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Discussion Starter #1
Now it's my turn to get some opinions from you smart people!
I have a massive amount of leaves to harvest every fall. 12 large oak and hickory trees. I've been looking at the various leaf vacs. Cyclone, agra fab ect. I also have a chance to purchase an LA140 that has been at the shop for over 2yrs that has a bagger minus the lower chute. It has a 48 deck without a power flow. My question is, do you all think i should go with the LA140 with bagger or suck it up and buy a tow behind vac. How well will a 48 deck without a power flow pick up dry leaves?

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Discussion Starter #3
Or I guess another option is a tow behind sweeper. I have ALOT of acorns too. I know the bagger and vac wont pick those up. I've raked and filled my 10p cart 5x already with just acorns. Lol

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From the videos I have watched,,, tow behind!! :good2:
DITTO - Tow behind! :thumbup1gif:

I think that your bagger will fill up very quickly.

Even though I have the largest CR I sometime think that even that fills up too quickly.
 

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I use my D160 with the Deere bagger and it works ok. The disadvantage of this setup is that it doesn't really shred the leaves very well so the bags fill up fairly quick. I park my utility trailer in the yard, bag the leaves and dump the bags into that so I don't have to run back and forth so often. If I do run into a bunch of wet leaves it will plug up sometimes - not a big deal to clear.

The single biggest issue I have with this setup is that Deere, in their infinite wisdom, put the stupid gas fill cap smack in the center of the machine in the back there so it's impossible to fill the thing with the bagger on without doing some super-human gymnastics or rigging up some funky contraption. I ended up buying 2' of clear plastic tubing that I can connect to my gas can spout to reach the filler neck.

And yeah, the bagger will leave 90% of the acorns behind. I rake those up after the leaves are cleared.
 

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Doc,

We had tons of leaves on the lawn, on the driveways and on the paths in the wooded areas of our last small acreage in the Portland, OR area. We used a bagger on the X304 that had a 42 inch deck, a mulching deck on the 322 and later on the x495 for the pathways which already had cedar chips, and for the wide open spaces and the gravel driveways we used the MC519 and Power flow on the other 322 and before that on the 318, although the x304 did a lot of that as well.

Baggers without power flow assist on the Deere decks work but are somewhat marginal for some kinds of leaves/needles. Although it was a much less quality mower, the deck on the Husqvarna riding mower seemed to have more "lift" when collecting and bagging needles and broken leaves from being driven on by the vehicle traffic.

Emptying the bags on any mower is much more tedious than the larger bins in the tow-able collection systems or even the MC 519 so be sure to consider that aspect as well...

Chuck
 

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I had the same dilemma, or at least a similar one. I used my LA135 and bagger, but could only get 1 or 2 laps around the yard before I had to go dump the bags. Then I bought the Cyclone Rake XL. It makes a world of difference. For example, today I had to dump it twice, where with just the bagger I would have had to dump at least 6 times. Not to mention clogging. My bagger would have clogged multiple times, today not once. I did my 1 acre lawn, and my buddy's 1 acre lawn next door in 4 hours today. Trust me, you want a Cyclone Rake (or similar).
 

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I used to have a 345 with 54" deck and the mc519 material collection system. It did a great job pulling the leaves off the lawn. I was cutting about 4 acres of lawn on a 6 acre property. The lawn was surrounded with mature trees and I also had a magnificent Sycamore in the yard that dropped dinner plate sized leaves. The system digested everything well, but I took many trips to the mulch pile to dump the full cart. I would speculate the cart held the equivalent of what the two bag systems would. The tow behind systems all seem to hold a very good volume and I'm certain they pull significantly more vacuum.

I have lots of leaves also now and have been blowing my money on so many other things that I cant afford a collection system right now. Stuck blowing them with a back pack and stuffing them in my 18 cart for another season.
 

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Xcopterdoc: my lawn is 1.5 acres of maple, oak, pine and cottonwood trees. The cotton wood trees are gigantic. I use an Agri-fab leaf vac with built in wood chipper. I absolutely LOVE it, it's hands down the best money I've spent for yard maintenance (used $600). I have a fenced in area and I use my BR600 to blow all the fenced in area out into the open so I can get at it. I would HIGHLY recommend the Agri-fab unit to anyone. The only down side is it's long and I have to make wide circles around my trees. Otherwise, it sucks up 99% of the leaves.

I prefer to suck leaves in the morning while there is still a slight dew on them, this nearly eliminates dust. Also, you will need a tractor with a heavy duty hydro drive because after 1.5 hours of pulling the leaf vac around, my Cubby (LTX1050) is not happy and the hydro drive is louder than normal.
Before:


After:


NOTE: 5 loads sucked up all the leaves above...
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Made my own.
 

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Where or do you vent the air in the cart? I built my own too and found it works better once I added another vent to mine to the original too small vent. Thanks
I had a small vent on the side also to see how full it was getting.I needed more so added to the top.No problems now.Between the gator blades and the PF it breakes up the leaves nice for the garden. IMG_0838.jpg IMG_0812.jpg
 

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I used to use a pull behind sweeper, but got real tired of all the trips out back to dump it. I picked this used one up for about 1/2 of new price on CL last season: Garden Tractors 2015 001 (5).jpg works very well!
 

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Agreed, tow behind is the only way to go. :good2:

Vacuum-1.JPG
Vacuum-new4.JPG
 

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What tractor will you be using to pull/mount the MCS on??

Depending on the tractor, whether you have hills, and do you haul your leaves off your property or do you pile them somewhere to rot up, will depend on what you use!!

If you have a large enough tractor, and considering you have a "large amount" of leaves to pick up, it really comes down to how many times do you want to empty the system. With any "hang on the back of the tractor" bagger system or even the hydraulic lift MCS that I use, they just do not hold that many leaves, even after the are chopped up with the mmm and blower impeller. You will empty these types of systems often when picking up leaves.

The MCS that use bags, you have to physically remove the bags and dump them. This can get pretty tiring after a while.

So, we are down to pull behind systems. I do not have one of these systems, although my neighbor does.
I believe the most important thing to look at with these systems is, how effect does the dump work, and is the final place for the leaves at a location where they will be left to rot up. In other words, when dumping the trailer, do the leaves actually come out without you actually pulling them out and will the leaves be left there. When dumping leaves, the dump does not pile them, they slide out of the trailer and you have to pull forward to windrow them.

So, do you have to haul the leaves off your property to finally get rid of them or do you have a place that you can dump them and leave them to rot up?

Personally, I do not have a place on my property where I want to pile/windrow leaves to let them rot up over time. So, I haul my leaves to the township grass/leave/tree limb recycling site. I have had the rear mount bagger MCS over the years and have learned to know, them bags get pretty heavy after about the 10th time of emptying them.

I also have to get my leaves into my trailer to haul them. So, I chose the hydraulic lift MCS that JD made. I GTT member actually has one of these for sale on craigslist and on this forum.
Yes, I sacrifice volume, but I do not have to get out of the seat to dump it and I can dump them right into my trailer. With a 1 series tractor, you do need front weight on the tractor with this MCS. I use the Heavy Hitch front weight bar with 8 - 40 lb suitcase weights.
I haul three 14" long trailer loads of leaves off my property every fall. The hardest part of doing this is unloading the leaves off the trailer.
 

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Now it's my turn to get some opinions from you smart people!
I have a massive amount of leaves to harvest every fall. 12 large oak and hickory trees. I've been looking at the various leaf vacs. Cyclone, agra fab ect. I also have a chance to purchase an LA140 that has been at the shop for over 2yrs that has a bagger minus the lower chute. It has a 48 deck without a power flow. My question is, do you all think i should go with the LA140 with bagger or suck it up and buy a tow behind vac. How well will a 48 deck without a power flow pick up dry leaves?

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Two options for acorns,,,
1) a BR600 Stihl blower
2) a herd of deer,,, :flag_of_truce:

I have option 1),,, but,,,
I use option 2),,

:lol:
12 little oak and hickory trees? I have that many along one part of my driveway!!! I have dozens and dozens, not to mention the acre of sassafras, the groves of aspen and a scattered couple huge maples.

I too have a BR600 and a herd of deer and I still have to cleanup leaves weekly between mid October and mid May if they're not covered in snow.
 

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Discussion Starter #18
Thanks for all the replies. After reading the replies and reading reviews, I'm leaning towards the cyclone rake. I like the idea that it folds up for storage. Also that it's mounted directly to the rear if the tractor. I have plenty of open space so tail swing isnt a big deal. Flat property so my 16 yr old Scotts shouldn't have any problem towing it. All my leaves get dumped on site and will be shredded again into compost.

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I use a walk behind BillyGoat Vacuum. It sucks up everything. It grinds it and compresses it. It can do pop cans, sticks, nuts, etc. I can easily clean the flower beds out with the hand hose kit. I really like it for more smaller yard that has only one large maple tree. It can get in tight spaces. My neighbors next to me have several large maple trees. They are to the west of me. They have 7 kids. Kids that have no idea what a rake looks like. They usually wait to the winds blow the leaves in my yard. They are so surprised how they seem to disappear. They enjoy fall days at sporting events while I try to get their leaves out of my yard and flower beds during the few daylight hours we have. Do I sound bitter?, if not, believe me, I am. I would much rather be on the Harley. The BillyGoat helps me not to take hostages.

Down side to the BillyGoat. It's loud. It's thirsty for fuel. It's like trying to pull start a 747 Boeing Jet. No clutch on the massive fan. It is a 6.5 Honda engine that proves they are not all easy to start. In fact, it cannot be done without starting fluid. It's dusty. You need to wear a good dust mask. It takes up space in the garage.

isaac
 

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Discussion Starter #20
I use a walk behind BillyGoat Vacuum. It sucks up everything. It grinds it and compresses it. It can do pop cans, sticks, nuts, etc. I can easily clean the flower beds out with the hand hose kit. I really like it for more smaller yard that has only one large maple tree. It can get in tight spaces. My neighbors next to me have several large maple trees. They are to the west of me. They have 7 kids. Kids that have no idea what a rake looks like. They usually wait to the winds blow the leaves in my yard. They are so surprised how they seem to disappear. They enjoy fall days at sporting events while I try to get their leaves out of my yard and flower beds during the few daylight hours we have. Do I sound bitter?, if not, believe me, I am. I would much rather be on the Harley. The BillyGoat helps me not to take hostages.

Down side to the BillyGoat. It's loud. It's thirsty for fuel. It's like trying to pull start a 747 Boeing Jet. No clutch on the massive fan. It is a 6.5 Honda engine that proves they are not all easy to start. In fact, it cannot be done without starting fluid. It's dusty. You need to wear a good dust mask. It takes up space in the garage.

isaac
I like that silver deck! I have one also. A 14SB. Got it for free. Cleaned carb and she fired right up.

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