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post #1 of 55 Old 10-30-2019, 09:16 AM Thread Starter
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First Engagement - Mechanized vs Biologics in Leaf Campaign

Finally got a break and rolled out the Trac-Vac yesterday to tackle the leaves for the first time this year. I am amazed once again. This Trac-Vac sits in the back of my shed from December to October, basically as a storage bin for other things. I rolled it out, checked the oil, filled the tank with fresh gas, set the throttle and choke, and give it one pull and it fires like a champ. A tribute to a well designed carburated engine with a choke and fresh gas.



This is the beginning of basically a weekly battle from now to mid-December. How is your campaign going?

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post #2 of 55 Old 10-30-2019, 09:42 AM
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Re: First Engagement - Mechanized vs Biologics in Leaf Campaign

Nice set-up Jere!.
We don't have a lot of trees on the yard, so usually just mulch what little is there from fence line trees & blow/rake what collects around the buildings and put in mulch pile by tree line out back.

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post #3 of 55 Old 10-30-2019, 07:28 PM
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Re: First Engagement - Mechanized vs Biologics in Leaf Campaign

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Originally Posted by Jere39 View Post
This is the beginning of basically a weekly battle from now to mid-December. How is your campaign going?
Welp there is a prediction for up to 4 inches of snow tomorrow and I haven't even touched my leaves yet. They just started falling, and it has been raining pretty much every day I am not working so.....

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post #4 of 55 Old 10-30-2019, 07:44 PM
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Re: First Engagement - Mechanized vs Biologics in Leaf Campaign

My leaf season is the month of October, will be done in another week, I figure. I blow the leaves into rows with the mower, which mulches a lot of them. Then gather up whats left with a lawn sweeper. I am a bit amazed how well those lawn sweepers work.

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post #5 of 55 Old 10-30-2019, 08:54 PM
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Re: First Engagement - Mechanized vs Biologics in Leaf Campaign

That is certainly the way to go having a large lawn area, Jere. I would love to be able to use a setup like yours. Having mostly pachysandra, and ivy ground cover, I have to resort to the leaf blower, and plow method.
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post #6 of 55 Old 10-30-2019, 09:10 PM
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Re: First Engagement - Mechanized vs Biologics in Leaf Campaign

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Originally Posted by Jere39 View Post
How is your campaign going?
I threw in the towel. Way too much rain left puddles everywhere and the ground too soft for wheeled implements. I used the leaf blower to get the worst of it in the front yard and ran out of time for the rest. Weather turned bitter cold and it is all a frozen mess now.

I was thinking a hovercraft could work. Just do a generous overlap so the leaves only blow out the one side.

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post #7 of 55 Old 10-30-2019, 10:33 PM
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Re: First Engagement - Mechanized vs Biologics in Leaf Campaign

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Originally Posted by RBRONKEMA GHTFD View Post
Welp there is a prediction for up to 4 inches of snow tomorrow and I haven't even touched my leaves yet. They just started falling, and it has been raining pretty much every day I am not working so.....
Yup... Same here.
Our trees are mostly oak. They're maybe 85% or so turned color. They'll be falling at a good rate until after Thanksgiving probably. They're often times at least half fallen by now. I swear those oak leaves hang on tight.

Almost 100% of the map,e leaves are down on most of our maples, though. Don't have to vacuum those up, though. Mwhen they're dry a good sharp mulching blade will pulverize them into dust real easy.


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post #8 of 55 Old 10-30-2019, 11:41 PM
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Re: First Engagement - Mechanized vs Biologics in Leaf Campaign

Beautiful set up! I have the DR version that sits for 11 months a year.. worth every penny..

I go to battle Monday.. Been raining for a week, but we're supposed to have 3 sunny days starting Saturday and I have Monday off. Told the wife its going to be a sun up to sunset marathon to get the most of it I can. I also will be going back over it every chance I can until it snows, as by Tuesday afternoon I fully expect it to look like I spent Monday in bed..

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post #9 of 55 Old 10-30-2019, 11:50 PM
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Re: First Engagement - Mechanized vs Biologics in Leaf Campaign

My London Planes trees turn brown back in September and are falling. My oak trees got brown leaves back in September but leaves not falling. The maple trees the leaves are just turning yellow and slowing falling. My Cleveland Select trees still have green leaves and don't turn red and fall until after Christmas. I did a leaf cleanup today took about two hours using the bagger filled up four large recycle cans. I do a weekly cleanup with the tractor and bagger up through January. The county does weekly recycle pick ups.

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post #10 of 55 Old 10-31-2019, 12:20 AM
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Re: First Engagement - Mechanized vs Biologics in Leaf Campaign

Our Oak are hanging strong too... but everything else here has been dropping for weeks... Been really rainy & wet the past week so haven't gotten out this week but have been blowing the drive once a week since the last week in Sept. just to keep up... Use out Exmark Zero-Turn with a Cyclone Rake XL for the lawn areas... but for our 1/2+ mile driveway & other ares I use the blower... this is only our second season with the PTO blower... It is almost a pleasure clearing the driveway & culverts now...
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post #11 of 55 Old 10-31-2019, 07:22 AM
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Re: First Engagement - Mechanized vs Biologics in Leaf Campaign

I can't even get out there, been raining everyday South Jersey.

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post #12 of 55 Old 10-31-2019, 08:08 AM
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Re: First Engagement - Mechanized vs Biologics in Leaf Campaign

Iíve been out there a few times between the rain, even in the rain but the DR has been fighting me all season. The crank bolt keeps backing out of the auger but I THINK I finally have it fixed, ended up drilling & tapping the crank snout to the next size up bolt (7/16) Plus when the leaves are wet they tend to plug the boot & then itís just mulching, no sucking. Iím gone for work next week so Iíll have to try again this weekend before I leave. Hereís a pic on the old tractor.....
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post #13 of 55 Old 10-31-2019, 08:17 AM
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Re: First Engagement - Mechanized vs Biologics in Leaf Campaign

Great set up Jere,

Do you run the carb dry of gas for storage?

I've gone both ways regarding dry or wet for storage. The last few years I have been running low on gas and then adding aviation fuel, run till warm with AV gas and then into storage.

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post #14 of 55 Old 10-31-2019, 09:28 AM Thread Starter
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Re: First Engagement - Mechanized vs Biologics in Leaf Campaign

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Originally Posted by c5rulz View Post
Great set up Jere,

Do you run the carb dry of gas for storage?

I've gone both ways regarding dry or wet for storage. The last few years I have been running low on gas and then adding aviation fuel, run till warm with AV gas and then into storage.
I run it dry, it's worked well for me for years, probably more than a decade. i can't really get ethanol free fuel anywhere near here, and even with treatment, I just don't trust it. When I need this to run, I need it now, not after a tank and bowl drain and nursing starter fluid into the carb. The engine has a shut off valve, but it isn't hard to run it dry. I have a limitless supply of leaves, and in desperation, I might run over some of the neighbor's lawn.



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post #15 of 55 Old 10-31-2019, 11:44 AM
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Re: First Engagement - Mechanized vs Biologics in Leaf Campaign

Iíve abused the Cyclone Rake the last week picking up leaves that were wet. Before I was able to get the first round dry. Today everything is white, so not much going on. I wish it was warm enough to wash the tractor. I almost prefer slightly damp leaves to reduce the dust, but wet makes some additional work.

Some swear by the lawn sweeper, like my neighbor, until last year with all the wet leaves. I pulled into a section of his yard where he had blown leaves into an 18Ē high, 8í wide, 20í long pile. No way he was going to handle it with his sweeper. I had it picked up in 10-15 minutes and the rest of his yard in the rest of an hour. He was blown away and asked me a couple of weeks ago if I would help him again and would pay for it. Different strokes for different folks.

I put mine away wet, but use Startron fuel stabilizer in everything. The engine on the Cyclone Rake has a shutoff on it to stop the engine and that seems to work well. I start the engine toward the end of Summer to make sure itís ready to go and it generally start fairly easily. After the initial time, itís one pull. Definitely a good engine they provide.

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