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Grooming Ball Diamonds, need advice

Discussion in 'Sports Field Management' started by stratfordpropertycare, Mar 18, 2011.

  1. stratfordpropertycare

    stratfordpropertycare LawnSite Member
    Posts: 34

    Got asked to quote 3 stonedust ball diamonds and 1000" pathway for monlthy grooming.

    I just picked up a 3yrs old 72" Harley power rake for a few grand, but have not had a chance to try it out yet... because of the snow on the ground here...

    I want to propose an hourly rate using a Case D45hp turf tire equipped 4x4 tractor with a front end bucket loader and a PTO equipped 72" Harley power angle rake. Rake specs below:


    Anybody have any Harley Rake experince with ball diamonds etc care to share their ideas and pricing ??

    Many thanks
  2. P.Services

    P.Services LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 6,322

    You don't need to harley rake a ball field!!!!! How about a york rake or how about a drag like they normally use. You need to do some research sunny boy.
    Posted via Mobile Device
  3. stratfordpropertycare

    stratfordpropertycare LawnSite Member
    Posts: 34

    You need to learn how to read funny boy....., why would I BUY a York Rake when I already own a Harley rake.... Harley Rake is top of the line compared..... to a York

    But thanks for your expert opinion and your 1.5 cents worth of advice
  4. P.Services

    P.Services LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 6,322

    Ok you use that thing a time or two and then report back. I've groomed my more than fair share of fields over the last two years and I can tell you I would never ever ever put a harley rake on a infeild. Never. Now I say this for multiple reasons but I will explain the biggest one. Most if not all infeilds are made up from stone chips or Georgia red clay, this stuff is not 12" thick that you need pto power to turn it over. Its not even 4" thick on most fields. Especially the red clay, that stuff is a top coat and it is extremely expensive. Its very hard to harley rake only 1" deep but still be able to fill the divots and level the ruts. Even with the wheels set 1" is just so small of an amount you really are not using the harley rake for the purpose its built for. When it comes to infeilds I would take a john deere gator and a nice drag mat anyday. (Not a chain link fence a real drag mat made for this purpose) you do realize it takes all of 5-8 minutes to do a infeild start to finish right?
    Posted via Mobile Device
  5. LawnCareNoobie

    LawnCareNoobie LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 434

    I work at a college as a grounds keeper and we use a machine designed for grooming baseball diamonds. We use a SmithCo field rake kind of like whats shown in the attached picture. P. Services is right, you don't really want to dig deep. Unless the field needs to be completely redone or is not very level, a light scratch on the surface is really all you need.

  6. beaglegun

    beaglegun LawnSite Member
    Posts: 91

    I don't recommend breaking up the surface at all if the infield mix is a red clay /sand type like Marmix. I nail drag occasionally when it is damp. The lose topdressing is calcined clay on every field I work on and that provides your fielding/sliding surface. Breaking an infield up any deeper just allows for more rain outs and the #1 thing coaches want is to play. You just have to convince them that they don't need that 1" of broken infield mix on the top. That's the biggest problem I run into. A firm surface that cleats can penetrate is great for playing on after a rain. A good grade is the most important. Get the water off the field fast!

    I do harley rake about 1 time a year to level low places at 1st and 3rd. I also don't believe in blending a bunch of calcined clay into your infield mix. It just allows for more water penetration and more rain outs.

    Wetting the skinned area daily is the key. Keep the amount of moisture you want in that skinned area to keep the firmness you want where you have cleat penetration but the water won't soak in to much.

    I've seen a few crushed limestone fields up north. You may be talking about them. They look and play like a gravel parking lot. A John Deere, Toro, Smithco, etc. infield groomer with a scarifier and a finishing screen would make grooming fast and easy.
  7. landscaperDAVE

    landscaperDAVE LawnSite Member
    Posts: 4

  8. Diamondpro

    Diamondpro LawnSite Member
    Posts: 10

    I agree! By the way, what college?

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