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Dump idea... Will it work???

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by LawnGuyFromTheFuture, Nov 12, 2006.

  1. LawnGuyFromTheFuture

    LawnGuyFromTheFuture LawnSite Member
    from Midwest
    Messages: 23

    For everyone with a leaf box that is not on a dump truck or dump trailer how about this.... at the bottom of the box mount rollers like semi trailers have for unloading boxes... put a piece of plywood on top of these rollers (sized to cover the bottom area less 1/2" or so all the way around for clearance...
    Hinge one side of the box to open so you can slide the plywood bottom out (leaves and all) tip plywood over to dump... slide plywood back in and go.. put ropes or a handle on the end of the plywood to grip and pull out.

    Would this work?
  2. Roger

    Roger LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 5,937

    Since the load of debris is on top of the plywood and the plywood has been pulled out, how do you plan to extract the plywood from under the load? You suggest "tipping plywood over to dump," but that suggests very little weight.

    I have a 5X10 trailer, 3 foot sides. When I get it packed tight with damp or wet leaves, one large forkfull is all I can handle. I cannot imagine trying to get a piece of plywood out from under the load after it has been rolled off the trailer. I would still have to fork off most of the debris from the plywood (if it was still in one piece) in order to get it free.

    You don't state the size of your truck or trailer. But, for your idea to work, I think the sheet of plywood would have to be one piece, covering the entire bottom (less the 1/2" you suggest).

    I don't think your idea would work for me. As stated above, I have a 5X10 trailer, without a dump. And, I continue to look for ideas to make the unloading task quicker. I have read about multiple layers of tarps. After reading so many ideas, I continue to conclude the 4-tined pitchfork is the best solution. With many suggestions, I believe I would spend more total time in the project, maybe less time getting debris off, but so much other time with tarps, chains, pallets, etc. I unload myself and the dumping area has no place (tree, pole, etc) to tie off for pulling anything out.

    My idea is to use a false endgate, with a windup roller on the back edge of the trailer bed. I remember using this scheme in the 1950s to unload heavy loads of silage off trailers. It was a simple scheme. However, I cannot find where to acquire the device used to wind the roller with the take-up chains attached to the false endgate. This idea is not unlike the LoadHandler device, but can be used for any width, any length, and will move heavier loads. I have inquired of LoadHandler, but they are not interested in making anything thing that does not fit a standard pickup bed.
  3. LwnmwrMan22

    LwnmwrMan22 LawnSite Platinum Member
    Messages: 4,373

    Two things.

    You don't really need rollers.

    You need to build an upright end at the front of your box, plus you don't really need a bottom.

    You then need some very heavy duty straps and fasten those securely to the corners of the upright end that's at the front of your box.

    You'll probably want to make some "skids" and attach them at the bottom, to keep this plywood, or whatever you're going to use from tipping when you pull it out.

    You don't want plywood on the bottom, or else you'll have to use something to get the plywood out from underneath the pile when you empty it.

    Anyways, then back up to a tree, or something extremely sturdy, and hook the straps to it and pull away from it.

    Just imagine a very tall table on it's side, with the bottom of the legs at the end of your pickup box, or trailer, whatever you're using.

    The biggest problem with this though, is that if you don't have a tractor, bobcat, or something to move the pile of leaves once they're out, or a large number of trees to do this to, that you'll soon have a very large pile of leaves / debris in front of all of your trees.

    If you wanted to, you could have a small hook or something on the front, so you could pull it out and away from the pile that's now on the ground.
  4. Jay Ray

    Jay Ray LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 6,510

    I have a 5 x 10 also Roger, and am considering buying the biggest LoadHandler in hopes that it would remove part of the load, maybe 60 to 75%. It will probably not work, but hope springs eternal, and I'll probably waste my money.
  5. Precision

    Precision LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,995

    I will start out by saying I don't do leaf work. (Florida)

    But we do large amounts of overgrown trimming clean ups and have mastered the method for removal of debris from the trailer. It involves a chain and a large object to attach to.

    The concept is to "Y" the chain with the open end attatched to the top end of the gate and the point end at the other end with the "V" part of chain laying on the floor of the trailer. You load large debris first, crossways along the bottom of the trailer then load whatever on top.
    When finished tarp and drive to the dump location.
    when at the dump take the "I" part of the chain and drag it over the top of the pile and attach to the large heavy object.
    Slowly drive away and the chain will roll up and slide off all the debris in less than a minute.
    remove the "I" part of the chain from the heavy object and drive until the entire chain clears the pile. collect the chain, lift the gate and return to work.

    The same thing can be done with the "V" part of the chain woven through the outer edges of a piece of chain link fence. The fence acts as a "net" for the leaves and use the same over the top method with the "I" part of the chain and pull off all the leaves. The chain link will end up on top of the pile.
    Then just walk the chain and chainlink off the pile, return to the trailer and drive off for more leaves.

    perhaps you would need an offset double layer of chainlink or perhaps a center chain as well to stiffen the chainlink. But this method should work for leaf removal. I have seen it successfully used for grass clippings.

    you will probably have to blow some of the leaves out of the trailer, but I would bet 80-90% come out with the chains.

    The best part is good proof coil chain last forever.
    chainlink scraps can be gotten for free.
    use quick links on the chain connections and as added connections to the chain link.
    Total cost less than $200.

    give it a try and let me know.
  6. LawnScapers of Dayton

    LawnScapers of Dayton LawnSite Silver Member
    Male, from Dayton, OH
    Messages: 2,572

    FYI.....I have unloaded 3000+ lbs. from my truck with my Loadhandler......
  7. Roger

    Roger LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 5,937

    When I talked with LoadHandler, and asked about trailer mounting, "... we think some have done it, but I don't know how they did the mounting." I agree with your notion of getting "most" debris out is a good thing.

    I have not bought one, and have not had an opportunity to see one closeby. Therefore, I don't know how the brackets could be modified to fit a trailer. I believe some fabrication would be needed, including welding. I do not have a welder, so that part would be difficult.

    One thought I did have with the false endgate idea is to mount rollers (pulleys ?) on the back, with the tops the same height as the bed floor. Then run cables, one from each side of the endgate, (wouldn't have to be very large, 1/4" ...?) from the base of the false endgate at the front of the bed, along the topside of the bed, over the roller, then down under the bed, back toward the front. Then mount a boat winch on the tongue, one for each cable. The cables would be wound on the boat winch spool. The boat winch would provide the necessary reduction to make the pulling power sufficient to pull back the endgate.

    By turning the winch, the cables are moving toward the front, but when passing over the roller, they would be pulling the endgate toward the rear of the trailer. I think all the parts would be easily available. However, some fabrication of the endgate, and the roller attachments at the back of the trailer would require some work.

    I hope I have made myself clear. Maybe somebody has crafted something like I'm discussiong and has some pictures.

    Every suggestion about an "endgate pullback" such as tires, pallets, etc, always requires something to tie off, such as a tree, pole, etc. When I dump, I am out in the open, with absolutely nothing to make an attachment.
  8. John Gamba

    John Gamba LawnSite Fanatic
    from ct
    Messages: 10,812

    At the opening or where the gate would be hinge a big sheet of plywood, at the other end by the cab or the front of the box mount a pole on an angle to the rear, mount a winch on top of the pole and winch up the piece of plywood so that the front lifts up and dumps the load. I just got a winch for 60.00 bucks that i used to help a friend do this. You will need high sides to do this.

    Please note!!!! make it so you can drop the pole in half so you dont hit anything.
  9. LawnGuyFromTheFuture

    LawnGuyFromTheFuture LawnSite Member
    from Midwest
    Messages: 23

    Roger mentioned the weight and getting the plywood out from under it... my idea was to slide the plywood out the side od the trailer.... as it slides out the front will tip to the ground leaving the plywood angled against the side of the trailer... a lot of the leaves would fall off and the rest can quickly be scaped off untill it's lite enough to tip the plywood over to dump the rest.
  10. cantoo

    cantoo LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,910

    You can buy a hoist for $500. You can buy the cyclinder and hoses for another $200. Some of you guys billing at 60 to 100 per hour should be able to make it back quick. Figure out how much time and effort yopu spend forking or whatever. We did it for a few years before I finally built my own.

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