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At Least I Looked Legit

Discussion in 'Commercial Snow Removal' started by thelettuceman, Dec 27, 2012.

  1. thelettuceman

    thelettuceman PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,218

    I have been researching on this website and others for a walk behind spreader. Everyone known to mankind has some negative reviews. It seems to me that it is more the fault of what you are trying to spread than it is the design of the spreader.

    I have 2 customers that want me to spread salt / cat litter mix over a small area. I used the spreader for the first time. It worked for the first 3 feet and went into "no spread" mode. Upon inspection, I found that the spreader was operating but the salt / cat litter mix decided not to obey the rules of gravity.

    I finished the job dipping into the spreader with a cup and tossing the mixture in various directions. I made sure the spreader was visible to give me some legitimacy.

    Upon returning home, I hosed off the spreader. All set for the next event. Like I said .... At Least I Looked Legit
  2. L.I.Mike

    L.I.Mike Senior Member
    Messages: 370

    Yup, did a whole parking lot like that, used the spreader to hold the salt and a can to toss it.
  3. jhall22guitar

    jhall22guitar PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,056

    Ive found the same thing, but i used a cheap piece of crap spreader haha.
  4. thelettuceman

    thelettuceman PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,218

    I was expecting to get humiliated BIG TIME for posting my problem. Misery loves company.
  5. nixray

    nixray Senior Member
    Messages: 165

    Why the mix with cat litter?
  6. beanz27

    beanz27 Senior Member
    Messages: 984

    Cat litter is very good, almost like sand or using ash, gives great traction.
  7. nixray

    nixray Senior Member
    Messages: 165

    Oh i see that makes sense
  8. ALC-GregH

    ALC-GregH PlowSite.com Addict
    from pa
    Messages: 1,143

    I was going to cut on you but decided to be nice. I'm slipping in my older age. :jester:
  9. 07PSDCREW

    07PSDCREW Senior Member
    Messages: 873

    Question for ya........not to derail thread, but in my experience with cat litter, it's always been bad. The litter I've used always turned into a slimy mess when it got wet. What brand works best?
  10. thelettuceman

    thelettuceman PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,218

    Go Ahead ..... LOL
  11. thelettuceman

    thelettuceman PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,218

    Sand or cat litter will turn into a slimy mess but both give traction. You are not derailing thread. Questions are welcome. Beware of the answers !!!
  12. 07PSDCREW

    07PSDCREW Senior Member
    Messages: 873

    Gotcha. Thank you.
  13. ScubaSteve728

    ScubaSteve728 Senior Member
    Messages: 499

    when i spread if it jams up i usually give it a few good bounces doing a reverse rowing motion making the tiers bounce off the ground which jolts the sand or salt down
  14. coldcoffee

    coldcoffee Senior Member
    Messages: 776

    There was a time when I literally did miles of sidewalks. I had tried about every spreader that I could get my hands on. Started off w/ some $300 spreaders, but the guys would just destroy them and they would rot out after a season or two...then went to the cheap-o spreaders, which were more like a kids toy. The plastic wheels wouldn't turn, they flexed...then cracked...and yea, the cup worked better than the drop.

    After getting away from sidewalks for too many reasons to mention...I bought a $550 stainless steel spreader. I don't let anyone else use it & it usually works because it has a flap in the bottom for rock salt. I still have to bang the wheels from time to time, but at about 9 years old...it's still working well. It's not the perfect devise, but generally does what it should.

    It's amazing to me sometimes how there is still no great solution to solve such a basic, common problem. The right machine would be like the next bread slicer.

    Almost forgot...Because of the problems associated w/ using damp/wet material or various sized material...For many cases, it's sometimes better (and less $$) to consider an efficient means of transporting the product, then using the right tool to physically project it. I've found that cutting the end off of a wiper fluid container w/ the end beveled...you can throw it long distance & it doesn't break like your empty gas station coffee cup. Some funnels work well also w/ the small end as a handle. So do the plastic gutter cleaning shovels...you just have to choose your weapon.
    Last edited: Dec 28, 2012
  15. framer1901

    framer1901 Senior Member
    Messages: 852

    The other night I asked myself why we even try these better spreaders?

    I went out to clean up a bit, take care of some walks and misc salting - I took the "good" small spreader with me, not planning on working that hard, spread an easy 5 bags of walk salt. I dump the first bag in and it's running all over the ground. WTF? Go to shut the gate and the control moves but it ain't connected to any cable... I'm thinking to myself this thing worked great when I bought it last year, paid 150, real nice, it was working then, oh yea, Big Jay replaced the cable last year once, piece of chit, it needs a new cable again?? Ok which direction does the slide have to move to close it? It won't move, 10# of salt on the ground, 40# still in the spreader, where's my bucket? Oh that's right, left the bucket at the shop cause I took the "good" little spreader - piece of chit. So as I'm scooping 40# of salt out of my fancy bucket on wheels, I'm trying to think - Jay, went thru all these spreaders we have and they were working perfect at the begining of the season, chit, we really haven't had any type of season yet - how many bags of salt have really been spread thru this thing this year???? Well, thinking, this spreader is with this truck, this truck has really only done these sidewalks maybe twice this year - did we really only get 10 bags thru a spreader before it broke again? Nah, probably didn't get 5, it probably broke the first day, and someone just left it in the back of the truck hoping the spreader fairy would come along and magically fix it...

    Moral to the story:
    1) If you are going to go do sidewalks, get a spreader out of a box, put it together and don't forget to bring your bucket.
    2.5) Thru proper 7p or whatever, I should have had needle nose pliars, cotter pins, new control cable and perhaps even a new in the box spreader with me just in case of some part failure, or I could have just brought a bucket.
    2) The heck with doing sidewalks, didn't we hire someone to do that?
    3) Where's my dang flip flops and shorts? someone start my loader and turn the heat up, I'll be right out, I ain't doing no more sidewalks.

    Jay - that piece of chit spreader is broke again.
  16. nepatsfan

    nepatsfan Senior Member
    Messages: 727

    I don't know why a broadcast spreader makes you legit. We use 5 gallon buckets and "feed the chickens" on walks for many of the reasons listed above. Granted we don't do thousands of feet of sidewalk like some may but we have a fair amount of walks to do. The buckets never break down and we have a million lying around.
  17. Antlerart06

    Antlerart06 PlowSite Veteran
    Messages: 3,437

    I still do it that way I used all kinds of Spreaders and in the end I back to feeding the chickens
    Hand and bucket never plugs up

    This year put on a 12v spreader on the ATV for my sidewalk crew only run Icemelt and so far no plugging happen I put a rubber flap around it So it drops it in same path of the ATV not throwing it in the grass

    One job always took 4 bags now doing it in 3 bags
  18. aloe

    aloe Senior Member
    from NY
    Messages: 285

    same with mine...wound up spreading it from the back of the truck w/ a cup.
  19. aflesh2002

    aflesh2002 Junior Member
    Messages: 4

    If you ever find a push spreader worth a s*** let me know. As for now it will continue to be a 5 gallon bucket !!!
  20. Mr.Markus

    Mr.Markus PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 5,779

    I've always done it this way, I even drilled the bottom full of holes one year because I hurt my arm. just walk down the wallkway bouncing and twisting the bucket to trickle out the salt. Had to add a strap cause the handle was to flimsy.