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Leaf Vacumm hose size??

Discussion in 'Turf Renovation' started by BEDLAM, Dec 13, 2006.


    BEDLAM LawnSite Member
    from NH
    Messages: 1

    I am looking for ideas and maybe experience to solve a decision for me.
    I am using a standard 5 hp chipper shredder to make a leaf vacuum.
    The shredder is mounted on a box trailer, and the outlet into the box.
    I have made a "plug" for the wood chipper end.(to increase suction loss).
    I plan to make a collector that will go on the ride on mower discharge .
    An 8 inch hose would be too large for the inlet on the chipper, so I am torn between the 6 and 7 inch hose.
    I believe the 6 inch would work fine, as the leaves would be pre-chopped in the mower, but I would also like to be able to disconnect the hose and use it to vacuum and I think the 7 inch would be a better choice.
    Any ideas would be appreciated. Thanks
  2. businessjeff

    businessjeff LawnSite Member
    Messages: 5

    This is kind of funny because I am building that same exact thing. I am using a 5hp craftsman chipper and mounting it to my deere utility cart. I welded up a structure for the bin and made fabric to go over it. It looks great havent gotten to use it yet but I dont see why it wouldnt work.

    The only thing I have to do is box in the center channel on the trailer its flexes with the weight of the chipper on it.

    I used 6 inch drain tube from lowes. Home depot doesnt have this stuff in 6 inch so you have to go to lowes. I would highly recomend trying this out first! Its $15 for a 10ft length, cant beat that. Also it has a few different fittings that might be usefull.

    Only downside is its not to flexible and im sure not, depending on the aplication, not to practical. Im just going down a strait line of leaves from after blowing them in one direction with my lil wonder to pick them up.

    You said it yourself, experience will most likely answer your question. I didnt know what the heck I needed for doing my leaves until after I did a few different kind of jobs. If you have any questions or want to see pictures of my rig let me know, Peace
  3. businessjeff

    businessjeff LawnSite Member
    Messages: 5

    Oh in case you havent looked into it the rubber hoses they sell for leaf vacs are about 10-15 a ft depending on what size you get. On ebay people advertise polyurethane ones to be better (stronger, last longer, not wear through) for the same price per ft, however they are better than a thin rubber, but not nearly as flexible, almost to the point where the solid plastic is better, especially in the cold

    Rubber hose $10-15/ft (flexible)
    Polyurethane $10-15/ft (Strongest)
    Lowes Black tube $1.5/ft (Cheapest)
  4. lawnpro724

    lawnpro724 LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,201

    six inch tube is what mine has on it and works fine except when leaves are wet. you may want to go with 5" tube for a 5hp engine to give you more suction mine has a 9hp and works good with 6" flexable hose.
  5. businessjeff

    businessjeff LawnSite Member
    Messages: 5

    Actually I fired mine up today for the first time and the thing works great. I was still having a problem with it getting clogged when I crammed them in and theres were some twigs, but that may really never be avoidable unless you get like a big 15 inch tube.

    I am thing about making a few different attachments. I am going to have one hose tip with a cross section taken from the end to give more surface area for suction and might prevent clogging. I would use this for flower beds and such.

    However that main idea behind this project is to shred and load leaves efficiently. My lil wonder blows them but as you all know they can make quite a big pile in a single area. Tarping works fine, if you have a place to dump. Actually I think tarping is the best method really. But if theres no place to dump and I need to haul off or bag them for the road Then I will make a big scoop attachment for my house. Basically the idea is to rake the leaves into this schout(sp?) and get them picked up asap.

    My wagon cart will do this good because it has a high capacity so I wont have to be emptying cans or individual bags. Also for my cart I made a self propelled front axle. Its awesome. This way I do not need a tractor to pull it. It electric and with no effort goes up a slope with 300lbs of shredded leaves in it. I am going to have a hand control for the cart on my vacuum tube so I can move it as I am sucking up leaves. What do you think about that?

    From my experience your equipment depends on the yards conditions. Lil wonder will work for anything, hills, wide open, trees, high acreage. I havent used a zero turn with a vacuum attachment on it but I think Ive seen a yard and just thinking about it makes since that it is the true king set up for doing leaves. However you cant get a zero turn everywhere. But the idea is, your not piling up leaves to later deal with picking up. And not only is the deck shredding them and picking them up but the vacuum collector is adding suction to your deck and also shredding them again. Cant beast the speed of a zero turn either. If the yard I saw was cleaned by a zero turn set up then it was spotless. No blower or even hand rake could get it that clean.

    Whats your take on rigs and setups for different applications?

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