can take a slight break from repetitive emails.

Z-master man
01-29-2010, 09:42 AM
Do you have any new pics of the equipment working in the snow? Or of the kage systems you have?

etwman
01-29-2010, 09:45 AM
I do not. There's a video on Kage's website that shows how the plow performs on a CAT 262. That setup is identical to our and it works the same exact way. It is a great set up.

JRSlawn
01-29-2010, 10:42 AM
Thanks for the above post Jared there is some great info in there.

yardworks, inc.
01-29-2010, 10:48 AM
What brand of plate compactor do you run and what model? Also how many pounds of force is too much to compact pavers with?

etwman
01-29-2010, 03:07 PM
Jeff I hoped I answered all the key points, if I didn't let me know what I need to add.

As far as the plate compactors we use all Wacker. 1550's, 2540, and a 3545. As far as how much force is too much to compact pavers with....I'm assuming you are talking about initial compaction and sanding in. I wouldn't take anything more than a 1550 accross the top of them.

yardworks, inc.
01-29-2010, 03:48 PM
Thanks for the info

KrayzKajun
02-01-2010, 04:12 AM
in the first pic of this thread, wht size is tht black enclosed trailer??

Gold Star Lawns
02-01-2010, 04:26 AM
The trailer is 28ft. I am pretty sure.

yardworks, inc.
02-01-2010, 08:06 PM
In one of your older post you had stated you were considering getting a asv machine. I was just wondering what you saw to change your mind. We have a Bobcat t200 and will probally upgrade to a newer machine this year. I have a friend who works for Ritchie Bros. and he says the rumor is that one of the major rental companies will be going bankrupt this year. He said the market will be flooded with equipment and to be ready to buy.

M and S Lawn Care
02-01-2010, 08:42 PM
Just posting to subscribe to this thread. :)

etwman
02-01-2010, 08:45 PM
I wanted to go with something to put the VTS system on and didn't want a fully dedicated track machine. In addition, CAT is a little smoother to run which is why we went that route over Bob Cat.

You're going to see alot of changes this year in businesses. I'm quite curious as to see who comes out from "behind the rocks" this spring. Those who are over leveraged will be the first ones to disappear. You can weather the storm alot longer, even with smaller jobs & tighter margins if you are not over leveraged.

yardworks, inc.
02-01-2010, 09:54 PM
Any issues on the wheel motors using the vts? I have heard some manufacturers voiding warranties for using the vts claiming it puts too much of a load on the wheel motors. We had a wheel motor go south on our T200 and the bearing shaving got into the rest of the hydraulic system. Short story, it cost us close too $7000 by the time we got it out of the shop. Also you said the CAT w/ VTS will outperform the Deeres you were running! That is amazing, a good friend of mine runs a 332 Deere and its a brute. Also, for any other readers, never buy a T200 it has undersized wheel motors, they overheat and cause the outer bearing to fail. The upgraded wheel motors will cost around $8000!

etwman
02-03-2010, 07:57 AM
No problems whatsoever with the VTS systems, and I've probed pretty deep to attempt to find them. One of the big plusses is its self cleans itself alot better, more caked in mud on the Deere equals decreased power and performance. The VTS will definitely outclimb a Deere setup. I'd be curious to put a VTS on a Deere but they really don't reccomend it b/c the wheel motors aren't meant for the setup.

Poor Todd just spit his coffee accross the room when he read this. He just bought a used T-200. Well...I guess time will tell.

flairland
02-03-2010, 08:02 AM
That is a little scary about the T200's. I think its a T250 that Todd bought though, so he should be ok?

yardworks, inc.
02-03-2010, 09:29 AM
If he did buy a T200 he needs to make sure he keeps the outer bearing oil changed. The only bad thing is that it is about $60 for around a 6 oz. bottle. That will do one side. Bobcat does not spec out their fluids so it is hard to tell if there is anything special about the oil. The upgraded wheel motors are called a long wheel motor, the old ones are considered a short motor. There are some aftermarket companies that you can get these from.

jon green planet
02-03-2010, 10:07 AM
im really digging your trailer man and those banners of the brands you use it's just amazing... awesome ,.. reminds me of a racing car trailer.... congrats! i wanna get to that point soon,.. im starting this season my lawn care business...

etwman
02-11-2010, 08:30 PM
Well we had ourselves one honey of a storm. I often donít touch on this subject because we donít do a lot of it, mainly just three commercial sites, and that is plenty. Plus I donít want to derail the thread. Two skid loaders with pushers, two trucks, and a handful of snowblowers. My guys did an awesome job on this storm and our customers were extremely happy. The KAGE system continues to impress the snot out of us, best snow removal device out there in my opinion. We now have about 30Ē+ on the ground, with about two feet coming from this blizzard. Iíve often said you know the storm is gonna ďtake it to the houseĒ when the weather channel goes to plaid on their snow depth maps because they ran out of colors.

We have some neat projects ahead of us for 2010. Iíll post some plans in the near future.

MysticLandscape
02-11-2010, 09:22 PM
I think you forgot to take the wheel-barrels off the 550 :drinkup: Two black diesels with fishers and cat skids, can't beat it. Wish it would snow here.

flairland
02-11-2010, 09:41 PM
Very nice equipment ETW. The trucks look like they've had a good workout! Storm must have come in quick not being able to take the wheel barrels off :)

etwman
02-11-2010, 09:53 PM
We leave all our tools on our trucks year round. They are up there and out of the way. We used to take everything off, but with our new shop everything is parked inside and not exposed to the outside elements everyday. Besides there's not alot of room inside the shop anyway with four trucks inside......

deere615
02-12-2010, 07:01 PM
Nice plowing pictures we got hammered here also!

KrayzKajun
02-13-2010, 12:46 AM
Man yall can keep the snow!!

etwman
02-16-2010, 08:11 AM
We had these off road diesel site tanks made which have been a great asset especially for onsite refueling of skid loaders during snow storms. Each is 100 gallons and we welded C channel underneath them to be able to move them around with a skid loader / forks. They are 2' tall, 2' wide, and 4' long, which allows them to fit perfectly in a bed of a pickup to take somewhere to fill back up. We just end up leaving a set of forks wherever the skid loader is. 100 gallons is a good amount for a decent snowstorm or any landscape project. The hand crank isn't that bad, we debated a 12v but that adds uneeded expense.

Craaaig
02-16-2010, 08:37 AM
finally got through this thread, nice stuff and your work is amazing!

DUSTYCEDAR
02-16-2010, 10:34 AM
THOSE TANKS R SWEET
with all this snow cans suck
time to upgrade 4 us

mrusk
02-16-2010, 12:03 PM
Jarad isn't there a certain # of gallons you can carry before you need a hazmat endorsement?

etwman
02-16-2010, 06:09 PM
For 200 gallons? Are you kidding me? We carry more than that in our saddle tanks on our freightliners.

They sell "L" shaped truck transfer tanks that carry 100 gallons.

nikolai
02-16-2010, 06:53 PM
The max limit of diesel fuel that can be carried in a vehicle is unlimited as long as the container that is holding the diesel is less than 119 gallons. If the container is greater than 119 gallons then placarding is required.

http://telsafe.org/Documents/NTSPGas-DieselFuelTransportation.pdf

William

oakwdman
02-16-2010, 06:54 PM
Wouldnt that law vary from state to state though? Or is it on a federal level?

KrayzKajun
02-16-2010, 07:03 PM
those tanks are sweet! i need to get a transfer tank for the bed of my truck, but i want a low profile one!

etwman
02-16-2010, 07:05 PM
It probably does. In NJ you can't carry a 5 gallon gas can without 7 different permits.....:rolleyes:

Krafty
02-18-2010, 04:32 PM
Etw this may be a dumb question but since I know you have experience with the transfer tanks ill ask it. I want a tank to put in the truck, I am sick of my guys wasting 20 min at the gas station every day. When I am looking for a tank most of them say one of two thing. A:this is not intended for gasoline, or B: intended for diesel fertilizer or water. I think you have a tank for regular gas in your truck?? If so what is special and what are the reasons the tanks are not intended for gasoline. Can I put just regular gas in one of them???

Jelinek61
02-18-2010, 04:44 PM
I believe the L-shaped tank in his truck is for diesel. Correct me if i'm wrong.

yardworks, inc.
02-18-2010, 06:31 PM
There is a website called tank depot, they have truck fuel tanks that are DOT approved for gasoline. They are a little pricey, but you know you are legal and safe. They are the aluminum refueling tanks on the site.

etwman
02-18-2010, 06:32 PM
The tank in the truck is a split tank that I had custom made about 8 years ago out of aluminum. One side is for gas and the other side diesel. Each hold about 50 gallons. You can now buy each half through places like northern tool and weld them together to have the same setup. I don't really see any issues in transporting gas or diesel in them, its a minimal amount anyway.

I rarely use the gas side much anymore unless we go on vacation and I take gas for the boat. The diesel gets used on occasion but now that we have tanks at the shop this sees minimal use as well. If I do use the set up its either for a snow storm for extra fuel for the trucks. I rarely keep fuel in it as its extra weight and a liability if something happens. It's probably still in my truck out of habit more than anything.

etwman
02-18-2010, 06:41 PM
The prices on tank depot are very similar to what I paid to have mine made. The only reason I had mine made was because they weren't available 8 years ago. Between tanks and pumps you'll have $1600-$1800 in them, if you do split tanks of course.

Krafty
02-19-2010, 11:29 AM
I checked out the prices on the Tank depot and they are not to terrible, compared to the rest. There description is much more informative as well. Etw when you ran a mowing crew do you think the expense of the tank was worth the time savings and convience it gave your crew? Thanks for the info!

etwman
02-19-2010, 03:59 PM
Do I think the tanks paid for themselves? Yeah I think they did. But it all comes down to a variety of things.

I'm just big on not having to stop any more than necessary on the way to a job site. Back when we mowed alot you fuel up in the beginning of the week and that's it. Trying to get a 26' enclosed trailer in a gas station every morning in rush hour, (which ultimately results in doughnuts in side and a 30 min break with 3 guys, etc) is not easy.....you do the math.

Same thing with the big tanks we put out back. Its onsite refueling here, 75' fuel hose and we can reach to refuel everything inside the building without jockeying trucks around. Once a week on Saturday everything is topped off. Bam...done! It costs us ten cents MORE a gallon to have fuel here on site (the tanks were free from the fuel company). I ran the numbers for the year based on our fuel consumption and it'll cost us $500 more in fuel costs. However, that's easily offset by having to stop for fuel with trucks and a crew in a year.

Pick your poison, there's two sides to the coin on this one.

JRSlawn
02-19-2010, 05:15 PM
Jared I would have to agree with you 110% we have a gas station 2 doors down from my shop the guys go there every morning they fill up go inside to wait in line to buy their drink and donuts on the clock and by the time they get ready to leave its packed and they wait another 15 minutes just to get out of there. Plus they stuff themselves and get to the first job lagging due to eating to much. I have been looking into getting a tank for the back of my truck to fill everything up with and save a ton of time and like you said when we get a snow storm I can have fuel where i need it when I need it that in its own is worth the cost of the tanks plus no fuel cards for the guys to lose and take home with them.

hitechlm
02-19-2010, 05:46 PM
i have also thought about getting auxiliary tanks on our trucks to save time in the morning, but does it really save that much time? When i worked for one of the larger companies by me we had our own tanks in the yard were everyone filled up at every morning or afternoon when they got back, but if you were to follow the crews out the next morning you would still see them all at gas stations or fast food restaurant's getting breakfast. I don't think it matters if you fill up at the gas station or your shop, your guys are still going to stop whether you like it or not. I guess that's why some companies dont pay drive time.

Tony Clifton
02-19-2010, 06:35 PM
Simple, make a rule that they can't get food....they can get that on their way in to work in the morning.
Crews at previous employers always stopped....when I started my company I made it very clear that you can't stop. He have stood by it and it is not a problem....I can't imagine how many man hours are lost by some companies who have crews stopping.

TerraScapesMT
02-19-2010, 07:51 PM
Simple, make a rule that they can't get food....they can get that on their way in to work in the morning.
Crews at previous employers always stopped....when I started my company I made it very clear that you can't stop. He have stood by it and it is not a problem....I can't imagine how many man hours are lost by some companies who have crews stopping.

I agree 100% It needs to be a rule that is set in STONE. Whats that saying.. you give an inch, they take a mile? I fuel up my maintenance trucks and equipment once a week and have large enough tanks to last the whole week. This gives them no reason to stop...

etwman
02-19-2010, 08:06 PM
Simple, make a rule that they can't get food....they can get that on their way in to work in the morning.
Crews at previous employers always stopped....when I started my company I made it very clear that you can't stop. He have stood by it and it is not a problem....I can't imagine how many man hours are lost by some companies who have crews stopping.

Its that simple, really it is. To my knowledge (and I'm 99% sure of this) all my guys bring their own lunches to work. There's really no need to leave the job site to go and get lunch. I think I touched on this before somewhere. It's almost impossible to leave a jobsite, go somewhere and get something, eat it, and be back in 30 minutes. Just doesn't happen.

We have a guy that comes in and washes equipment on Saturday's in our shop, high school kid. Does a pretty good job. At that time he'll fuel up our equipment. Our trucks can easily run a week on a tank, probably two weeks. We'll preload materials / equipment on trucks so when crews arrive Monday everyone goes right to the site.

It all boils down to efficiency. Efficiency = profitability = growth.

jeffslawnservice
02-20-2010, 09:31 AM
In regards to the rules some of you have set in place about no stopping to buy lunch during the day. I have one exception, in my area there is a a store called Wawa. In is a gastation/deli. Basically just like a 7 eleven but with gas. When I am going maintenance and maintenance only i will stop here for lunch. I can park my truck and trailer get gas if needed and my worker can go grab lunch. I bring my own lunch but from the time we left our last account before lunch till we reach our first account after lunch it takes no longer than 30 minutes. But like I said that only works for maintenance work and if we were to be at a job site all day it wouldent work.

Tony Clifton
02-20-2010, 06:46 PM
Yea, I actually have no problem with my guys leaving a jobsite to go get lunch. They know the time they have and they know what a reasonable distance to drive is and what is not. We make our guys take a 1 hr lunch since we work 10hr minimum days so they have the time to do it, and I think they sometimes enjoy getting off of the jobsite....this isn't everyone and its not all the time.
However, just stopping by the store in the AM or while going jobsite to jobsite is unacceptable...I mean seriously? We have hired some guys in the past that feel its a violation of employee rights for them not to be allowed to spend 10 minutes getting their morning coffee on their way to the jobsite.

hotshot4819
02-21-2010, 09:16 AM
Do I think the tanks paid for themselves? Yeah I think they did. But it all comes down to a variety of things.

I'm just big on not having to stop any more than necessary on the way to a job site. Back when we mowed alot you fuel up in the beginning of the week and that's it. Trying to get a 26' enclosed trailer in a gas station every morning in rush hour, (which ultimately results in doughnuts in side and a 30 min break with 3 guys, etc) is not easy.....you do the math.

Same thing with the big tanks we put out back. Its onsite refueling here, 75' fuel hose and we can reach to refuel everything inside the building without jockeying trucks around. Once a week on Saturday everything is topped off. Bam...done! It costs us ten cents MORE a gallon to have fuel here on site (the tanks were free from the fuel company). I ran the numbers for the year based on our fuel consumption and it'll cost us $500 more in fuel costs. However, that's easily offset by having to stop for fuel with trucks and a crew in a year.

Pick your poison, there's two sides to the coin on this one.



We Have a Biofuel company fill up our trucks at our shop, they come 2 times a week and top the 3 trucks off, as well as the hydroseeders.. granted im smaller then you guys,, 3 trucks, 3 hydroseeders ( 2 1000 gal and a 1300 gal ) and some fuel containers.
we pay Daily rate for the fuel, cant complain, i loose no down time for fueling...

And i allow my guy to stop 2 times a day at a store for bathroom/ food reason..

Krafty
02-21-2010, 12:44 PM
Yes I also let my guys stop for lunch during there route, this way they do not have an excuse for goin to the restroom. The understanding though is run in get it to go, go to the bathroom if needed and get to gettin. To my knowledge this is waht they do and if it may take them 30 minutes between stops. The gas stations is what kills me thouugh. There is really only one gas station to stop at in the morning in my area. The problem is that at 7 am there is 3 other lawn crews in there fueling up. So they go in get the donuts dink around for 20 minutes then come out and bs with the other companies for another few minutes it just drives me crazy so much wasted time. I don't have time to baby sit nor should I have to, so I am thinking along the lines of a tank. I guess I was suprised at how much they were, and am weighing out the cost benefit ratio. Thanks for the info!!

riverwalklandscaping
02-21-2010, 02:34 PM
Don't forget you have to balance the fact that you are saving money by running your employees all day without any break, but probably loosing productivity by having unhappy employees who have to work all day without any breaks. I am not saying this is the case for any of you guys, as I am sure ETW's employees are treated very well and are happy... I am just saying if you don't give an employee any time to rest, they will work slower, that is proven time and time again in large companies, and it's part of why you notice the bigger the company, the more breaks and longer lunches they have. I don't remember the law exactly but here you legally have to give 30 min lunch and/or 2 15 min breaks for every 8 hours worked.

ETW - How does one manage to spend 30 minutes buying doughnuts exactly haha. I would be on someones ass if they took that long to get a snack.

SIWEL
02-21-2010, 02:39 PM
Just because you don't stop for lunch, doesn't mean they are unhappy. If my guys or I need something while we stop for gas in the morning (the gas station we use has a dunkin donuts and mcdonalds across the street) they can run over, as long as everyone doesn't go and someone can finish filling up. I do ask for people to bring there lunch because there will be no special trips out for lunch. A couple of them have had girlfriends/family bring food to them at our bigger accounts that we service. Just like everything in buisness, its a balancing act.

yardworks, inc.
02-21-2010, 03:20 PM
I was at a icpi class recently and they recommend pouring a 4 in. thick x 4 ft. wide concrete slab underneath your subbase around a pool. They believe this will help bridge any weak spots since it is harder to get the compaction numbers you need around a pool. I was wanting to get your thoughts on this.

etwman
02-21-2010, 04:39 PM
That slab is a complete waste. I'm beginning to think ICPI is a complete waste. I haven't sent my guys to and ICPI class in probably 4 years. They collect annual funds, teach the basics, and that's about it. My top guys can train any of my new hires just as well, if not better. Sorry, had a rant there.

Flowable fill will take care of the issue, filling all and any voids around a pool. We use it quite often and it works very well. I think we used about 20 yards of it last year on one of our big jobs to cover conduit and voids where compaction was impossible.

jeffslawnservice
02-21-2010, 05:39 PM
Don't forget you have to balance the fact that you are saving money by running your employees all day without any break, but probably loosing productivity by having unhappy employees who have to work all day without any breaks. I am not saying this is the case for any of you guys, as I am sure ETW's employees are treated very well and are happy... I am just saying if you don't give an employee any time to rest, they will work slower, that is proven time and time again in large companies, and it's part of why you notice the bigger the company, the more breaks and longer lunches they have. I don't remember the law exactly but here you legally have to give 30 min lunch and/or 2 15 min breaks for every 8 hours worked.

ETW - How does one manage to spend 30 minutes buying doughnuts exactly haha. I would be on someones ass if they took that long to get a snack.

I will agree with part of this and can vouch for it personally. Even though this is completely unrelated I just started my company this past year and do snow management. I do not have a 4x4 truck so I use a snow blower on drives. I also have one helper/ employee or what ever you want to call it with me. If we do not stop for some sort of lunch I can tell his productivity drops big time. If we do stop for lunch or a break the productivity that he showed at the beginning of the day is the same at the end of the day.

Also I can see why it would take one person 30 minutes to get lunch.

1. Drive time to the store.
2. Picking out the item(s) that they want or having them made.
3. Waiting in line to pay.
4. Drive time back to the job site.

And then they need to eat their lunch too so it can possibly take more than a half hour. And I am not saying they drive fifteen minutes to the store and then fifteen minutes back to the job site. It might only be a 5 minute drive but it will add up.

Krafty
02-21-2010, 06:37 PM
That slab is a complete waste. I'm beginning to think ICPI is a complete waste. I haven't sent my guys to and ICPI class in probably 4 years. They collect annual funds, teach the basics, and that's about it. My top guys can train any of my new hires just as well, if not better. Sorry, had a rant there.

Glad I am not the only one with these thoughts!

yardworks, inc.
02-21-2010, 07:22 PM
Thanks for the info. I thought the same, also it looks bad when you just talked the customer out of using concrete around the pool and then tell them you need to pour concrete underneath the pavers to help support them.

Rex Mann
02-22-2010, 07:08 PM
ICPI does recommend the slab around a pool, but flowable fill will work, too. I think it is a better solution. This is recommended in clay soils. Just look at any new house construction with a basement. The settling around the foundation can be significant and take years to finish. Same with a pool. No one wants to compact over and around the pipes. Couple that with clay soils, and you need to come up with a better solution.

Peace,

Rex

http://PaversInstalled.Com

Bird21
02-22-2010, 10:13 PM
Bed the pipes in sand and install sand over the pipes, then gravel.

CertPro
02-27-2010, 07:45 PM
You will still have a compaction issue. Most likely you will have settling there

etwman
02-27-2010, 09:09 PM
I agree, sand will not work over pipes or conduit.

Bird21
02-28-2010, 10:29 AM
The pool contractor that does our pools does it this way, and they do about 200+ pools a year. I have had no issue with their installation of the plumbing to date. I do alot of their hardscape and they do all my pools when it's my job.

Etw, congrats on the success I will have to post some of our work. You do things first class, exacty how I was brought up.

As my Grandfather taught me " You do everything once, first class or you don't do it"

I am in the process of getting a hook truck and happend to find this thread while searching trucks. Going with a Kenworth or Freightliner.

Anyway again great thread.

tthomass
02-28-2010, 01:12 PM
Actually T250 and its been running great :). From a different view, I wouldn't have been able to bill 130hrs of snow removal had I waited on another machine. The 250 has already paid back over 50% what I gave for it, after fuel/labor. I'd like to have a VTS but I was in a pinch to get a machine and couldn't find a system.


No problems whatsoever with the VTS systems, and I've probed pretty deep to attempt to find them. One of the big plusses is its self cleans itself alot better, more caked in mud on the Deere equals decreased power and performance. The VTS will definitely outclimb a Deere setup. I'd be curious to put a VTS on a Deere but they really don't reccomend it b/c the wheel motors aren't meant for the setup.

Poor Todd just spit his coffee accross the room when he read this. He just bought a used T-200. Well...I guess time will tell.

tthomass
02-28-2010, 01:47 PM
Oh yeah.......I hate coffee. I guess when you're old you need those things to help get you going in the morning haha. Back to my cave now.....

RLS24
02-28-2010, 02:00 PM
man, the whole lunch thing is a really touchy subject for some of you guys! I will agree with the whole gas station thing in the morning, which is why (even if I am mowing lawns by myself) I'll try to plan gas station fill up stops around 10-1030, that way the gas stations usually are not that busy because you are past the morning rush and you haven't got the lunchtime rush yet. Also, I (or anyone thats with me that day) usually isn't hungry then so if anything we run in and grab a gatorade and thats it. Usually in and out pretty quick.

lawnkid
03-01-2010, 04:16 PM
That slab is a complete waste. I'm beginning to think ICPI is a complete waste. I haven't sent my guys to and ICPI class in probably 4 years. They collect annual funds, teach the basics, and that's about it. My top guys can train any of my new hires just as well, if not better. Sorry, had a rant there.

I'm glad I'm not the only one who's questioning some of ICPI's specs. Time to put the shield up.

Swampy
03-01-2010, 11:49 PM
That slab is a complete waste. I'm beginning to think ICPI is a complete waste. I haven't sent my guys to and ICPI class in probably 4 years. They collect annual funds, teach the basics, and that's about it. My top guys can train any of my new hires just as well, if not better. Sorry, had a rant there.


Well from what I've be reading and told on here about hardscaping. Really coinsides with what I've learned through my schooling, at MATC. The only difference really is depending on the application should things change, through the few civil engineering classes I took.

etwman
03-02-2010, 07:57 PM
There are some neat things transpiring in our company as we head into 2010. We're taking some more risks, but then again I always say you regret the risks you didn't take.

This Friday will be our long awaited 10 year celebration at our company. We have a neat day planned with some of our clients, staff, and vendors that will begin at noon and extend late into the evening.

After a long time in the process we are pleased to announce an addition to our full time staff. We have acquired one of the industries best Registered Landscape Architects with over 20 years experience in high end build. This will be a huge asset to our company as we move forward in streamlining our build projects. We are now the only design/build company in the county with an RLA in house. In addition, we have implemented one of our own into an operations manager position creating a total of two more administrative positions.

Several neat projects are in the drawing stage, one of which will take us out of state to the east on a new residential build. As project drawings are finalized and build begins I'll pick a couple projects to track progress of here.

Wishing everyone the best in 2010.

Looking for a book to read while waiting for the snow to melt. "Never Eat Alone" by Keith Ferrazzi.

Scaping 4 Life
03-02-2010, 08:14 PM
Are you hiring? I can be there within the next 24 hours.

etwman
03-02-2010, 08:22 PM
We will probably hire 4-6 crew members as our season cranks up here soon, all of our support staff and foreman are in place.

Oh and another great book, thanks to John Wingfield, Half Time by Bob Buford. And no its not about the Dallas Cowboys, thankfully.

GroundScapesIncorporated
03-02-2010, 08:24 PM
How many employees you up to Jarod? You guys still running three man crews? Congrats on the ten year!! Also congrats on the new additions, having an in-house CLA must be a huge advantage over competition!

etwman
03-02-2010, 08:29 PM
3-4 man crews depending on the project. If we need more than that we'll typically double up crews on one project. We'll teeter between 3 and 4 crews for the season.

We are currently at 8 full time and will probably top out at about 14-16 or so once we ramp up.

yardworks, inc.
03-02-2010, 11:58 PM
For your design work do you use 3D, hand drawings, or CAD type drawings for customer presentations? If you do use a software, what kind, and your opinion on what customers seem to like?

etwman
03-03-2010, 12:55 PM
We'll be using all three. In my opinion each brings a certain element to the table. Autocad will be needed for detailed construction drawings, 3D (sketch up)for customer visualizations, and hand drawings offer a soft touch to conceptuals.

Different customers can relate differently to each.

kylecal91
03-03-2010, 01:40 PM
Nice equipment. Your dodge is almost the exact thing I have, except mines a 96. How many miles you got on it? man or auto?

CertPro
03-03-2010, 03:37 PM
Jarod - Will the LA be solely for in house stuff or will you be farming him/her out to other co's

etwman
03-03-2010, 04:37 PM
The Dodge was pretty much a menace. It was an automatic and couple with the cummins in those years it just wasn't a good combination. It was sold two years ago and replaced with a 550.

The LA will primarily focus on our projects. Alot of our projects, due to the size, require drawing changes, consultations, plant alterations, etc throughout the projects so this will require time as well. The topic has come in to play on allowing consultations with other companies. It will be on a limited case by case basis. I'm not opposed to it but our projects have to take priority. I feel confident we'll have enough work in house to keep this person busy.

CertPro
03-03-2010, 10:20 PM
Will they also manage the project or will their time be strictly design based

etwman
03-04-2010, 09:55 AM
Design based. Our operation manager in conjunction with our foreman manage the projects.

EagleLandscape
03-04-2010, 07:12 PM
We will probably hire 4-6 crew members as our season cranks up here soon, all of our support staff and foreman are in place.

Oh and another great book, thanks to John Wingfield, Half Time by Bob Buford. And no its not about the Dallas Cowboys, thankfully.

MIGHTY WELCOME SENOR!

I haven't had time to start the one you sent me, but I think my wife has already finished it though:)

yardworks, inc.
03-06-2010, 01:43 PM
Jarod I was wondering if you have has any problems from the F-450 you bought. I have heard so many nightmare stories about the 6.0. I have found a pretty good deal on a '03. If you have had some problems in the July '09 issue of Diesel Power magazine they discuss all the problems and the cures for each year model.

EagleLandscape
03-06-2010, 02:20 PM
post some 10th anniversary pics:)

etwman
03-06-2010, 08:48 PM
Yesterday was one of those days in the history of the company that you probably won’t forget for awhile. To spend an entire day with great clients and employees having fun and celebrating a milestone in the company history is priceless. Without either of them this company would not be where it is today.

The day began with a lunch at our offices. From there we headed out to several destinations in which I'd prefer to keep private. Attached are a couple pics as we had a professional photographer present. She took a lot of great shots and as you can see from the last one we had some fun our field foremen. My guys have a great sense of humor and we have a lot of fun together. Most of the year they are out on separate jobs so it’s neat to all be together at times. I couldn’t ask more from my staff. As an employer I have the best I could have.

NEWGUYRI
03-06-2010, 09:09 PM
congrats on the sustained success:)

etwman
03-06-2010, 09:12 PM
I may get a couple black and white one's framed. There are quite a few taken and the photographer was really good.

We kind of laughed that its almost like a band shot. It would make a cool magazine cover shot with an article on us. Time will tell on this. There's a few interested magazines I've been talking with who have expressed interests in some of our projects.

Its warming up. 2010 is here. Almost time to play ball!

P.Services
03-06-2010, 09:28 PM
i notice you wore a button up shirt and your guys didn't.

NEWGUYRI
03-06-2010, 09:30 PM
I may get a couple black and white one's framed. There are quite a few taken and the photographer was really good.

We kind of laughed that its almost like a band shot. It would make a cool magazine cover shot with an article on us. Time will tell on this. There's a few interested magazines I've been talking with who have expressed interests in some of our projects.

Its warming up. 2010 is here. Almost time to play ball!

Thats exactly what I thought when I first saw it. Almost belongs on the cover of Rolling Stone Magazine, lol:)

etwman
03-06-2010, 09:32 PM
All the suits were identical, with all button up shirts. Its the lighting in that shot that didn't capture it.

P.Services
03-06-2010, 09:47 PM
All the suits were identical, with all button up shirts. Its the lighting in that shot that didn't capture it.

oh, i just figured you wore one out of necessity and they arnt at that point yet.

BMFD92
03-07-2010, 04:59 AM
i must say as a young soon to be college grad in construction management your business is the most inspiring and motivational tool to success to my business. I am taking my ACI exam in April 3rd. You may want to look in taking this exam. It is an accredited certification from the American Constructors Institute. From what my professors told me, I would be one of the first in the green industry to have this accrediation. You seem to have the type of business that would benefit greatly from this for what its worth. Best of luck in 2010.

etwman
03-23-2010, 07:27 PM
Spring has finally hit, all the trucks were out for the day and an empty shop was a nice sight see. We have a good handful of pool jobs this spring, some with some really wild features. I think I counted 7 all together either sold or in the drawing stages.

Bringing a new flagstone product in from China which is really neat. I'll post some pictures as we'll be using it on two projects.

Here's a project that we'll be starting in the next two weeks. Whole thing is natural stone. I'll post some project pics as we start.

etwman
03-23-2010, 07:32 PM
Jarod I was wondering if you have has any problems from the F-450 you bought. I have heard so many nightmare stories about the 6.0. I have found a pretty good deal on a '03. If you have had some problems in the July '09 issue of Diesel Power magazine they discuss all the problems and the cures for each year model.

Sorry I just saw this. We threw about $1500 at it over the winter. Something about have some computer updated so the thing would run right in the first 5 minutes. It corrected the injectors and it seems to run right now. Other than that its been fine. I've heard nightmare stories too about the 6.0 so we're wathing it closely. If it begins to become a money pit, its gone.

Green Grass In VA
03-23-2010, 08:54 PM
very nice work ETW only took me 5 hours to go threw this whole thread

Jelinek61
03-25-2010, 09:23 PM
First of all congrats on the ten year aniversary and secondly just reached 200 pages in your thread. Everything looks great keep up the good work

CertPro
03-26-2010, 10:15 AM
Did your new LA draw that plan?

etwman
04-19-2010, 03:19 PM
Nice little toy for the boys in the field for the really tight landscape projects around pools. 10 implements, and we'll add a couple others.

I would have prefered a diesel but couldn't find one used at a good price. This only has 400 hours on it and is in good shape.

Krafty
04-19-2010, 06:02 PM
Look like is in immaculant shape!! They sure are nice and handy in the tight spots. Congrats on the find!!

KrayzKajun
04-20-2010, 12:06 AM
SWEET FIND! congrats on the 10th anniversary!

i make 5years as a legit company come October!!

etwman
04-20-2010, 07:11 AM
5 years is a solid mark, congrats. Now you get to start making tough internal decisions, working smarter not harder. I forget exactly what the statistics are in the green industry, but the companies that make it past the five year mark are in the single percentages. It think its like 8% make it past 5 years, but don't quote me on that. I read it somewhere at one point.

Kennedy Landscaping
04-20-2010, 09:25 AM
Nice machine, I'd love something like that

oakhillslandscaping
04-20-2010, 06:19 PM
nice grab Jarod, thanks for the advice a few weeks ago. it was greatly appreciated, hope to see some more work pics soon