Torn on my aeration marketing approach - more plugs w/ Plugr 850 or Lawn Solutions WB

Discussion in 'Turf Renovation' started by Exact Rototilling, Mar 8, 2010.

  1. Exact Rototilling

    Exact Rototilling LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 5,378

    Even though many people have said it could not be done, people won't care etc.....I have marketed my aerations these last 2 years as being a greater net benefit since I run a Plugr 850HD that has a very dense plug pattern. The most common response I get is "wow that is noticeably more plugs than the last guy who aerated". I believe only the Ryan 28 tricycle unit pulls more plugs per square foot than the Plugr 800, 850 & 855. Even that I'm not 100% sure. I have never used the Ryan 28 or even seen a plug print pattern nor have I ever seen one in service in my area. If I could rent a Ryan 28 just to try it out I would.

    My Lawn Solutions WB ships out today and I also need to get my hangers and flyers finalized this week.

    Correct me if I'm wrong the Plugr 800, 850 and the new 855 have one the densest patterns in the industry. IMO it makes little sense to run one of these unless you are claiming more plugs..... correct? Reason is these machines wear out tines very quickly and the tines are not cheap. A set of 8 is well over $120 and they only last maybe 50-60 aeration in the rocky soil here. With all that said why deliver more plugs and NOT brag it up and or charge more money?

    *** Recent development....I just bought a Lawn Solutions WB and I'm excited to get this machine for the ease of use from what I can tell from video and user reports. I'm also very confident it will pull deeper plugs than the Plugr

    The best I can tell the Lawn Solution WB pulls possibly slightly more per square foot than other rolling tine types. Not 100% sure about this.

    All things being equal it makes little sense to burn up Plugr tines at a rapid rate with the wear and tear of the bouncing machine on our rocky soil here and not switch over to Lawn Solution machine as the main working unit.

    So should I charge more for the Plugr aeration vs. rolling tine aeration of the Lawn Solution machine?

    Any input from aeration veterans much appreciated! :waving:
  2. americanlawn

    americanlawn LawnSite Fanatic
    from midwest
    Messages: 5,942

    We got rid of our Plugr units cuz they beat us to death & were cumbersome. We also have Lawn Solution walk behind aerators (now down to just one) which are easier to run, except for the hand controls -- still waiting since October for some kind of upgrade that was supposed to correct the problem. They were supposed to install it this winter for $100, but we still have not heard from them. :confused: So we sold one of our LS aerators due to lack of company support. We kept one, but we're not holding our breath regarding customer support (promises).

    Our favorite are the Turn-Aire units (TURFCO). They pull the best plugs, and the "chariot" is something we cannot live without.

    Our 2 cents.
  3. Exact Rototilling

    Exact Rototilling LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 5,378

    Did you have the Plugr 850, 800, 600 or 400's?

    From what I know of them I'd never own the 600 or 800 due to the lack of hydro drive and they wear out the operator on anything but perfectly flat properties.

    Have you ever used the the Ryan 28 .... if yes how did it compare to the others?
  4. SeedPro

    SeedPro LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,030

    The last time I ran a Ryan Lawnaire Reciprocating aerator it about shoot my teeth loose.

    Plus the wheels wanted to get stuck if the soil was really wet.

    There's absolutely nothing wrong with drum type aerators. I have the lesco Split Drum aerator you can steer with the split drums and it pulls more than enough plugs per square yard or whatever.

    The real bonus I see with a drum aerator is you could drive it through a swamp and come out the other end. These wheel powered aerators wont do that. You'll never get stuck with one is my point.
  5. JFGLN

    JFGLN LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,023

    We picked up a used Ryan 28. It is much easier to use then our old Bluebirds. Now we don't feel exhausted after a day of aeration.
  6. pieperlc

    pieperlc LawnSite Senior Member
    from Midwest
    Messages: 545

    We have an LA28. I've never run any other aerator, but I can tell you about my experience with it. To my knowledge, no aerator in the lawn care market will pull more plugs. In perfect conditions it is a breeze to run as it is a zero turn aerator. It will pull plugs out of dry lawns, but it jars your teeth out. Hills are not fun. As for your original question: The plugr and LA28 are niche machines so they deserve a premium price. The LA 28 is slower than drum aerators, but pulls a much cleaner plug from what I've observed.
  7. Exact Rototilling

    Exact Rototilling LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 5,378

    I agree. Funny.... Ryan says on their web site the 28 is the most productive unit they have...? At pulling more plugs yes. Speed no.

    This is big favor to ask ... or any Ryan 28 owners ....can you get a big piece of cardboard pallet sized and run over it with your Ryan 28...then cut out a square foot template and post pics of the plug pattern? So the world can see once and for all if the Ryan in fact pulls more plugs than the 800 series Plugrs?

    When I'm doing over 60-100 aerations per week...then I will get the Lawn Solution stander.
  8. brucec32

    brucec32 LawnSite Platinum Member
    Messages: 4,403

    I wouldn't call a machine with tines that cost $120 to replace all that expensive to operate. Spending $120 every $5000 or so of revenue seems reasonable.

    The aeration effect of using these denser pattern machines or ones that provide deeper cores matters and you should highlight that.

    However, you might consider machines that have a less dense plug pattern but are far faster and more user friendly than others. That way you can make 2 passes with less effort in about the same amount of time. It might be better to advertise "2 passes over the lawn" rather than just a denser pattern anyway.

    With aerating I don't think it's the time it takes that matters as much as the effort it takes. I wear out far before I run out of time. If I did a lot of aerations I'd sure want the machine that was easiest and most comfortable to use. Because if you stay fresh you can work longer.
  9. pieperlc

    pieperlc LawnSite Senior Member
    from Midwest
    Messages: 545

    Right now everything around here is mud, maybe in the future. I'd like to try out the pull behind unit that plugr makes. It looks like a nice unit for larger areas. Anyone have any experience with that?
  10. Exact Rototilling

    Exact Rototilling LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 5,378

    Yes Lawn Solutions WB unit will be here today....will post 1st impressions late Saturday.

    Wish I knew how the LS units plug pattern per sq foot compare most rolling tine units in service...?
    Last edited: Mar 12, 2010

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