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Sprayer in progress.... but have ?'s

Discussion in 'Pesticide & Herbicide Application' started by eruuska, Sep 21, 2005.

  1. eruuska

    eruuska LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 454

    Hey Geniuses,

    I need a little help here. My goal is to mount a 15 gallon sprayer on my Gravely WB. I bought a Fimco trailer sprayer, removed the trailer, mounted the tank on top of the deck, mounted the boom to the front of the WB (at an appropriate height of course), and I'm in business.... sort of.

    Few problems though:

    1) I need a foot-operated switch. Someone suggested one of the old-fashioned automotive high-low-beam switches. I could mount it on the top of my single-wheel Velke. I think I have enough clearance so that when it jack-knifes it won't get sheared off. Any thoughts about this?

    2) I'm getting more drift than I'd like. Does anyone know of a spray tip that would give me a coarser spray than the stock Fimco tip? The number on the TeeJet tip is TKT3. I'd like to be near .5 gpm at 30 psi.

    2a) Does anyone know if there is a way to reduce pressure out of the pump? It's the 2.1 gpm 60 psi Fimco pump.

    3) I'm getting a fair amount of spray on the front end of the mower. The spray is aimed forward, but the breeze blows a mist onto the casters and front end of the deck. Will this cause corrosion problems with your typical broadleaf herbicides? I will not be spraying any fertilizers.

    If I can get past these hurdles, I think I'll have a damn fine sprayer unit. I'll post pictures as soon as I determine success. :rolleyes:

    Thanks in advance!
  2. GreenUtah

    GreenUtah LawnSite Senior Member
    from SLC, UT
    Messages: 866

    Yes, you can use a pressure/flow regulator, should be available from any hose products store and probably many other places. Tracking product on your wheels can be a problem, moving your original spray pattern as the wheels pick up the product, roll forward and possibly put it somewhere else, the reason most booms are out back. Driving into the drift is also a problem for the operator unless you are taking necessary precautions to reduce exposure. Yes, I know the permagreens apply out front at speed, but at much lower volumes and with two directional nozzles pointed down and out more so than a "boomless" wand nozzle is meant to be. As far as switches go, load rating and it's ability to get wet will probably be more important than where it is located on the machine. Your pump will have a load rating(amps) on it and you'll want a switch that keeps that rating in mind. Most auto parts store switches do not meet that criteria. On a walkbehind, I may personally want a toggle or contact switch at the top of the handlebars where I could flip it with my thumb on and off. Teejet has a very wide line of nozzles in all sorts of gallonages, just make sure that you pay attention to the pattern that they throw. Have fun.
  3. Grandview

    Grandview LawnSite Gold Member
    from WI
    Messages: 3,251

    You need a bypass valve for the excess flow. Between the pump and boom you need a plastic T. In one opening goes a pressure gauge. One opening gets plumbed to the boom. Insert a valve in this line. Best spot is right at the T. The last opening goes back to your tank. You insert a valve in this line also. This is your bypass valve. By opening and closing the bypass valve you adjust your pressure. To reduce your drift problem use air induction nozzles. I like the two part ones. If you use the .5 Venturi you can get your gallons per acre down to about 5 going 5 mph with a nozzle spacing of 20 inches. If you PM me your e-mail address maybe I can send you some pictures.
  4. eruuska

    eruuska LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 454

    What's a good online source for spray nozzles? My local supplier is pretty much ag-focused, and wasn't a whole lot of help technically.

    So far I'm pleased with my results. I mounted the boom about 15" forward of the deck, and if I can increase my droplet size I'll be even happier.

    Grandview, I PM'd you with my email. Thanks!
  5. eruuska

    eruuska LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 454

    I took a close look at the pump setup, and what do you know, there's a bypass valve already installed. Duh. Don't know how I missed it.

    Anyway, I reduced the pressure to about 15 psi and there is a LOT less mist and drift. May not even need to change nozzles.

    Thanks guys!
  6. GreenUtah

    GreenUtah LawnSite Senior Member
    from SLC, UT
    Messages: 866

    I'd like to add that you should run a clean water test out on the pavement to check your spray pattern for banding and width at the lower PSI. You'll also need to do a gpm output measurement so that you can figure your correct mix rates.
  7. eruuska

    eruuska LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 454


    You're absolutely correct. I wouldn't even THINK about spraying the real deal without proper calibration. I'll probably do all that this weekend.
  8. eruuska

    eruuska LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 454


    Calibrated sprayer this morning. At 15psi (adjusted with the bypass valve), I'm spraying at a rate of .3 g/1000 sf. This is in the range of the Permagreen and Zspray. I did a test at 10psi, but this put me down to around .26 g/1000 sf, and I didn't want to really go any lower than .3, so I think 15 psi is about right.

    Very little drift, a little on the wheels. Cuts a path about 78 inches across. Since the WB is a belt drive, I can be confident that my speed will be constant, every time. I need to make the wiring a little neater, then I'll post some pics. I plan to put it to use next week some time.

    Thanks for all the help!
  9. lawnservice

    lawnservice LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 589

    sounds like you're all set now but heres a link for nozzles

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