Portablr irrigation

Discussion in 'Irrigation' started by muddstopper, Nov 23, 2003.

  1. muddstopper

    muddstopper LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,342

    I am thinking about building a few portable irrigation systems to us along with my hydroseeding business. The problem is I have no real knowledge of how an irrigation system should be set up. My plans are to purchase the plastic tanks, install an irrigation pump along with a manifold for the different #of zones, make little stands for the sprinkler head and mount all of this on a small trailer. I plan on obtaining water from the residents connecting by way of a water hose which will have a flow valve to cut the water off when the tank get full and will cut on when the water level gets below a certain point. My problem is what size pump should I buy, and how many gal of water will it pump, what would be the best type of manifold/timer would be best for this type situation, and what type of sprayheads would be best to use. I am thinkg at least a 6 zone system with the heads being connected to the manifold by way of regular water hose. Distances for running hose will be flexible enough to place wherever best coverage would be. Most homeowners here get their water from wells and a lot of them are only summer residents. Most seeding jobs that I do are for people that arenot around most of the time and there isnt anybody to see that the new grass is kept watered. I plan on renting these tanks to the owners after I complete the hydroseeding and also monitoring to insure that the lawns are kept watered for a sufficient time to get a good stand of grass. I hope some of you irrigation experts can help me on this. Any and all info will be appreciated. I need info concering how long each head will need to spray to properly irrigate the area,and how far each head will spray, and how much water is actually consumed at each head. All of this info will help me determine if this plan is actually feasible or not. I may not replie to any answers right away as I am going out of town and wont be able to read your replies for a couple of day so I would like to thank you for your help in advance.
     
  2. shearbolt

    shearbolt LawnSite Member
    Posts: 171

    We use multiple timers to water unattended jobs.
     
  3. turfman59

    turfman59 LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 801

    Sounds like a billing nightmare to me, If you have multiple jobs your going to need a lot of equipment to keep this all going. If they cant afford irrigation, I think its kind of like taking a bath with your socks on IMOP,,,,, Sell them a permanent system. These clients actually want to spend their money on one you just have to sell'em....
     
  4. muddstopper

    muddstopper LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,342

    I had planned on building several of these systems but without knowing what kinds of pumps,sprinkler heads ect that i am going to need to make it actually work it will be hard to figure out the feasibility of this project. Selling irrigation in this area is an extremly hard sell. Most residents are on their own private wells or community wells and their water is in limited amounts. They are afraid they will run out of water if they run it to much and just wont install an irrigation system. I only know of 2 systems, besides the golf course, in this area. What I have planned is just for use after I have seeded a new lawn. When I get thru seeding I leave one of the units at the site, set it up, check on it every day or two and remove it when the grass is ready to mow. People will pay for this service until their new grass is established, 3 to 4 weeks and then let mother nature take over, good or bad. It will also help me with the callbacks that happen when people dont water their new grass and it dies out. Try giving me a few numbers to work with, it might turn out that you are entirely correct in the problems that I will face doing this, and then again, it might not be as bad as it sounds.
    If I knew how to install a system I could probably figure this out my self. Another reason I don try to sell irrigation to my customers.
     
  5. muddstopper

    muddstopper LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,342

    The lack of replies have me thinking that this is totaly unfeasible or everybody is to busy eating turkey to reply. Heck my wife has kicked me out of the kitchen so many times today that my butts getting sore.
     
  6. DUSTYCEDAR

    DUSTYCEDAR LawnSite Fanatic
    from PA
    Posts: 5,137

    i have thought about something like that but when i looked into it it was 2 much invested and not a good return if i have a place that needs watered i get a tripod sprinkler it sits 5 ft high and will spray 90ft circle i ste that up on a timer and leave it i bill 4 the time i have to drive out and move it if they dont want to pay the lawn can die payup
     
  7. muddstopper

    muddstopper LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,342

    Dusty,
    I have tried the tripod sprinklers, but not with the timers. I am looking to improve my services and reputation by having satisfied customers. Letting the grass die is not going to get me the "good "word of mouth advertising that is needed to have a successfull business. I realize that it is impossible to satisfy every customer but I feel that if an honest effort isnt put forth then it wouldnt be right to put the blame on the customer either. I feel that I need at least six or eight of these sprinkler systems to provide the service that that would be nessecary to satisfy "my requirements". Having these units would also allow me to continue hydroseeding into the summer months when seeding without watering is sure to fail. I also realize that the return on my investment will take a while to recover, but if the increase in satified customers leads to more customers, and expands the time that I can seed, then the return on the time, effort, and money spent will more than offset the cost of the systems. There are a lot of people getting into hydroseeding, setting myself apart from some of these fly by nite operators and filling a niche in the hydroseeding market is a way that I feel will help me improve my business. Most of thes posts are along the lines that what I am suggesting isnt worth the hassel, and maybe its not, but if you havent tried it how do you know it wont work. I fail to see the hassel. I take the system with me when I get ready to seed, I hook it up and place the heads when I get thru seeding and then I leave, I return and pick the machine back up when the customer doesnt need it anymore and take it to another customer and repeat the process.
    If anybody has any suggestions as to pump requirements, flows and pressures, head types, water consumption used per head, timers and manifold types, ect. Please post.
     
  8. DUSTYCEDAR

    DUSTYCEDAR LawnSite Fanatic
    from PA
    Posts: 5,137

    do u have a local sprinkler supplu house near by they have the big rotors thay u may want and the flow needed then u can see what kind of pump u will need try the toro web page or hunter
     
  9. muddstopper

    muddstopper LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,342

    No, there is no supply house, local hardware stores, Ace ect. there is a home depot in the next town. I have done a small search on the web and have been reading the guide posted there by Jess Strikler(sp). Havent actually looked at any manufacturer yet. Research, research, seems a never ending trail. Have also looked at a lot of pump manufaturers, I just havent figured out how much water I need to irrigate properly. Is there a formula for that?
     
  10. turfman59

    turfman59 LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 801

    You have to educate the client on how important watering is. If they are not going to water it, the first 5 weeks tell them they might as well not even do the project. make them responsible. How much knowledge do you have on ET rates. You must first educate yourself to be able to speak the language to your customer. There would be no reason to absorb a temporary sprinkler system in the cost of Hydro seeding. this should be a stand alone charge. Just like when I planted 12K dollars worth of trees this year the watering of them was one half of the total installation. If you not in an area that lawn sprinkling is a standard, them how neccesary is Hydroseeding....Lets keep this discussion going
     

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