Question about gear drive sprinklers

Discussion in 'Irrigation' started by topsites, Nov 2, 2007.

  1. topsites

    topsites LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 21,653

    I'm talking about single stream 40 - 360 degree rotating nozzles that are generally used to irrigate lawns or otherwise large areas, usually sold at Home Depot / Lowe's. I am familiar with Orbit, Hunter, Rainbird, and Toro (for the most part, interchangeable).

    Having broken (and replaced) a few of these, it has come to my attention the only part that usually gets broken is the top piece, or the head, the actual nozzle itself... The rest of the body with the spring stem remains intact, however, I can only get the entire $12 riser tube assembly as a replacement.

    Does anyone know if anyone sells just the individual top part of the head or the nozzles, where I might find one, and also if they are, as I suspect, replaceable in and of themselves, by repairing the unit.

    Because by now I have at least two, one rainbird, and also a Hunter, both with cracked heads...
    I would love to rebuild these during idle time and put them in my truck, for the next time I smacks one.

  2. londonrain

    londonrain LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,129

    99% of the time if a head gets hit by a mower then there is already something wrong with the head, which is making it not retract....
  3. Mike Leary

    Mike Leary LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 23,171

    Lots of the cheapo gear drives will not stand a mower hit..screws up the
    adjustments forever..I've had the mowers take the tops off I-20s & they
    still kept on turning. Worst case for us with mowing & line trimmer boys
    have been the Nelson line..piece of junk.
  4. WalkGood

    WalkGood LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,910

    Even if the remains are working, it will cost you more in time/effort ($$$) than it is worth than if you just unscrew the insides (leaving the body shell) and replace with the insides from a new one.

    Unless of course, you're retired and this is on your house and you've got all the time in the world to perform surgery on the head.
  5. topsites

    topsites LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 21,653

    Wow, first off thanks for all the answers, I'm humbled by the informative replies, especially in such short order.

    I understand, I'm not about to hold myself responsible for defective risers, it's been many years since I've replaced any like that.
    However if I have a spare on board I could offer to do it for less than a separate visit would cost, but that's another thought.

    Now there was one this week that, even if improperly installed (it stuck too far up lol) was also clearly visible and in that sense avoidable. I've known where this one is for over a year now, I saw it coming, but I figured the mower would clear it and it didn't. That to me is like when the traffic light turns yellow and I think I can make it before it turns red, and I don't...

    Then there was one that was a neighbor's... There's just no way out of that one, I swung across the property line and clip, defective or not I'm in no mood to contest this mess with someone that's not even my customer.

    Those kind :laugh:

    No, I am talking about replacing the part that unscrews, still not sure how it works because I haven't been in the mood to take a new one apart... The problem is I'm not buying a new one just for the parts, if I have a whole unit then I replace the whole unit, but when it's always the same part that gets snapped off it is that part I'm interested in (vs. the whole unit).

    I could keep the old ones for parts, but it's always the same part that breaks, so no sense in that, I need the part iself.

    I'll go visit next, see what they have.
  6. topsites

    topsites LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 21,653

    Ok I found a picture, it is a perfect representation, this is the exact she-bang I replaced today.
    Not true, the pictured one is an Eclipse, I used a Voyager ii, close enough I tell you.

    I about have to pull it apart anyhow just to get the settings straight, but it's a simple matter of unscrewing manually the unit, far as I can tell... I did specifically circle the part that clips, it seems that would come apart from the center pole but if not then I would be willing to buy the entire center pole. And yes, sometimes the part that the blue arrow points to also gets ruined but all they sell is that whole unit as pictured...

    Is this the only thing they sell or are individual parts available?
    I would think it's a 5-minute thing to replace what is actually broken, and I would think it's cheaper that way?
    At $12 a unit they ought to sell the individual 2-3 or 4 parts that make it up :laugh:

  7. WalkGood

    WalkGood LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,910

    Yep, unscrew where that blue arrow is pointing. Pull it out, and replace with a new one, leave a bill (maybe get paid too) and go on your way.

    Some manufacturers might sell the individual inside parts like wiper seals. It's just not worth it to futz with it that way.
  8. topsites

    topsites LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 21,653

    Ohhhh ok that does help, saves me from digging out the hole and replacing the whole unit.

    Hmmm, I'm going to check out the Toro units at 3.67 each tomorrow as well, if it's comparable and not a shrub waterer...
    For that to work I'll also need access to someone's system for initial testing and comparison, I think I can arrange that much.
  9. WalkGood

    WalkGood LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,910

    That is a spray head. :nono: :nono: You asked about rotary gear stream heads. Hmmmmmmm..... pardon me but are you very new to irrigation?
  10. topsites

    topsites LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 21,653

    I'm mostly into lawn cutting, this issue has come up several times over the years due to clipped heads. No, I don't plan on getting into irrigation, I might replace a head here or there, mostly due to mower-related issues, that's about it... But at $35-45 a cut and $12 a head, it's an irritating cost even when it doesn't happen much.

    But this is reasonable:

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