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View Full Version : 20 acres BAGGED ???? HELP!!!


mowerpower
01-05-2005, 12:40 PM
Now the people with the 20 acre soccer complex want "all grass clippings removed" however we decide to do this is our choice. How many ways are there besides bagging ? What will we do with all this grass ? Now how much do we bid (this is alot more work) ? Any input you guys can give me will be appreciated. Thanks in advance! I'm mowing with 2- 60 inch choppers, once a week .

hockeygoalie
01-05-2005, 12:42 PM
Are you throwing it now, or mulching it? Mulching it every 4-5 days would look nice.

Kelly's Landscaping
01-05-2005, 12:50 PM
Trac Vac offers some 50 cubic ft bagging trailers designed for ZTRs you might want to look into that. What ever you buy if your going to bag this place has to hold allot or you will be emptying the thing every 3 mins. I think there price just went up.

redoak77
01-05-2005, 12:52 PM
i would recomend gator blades with an ultra vac system, if they make one for dixir choppers. Good luck and you get the award for the most bagged. Maybe if u raise the price enough they will decide not to have it bagged

Lawnchoice
01-05-2005, 12:52 PM
You had better have a truck loader follow you around when you mow!

rodfather
01-05-2005, 01:07 PM
I think there price just went up.

...as in ballistic, huh Kelly.

We mow 2 private polo fields. They're very much like a soccer or another type of athletic field in that they have to be kept very short. And they get a lot of use from having 8, 1000 lb. horses at a time running around for 2 hours at a clip tearing the field up. They are approximately 10 1/2 acres per field (and we have been doing them for years too btw).

We tried bagging in the beginning and it was a nightmare to say the least. It was just too damn much work and we were even allowed to dump on site. What we ended up doing was talking both owners into letting us mow twice a week. It works and everyone is happy. BTW, be glad you don't have to put up with the hoof prints made by the horses. What a pita that winds up being.

Hope that helps some...

Ric
01-05-2005, 01:16 PM
Now the people with the 20 acre soccer complex want "all grass clippings removed" however we decide to do this is our choice. How many ways are there besides bagging ? What will we do with all this grass ? Now how much do we bid (this is alot more work) ? Any input you guys can give me will be appreciated. Thanks in advance! I'm mowing with 2- 60 inch choppers, once a week .


Mowerpower

Don't run out and BUY any equipment just yet. The price to Bag a 20 acre complex is more than likely out of their budget. Now something tells me this is a committee that is asking for the bid price. I would Highly recommend a double bid, one with bagging and one without bagging. Having worked with Committees over the years I can tell you what everyone already knows about them. They have unrealistic dreams.

Anymore when I get requests for bid for what I feel are for unrealistic services, I don't waste my time bidding on them. However on a 20 acre site it should be worth your time to at least bid the Bagging part. But don't expect to get it.

Ric
01-05-2005, 01:24 PM
...as in ballistic, huh Kelly.

We mow 2 private polo fields. They're very much like a soccer or another type of athletic field in that they have to be kept very short. And they get a lot of use from having 8, 1000 lb. horses at a time running around for 2 hours at a clip tearing the field up. They are approximately 10 1/2 acres per field (and we have been doing them for years too btw).

We tried bagging in the beginning and it was a nightmare to say the least. It was just too damn much work and we were even allowed to dump on site. What we ended up doing was talking both owners into letting us mow twice a week. It works and everyone is happy. BTW, be glad you don't have to put up with the hoof prints made by the horses. What a pita that winds up being.

Hope that helps some...


Rodfather

How do you keep grass on a Polo Field? Been there and done that, no answer required. All I can say is Polo Fields are the biggest challenge in Turf Maintenance. Hopefully your cool season grass stands up better than 419 Bermuda.

BTW Polo Fields generally have a much bigger budget than soccer field.

rodfather
01-05-2005, 01:32 PM
Rodfather

How do you keep grass on a Polo Field? Been there and done that, no answer required. All I can say is Polo Fields are the biggest challenge in Turf Maintenance. Hopefully your cool season grass stands up better than 419 Bermuda.

BTW Polo Fields generally have a much bigger budget than soccer field.

You're right there Ric. Both of these gentlemen are millionaires many times over. I know for a fact that one of them spends over 20 grand a month just on playing polo (trainers, maintenance, vet bills, feed, etc.)

Well, I know polo is real big in Florida and don't know much about 419. The cool season grasses we have do rebound pretty quickly up here. Man those hoofs do tear up the turf. What's funny is seeing about a dozen or so guys (I won't mention their nationality) on Mondays out with their buckets and shovels filling in the holes made by the horse's feet. Then a couple of times a year they will have this big paving contractor bring in one of their large double drum rollers to smooth out the fields.

It's amazing...

mowerpower
01-05-2005, 02:59 PM
Does anyone have any idea what kind of price I should give them for bagging this much grass ?

Ric
01-05-2005, 03:13 PM
You're right there Ric. Both of these gentlemen are millionaires many times over. I know for a fact that one of them spends over 20 grand a month just on playing polo (trainers, maintenance, vet bills, feed, etc.)

Well, I know polo is real big in Florida and don't know much about 419. The cool season grasses we have do rebound pretty quickly up here. Man those hoofs do tear up the turf. What's funny is seeing about a dozen or so guys (I won't mention their nationality) on Mondays out with their buckets and shovels filling in the holes made by the horse's feet. Then a couple of times a year they will have this big paving contractor bring in one of their large double drum rollers to smooth out the fields.

It's amazing...


Rodfather

I was applying a pound of fast release N per week after the games and still couldn't keep up. Yes some of these guys have 20 horses and switch during the game so as to alway have a fresh one.

Now winter is Polo Season in Florida the same as our slow growing season. The same water that makes Grass grow, makes the ground soft and easier to tear up.

KathysLGC
01-05-2005, 03:21 PM
Does anyone have any idea what kind of price I should give them for bagging this much grass ?

Say your cutting at 3 acres per hour, Thats close to 7 hours on just cutting. How long do you think it would take you to bag 20 acres? I say charge $1000 extra for bagging.

ztoro
01-05-2005, 04:46 PM
Say your cutting at 3 acres per hour, Thats close to 7 hours on just cutting. How long do you think it would take you to bag 20 acres? I say charge $1000 extra for bagging.


2 60 inch Dixie's he should be mowing 10-15 acres an hour

rodfather
01-05-2005, 05:05 PM
If I was to bag that large of an area, I would need to get another 50% over and above straight mowing.

cgland
01-05-2005, 05:09 PM
Typically on any bagging we double the mowing price plus disposal fees.

Chris

rodfather
01-05-2005, 05:47 PM
Yes some of these guys have 20 horses and switch during the game so as to alway have a fresh one.

You got it. One guy has 14 ponies and the other 18. They both use Peterbuilts to pull the trailers around too.

all ferris
01-05-2005, 06:40 PM
At least $75 per acre

all ferris
01-05-2005, 06:50 PM
probably more like $100 per acre now that I think about it. I think 20 acres of clippings would fill a couple tandem trucks.

all ferris
01-05-2005, 06:51 PM
Ok, $150/acre

DennisF
01-05-2005, 06:53 PM
I can tell you that in my area of Florida the going rate is $35-$40 per acre for anything under 10 acres. For anything over 10 acres the rates are $30-$35 per acre. That is without bagging. If I were to bid that job in my area it would be in the $70 per acre range if they want it bagged. They would also be responsible for disposal fees and hauling to the landfill. Getting 20 acres worth of grass clippings to the landfill will be a task in itself. If they want the clippings removed from the property, you will probably need to sub-contract that out to a hauling company. It would probably take several 20 yard dump truck loads to get rid of the clippings.

I would try to convince them to have you cut it twice weekly and mulch everything.

out4now
01-05-2005, 07:18 PM
When you first started talking about this complex I told you althetic directors can be PITA's. Get a Goosen Versa vac or rent a turf vacuum. A good one meant for large jobs. Do you have to haul the clippings? Oh yhea figure in the cost of a roll off container now too. Mulch them as fine as you can first and then if they still won't go for it you'll have to rent a vacuum. We used to rent Gravely's to do ours but I don't think they make them anymore, haven't seen any Gravely chippers in awhile now either. Your rental yard should have a good vacuum available though. No less than 80 an hour for all that trouble. http://www.goossen.com/products/TV_40_1.jpg It will look something like this or if you need more there's this
http://www.brouwerturf.com/products/vacuum/bv85/index.html

Precision
01-05-2005, 08:02 PM
I will say right up front I have no experience at this kind of work.

But, obviously you don't want to bag, so base your bid on that. I would assume that cutting twice a week would cost just slightly less than the current single cut. So my thought would to begin your pricing of bagging at 2.5 times the current price for once per week cutting.

Obvoiusly, check out your costs and make sure that even makes it worth it.

Something that I notice, is that if you mulch everything and wait and look at the first stuff you cut, the clipping volume has decreased by 50%. So if you do end up bagging, it might be worth it to mulch mow, then when you are done run it over with a vac / bagger system.

You might even try getting them to let you mulch one field twice per week for a while to see if that will be enough of an improvement for them over the current plan.

My hat is off to you if you end up bagging. That would be a huge nightmare.

coastallandscapesolutions
01-05-2005, 08:44 PM
Ok, $150/acre


Keep going..........

BobwithECLC
01-05-2005, 08:50 PM
Okay I see all these prices for bagging. But I am wondering why do they want to have it bagged in the first place?

KathysLGC
01-05-2005, 09:07 PM
Get 15 goats.

KathysLGC
01-05-2005, 09:08 PM
Or use Meg mo's :D

jbell113
01-05-2005, 09:41 PM
i would take your price of cutting ..without bagging ...and times it by 4 and that would be the price for bagging

jajwrigh
01-05-2005, 10:44 PM
I was definately thinking mulch or mow more often....that is too much work to bag all of that!!

rodfather
01-05-2005, 10:49 PM
Like I said, we bagged 2 10.5 acre polo fields each week and you CANNOT believe how much clippings that amounts to. Cut twice a week when needed and you will be ok. Been there/done it, trust me

Kelly's Landscaping
01-05-2005, 11:07 PM
Only on a chem lawn have I ever seen over a yard of clippings on an acre that was cut normally. So that said you are looking at 15-25 yards a week at the max. Now that will fill 2 normal size rack bodies so that is a lot of clippings. It can be done I would want about 75 an acre plus about 100 for dump fees so 1600 a cut and I would do it.

LB Landscaping
01-05-2005, 11:09 PM
I've got aa 3 acre account that has to be bagged. During spring or rainy seasons when the grass grows at a good rate I fill my 1 ton dump just mowing it once. Where are you able to dump clippings and whats the cost??

scaglawnsnj
01-06-2005, 02:03 PM
if i got a call for 20 acres i would run for the hills..or if they agreed on 300 a week i would sent 3 guys with 48" mowers to attack..jus fill the truck and dump it at the local dump. after done..that would be a profitable day 3 guys 7.75 hr for half day=93.00 dump fee 15.00 my pay for checking up 200.00

FrankenScagMachines
01-06-2005, 02:35 PM
if i got a call for 20 acres i would run for the hills..or if they agreed on 300 a week i would sent 3 guys with 48" mowers to attack..jus fill the truck and dump it at the local dump. after done..that would be a profitable day 3 guys 7.75 hr for half day=93.00 dump fee 15.00 my pay for checking up 200.00
You can't be serious? Your reasoning and pricing structure for that job would make me rather die than even give a bid on it!

Bagging is a lot of work on jobs where you have to dump more than a couple of times. I have a great setup to bag- 52" Ferris 23hp Ztr with 10 bushel deck driven collection system. Its fast and easy to bag with this. To haul and dispose of clippings, a Ford F350 flatbed with sides. In summer I usually run 18" or 24" tall sides for general mowing operations this is sufficient to contain clippings from a full day of bagging for me on small residentials (I have one day's worth of bagging to do so i do it all in the same day and have a bagging day). In the fall, I put on 3' steel sides (grain truck style) plus steel ribs to go another 12" so 4' high, then a tarp strapped on top of that, and the leaf vac sucks and packs them into that resulting box. I never bagged more than a couple acres in one yard and then only a few times, so it would be hard to guess how much grass that would be, but I know that $300 for one job bagging the whole way would only buy about 4 hrs of my time if working by myself, that includes dumping as we can dump yard waste free here although it still takes time. I would say, with the 3' sides on it, my truck would probably be full from that, and I would say I could cover ABOUT 5 acres (it totally depends on the growth, sometimes i can mow full speed with bagger on if its thin and not a lot of growth, and hardly dump the bagger, other times have to go 5 mph and dump every 15 minutes) in that 4 hr period of time. However, since pricing by the job and this is a huge job i'd probably go higher than the $60 per acre that i just came up with there. Generally side discharging is about $40-50 an acre here when dealing with places over an acre and under say 10 acres. So i would probably charge, hmm... about 75 an acre for that job = $1500. I'd probably tack on another few hundred "just in case" and then another couple hundred just because I can... so make it an even $2,000 and we got a deal! I would get it on contract for at least one season if not two or three even. Then I would go buy a very large mower with a very large collection system. Possibly a front deck mower 72" or so with the biggest Trac-Vac they make. That should have no problem doing at least double my productivity with my Ferris on a job that size! Possibly up to 3 times the productivity. Now we are making some money, $125 an hour sound ok to you? Sounds fine to me. Then we buy a decent looking grain truck and a 30hp+ tow behind vac loader, OR get an old city Giant-Vac leaf vac trailer from an auction or Ebay, and rebuild it. Send that out there to suck up the grass and haul off. Or, go back to the grain truck with an open top and take a loader of some sort to load it. This will not be a cheap ordeal, for sure. With that front deck mower + trac vac running all day you shouldn't have any trouble doing that job in probably 6 or 7 hrs? Then in the afternoon send over another guy with a rig to dispose of all the grass the mower has accumulated. In and out in one day. Get the field owner to tell his friends maybe pick up another similar job and really make the equipment pay for itself. payup :cool2:
This is something I would consider. For $300 i would just stay in bed :sleeping: :rolleyes: in fact i don't beleive any legitimate LCO could afford to cover their costs to do it within a day or two at a price of $300... if they could my hats off to them! I realize you may be in a hugely depressed market area, but $15 an acre to bag and dispose of clippings, you are LOSING MONEY and you cannot tell me otherwise. There is no humanly possible way to profit at that price. If thats all your market will bear, i would run as fast as possible. Seriously i would pack up my stuff and move somewhere else.

rgjlawn
01-06-2005, 02:35 PM
if i got a call for 20 acres i would run for the hills..or if they agreed on 300 a week i would sent 3 guys with 48" mowers to attack..jus fill the truck and dump it at the local dump. after done..that would be a profitable day 3 guys 7.75 hr for half day=93.00 dump fee 15.00 my pay for checking up 200.00
you must like to work for chicken feed, 3 guys 3 mowers truck trailer, taxes overhead misc. crazy crazy crazy

Kelly's Landscaping
01-06-2005, 03:09 PM
I would like to know how many sq ft gmj thinks are in an acre and how many acres he thinks a 48 can cut an hour while bagging? One I think the 3-man crew with that equipment would take 9-10 hours so figure 27-30 man-hours. Then I doubt you will have 3 guys working for 65 cents over minimum wage I realize your state may not be at 7.10 yet like mine but you can not be that far back your next door to us. Dump fees would be the next issue as I stated I expect it would be 15-25 cubic yards most land fills charge by the ton so lets say 4 tons I know thatís going to be a hell of a lot more then 15 dollars. I have a town I work in that has the balls to charge 96 dollars a ton. We do have the ability to use organic place he charges by the yard not the ton so 5 a yard times 20 yards and thatís a 100 dollars. Honestly speaking if you bid that and tried that price you would lose money no questions asked.

scaglawnsnj
01-06-2005, 03:28 PM
if i got a call for 20 acres i would run for the hills..or if they agreed on 300 a week i would sent 3 guys with 48" mowers to attack..jus fill the truck and dump it at the local dump. after done..that would be a profitable day 3 guys 7.75 hr for half day=93.00 dump fee 35.00 my pay for checking up 200.00


OPPS I CALCULATED 2 ACRES MY BAD 2200.00 SOUNDS RIGHT
MIN WAGE IN NJ 5.35 THE MEXICANS WORK FOR $5-10.

rodfather
01-06-2005, 03:40 PM
Do they bag the fairways at Pebble Beach? Nope.
Do they bag the outfield at Yankees Stadium? Nope.

I'm telling ya to mow twice a week and you can forget bagging altogether. Period

DennisF
01-06-2005, 03:52 PM
if i got a call for 20 acres i would run for the hills..or if they agreed on 300 a week i would sent 3 guys with 48" mowers to attack..jus fill the truck and dump it at the local dump. after done..that would be a profitable day 3 guys 7.75 hr for half day=93.00 dump fee 15.00 my pay for checking up 200.00

I would bid the job at $1400 per cut, plus disposal and hauling. Then I would sub-contract it to you at $300 and pocket $1100 for doing nothing. That sounds like a win-win situation for everyone.

On the serious side. You need to re-think your proposal. The disposal costs alone would be $200-$300. It would require a minimum of 2 dump truck loads to dispose of the clippings. At $100-$125 per load, plus landfill fees at $15 per ton...you can see that your proposal won't float.

all ferris
01-06-2005, 06:58 PM
Get 15 goats.

Then you'll have to pick up the POO.

Question for Mr. Rodfather: Who picks up the horse poo on the polo fields? I would imagine you could almost get a ZTR stuck in a pile of poo that big. lol :dizzy:

rodfather
01-06-2005, 07:05 PM
Then you'll have to pick up the POO.

Question for Mr. Rodfather: Who picks up the horse poo on the polo fields? I would imagine you could almost get a ZTR stuck in a pile of poo that big. lol :dizzy:

Actually, there is very little cause the horses never really stop running. Now, over by the trailers where they change horses and water them down...that's a different story altogether, believe me...

mowerpower
01-07-2005, 10:31 AM
They only want it mowed once a week because they are only going to strip the fields once a week and have games once a week (Tuesday or Wednesday) and on weekends.

Kelly's Landscaping
01-07-2005, 01:34 PM
Just remember this you went into this business to make money the whole reason you risked your life savings your free time and your health is to make money. As much as you may want this account make sure it makes you money if its break-even or worse then you do not want it and you certainly do not need it.

Rollacosta
01-07-2005, 08:05 PM
let it go to seed and call in a combine

DennisF
01-07-2005, 10:09 PM
If they insist on bagging, you may want to walk away from the job. Believe me, bagging 20 acres is going to be a monumental undertaking. Unless you have the equipment to haul a mountain of grass clippings to the landfill, a job like that could blow up in your face.

I'm not trying to discourage you, but these kinds of jobs usually wind up costing more than they are worth (both in headaches and money).

If you do decide to bid the job make sure that you bid on the high side. Leave yourself a little leeway so that you can make a reasonable profit from the job.

Rollacosta
01-08-2005, 01:49 PM
lower league PRO clubs overhere rarely bag clippings ,in general football [soccer] pitches are cut with large gang/reel mowers.[i think this cutting method is important].give them 2 prices 1 to cut and drop other 2 bag.. i contract to IPSWICH TOWN FC i know what i'm talking about ,brother plays semi pro soccer as well..leave the bagging up to premiership teams like MANCHESTER UTD and LIVERPOOL FC..etc

oldturf
01-10-2005, 12:00 AM
Now the people with the 20 acre soccer complex want "all grass clippings removed" however we decide to do this is our choice. How many ways are there besides bagging ? What will we do with all this grass ? Now how much do we bid (this is alot more work) ? Any input you guys can give me will be appreciated. Thanks in advance! I'm mowing with 2- 60 inch choppers, once a week .
I cut 85 acres of soccer fields every week, they wanted it bagged. I convinced them that they would be better served if I mowed more often and no bagging required,unless weather conditions make it impossible to mow and they have a grass build up, then remove excess clippings. Quote your regular price per mow plus 2 times that amount when ever cleanup is necessary. Give them another quote at 3 times your normal mow fee for mow and pick up, believe me this is not an over charge. They will agree to the clean up as necessary, if you are dealing with one person. If you have to deal with the whole committee, good luck. Remember you will have to do this for a whole year.

worthbrown
01-10-2005, 09:19 PM
I have a large vac made by Brouwer for my 250 acre sod farm. I don't know the bushel size, but the pickup is 12 feet wide, the box is about 8 feet wide, 5 feet tall, and 14 feet long. I use this as a last resort, when the grass gets too tall and leaves clippings on top of the grass. In normal conditions, I only clip off about 1/4 inch at a time. This machine is about $22,000, so it would probably not be a viable option, but it is another option.

Rollacosta
01-11-2005, 05:33 PM
why do you folks have soccer pitches it's not like any of you understand the game or the USA will become good at the it

out4now
01-11-2005, 05:58 PM
I sense some hostility. lol

Rollacosta
01-11-2005, 06:10 PM
haha no hostility here out4now ..i meant to include a smiley :) :)

Smithers
01-11-2005, 06:30 PM
why do you folks have soccer pitches it's not like any of you understand the game or the USA will become good at the it
hahahah...that is funny. i came from Europe, so i know exactly what you meant, Rollacosta. :):)

never get good at it....that was funny. :)

QualityLawnCare4u
01-11-2005, 08:40 PM
Mowerpower, the thought of bagging AND removing 20 acres is a monumental task. Would not be so bad if had on site dumping, but having to haul it off is much worse. Personally I would walk away from this with the equipment I have. If you do take it make it worth your while. Im afraid this could turn into a bad job you wished you had passed on.