HYdroseeding ????????????????????

Discussion in 'Landscape Architecture and Design' started by start2finish, Aug 12, 2005.

  1. start2finish

    start2finish LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 497

    I am researching adding a hydroseeder to our company. I have looked into the Turfmaker Line I believe 430 and the 1000. Any other models or brands to look into. I am going to tack blown straw and do the premium complete covering as well. Thanks guys.

  2. i_plant_art

    i_plant_art LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 558

    yeah look at

    FINN --- www.finncorp.com

    Bowie- www.bowieindustries.com

    Kincaid- www.kincaidequipment.com

    These are the three units that i have used while doing internships during college and rentals for my own business. When u get one make sure that it has propeller agitation (i think this is what its called) DO NOT get a jet aggitator.... they suck and take far far too long to make the slurry and will get clogged very very easy..... ( i know from first hand experience what a pain) i dont know how often or how large of areas you plan on doing but make sure you get one big enough that your not constantly running back and forth to fill up again. Those are the three top manufactures out there in my opinion. Hope all works well for ya.
  3. Dreams To Designs

    Dreams To Designs LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,406

    I have demo'd the Finn and had great results. It is also very important to have excellent dealer service with a hydroseeder, so check around to see who can service what in your area, just like your other equipment. Have everyone one of them come out and do a demonstration for you. They can do a small job for their demo if you have it ready to go. You buy the materials. The other very important thing to a hydroseeder is what you put into it. The tackifiers, seed & additives that go in will have a tremendous influence on if, or what comes out. The right recipe will give you and your client great results.
    As for size. What will you haul it with? Where are you going to get the water? Will you be hauling it in for each job, or are you going to use the customers hose. That can take a really long time and around here, the water department doesn't take to kindly to hooking up to fire hydrants. lol Depending on the use, can you get the whole property done on one tank? I like to mix, for at least the main lawn area, one tank, for consistensy.

  4. start2finish

    start2finish LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 497

    Size is no problem, we are eithe going to mount on a 6 Ton tagalong or a tri-axle gooseneck.(we have three trucks with gooseneck so breakdowns are not crippling) as for water we have a 1000 stainless steel nurse tank we use for topdressing(liquid nitrogen) and water for chemical app. on our farm. We can pump out of a pond or creek and fill the tank with pump mounted on trailer.

    The other option for fill-up is Greensboro, NC will allow you the buy a meter to hook to a hydrant and have read quarterly to pay for water if their source is close to job.

    As for the work probably 75% will be tacking convential seed and straw for erosion control jobs, and hopefully the $0.12/sq ft. rate to replace laying sod.
    I have only used the turf maker and wanted to know how the others rate.
  5. Planet Landscaping

    Planet Landscaping LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 607

    Finn is what we use. Great machines, Cant speak for the others. :cool2:
  6. muddstopper

    muddstopper LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,341

    Turfmaker is an excellent machine. They no longer use the Bowie gear pump on their new machine, they instead are using a Bowie Knockoff that is similar in design but since they have just started using these pumps not to long ago, I guess the story is still out on how reliable they are. Kincaid is also another good machine, infact Kincaid used to be the manufacturer for Turfmaker and made all of the turmaker machines for James Lincoln. That is the reason the Kincaid machines and the Turfmaker Machines look so similar. I am not sure who is manufacturing the Turfmaker machine for Mr. Lincoln now. Finn is considered the Cadilac of hydroseeders but I think that is just a matter of preference and owner perceptions. Still they are excellent machines altho slightly a little higher in price than the other manufacturers. Bowie makes super tuff machines. I am running one that was built in 1969 and I will put it up against any of the new machines on the market today. The machines are just plain dependable. I also own a Finn and to be honest I dont have a preference as to which one I would buy if I was buying another new machine.

    As for the comment about the jet agitated machines sucking. I started out with a jet agitated machine and it paid for the Bowie as well as the Finn that I now own. The 500gal jet machine was my machine of choice for smaller jobs even tho I had a 600 gal Finn as well as the 1000 gal bowie setting here in my yard. If i hadnt of just plain worn out the pump on the machine I would still be using it for lawn work. The machine isnt what grows the grass, it the knowledge of the person running the machine that determines how well a seeding job will turn out. Having owned both types of machines as well as different brands I think I have a pretty good ideal of what to look for in a hydroseeding machine.

    Jet machines are simple to use, require less maintenace and cost less to buy as well as operate. They are somewhat limited if you are trying to do erosion control spraying BFM mulches or with the wood mulches. They will spray these mulches but it takes great care on the part of the operator to keep from having cloggs and therefore will take longer to seed the same job as it would if a mechaincal agitated machine was used. On the other hand, if you are going to be using straw on all your seeding jobs then what is the point of paying for a mechincal agitated machine that will cost more to purchase and require more money and time to maintain.

    Mechanical machines are heavier in empty weight than the plastic jet agitated machines, require more maintenace and just plain out cost more to purchase. They will perform better than jet machines when it comes to the BFM mulches or the wood mulches. They will mix heavier slurries than jet machines and therefore give you more coverage are per tank load than a similar size jet machine. The amount of materials you can mix and spray in your hydroseeder will determine the total coverage area that can be covered per tank load.

    If you are just mixing water, fert and seed and then covering with a layer of straw or using the machine just to tack straw, there is no way in the world I would even consider the cost or need of a mechanical agitated machine for this purpose. The jet machine is just flat out the best choice because of weight and cost factors. On the other hand, if you will be doing erosion control work, spraying wood or bfm mulches on a regular basis, I wouldnt consider anything but a mechanical agitated machine. For normal lawn work I would weigh the pros and cons of both machine types before making my choice. Ocassional hydroseeding can and is being done just fine with jet agitated machines as well as the mechanical agitated ones. The type of mulch being used is not the most important factor in growing a great lawn.

    ps. I am going to sell my 1000gal bowie machine/ truck in the near future as I have purchased another truck and am also planning on another hydroseeder of my own design. If interested you can pm me. I can deliver to Greensboro.
  7. start2finish

    start2finish LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 497

    Muddstopper could you send me an email. I keep getting an error when I try to PM you. start2finish@bellsouth.net. I am interested in learning more about your hydroseeder. Details on truck and seeder. Thanks
  8. shiveslandcsaping

    shiveslandcsaping LawnSite Member
    Messages: 93

    what type of erosion control jobs are u goin gto be doing? for the DOT or something else?
  9. start2finish

    start2finish LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 497

    We are looking to DOT work, but our main focus will be on developers(private) and to be able to stop laying sod. It is a real pain in the a** to beg for sod to be cut when we need it and we don't have a vast amount of labor. We have geared our business to be very equipment oriented, which erosion control will fit. I am not new at erosion control we have just subbed out most of the tack work in the past.
  10. Advanced Lawncare

    Advanced Lawncare LawnSite Member
    Messages: 76

    I have a Turfmaker 550 and I have no complaints. I would agree that if you are going to be spraying a BFM or doing erosion control a mech machine would be better over a Jet IMO. If i had to say that there was a draw back to my machine is that it is too small, but it does its job fine.


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