$400/hour - thanks TURFCO

Discussion in 'Fertilizer Application' started by americanlawn, Nov 1, 2010.

  1. americanlawn

    americanlawn LawnSite Fanatic
    from midwest
    Messages: 5,954

    Saturdays this fall we've mainly been treating commercial properties and acreages. (Spreading fert & spraying weeds as needed with ride-on units).

    The guys clock in at 8:00 a.m. and they clock out by 1:00 p.m. on Saturdays so they get home in time to watch the HAWKEYES.

    Average production = $300 - $415 per hour on Saturdays. Last Saturday, one T-Man did $465 per hour. One truck/one guy (no trailer) = over $2500.

    Weekdays, I try to "load them up" with production. I'll send these (ride-on) guys out with 18 - 25 stops per day, and they STILL get in before the "push spreader" guys who have the same number of stops. :confused:

    Don't worry -- the quality of application is there. In fact, we have fewer "call backs" regarding our "ride-on" app's compared to hand-push/spray app's.

    The main complaint I have regarding the T3000 is that we have to replace the pump diaphragms up to 3 times per year per unit. This takes nearly an hour of down time. I understand the 2011 T3000 will have a different pump that addresses this, and it also offers an electric start option is available for those that think this is necessary. Did anybody get a chance to see these T3000 upgrades at the GIE? We plan to upgrade all of our T's before spring with the new pumps. Don't think we will opt for the electric start, but some guys like it....

    rscvp, thanks
  2. br549oicu8

    br549oicu8 LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,230

    Good job, Larry! Was hoping you could have made it to Louisville this season. Maybe next......
    I did get to see the T again......, and I am sure glad it works well for you!
    I did see some interesting new stuff there, too.
  3. Grandview

    Grandview LawnSite Gold Member
    from WI
    Messages: 3,251

    Just think what you could do with a Z.
  4. Fresh_Cut

    Fresh_Cut LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 344

    OK, I'm new here.... what kind of "ride on" equipment are you referring to?

    I just started with the organic spray treatments and I plan to get a tank with boom that mounts on my eXmark Lazer Z. Maybe a 15 gallon unit.

    Is this something similar to what you are running?
  5. rcreech

    rcreech Sponsor
    Male, from OHIO
    Messages: 6,162

    That is sweet Larry!

    I have never seen a post show income/hour for a machine...although it is cool to talk about, it is such a subjective way to look at it.

    I know that is the way I look at it for my business, but hard to say it was a person or machine and here is why....

    If I charge $100 an acre with a ride on and you can charge $1000 an acre for a push spreader you technically didn't do 10x more area then me and that would say that the push spreader OUT PERFORMED the ride on!

    Just trying to make a point! :laugh:

    You just charged more/acre.

    About the only way one can look at a machine IMO is to look at sq ft per hour.

    I am not sure I follow you!

    BTW...Thanks for having your Agrium guy call me the other day! I told him you said he SUCKED at football and he just laughed!!!!! :laugh:
  6. OrganicsMaine

    OrganicsMaine LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 553

    I think because he broke it down into an hourly rate, it is a good way to look at it. Now drill that down a bit and figure out what it costs to run that machine and see what the NET per hour is. That is where the good stuff is!
  7. rcreech

    rcreech Sponsor
    Male, from OHIO
    Messages: 6,162

    That is exactly what I do!

    Just think it is hard to compare machines/anything as the rate/acre is what sets the standard.

    Not time or sq ft.hour.

    If you are charging $10/sq ft...that is $430 doing 1 acre/hour
    If you are charging $1/sq ft....that is $43 doing 1 acre/hour

    Wherever you are between that sets your total $$$$$/hour.

    See what I am saying?
  8. grassman177

    grassman177 LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 9,795

    it is one way to look at it , but yes it is completely subjective. good though larry.
  9. americanlawn

    americanlawn LawnSite Fanatic
    from midwest
    Messages: 5,954

    First off RC -- I did NOT suck at football in high school. :laugh: I played offensive & defensive end, and my high school team played against my Agrium rep's team (he was quarterback). He's a great guy as you now know. It's also nice to get a competitive quote from those guys.

    This year we started recording "start/finish times" on each property. I guess it's state law now. At month end, I went through the "actual times" our applicators were actually on properties during the month of October (and this included drive time in between stops). The numbers surprised me, and at the same time explained why the 3 ride-on guys usually returned before the "push-spreader/hand spray guys". When the weather permitted (and it was good in October for the most part), all guys were doing 20 - 25 lawns per day.

    Figure $3.00 to $3.50 per K on larger lawns. Small lawns = much more $$ per K. $450 per hour = properties 15,000 - 248,000 square feet (last Saturday). (Could have run a Z on most of these areas)

    Here's where I feel bad......we pay a 2% production commission. This is unfair for the guys who treat small properties. I'll try to make it up to them with their year-end bonuses, but next year I figure 2% for ride-on's and 4% for the guys who treat small lawns. Sound fair???

    It's pretty easy to say that "machines" make the big money (and they do), but in the end -- it's the "individual" -- gotta treat 'em right. (just gave a $2000 loan to one of them today, and it was a sound investment)

    I hate giving out info regarding prices, pay, incentitives, etc, but I figured folks might be interested on how we do things. God bless, americanlawn
  10. Grandview

    Grandview LawnSite Gold Member
    from WI
    Messages: 3,251

    An applicator producing 300.00 to 400.00 per hour is good. You know he is moving quickly during fill times and not taking a lot of breaks. It is more than the machine.

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