using leaf loader for mulch

Discussion in 'Landscape Architecture and Design' started by David Gretzmier, Apr 19, 2002.

  1. David Gretzmier

    David Gretzmier LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,645

    Gonna post this one in lawn care too...

    I am curious if anyone out there has tried to use a large leaf loader for a mulch mover. I am wondering if the ones that are tailgate mounted- in the 16-18 horse varieties or towable in the 22-35 horse versions would be able to suck bulk wood mulch thought their intake hoses at street or driveway ( I think they could do this ) and blow it through a 4 or 6" wire reinforced plastic leaf loader hose. ( this is the part I am not sure about.) how far would it push mulch through the hose ? 25 ft, or maybe 100ft? the reason I ask is I cannot justify one of the $20,000++ Finn bark blowers and the trailer model seems inadequate at holdiing 6 yards anyway. they are able to blow through 150 and 200ft of hose. a $3000 leaf loader with $1000 in hose/brackets and mods seems doable though, if it would work, and we could of course use it for leaves. any one tried this or have any thoughts? Dave g
  2. yorkpaddy

    yorkpaddy LawnSite Member
    Messages: 137

    I doubt it would work, mulch is a lot heavier than leaves. It would probably chew up your impeller
  3. dougaustreim

    dougaustreim LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 488

    We tried ours one on a mulch removal. The mulch was already degraded quite a bit, smaller than fresh mulch would be. It did not work at all plugs up etc.

    The other thing to keep in mind, a leaf loader is designed for a long suction hose but short discharge. You are looking at short suction, long discharge, probably woudn't work at all.

    I have not tired it, but perhaps one could take the knives out of a straw mulcher and send mulch through it. You can blow straw through the hose one of those quite a ways, maybe it would work. But unless you also do straw muching, you might not have a lot of use for that machine either.

    Doug Austreim
    Austreim Landscaping Inc
  4. David Gretzmier

    David Gretzmier LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,645

    thanks- I have seen one of those loaders in action, and man, it sure seems they could throw leaves right out of the box truck. wonder how they get mulch to travel through 200 ft hose on those bark blowers? Dave g
  5. HBFOXJr

    HBFOXJr LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,712

    I always thought getting the stuff into the wheel barrrow was a drudge a an old potato body or silage wagon would solve that and now they make them. If your handy and in an ag area you might think on this a little.

    Also, bag mulch is not as far fetched as people think if you have a way to handle it. When your moving 2 or 3 cubic feet in one shot with just your hands yardage goes quick. You just gotta be prepared with forklifts and truck bodies and tie downs.
  6. jkelton

    jkelton LawnSite Member
    Messages: 243

    Dave G:
    The bark blowers what I consider to be a "roots-type" blower to push the material through the hose. There is a fair amount of pressure on the hose to acheive this, but I think the air flowrate provides most of the energy to push the material through - without the kinetic energy of the airflow passing through the hoses, it would be difficult to push the material through. I have a bark blower myself and I still am amazed that I can blow heavy hardwood material through 300' of hose and up steep hillsides!
  7. mlc4163

    mlc4163 LawnSite Member
    Messages: 40

    I live about 30 minutes from the Finn factory and their smallest unit was quoted to me at $35K. The advertised 7 yards per hour is considered very conservative for a 2-man crew, closer to 10 or 12 yards of black gold hardwood is what they told me. I'm looking for a pre-owned model at the end of this year. Good luck with the modified leaf blower.
  8. gr8 1

    gr8 1 LawnSite Member
    from OHIO
    Messages: 41


    We just built a trailer with a silage wagon on it, and it is awesome. We can hual 14 yds of mulch and fill a 10 cu. ft. wheelbarrow in less than 10 sec. NO MORE SHOVELING!!!!!!!!!!! It also cost alot less than buying one.:D

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