new guy on the block...

Discussion in 'Starting a Lawn Care Business' started by Up North, May 3, 2004.

  1. Up North

    Up North LawnSite Bronze Member
    from MN
    Messages: 1,063

    Just started up my own lawn mowing & yard maintenance business. Just finished up on the spring clean ups. What do you guys find is the most effecient way of picking up debris? I used a JD with bag system, works great but find that I spend more time dumping then bagging. I'm thinking for next year a dump trailer with tall sides and some kind of system to suck the leaves into the trailer would be the way to go. Is it? What works best for you guys? Also, new to this site, great info and thanks to all who share their info as it helps the new guys.
  2. Team Gopher

    Team Gopher LawnSite Platinum Member
    from -
    Messages: 4,040

    Hi Up North,

    Here is a trailer idea that may help you. Click here to read the post it came from.

  3. DJL

    DJL LawnSite Member
    Messages: 237

    We just bought a new 16HP Billy Goat Debris loader. It attaches to the back of our 16' dump trailer. We have removable (via aluminum piping) top & sides. Fits around 15 cubic yards according to my estimation. However, you still have to get the leaves/debris to the trailer and vice versa. In other words, you can't drive over someones lawn to get to the back of their house. Were it helps is with loading the trailer and removing the debris from the site. Makes the debris into a paper confetti consistency.
  4. GrassFearsMe

    GrassFearsMe LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 340

    I have a question for you guys what is up with this dump trailer craze. I think it is soo much easier to use a dump truck, it can carry more weight and is easier to move around.
  5. specialtylc

    specialtylc LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,656

    It all depends on how much leaves you need to clean up. On the properties I do we clean them up thru the fall so they dont get 2 ft deep in leaves. I have found the best for us is to use the Z and WB to blow them into a pile. Then use the WB to chop them up. After the leaves are chopped up we bag them up with the WB. Also do the same thing on the smaller areas with a 21.
  6. Up North

    Up North LawnSite Bronze Member
    from MN
    Messages: 1,063

    Thanks for your input guys. The trailer with the Billy Goat looks like the ticket. Like you say DJL, getting the leaves, pine needles, etc. to the trailer is a part of the process but I think I can make that process easy by adding a bagging system that dumps. Just dump everything next to the trailer and suck it all up with the Billy Goat. This would cut down my clean up time greatly, never seeing another leaf/garbage bag will be just fine with me!

    Really nice job on the trailer DJL, looks awesome!
  7. DJL

    DJL LawnSite Member
    Messages: 237


    FYI, that isn't my trailer pick. My loader hangs on the back of my trailer.


    Referring to your "dump trailer craze" question. It is actually very simple for our particular outfit. I'm in no way saying they are better than dump trucks but they do have their place.

    (1) Any which way you look at it the cost of a dump trailer is less than the cost of a truck. This includes initial cost, insurance, and maintenance. One might argue that we should've bought used. Well, IMO, the cost of maintenance would offset the cost of the trailer if you bought used anyway. Also, we don't have the engine knowledge that some might have to keep a used truck running.

    (2) Our dump trailer with 12" boards around the top sides has a capacity (level) of just over 9 cubic yards. I don't believe dump trucks can get you that amount of capacity. Since our mulch jobs are anywhere between 6 and 10 cubic yards (on average) it only requires one trip. In addition, with our cover and debris loader attached we can can get over 15 yards loaded into it. So someone with a mason dump, dump insert, etc. has to make many more trips to dump the debris than our dump trailer. For us, we can go all day and not fill our dump trailer. Just more efficient if you ask me.

    (3) Our dump trailer is a few feet lower to the ground than a mason dump. This helps in a few ways. First, lifting a landscape barrel into my dump trailer (or any material for that matter) is a heck of a lot easier. Second, I can utilize a mini TLB to load my trailer because it is much closer to the ground. I was able to load my trailer with a Dingo 420. Although, I did take the plank off to make it a little easier. Not sure you could do that with a mason dump, load it with a Dingo.

    (4) Our particular dump trailer has the option of a 4" drop with stowable ramps underneath. It enables us to transport heavy equipment (8k max) fairly easily. This also allows us to unload the mulch directly out of the dump trailer into our wheel barrows. Don't have the hassle of climbing in and out of the dump truck. One big step up and I'm in the bed unloading mulch. So as far as it carrying more weight. It's not that much of a difference between a mason dump and a dump trailer.

    (5) Our dump trailer can transport our lawn equipment as well. Pretty hard getting what normally fits onto a 14' utility trailer onto a dump truck. Basically it is a nice backup to the utility trailer. Came in handy last week, blew the leaf spring on the utility trailer last week driving out of our second job. Was able to complete the route the next day with the dump trailer hauling everything.

    (6) With the trailer hauling the material it frees our truck bed up. We are able to carry our leaf blowers, misc. tools, wheel barrels, etc. in the bed. Most of the time in dump trucks I see them have to unload the dump truck, get it filled with material, only to throw all of the equipment back on top of the material. Pain in the butt if you ask me.

    Hope I was able to fill you in a little bit more on the "dump trailer craze" that is going on. As far as being easier to use...for your operation it very well might be. For ours, it isn't. As far as easier to move around, I guess that is true. Although, honestly, I haven't encountered a problem yet with our dump trailer. Yes, it can be a pain maneuvering, but no more of a pain than a utility trailer for your lawn equipment.

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