time to cut one acre?

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by David B., Aug 16, 2007.

  1. David B.

    David B. LawnSite Member
    Messages: 8

    If you had a property, flat land minimum trees, or for simplicity let's just say a football field kind of property.
    you have to cut with a tractor and bushhog.
    how long would it take to cut one acre?
    the property is 200 acres total if that matters.
    the average tractor needs how much fuel per hour?
    I'm trying to figure out my cost on a job like this.

    thank you

  2. All_Toro_4ME

    All_Toro_4ME LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,578

    We really need more info. How big is your cut? What speed are you mowing at? When you say tractor, is this a WAM or standard tractor with mowing attachment? HP for tractor? As far as time wise for an acre for me, along as it is flat, no ditches, trees things like that, usually about 20 minutes with the Z.
  3. topsites

    topsites LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 21,653

    I understand your plan but I don't think that's going to work out but so good, see what the guys have to say thou.

    I myself would stick with some type of a flat rate, such as $20 - $25 per acre but this is only an example, I'm not sure of the per acre rate for brush hogging... But, if it takes 20 minutes per acre then 3 acres an hour at $25 / acre is $75 / hour, and I think that is around where you might want to be with a tractor. All depends again on the size, some can go as high as $120 per hour, hence why I say if you can find the per acre rate you might be better off.

    Or see if you can find the tractor's specs, let us know that, might help.

    Good luck
  4. hayhauler

    hayhauler LawnSite Member
    Messages: 9

    If you're bush hogging with a tractor, what size bush hog is it? If a 5 ft, charge around 30/hour, 10ft, 40-45/hour. If you have 200 acres, with a 10ft bush hog, you could finish in roughly 2-3 days (not sure how long you will work) if like a foot ball field and easy to cut.
  5. nmurph

    nmurph LawnSite Senior Member
    from ga
    Messages: 668

    here's your formula

    for calculating acres-per-hour: (mph x width of cut/99) x .8

    this assumes 80% efficiency, giving some margin for overlap and turn around.
  6. KTO Enterprises

    KTO Enterprises LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,286

    I do a lot of work like this. I take it by the fact you are in south florida this is for a developer? Bush hogging is not cheap work. There are a lot of people that dont understand how expensive tractors can be to maintain and repair.

    First question How tall is the growth? Is it grass of small sapplings?

    If grass up to waist high with my 40 Hp Tractor and a 5' bush hog I can do an acre in about 35 minutes.

    I generally to be safe shoot for 100 per acre in tall grass, but with that kind of volume I would feel safe at 80 per acre. That would be right at $16,000.

    I would set aside at least 2 weeks for this project, and do not give this kind of work away at a cheap price.

    You will go broke charging anything less that 90 per hour.

    I stay in the 120 to 150 range depending on what I am cutting.

    Like I have told many one stump can ruin thousands of dollars worth of equipment. i have hit it all, car wheels, stumps, matresses, concrete chunks, pipes, and other various pieces of steel and brick.

    There are a lot of people on this site hell bent on talking people into giving the work away. Dont listen to them. Feel free to call me if you have any questions. 843 252 2704


    As for fuel I use about 1.5 gallons per hour running at close to 4 miles per hour on waist high grass with a 40 hp machine
  7. delphied

    delphied LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,067

  8. JB1

    JB1 LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 5,904

    we can cut ground like that any where from 7 to 9 minutes. But we aint using a 5 foot bushog.
  9. KTO Enterprises

    KTO Enterprises LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,286

  10. David B.

    David B. LawnSite Member
    Messages: 8

    thanks all,
    it is obvious that some people give advice on things that they don't have any understanding about.
    I learn as I go and it only took me a couple of days to find the answer to my own question.
    just for the ones who are interested in knowing a little more about large bushhogging.
    deere and progressive are selling equipment that can cut 70 acres a day.
    to start "small", you could go with something like this:
    TDR that cuts 10 acre an hour with a 50hp tractor.
    so, that comes to $100/hour if I charge $10 an acre.
    three days work for $2000.00, pay employee $300.00 for 20h of work and pay for fuel, that still should leave a nice profit for some beer for me.
    the once who get their $50.00-$100/acre, more power to you, maybe you want to subcontract to me in the very near future, :laugh: I should be open for business in about 1 month
    ohh, and I can get a TDR115 for $3500.00 completely rebuild.


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