Need some in put on LARGE weed whacking job

Discussion in 'Landscape Maintenance' started by KYMan, Jan 22, 2013.

  1. KYMan

    KYMan LawnSite Member
    Messages: 57

    I am putting in a bid at a local factory but need some input from you guys first. The whole property is 9 acres....2 acres of it is hillside that is not only too steep too mow but also too rough with rocks and wash outs. The maintenance manager has already expressed his desire to have it mowed but it's just not possible. He wants it mowed/trimmed down 2-3 times a year. So not only would the incline and roughness make it impossible, you would be crawling in 3 foot high weeds.

    How long would it take you guys to weed whack a 2 acre hillside? I just got done measuring this ditch that I do a couple times a year and it is 4000 sq/ft and it takes me an hour. At that rate, that's a 22 hour job. I think charging for those hours will cause me to lose the bid. Should it be fewer hours or more? Just wondering how fast you guys can do it.

    THORNTON SERVICES LLC LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 432

    Sounds like your customer is throwing the book at you for wants and just seeing what all they can get out of you. You will need help with this trimming job and you should bill for your time , if you are a solo op and cannot get help , you may have to break the trimming into sections and do it in the evening throughout one week , break it into 3 or 4 sections and do it this way if you really want the account and can get the money to justify 4 trips to a site other wise 4 guys on a trimmer one visit , But regardless how you actually physically do it , time is money and if they will not pay have them get some one else , my opinion at least , these big trimming accounts can really make you miserable and sometimes are better to just walk away from them if you can't get the money for them. I would try to break up the bid , one for the mowing job you actually want then the hillside this gives them the option to hire you for one and not the other if budgett does not permit. just my opinion though , hope it helps.
  3. LandFakers

    LandFakers LawnSite Fanatic
    from CT
    Messages: 6,309

    Well I have never done a job that big for weed whacking, but if you can do 4000sq in an hour, you have to factor in refuel time and everything else. If its going to take you 22 hours then bid it at 22 hours. Don't lessen your rate just to get the work
  4. highlander316

    highlander316 LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 334

    how steep exactly? We do one twice a year. It's just over an acre. At some parts, it's so steep that you are almost guaranteed to slip down. During the first whacking in late June, all the foliage is thick and growing (loaded with water, and about 60-70% of the area has an underlying ground cover of poison ivy). It takes longer to cut. Takes two guys about 6-6.5 hours. During the second whacking in mid-late November, most everything is dead/dormant so it goes faster. Closer to 4-4.5 hours. The key is whack it as low as possible each time, makes it easier on following whackings.
  5. frady5454

    frady5454 LawnSite Member
    Messages: 7

    I have a property similar to that one and it takes a four man crew about 4.5 hours to do the job. Really steep terrain and we only weed eat it 4 times a year. The bank that we do is 2 acres as well. The spring cut is the worst and takes a tad bit longer.
    Hope that helps
  6. KrayzKajun

    KrayzKajun LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 10,737

    Sub it out and get someone to spray it.
    Posted via Mobile Device
  7. rlitman

    rlitman LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,763

    Not that I know anything about this (I'm the first to admit when I'm out of my element), but wouldn't a power scythe make the job easier/faster? Just tossing up an idea. . .
    I'd go at it with my angled pole hedge clippers. It won't chop up all the growth, just lays it down, but you can cut down a whole lot more than a string, in a whole lot less time.
  8. Swampy

    Swampy LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,435

    Use a brush cutter head on the end of a heavier weed eater, the String just won't cut it you'll go threw a ton and not get very far vs just using a blade which will be faster.

    The few brush cut jobs I did do, I was at about 45/hour, and the KM 90 did good threw the fleshy green material and the extremely soft woods (sumac's) but kind of struggled with harder wooded material (buckthorn, black walnut, and black locust).
  9. KYMan

    KYMan LawnSite Member
    Messages: 57

    Yeah I know I'll be using a brush cutter head as string would just be wasting my time. By the several responses that I have already read, so....20-22 hrs is actually a pretty good estimate on how long it will take then.. And I just bought a new FS100 too dangit. Won't be able to use it b/c it won't accept a blade. I'll get a new FS110 too I reckon....may sell the 100...has less than 4 hours on it probably.

    Never thought about the spraying but wouldn't that lead to erosion? I also have a pull behind mower for my ATV that I have considered using but at such a slow speed given the height of the grass, I don't think it would hold the hill going upwards, definitely not across the hill....flip over in a heartbeat.
  10. grandview (2006)

    grandview (2006) LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,465

    Sell a trimming job,then sell them a growth regulator app.

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