Billy goat KD Vs. gum balls

Discussion in 'Landscape Maintenance' started by, Oct 17, 2011.

  1. LawnSite Member
    Messages: 169

    Here in Oklahoma lots of people back in the day were stupid enough to plant these trees which dump spike ball unto the ground and they are a pain to pick up. (for them anyways... for us it like picking up dollar bills...) I have a chance to buy a Billy goat KD (no longer made) with hose attachment and no, I'm not going to try to pick up a yard full of leaves with it rather I want to use it for picking up all the junk alongside the curb/pick up junk out of the flower beds/picking up gum balls. To make it worth it for us we need it to pick up gumballs... can it do it?

    Any other general comments on the KD vacs? (btw. its the one with a honda engine not a b&s)

  2. Mr. Force® Billy Goat Industries

    Mr. Force® Billy Goat Industries LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 511

    You'll never get them all up if you're on grass, but the shorter the grass the better you'll get them. I've done this many times in testing (ironically someone planted over 20 of them along our driveway here almost 30 years ago) You need to push the unit forward and pull it back (like a vacuum on carpet) to get up to 90% of them up. Lower the intake until it's getting them to your satisfaction. It's a lower setting than the "rule of thumb" setting normally used for getting leaves.

    The only real cure for a getting all of the sweet gum balls?, is a chainsaw....
  3. LawnSite Member
    Messages: 169

    Haha I agree the chain saw is the only cure!

    Thanks for the info "Mr. Force". I'm pretty sure we're going to give the machine a go and I'll start a thread letting other here about my thoughts on it.
  4. dboyd351

    dboyd351 LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,124

  5. White Gardens

    White Gardens LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 6,776

    Have you thought about a cheap lawn sweeper? That might be better for the occasional use.

    That and if I recall, the gumballs are only bad every other year.

  6. LawnSite Member
    Messages: 169

    Bag oh nut... hmm... I like the idea but its a little more of a niche product than what my company can buy right now. if the billy goat isn't up for gumballs I will probably give it a whirl thou.

    Lawn sweeper? Never seen one of them before... look it up on Google... interesting...but I think all give the billy goat a try. (I'm going to bring a bag of gumballs to the guys house I'm buying the unit from and see how it does. lol)
  7. White Gardens

    White Gardens LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 6,776

    Seriously? They've been around for eons and work great. It would go about 10 times faster than a billy goat. No walking either, just pull it behind your mower.

    I use one after I de-thach yards. I don't do but maybe a couple a season so the sweeper works great. The only thing that stinks is that occasionally you might get a rock that comes back at you, but it's more of a nuisance than anything.

    With the lawn sweeper you get less moving parts for malfunction. If you kill the sweeper, it probably would be cheaper to go buy another one rather than spending the money on fixing a lawn vac.

  8. LawnSite Member
    Messages: 169

    Well I've "heard" of one but never used one/seen one used. haha

    The reason I was hopping the Billy Goat could do is that I want to buy I vac to pick up debris along side the curb/in the flower bed. I was just trying to find a job for it that it could work for me to pay for itself. (no use getting it if its losing me money!) I'm just hoping it goes faster than picking them up with a rack, "big green hands" and a bag... anyone else have any experience with one of these vacs?

    White Gardens - What brand of lawn sweeper do you recommend?
  9. White Gardens

    White Gardens LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 6,776

    John Deere and Agri Fab are the two that come to mind first. Though homeowners models. The old Sears one we had when I was growing up worked every year around the farm for as long as I remembered. Even though not used often, there was nothing to it mechanically, so nothing broke. It would pick up leaves and light debris pretty easily. It mainly got used for when I got behind on mowing the lawn and I would get it out to pick up grass.

    After originally posting, I started looking around as I've toyed with the notion of actually buying one the next chance I get. From what I could tell that you could go extremely high end and get a TORO, or middle or the road, well built standard model from Ohio Steel.

    From the reviews I read, it looks like the Ohio Steel picked up sticks and other debris really well compared to other models.

  10. dboyd351

    dboyd351 LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,124

    Northern Tool has lawn sweepers at a pretty good price that get good reviews, too. I actually just bought one, but our leaves haven't fallen, so I haven't tried it yet.

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