Any Solo Operators use a Leaf Loader?

Discussion in 'Landscape Maintenance' started by recycledsole, Dec 13, 2012.

  1. recycledsole

    recycledsole LawnSite Gold Member
    from MD
    Messages: 3,274

    If so, I would really like to know how. I am really struggling taking so many loads of leaves in tarps- they are heavy! But leaf loaders are quite heavy and I can not mount and dismount it by myself. Id like to hear what you all do if you care to share.
    Thank you very much
  2. RSK Property Maintenance

    RSK Property Maintenance LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,504

    I used one solo, put it on the trailer, and tow it with the dump truck so that way you only need to take a tube from the leaf loaded to the dump truck off, and obviously drop the trailer. or have something welded up so it will mount into the plow mounts on the front of the dump truck and that way you leave it on until leaves are done and you just pull a pipe off the put that on trailer before you start driving. tarps are pretty out dated, and tough to load leaves.
  3. buttaluv

    buttaluv LawnSite Senior Member
    from MidWest
    Messages: 572

    I think I'm going to get one...haven't figured out quite how I'm going to run though...ideally it's nice to have the box, loader or even a dump trailer on one truck and mowers on another....but I have to do it all in one rig....
  4. caseysmowing

    caseysmowing LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,137

    I have mine with me all the time along with a ZTR,walkbehind blower and BP blowers. Its on a little cart with wheels and I roll it off the trailer and put it in the hitch and go on. When I have to dump I can't fit the cart underneath it anymore so I just pull it out go dump and try to have the back of the truck pointed down hill if possible. Think real hard about how much tarping leaves sucks and tilt it back and lift like hell!!! I'm not saying it is easy or I get it on the first try every time but it's possible. The loader is a 16hp trac vac. The ideal way is to have it mounted where you don't have to take it off and can still pull a trailer. When I get a bigger truck that is what I'm going to do. Also I'm a small guy 5,8 150lbs.
  5. Ethanslawn

    Ethanslawn LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 283

    im solo 80% of the time (have my dad help me every now and then) thats what we did we bought a dump insert built a box(2x4s and plywood, metal screening for top). We mounted the loader on the front of my trailer 2x4s across the top rails(i put wood sides added) and we overbuilt the mounting and the box (first year with loader). This was the BEST and MOST EFFICIENT way of doing it. THen if i had a smaller job i just took my z or wb and vacuum up what i couldnt get after i had blown a major toward the truck in a pile.
  6. zackvbra

    zackvbra LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 553

    i just started offering leaf clean up this year, and the way ive been doing it is bagging the crap out of it with my ztr power bagger, riding the load over to the truck with the tarp laid out in the bed, and dumping the load into the tarp.

    no need for a leaf loader. i mean unless you have a god-ton of clean ups lined up. just my opinion.
  7. caseysmowing

    caseysmowing LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,137

    How do you dump with this setup?? Do you unhook the trailer or leave it??
  8. zackvbra

    zackvbra LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 553

    i leave it on there. at the dump site, i dont have a container to put them in, so i just pull the tarp out and dump it on the ground beside the trailer. i try my best not to dump a lot right behind the truck, but sometimes i mess up and do, but its not a big deal because i just run over the pile with the trailer.

    and to keep the leaves from blowing out while im on my way to the dump site, i use two ratchet straps. i pull both sides of the tarp over the leaves, and strap it cross ways across the top of the tarp. this trick i learned from a guy on this site.
  9. caseysmowing

    caseysmowing LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,137

    I'm sorry, I was refering to the guy that has his vac on the trailer. Must of hit the wrong button. BTW farther North you go you will have massive amounts of leaves.
  10. RSK Property Maintenance

    RSK Property Maintenance LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,504

    that's actually how I did the majority of my clean ups this year, works pretty good especially with the scag cheetah i bought in june with a 34hp engine, and a bagger i bought new in the end off september, I just continue to cut all my lawns every week or every other week depending on what they need, and bag them, then once the grass stops growing, and the leaves are all down, I blow all the beds out and bag the lawn for a final time, comes out pretty mint, and takes a lot less time for the final clean up. and I charge the same price as every year before, so the customer is happy there lawn looks good all the time, and there is no price increase and i'm happy because I just made 3-400 in an hour or less usually. the other clean ups I do that aren't my regular lawn customers i'm going to really push hard next spring to switch to having me do the lawn all year and then their clean ups will fly too vs. spending 3-4hrs on a 400 dollar clean up. It really is the most efficient way to do a clean up. i suppose someone will argue that its more wear and tear on the mower or something dumb like that but i really don't care, because i'm making enough to buy a new cheetah every year, with a bagger system. but obviously i don't need that, i may consider a second cheetah and bagger system next year depending on how things go in the spring but i certainly don't need another one yet.

    that would be me. some yards up here have literally over 2000lbs of leaves that have to be hauled away each year. I am using my dads mitsubishi fuso cab over dump truck and it literally holds almost 15 yards, its a 12ft mason dump with 3 or 4ft metal sides welded on, and its 7ft wide, i don't even put a box on it, its so big already and the leaf vac shreds the leaves pretty well, so honestly I only dump once a day when i'm done for the day after I disconnect my trailer, but yah if had to dump more then once per day it would be pretty annoying. that's why when i get my own dump truck i'm mounting the leaf vac in the front on the truck in the plow frame, that way it stays on the truck for the whole leaf season.

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