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making your own bagged salt

Discussion in 'Ice Management' started by Jay brown, Feb 16, 2009.

  1. Jay brown

    Jay brown PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,783

    just a thought for next year....i think i'll try to make my own bagged sidewalk salt, by taking fine salt out of our bulk bin and spraying it with geomelt 55 and mix it up with the loaders....any idea on a bagging system, or what type of bags to use? i would like to make about 6 ton (2 ton for us and 4 ton to sell to my buddies)...we pay about $8.50/50lb bag now and i think i could do this for $2.50/50lb plus the cost of the bag.....
  2. Burkartsplow

    Burkartsplow PlowSite Veteran
    Messages: 3,248

    8.50 for rock salt 50# bags. am I hearing you right on that.
  3. Jay brown

    Jay brown PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,783

    no not for straight salt, i'm posting about a treated mix for sidewalks....we don't use straight salt on walks. if i broke down what we pay for 50lbs of salt it would be about $2
  4. CAG80

    CAG80 Member
    from ct
    Messages: 62

    i remember seeing a skid steer attachment that was a bagger.. you hooked up a bunch of bags to it and scooped into the pile like you would with a bucket on it.
  5. Jay brown

    Jay brown PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,783

    thought i would just fill the bags with a shovel.
  6. HinikerPrototyp

    HinikerPrototyp Member
    Messages: 88

    Well you asked for idea on bagging....I would have two people at least to do this. I would have the salt in the back of a dump truck with a tail gate spreader or a replacement tail gate spreader or v box with the spinner removed, have a large funnel made to a opening little smaller then bag opening (just use some rolled aluminum flashing material) and install a slide gate on the bottom to hold the salt while u open the next bag..Run the unit as slow as you can and adjust as you become a professional salt bag filler lol.. Find a short box conveyor that you can have on the ground with rollers on it maybe like 10 feet long start the auger or conveyor on the truck, hold the bags under the funnel when the bags full roll it to the side and tie it with a tie strap , throw it on a pallet. Using the roller box conveyor lets any salt that misses the bag falls thru the conveyor and stays in one place.Have one fill the bags and one tie them and stack them.I'm sure you could find bags on ebay or do some online searching or if you live in a big city you might try a janitorial supply place.Heck if i lived closer id come help you get something set up,sounds like fun. PP Woven Bag should work good.
    Last edited: Feb 16, 2009
  7. cretebaby

    cretebaby PlowSite Veteran
    Messages: 4,162

    Problem is if you dont use a sealed plastic bag it will get hard fast
  8. HinikerPrototyp

    HinikerPrototyp Member
    Messages: 88

    while searching for salt bags online i found this old ad maybe you can contact them for the volunteers that they had help fill there bags lol

    The ERASE (Emergency Room Advise, Safety and Education) Salt Project hopes to reduce the number of falls leading to Emergency Department visits by 5 percent in 2005.

    Several dump truck loads of road salt will be delivered to St.Vincent Indianapolis Hospital, where volunteers will bag, load and deliver the salt to senior citizens throughout Central Indiana. The event will take place between 8:30 a.m. and 1 p.m. in the ambulance bay in front of the St.Vincent Indianapolis Hospital Emergency Department. Free salt bags will then be available in front of the St.Vincent Indianapolis and Carmel hospitals’ Emergency Departements.

    Volunteers are needed from 8:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. Participants may volunteer for an hour or the entire day depending on the volunteer’s schedule. We need The ERASE (Emergency Room Advise, Safety and Education) Salt Project hopes to reduce the number of falls leading to Emergency Department visits by 5 percent in 2005.

    * 400 volunteers to bag salt
    * 3 volunteers to drive pickup trucks and deliver salt bags
    * Volunteers to transport salt in their own pickup trucks
    * Load pickup trucks with bags of salt
    * Assist with other duties as requested

    Call Volunteer Services at 317-338-xxxx or email ussmileyflag
  9. HinikerPrototyp

    HinikerPrototyp Member
    Messages: 88

    Yeah good point ok a thick plastic bag, spin and tie with a tie strap, i guess you would have to maybe use a different type of conveyor then since the the rollers might cut the bag.
  10. ABES

    ABES PlowSite.com Addict
    from MN
    Messages: 1,322

    I would just use 5 gallon pales with covers.
  11. Jay brown

    Jay brown PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,783

    i thought about the 5 gal pails, but it woud take 240 buckets to do 6 ton...that's a lot of pails, but it may be better in the long run..
  12. HinikerPrototyp

    HinikerPrototyp Member
    Messages: 88

    You would need covers on them also to keep the moisture out so thats going to add to the cost.
  13. kimber

    kimber Senior Member
    from Ohio
    Messages: 140

    Two thoughts for you. First, look for a local company in your area...they may contract bag for you. Since this is a start up venture for you, it will save you on investing in a bagger, which can be costly if you purchase a fully automated one. If things go well, then you can look into that for the future...just a personal opinion.

    Secondly...be careful of fines in your bagged salt. Bagged salt usually uses the "mediums", which is that grade of salt that scalps off the top size, screens out the bottom fines, and you end up with a very nicely graded mid range sized salt for bagging. Fines may still cause clumping..even if treated.
  14. veggin psd

    veggin psd Senior Member
    Messages: 273

    How about using a thermo bag sealer. It would seal the bag just like factory run bags.....

    Just a thought:rolleyes:
  15. leon

    leon Senior Member
    Messages: 872

    bagging salt OMG!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    First: before this gets any more foolish;

    Rock salt occupies 2/3 of a cubic foot for 92 pounds!!!!!

    Most if not all rock salt is treated with an anti caking agent anyway.

    Second: a bagging system needs a bulk bin, a method to fill the bulk bin, an open mouth bagging system or valve pack bagging system, belt conveyor, bag sewing machine if needed, or heat sealer depending on which type of bag is desired.

    Third: most plastic bags are form-fill-seal meaning the bags come in two rolls forming the front part of the bag and rear part of the bag as the bags parts are unrolled the the sides and bottom of the bags are electro welded with a heat sealer melter as they are unrolled and proceed under the open mouth bagger untouched by human hands.

    The form fill seal bags are also waste of resources and they are not easily recyclable where a pail would be used over and over again by charging a deposit.

    The pails used for cat ltter are the perfect size,have heavy duty plastic handles, and are sealable with a plastic tear strip for opening the lid.

    And with the economy the way it is now buying several pallets of the type of plastic pails
    used for cat litter will be easily done.

    If you want a real rat and vermin problem spray your geo melt on the salt before you bag it!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    The least expensive way to do this is to buy several pallets of inexpensive weaved plastic bags exactly like the ones used for animal feed and coal they are sealed using "SIZAL BALING TWINE" no not the polyethyelene twine! Buy bags that are rated for the fifty pound size.

    First, the easy thing to do is simply this buy a dozen new traffic cones-Yes buy them!!!!!

    Buy fifty six-gallon pails/one pallet- to fill the bags in one movement.

    That way you can fill the pails and weigh them on a beam scale for one pallet of fifty pound bags.

    Second, set up a dry area to work a dry shed with lightling etc.

    Third If you have an extension ladder it will save you having to buy one-yes I am getting to it;
    set the ladder on the concrete blocks five blocks high.

    Cut three inches off the top of each traffic cone to open the top of the cone.

    Take each of the trafffic cones and set them upside down between the rungs of the extension ladder. Take one of the new bags for a fifty pound measure and hold it under the end of the traffic cone to fill it to or near the 50 pound weight or simply charge by the pound and be done with it otherwise you will need to buy a beam scale and add or remove salt prior to tying the bag if you do not use a measured pail.

    A portable sand bagging machine is another option but the seasonal use of it will kill any cost saving advantage. they are fine for flooding and volunteers but other wise...............

    The labor intensive end of this is simply putting salt in the pails and weighing them prior to packaging it.

    Make sure to zero out the tare weight of the pails with the beam scale.
    Last edited: Feb 17, 2009
  16. hydro_37

    hydro_37 PlowSite Veteran
    from iowa
    Messages: 3,790

    Pails would be my choice. Most restaurants will give them to you free. They get all sorts of product in them.
  17. HinikerPrototyp

    HinikerPrototyp Member
    Messages: 88

    now i thought i already posted the easiest method lol, that sounds like a lot of foolishness
  18. IMAGE

    IMAGE Sponsor
    Messages: 1,736

  19. leon

    leon Senior Member
    Messages: 872

    salt etc.

    Is that directed at me? If the title of my response bothers you I am sorry, I just do not believe in doing things the hard way especially when you are stuck doing it yourself.

    Having spent so many years in a mass production environment has shown me how it is done much more simply and more efficiently

    It is simply a matter of opportunity cost, what are you willing to give up to obtain something else? It is simple economics problem with or with out algebra.

    Its no different than baling hay by yourself packing and picking 20 pound bales off the bale chute on to the ground. you do not get tired or winded that way even though you are handling more bales. The hay quality is the same with a few more bales and twine which are much less likely to break from the stress of handling.

    I also used bag a lot of ice and rock salt for a living not that it matters.

    When any bulk material is bagged it is weighed either using a tippy dump arrangement with tipping hoppers or gravity drop chutes connected to bean scales, load cells etc. with shut off gates prior to the open mouth bag fillers

    It is not foolishness when labor is concentrated to do one portion of the job until it is done and then proceed to the next step, It is referred to as stages of production.

    Doing one function until it is complete, then move on to the next function of the job untill that part of the job is complete, then move to the last part of the job and complete that one and the entire job is finished.

    It is no different than baling hay and leaving the hay in the field under tarpaulins while it is being harvested and stacked for later movement and feeding

    It is no different than the five steps needed for room and pillar mining of any ore.

    1.scaling the mine roof of the entry by machine or manually.

    2,. installing roof bolts and straps to support the mine roof and restrain its movement at a manageable rate of convergence.

    3 Drill all the shot holes for the round in the entry to be mined mined.

    4. Undercut the entry to relieve the eliminate mine roof stresses from the explosive used to extract the ore.

    5. Muck out the entry and check for unexploded blasting caps to be removed or reshot.

    The idea is to save labor and effort by doing the entire batch at once or in two movements
    with the needed parts inventory prior to starting the job.

    Rock salt in fifty pound bags is either sold forty bags to a pallet or eighty bags to a pallet.

    Fill the pails first.

    Weigh them and then add or remove salt.

    At this time mark the fifty pound level in the buckets with a sharpie or magic marker so you have that as a reference when shoveling

    Set the bags up under the cones to load 10-20 bags at a time in one motion.

    Lift each inverted cone to fill the bag from the bottom of the bag to avoid spiillage and the cone forces the bag to stay in place.

    Another option is a simple piece of round duct work with a wide spout flange long enough that it fits in the bag all the way to the floor.

    Pull the bags out and tie them with baling twine using a millers knot.

    Done-with twenty bags in less time than it takes to shovel and weigh each bag indivdually.
  20. TCLA

    TCLA 2000 Club Member
    Messages: 2,692

    Might be ok advise, but what's foolish is that you think he wants to start a bagging company. He only wants to bag 6 ton for himself and his buddies.