Author Topic: Automated Bush Wacking Attachments  (Read 39184 times)

Bill Sample

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Automated Bush Wacking Attachments
« on: August 20, 2010, 07:31:45 AM »
I know this is a wee bit off the topic of Joe & Lindsey, but seeing and hearing about the annual task of r o w mowing, are there any 2 foot gauge bush hogs around?  ::) Or maybe a sickle bar carrier to get the close-in areas.

John Kokas

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Re: Automated Bush Wacking Attachments
« Reply #1 on: August 20, 2010, 11:43:37 AM »
Maybe an answer is converting a used mini-excavator from tracks (tank type) to some variation of hy-rail gear and a mower attachment.  I see similar attachments on tractors and backhoes used by various DOT departments. 
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Ira Schreiber

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Re: Automated Bush Wacking Attachments
« Reply #2 on: August 20, 2010, 02:05:33 PM »
Attach this to a mini-excavator and see what you get for under $50k.

http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&item=350373796726&ssPageName=STRK:MEWAX:IT

Vincent "Lightning" LeRow

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Re: Automated Bush Wacking Attachments
« Reply #3 on: August 20, 2010, 03:38:25 PM »
We could even attach that to a rail-car.  I (and I bet many others backs) love it already!
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Wayne Laepple

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Re: Automated Bush Wacking Attachments
« Reply #4 on: August 20, 2010, 04:28:57 PM »
This unit requires a PTO to operate. Maybe we can figure out how to mount one on a skid with an engine to run it. Set the thing up so it can be placed on a flatcar or pushcar. I wonder what the horsepower requirement is?

John Kokas

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Re: Automated Bush Wacking Attachments
« Reply #5 on: August 20, 2010, 04:58:10 PM »
Wayne,

I've seen these units run on as little as 14 HP diesel engines.  It's not the RPM/HP that's important but the torque.
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Mike Fox

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Re: Automated Bush Wacking Attachments
« Reply #6 on: August 20, 2010, 08:40:50 PM »
I have been thinking of this for a few years now. As our ROW gets longer, and our mowers get older, it seems that less mowing is getting done by annual picnic than before. I think actually the same amount is getting done, by the same amount of people. We just have more to do.

And just last weekend at the annual picnic, the topic did come up.

I have in my wish list, a faily new Cat 302.5 Excavator. This is a small machine. Notice the lack of windows. Less things to break.


Something this size would be very handy year round. Modifying a reel type mower to this should be easy, as well as mounting High-rail gear. The machine is just wide enough to straddle the tracks and be on the ties. This would proovide stability while digging. It would be up on the wheels while mowing.

At just over 3 MPH top speed, the mower would have no trouble keeping up.

I only suggest Cat because this was what I looked at. I am familiar with those. Any other Mini excavator would probably do just as well. Anybody have one to donate? Would love to work on that this fall and have it ready for next mowing season.

Mike
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Bill Fortier

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Re: Automated Bush Wacking Attachments
« Reply #7 on: August 20, 2010, 11:27:45 PM »
You don't have to mow what doesn't grow. Consider this approach.

Hook up something like this: http://www.sioux.com/walterssteamguns.html

To something like this: http://www.sioux.com/steamgen.html

Or this: http://www.therma-kleen.com/propane_steam_cleaners/propane_steam_cleaners.html

And have at them. No poisons to get into the groundwater like with herbicides, but every bit as effective.

Whack the diehards that pop up, as required.

John Kokas

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Re: Automated Bush Wacking Attachments
« Reply #8 on: August 21, 2010, 10:55:50 AM »
Steam is one thought - immediately adjacent to the ROW but impractical as you get further and further away from centerline.  The one other advantage of my suggestion of the mini-excavator is that it can also be used as, (you guessed it) a mini-excavator.....  ;D  Remember - drainage pipes, crossings, ROW improvements, stone onto the flat car, coal bunker loads, etc.   Just change the attachments on the boom.
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Pete "Cosmo" Barrington

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Re: Automated Bush Wacking Attachments
« Reply #9 on: August 21, 2010, 11:38:37 AM »
Hmmmm.....
those are some good points in favor of the excavator, in that it has multiple uses.
My question would be, would we need a steam cleaner around the shop just as a general STEAM CLEANER?
The other question is, is it better where soil erosion is concerned to MOW or to kill/spray/whatever the weeds etc?

Mike Fox

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Re: Automated Bush Wacking Attachments
« Reply #10 on: August 21, 2010, 02:01:36 PM »
For erosion purposes, it is better to mow. If you kill, you also kill the roots, which holds the soil in place.

Mike
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James Patten

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Re: Automated Bush Wacking Attachments
« Reply #11 on: August 21, 2010, 05:11:00 PM »
We do have a steam cleaner, but not very heavy duty.

For the Walter's Steam gun, probably could fire up #10 for a mid-week day and get most of the right of way that day.

Wayne Laepple

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Re: Automated Bush Wacking Attachments
« Reply #12 on: August 21, 2010, 09:23:21 PM »
According to the spec sheet on the Maschio mower Ira noted above, a minimum 40 hp engine is required.

John Kokas

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Re: Automated Bush Wacking Attachments
« Reply #13 on: August 22, 2010, 11:55:02 AM »
I really like the CAT excavator that Mike posted.  There has to be some around on the used market cheap due to "economic conditions" OR maybe a rental company would be willing to donate a used one.  Does CAT have a mower attachment?
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Bill Fortier

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Re: Automated Bush Wacking Attachments
« Reply #14 on: August 23, 2010, 01:00:28 PM »
For erosion purposes, it is better to mow. If you kill, you also kill the roots, which holds the soil in place.

This is true, so a scorched-earth approach wouldn't do. However, the area immediately around the trackbed is apparently the most difficult to mow so it might benefit from some selective scalding. Also, identifying and taking out saplings that become bigger problems over time might be helpful. I know from experience that flush-cutting unwanted maples is an exercise in futility.

There are several kinds of tools available for RoW "gardening" with advantages and disadvantages to each. With around 18 acres of garden (if my math is right) with quite variable conditions there's no single tool that can do it all. Portable whackers and riding mowers certainly can't.

For the undrivable or unwalkable slopes, here's an example of a sickle-bar rig: http://www.wikco.com/tsbmwr.html

Class 1s and highway departments like things like this:



The thought of something with that kind of reach (even with proper counterbalance) perched on two-foot track kinda scares me.

I wouldn't mind getting hold of that excavator, though. There are a few spots in my back yard that would benefit from its attention.