Grass Clipping Hopper Idea

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by Premier landscaping south, Jan 24, 2011.

  1. Premier landscaping south

    Premier landscaping south LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 534

    I need some advice/ideas about my grass clipping dilemma.

    I use a 42" walker and collect clippings at 80% of my stops and can get rid of most of those clippings at various stops through out the week. Although I usually end up with a good amount to take to the landfill every week.

    I pull a 6' x 12' tandem axle trailer with 2' raised sides.

    I used the large plastic bags I purchased from a Walker dealer last year. Worked well but expensive and lifting the bags from the ground to the back of my truck was a pain in the back!

    I was thinking of building a hopper that would have 4 wheels and removable sides that would be secured to the front area of my trailer. When the walker is full just back up trailer and dump clippings into the hopper and back to mowing.

    When I get to the landfill I would roll the hopper out of the trailer and remove sides and use a pick or other hand tool remove clippings from hopper.

    1. Would have to build hopper as low as possible to fit as much clipping as possible and still have enough clearance to prevent bottoming out when rolling from top of trailer on to gate.

    2. Being able to pull full hopper out by myself.

    3. having to remove tarp and re tarp every stop. Could make a custom size tarp to fit over clippings.

    4. My Walker is having engine replaced now so I cannot measure the height of the GHS at the low end. I believe it is somewhere around 20". So with that said the height of the trailer hopper could not be to tall so that limits the amount of clipping I can dump into trailer hopper unless I build a small ramp to drive onto in order to raise the Walker higher than the trailer hopper.

    Anybody scene something like this or have any good ideas on this subject?
  2. Jason Rose

    Jason Rose LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 5,858

    I think the wheels under your hopper/cart would have to be pretty large just to handle te weight and be able to roll on the trailer gate off onto dirt. That there would make the bottom of the hopper pretty high off the ground, you wouldn't be able to have a very tall front side to it to be able to dump it out cleanly. You are right, in order to dump the whole contents out you really need to be dumping onto the ground, or at the same height as what the mower is sitting on. Dumping directly on the trailer would be easier, until you needed to unload it. then you would have to use a pitch fork. FUN!

    I use the dump bins that slide into the hopper, most of the time anyway. The hopper still has to be dumped after pulling them out though because of how much is left in there. I dump my clippings into the bed of the truck, dump bed. There's no 100% good solution for mowers that are designed to dump on the ground. Just a fact of life with them. Many people have devised methods that work for them but wouldn't work at all for the next guy. The walker high-dump is a solution for getting the hopper up high enough to dump, and you could dump it into your truck with it. But the lift kit adds so much weight to the rear of the machine it makes it very hard to maneuver even on flat ground and you can forget about doing hills and ditches.

    What's really bad is that walker no longer makes the dump bin inserts, for the new style box anyway. So when it comes time for me to upgrade again I'm going to have to go back to the drawing board as well...
  3. CircleC

    CircleC LawnSite Senior Member
    from NW
    Messages: 309

    I also collect about 90% of my clippings and this is what I do.....I have a 7x16 ft open trailer and put a 15x20 ft tarp on the front of the trailer. 1st stop of the day when I unload my navigator I spread the tarp out. Once the hopper is full I backup on the trailer and dump and just keep going. When I'm done at that stop I bundle up the tarp so the clippings dont go flying everywhere and move on. Some stops you dont need to spread tarp because hopper isnt full. At the end of the day I hit the grass dump.

    At the grass dump I just unload mower and pull tarp off the trailer. Sometimes the tarp can get heavy but you just need to put some back into it and it works out fine. Blow the trailer or extra clippings off with you blower and your off. 5 will unload faster than some D-Bag shoveling. It sure beats shoveling from your truck bed. You can do the same thing out of the back of your truck if you so choose. Just pull the tarp out...It really gets heavy if you go a few days without dumping or you let it stay to long and get stinky.


    Hope that helps!
  4. flatlander42

    flatlander42 LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,239

    I just use a ~30 gal tote and dump into that. It takes two trips with the large navigator hopper. I throw it in the truck and use a "loadhandler" to unload at the dump every few days.
  5. johnsonslawnmanagement

    johnsonslawnmanagement LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 908

    If your going to build something like that, make it dumpable or flippable. It would be pointless to dump onto something like that and then have to unload it by hand.
    It would be the same as dumping on the trailer and pitch forking it off.
    I have his same dilema. I though of building a steel bin that hindges on one side of the trailer. Could make it like a side dump with a cylinder or have it where you could hook a rope to the other side and pull it over with a mower. Just an idea
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  6. chavezw16

    chavezw16 LawnSite Member
    Messages: 23

    why dont you rig up a load handler to the front portion of your trailer, then when your hopper is full you back up the trailer dump and go. when you get to the landfill just crank the grass off tour trailer, of course you may hve to build some sort of removable door on the side of the trailer but i think it would be worth it.
  7. brianslawncare

    brianslawncare LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 459

    how about building a dump box on the front of the trailer? remove one of the sides and build it. or maybe on the v in the front ? go in the forms and look under pictures their is a landscaper from california who built a dump box on his trailer. he got a old 18 foot car trailer and put the box on the rear and built a gate in front for his mowers. it was a great idea and his work was excellent. i thinking of doing that in the future.
  8. Premier landscaping south

    Premier landscaping south LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 534

    I like that idea. Maybe build a removable wood divider across the width of the trailer 4 feet from the front. So I would have a 4'X6'X2' area to dump in. That would roughly be the same area as a pick up truck box. Hinge the trailer side either at the bottom or one side. My trailer vibrates allot when it is empty so I would have to have the "door" secured well after I modifications.

    I still want to be able to use the trailer for hauling mulch, leaves, debris and more mowers in the future. So building a permanent box is not the route I want to take.

    I would imagine the handle of the loadmaster and the mechanism would have to be mounted on the outside of the trailer. hmmm something to ponder.

    Thanks for all the input. I am going to search for pics after I get my chit-lens fed and off to bed.
  9. h2oskier

    h2oskier LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 601

    You may want to try one of those mini dumpsters that tilt, put it on the front of your trailer and let it dump off the side. Most waste management companies have these for sale and it may work for your application.
  10. MOW ED

    MOW ED LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 5,028

    I used to collect clippings years ago and had the solution. I had a gate fabricated for the front of the trailer that was hinged. When I needed to collect and put the clippings somewhere I dropped the gate right to the bumper of my pickup. I backed the Walker to the box and dumped. I had a large tarp in the box bed and when I got to the dump I simply pulled the tarp out and was done. Go to this thread to see a picture with the tailgate removed. It works both ways.

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