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how do I build a leaf-vac box for my dump?

Discussion in 'Turf Renovation' started by goldstarlandscaper, Oct 12, 2006.

  1. goldstarlandscaper

    goldstarlandscaper LawnSite Member
    Messages: 4


    I need to build a leaf box for my 3500 dump truck. I have never done this before, so i would love any suggestions or plans.

  2. SodKing

    SodKing LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,641

    There are no plans, what my crew does is take sheets of plywood and stand them up and screw them into the wooden bed extender. The then run 2x4's up the seams and in the corners for stability, screw the plywood into them as well. Then you frame out the top for the ceiling and leave a 4x8 opening that gets 1/2 screen to vent all the air. A common mistake is to not have a large ehough excape hole and then the whole box breaks apart... You can hinge the door to the top that way you don't have to take it off to dump...

    CLARK LAWN LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,526

    thats close to what i do i frame it first then put the plywood on
  4. DBL

    DBL LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,219

    get the dimensions and cut plywood screw it to 2x4's that will line up with the holes specially made for them put them up on the sides the cut two doors on the sides that will open to dump with a circle hole in the top for the vac if needed all you cant take the door off and it will double as a chipper body
  5. beautifullawns

    beautifullawns LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 313

    up here a awning company makes a canopy for the truck. The roof is even made of a vented material so air can get out. If you do a wood box make sure you put a big enough vent so all the forced air can escape. My first box I made the mistake with the vents.
  6. goldstarlandscaper

    goldstarlandscaper LawnSite Member
    Messages: 4

    Thanks for the help guys. So that vent needs to be pretty big huh. When you say 4x8, is that inches or feet? Also what thickness plywood, 1/2 or 3/4?
  7. capecodlawn

    capecodlawn LawnSite Member
    Messages: 39

    Why the need for a vent??
  8. baddboygeorge

    baddboygeorge LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,249

    all that air has to be released thats how the system works , the more air released the more leaves you can get into the box. I always vent the whole top with hardware fabric it works well . see ya george
  9. Uranus

    Uranus LawnSite Bronze Member
    from Mass
    Messages: 1,624

    4 feet x 8 feet. My vent is on top of my box and it is 48"x70". How high do you guys go for your boxes. Mine that I built today is 10 feet tall, total from the ground. I have a down eastern easy dump insert and went up 5 1/2 feet from the insert.
  10. Greybeard

    Greybeard LawnSite Member
    Messages: 132

    I built a box with 1/2" plywood 3 years ago, and just set it up again this week. Every panel has a 2x4 glued and screwed to every edge, making for a real strong piece. One sheet of plywood goes across the front against the front of the truck body, with two vertical 2x4s on each end, 2" apart. The the side panels lock into place between them. Our truck is 14' long, so it has two 7'x4' panels on each side. They get through-bolted to a vertical 2x8 to join them together - and unbolted afterwards. For the tail, I use the truck's tailgate at the bottom, and swing a plywood sheet from a piece of pipe at the top. It tucks inside the steel gate until I dump, then swings free when I open the tailgate. The top is a mesh tarp, full length. I also run a couple of cables across the top through eye-bolts to keep the sides from spreading out under load. I painted it with stain from Home Cheapo, and I store it indoors off-season. It still looks and works great. The truck holds about 20 yards of chopped leaves, so we can load several big piles before we have to dump.
    Good luck. Where in Mass. are you?

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