Skid Sprayer Advice (compost tea)

Discussion in 'Organic Lawn Care' started by greenpepper, Jan 13, 2011.

  1. greenpepper

    greenpepper LawnSite Member
    Posts: 22

    Hello! I'm a long time lurker of this site and I have only posted a few times. First of all I want to thank all of those who share information and advice here. I've gained so much knowledge by frequenting this site...So thanks in advance!

    I'm launching my orgaincs business this year and I'm looking to purchase an efficient method of applying compost tea. I have a cub cadet dealer within a few minutes of my location and they offer this skid sprayer (http://www.cubcadet.com/webapp/wcs/stores/servlet/product_10051_14101_492259_52970_-1_600002_52970)

    I'm considering purchasing this piece of equipment and wanted the pros who are already in business to give this a once over and tell me if this would do the job.

    Again thanks for everything to those who share their opinions and advice! I look forward to any responses and as I gain knowledge of the industry I'll be happy to reciprocate!

    -Brett Pepper
     
  2. I had a look at the page that you linked. There's not really enough enough information to say if it's workable for sure.

    I'm pretty sure you would have to change the strainer screen since most of these sprayers are designed for chemical apps. It's likely too fine and you really want to get the 'chunks' out when you spray. Too fine a screen and you'll strain out fungal hyphae and bits of OM where many microbes are attached.

    Is the plumbing accessible for cleaning? Are there many abrupt 90 degree fittings?

    'Jet' agitation in some sprayers is pretty brutal on the microbes. At the same time, correct agitation is fairly important IMHO.

    The pump supplied with that sprayer looks to be a good one (it looks like a Hypro D-30 or D-50...both good pumps and parts easy to find). If it's anything aside from a D-30/50 I would pass if it's made by Hypro. Udor makes pumps which are more reliable (all our sprayers have Udor pumps) with very good availability of parts.

    In any case, keep spare diapgragms, valves, o ring sets and a regulator rebuild kit on hand just in case.

    I have attached a pic of one of our setups below. Note the sweeping 90 degree fittings and removable (removable by hand) siphon and return lines. A smaller nurse tank is a slick option to store undiluted compost tea. This particular unit has an aeration system set up on both tanks. I like this because you can dechlorinate water and store CT without retuning to your shop. :cool2:

    [​IMG]
     
  3. OrganicsMaine

    OrganicsMaine LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 553

    Hey Peter,

    How many square feet can be treated with this setup? If CT requires close to 10 gal/k, this could mean a lot of refills in a day.
     
  4. ICT Bill

    ICT Bill LawnSite Platinum Member
    Posts: 4,115

    2 gallons per 1000 is typical, some apply as much as 5 gallons per 1000, in Ag they only apply 5 gallons per acre as a foliar spray
    100 gallon tank, 50K on the high end 20K on the low end
     
  5. OrganicsMaine

    OrganicsMaine LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 553

    Thanks Bill,

    Somewhere on here I read that you need to really saturate the ground with ACT....well maybe not saturate, but that you need to be using a lot more than 2 gal per K.

    So is that rate with your product or with A or AACT?
     
  6. RigglePLC

    RigglePLC LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 12,341

    You may wish to get a sprayer that allows you to rotate the reel to spray out of the side of your truck. Scroll down two inches and look at the Gregson-Clark lineup; quality is important.
    http://www.gregsonclark.com/why_buy.html
    Be sure you have a fill-well filter to prevent chunks of organic material from entering the tank. You will want to use an inline filter to protect from plugging the pump. But not so fine that the filter plugs up frequently, say 100 mesh. You may need an adjustable spray gun and nozzle with one large hole so that it will not be clogged by organic debris. New diaphragms are the only thing I kept on hand for parts. You will not be using strong chemicals or anything abrasive so it should be easy on the pump. Keep the pump speed and pressure low to reduce excess agitation pressure.
     
    Last edited: Jan 14, 2011
  7. NattyLawn

    NattyLawn LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,643

    Bill,

    2 gallons per k might be typical with your product, but 4 gpk seems to be the norm for AACT. I go at 5-6gpk of tea and water as the carrier.

    In your ag reference, you say 5 gallons per acre, but is that for AACT and water or AACT only?
     
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  9. phasthound

    phasthound LawnSite Platinum Member
    Posts: 4,603

    I typically apply AACT at 5-6gal, which is why I have a 500gal/25gal tank trailer mounted spray rig. The 500gal is filled with AACT or H2O enough for a days work, the 25gal tank is plumbed to the 500 & is used for custom or spot treatments.

    This rig is for sale at about the same price as a Lesco 200gal space saver.
     
  10. Barefoot James

    Barefoot James LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 984

     

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