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Author Topic: Does the cold effect machine mixing  (Read 232 times)

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Offline P.L.

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Does the cold effect machine mixing
« on: Tue November 28, 2017, 09:02:03 PM »
Iíve been spraying a lot lately and the temps when we spray have been fairly cold, high 30s low 40s. We are doing the same things as usual, it just seems like the with the cold the mulch takes longer to mix and Iíve been having a harder time getting things done. Has any one else noticed a difference in machine performance/material performance when spraying in the cold vs the warmer weather when we do most of our spraying?  One other though that I have is that my pump (tm-60) may need some cleaning, itís been a long time since I took it apart and checked things out,  thatís on the to do list.
Easy Lawn TM-60

Offline landscaper1009

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Re: Does the cold effect machine mixing
« Reply #1 on: Wed November 29, 2017, 08:42:25 AM »
Colder weather has been known to cause mulches, tackifiers and other additives to take longer to mix.  Kind of like sugar dissolving faster in warmer water than cold.  I have applied tackifier in conditions where water was freezing on the tank and we had a heater on the pump to keep it from freezing.  It did take longer to go into solution, but it worked.

Clean your T60 and check the gap between the impeller and wear plate to make sure the gap is still good.

This is copied from a T60 manual T 60 SO#)
To check pump tolerances loosen the two clamps on the pump suction piping and remove the inlet elbow. Through the pump suction hole, insert a feeler gauge between the pump impeller (3) and the suction cover (1). This measurement on a new pump is between .030-.045 of an inch (.762 -1.15 mm).


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Offline Bowie Man

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Re: Does the cold effect machine mixing
« Reply #2 on: Wed November 29, 2017, 09:43:52 AM »
Guar based tackifiers are known for not breaking down and mixing into the slurry when used in cold water.   You may see what globs shoot out of the tank which is a result of guar not mixed properly.   You can see the same results when using much with tackifier in it as that is usually a guar based product.
If possible try switching to a granular poly-acrylamide type tackifier.
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Offline Epic Manufacturing

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Re: Does the cold effect machine mixing
« Reply #3 on: Wed November 29, 2017, 11:02:53 AM »
The correlation between your performance issues and the cold weather might be a coincidence.  If it's been a while since you've inspected your pump, it is possible that you are experiencing performance issues due to wear of the impeller and volute inside the pump.  This would lead to less agitation energy inside the tank and less spray pressure at the end of the hose.  It could also lead to more material being left in the bottom of the tank than usual. 
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Offline HSandG

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Re: Does the cold effect machine mixing
« Reply #4 on: Wed November 29, 2017, 05:55:15 PM »
The cold water makes the bonded fiber we use very hard to mix. We have to run the fill pump slower and run the paddles as fast as they will go. Sometimes , a dry chunk makes it into the pump. It gets caught in one or two of the impellers , then the pressure drops and the machine sounds like it is cavatating . No matter how long we mix , it still happens. When we take the suction pipe off we find the material is packed as hard as rock.
We mix hundreds of batches a year and we only have a problem when the water gets below 40 degrees . I'm thinking of building a mulch grinder for use during the cold season.
finn t-330 , b-260 mulcher

Offline P.L.

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Re: Does the cold effect machine mixing
« Reply #5 on: Wed November 29, 2017, 08:39:06 PM »
Thank you for the replyís. From the responses it sounds like the cold is that cause of most of my problems. Iím mixing 70/30 and like hsandg said it seems like the some of the mulch just stays dry no matter what and gets jammed up in the pump causing problems. We sprayed a tank today and the temps were in the high 50s and everything went into mix much quicker and the machine preformed like it usually does.  We cleaned the tank out throughly when we were done because this should be our last time spraying and there was ice built up on the bottom from earlier in the week that could be causing some of our other previous issues. I am going to inspect and shim the impeller if nessecary we donít spray a ton but I think this year we put 5-6 pallets of mulch trough the machine and I donít think Iíve inspected the impeller for the last 2-3 years.  I think the perfrmance issues Iíve been having are a combination of things exacerbated by the cold weather. Iím over hydroseeding at this point, Iíll deal with it next year when Iíve had a break for a while.
Easy Lawn TM-60

Offline dawrule

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Re: Does the cold effect machine mixing
« Reply #6 on: Thu November 30, 2017, 10:58:06 AM »
I have been using 100% wood fiber mulch. See no difference in mixing in cold weather using my bowie. Air cooled Wisconsin likes the cold air and runs like a champ.

I would check your impeller tolerance and shim as needed in Spring.

Offline Epic Manufacturing

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Re: Does the cold effect machine mixing
« Reply #7 on: Mon December 04, 2017, 11:08:30 AM »
Another thing to consider is the hardness/softness of the water.  Warmer water absorbs more calcium and magnesium which makes it hard.  As groundwater becomes cooler, it absorbs less of these minerals and becomes softer.  Softer water can lead to foaming issues when mixing which can make it harder to mix a slurry and can also cause more cavitation in the pump leading to spraying issues.  If you are seeing foaming in the tank, add a surfactant such as an anti-foaming agent from a pool supply shop or simply add some vegetable oil.  This will break up the surface tension of the water and reduce the foaming and should provide for better mixing and spray performance. 

Thanks,
Jeff
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Offline P.L.

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Re: Does the cold effect machine mixing
« Reply #8 on: Wed December 06, 2017, 08:09:15 PM »
Thank you jeff. I did not notice any foaming. I think itís a combination of the cold the pump, the fact that there was ice build up in the bottom of the tank ( I did not realize until after the post when winterizing the machine) and the fact that Iím burnt out and ready for a break. I think for now Iím going to cover up the machine and deal with it in the spring.....a decesion Iím going to regret, but willing to make at this point in the year.  Thank you for all of the replies and help. Forums like this are extremely helpful to avoid/ hell with all of the curve balls that get thrown your way.
Easy Lawn TM-60

 

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