My possibly new compost topdresser...

Discussion in 'Organic Lawn Care' started by DeepGreenLawn, Jun 10, 2008.

  1. DeepGreenLawn

    DeepGreenLawn LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,372

    OK, Treegals way of taking out of the box items and making them work for your purposes and then saving a ton of money, ie. experimentations, has inspired me. I think I may have found my new compost topdresser, or at least a mini version to mess around with.

    I was helping my in-laws move some furniture they were replacing into their basement and found an old scotts drop spreader. I being the young one that I am have never seen one like this before and thought it was quite interesting. I will try and post some pics. I think it may work. We shall see.
     
  2. DeepGreenLawn

    DeepGreenLawn LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,372

    here is a picture of the spreader I am talking about. It has a lot of teeth at the bottom to spread out the fertilizer you know? I took most of them out. I left like every 4th one to keep a little sturdiness to it.

    What do you think? I think it will work great for my yard, it is only about 1500 sq ft. But give me a 5k lawn and it might take me a minute. But it is a start.

    770271_front200.jpg
     
  3. jeffinsgf

    jeffinsgf LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 641

    Even with most of the teeth removed, I predict your material will bridge over the opening and never work through. Sorry...been there, done that.
     
  4. DeepGreenLawn

    DeepGreenLawn LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,372

    you have actually used this for this reason? There is a roller kind of bar that I figured would help "agitate" the product and keep it flowing. I figured the compost will have to be pretty dry for it to sift through. I have just now got the teeth out. If it doesn't work I will try to use it as a prototype and make something more effecient. The basic concept seems to be pretty sound though.
     
  5. jeffinsgf

    jeffinsgf LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 641

    If your compost is sifted as fine as a granular product, and as dry as a granular product, then it will go through. Now, if you get that far, you'll have to look at volume. The goal in topdressing is usually to put down 1/8 to 1/4 inch of material. How many passes will it take with a dropseed spreader designed to spread granular fert and seed?

    Tried to topdress with sand with both a broadcast and dropseed spreader. Neither worked. I had a truckload of sand on my driveway, and no way to spread it. That was years and years ago...still a story my wife tells on me around my buddies.
     
  6. jeffinsgf

    jeffinsgf LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 641

  7. treegal1

    treegal1 LawnSite Gold Member
    Posts: 3,911

    your on to it now!!! the cheapo wagon, its like a drug. the thing about that spreader is size.there was a lesco 48" spreader that we used a long time ago, cost 500$ then??

    then we actually spent the money and got a real manure spreader............. it ok if you got the space and manure. we have left it at the "farm" for now.

    so now what to do, got some lawns that need 1/4- 1/2 inch of compost........ top dressers....eh. it is what it is.

    now we are getting to the point that we need a real top-dresser for residential yards, not an acre of sports turf or golf courses.

    lets see herewhat to do, needs a belt for when we lay the mud down, 48 " wide max for gate clearance, self propelled, on a huge wide foot print,electric powered would be nice, nice low center of gravity/ with a flat hopper thats really shovel tall not insane poo flinging high, while we are at it lets make this a tracked monster????
     
  8. DeepGreenLawn

    DeepGreenLawn LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,372

    looks heavy and hard to push. what i have would seem to do alright if I can get it to pass through. I was thinking leave it wide open and as long as it is falling it should cover pretty well. I have yet to try it, don't have time to be honest, but I can't wait.

    I see where your coming from with the manure spreader treegal, This is for residential lawns of typically 5k or less. Like my own lawn that is about 2k, probably less, there is no room to park a manure spreader let alone pull it around.

    I will definitely keep you updated on it though.
     
  9. jeffinsgf

    jeffinsgf LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 641

    You just described this: http://www.turfco.com/images2/MeterMatic/Mete-R-Matic.html -- except for the power, its gasoline, and its got huge flotation tires, instead of tracks. They've been making these for a lonnnng time. You can find them on eBay all the time for cheap. They may need a little re-hab, but Turfco is great about parts for old machines.

    If you're looking to get the job done right, with the minimum investment, then I refer back to the Earth & Turf link above to the ground powered unit.

    DGL, I'm not trying to rain on your parade, but your "heavy and hard to push..." comment shows that you are not thinking this all the way through. Let's say you get your drop spreader to actually flow (which I don't think you will). Look at the hopper...you'll be filling it every 20 seconds, if your application rate is correct. My huge tow-behind Turfco holds 2/3 of a yard, and even with it, I spend more time running back and forth to the supply than I do spreading.
     
  10. treegal1

    treegal1 LawnSite Gold Member
    Posts: 3,911

    that is a nice machine, thanks for the link
     

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