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Discussion Starter #1
I'm hoping to get some advice from you guys in regards to a walk behind spreader for my property. I have a little over an acre of lawn that is heavily populated with moss and very thing due to the previous owners not taking good care of it. I've got a couple dogs and they will finish it off if I can't get it to fill in. I started to dethatch it this weekend in preparation for aerating, seeding and fertilizing.

I have been looking heavily at the AM Leonard 70lbs broadcast spreader in either Stainless Steel or in black powder coat. I will likely use this unit for salting my driveway as well in the winter. I know salt will eat metal if it gets wet or sits for too long. The AM Leo model can get deflectors on the side so it can do drop spreading which is perfect for the winter on walkways.

https://www.amleo.com/leonard-70-lb-broadcast-spreaders/p/VP-AM70/

1. Any suggestions for a broadcast spreader or is the AM Leonard 70lbs model top notch? The price is heavy yikes!
2. Is one material better than the other for winter salt us as well as seed and fert?
 

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I have the Agri-Fab version of that spreader,, but, it is a tow version, about the same capacity.

I have used mine for fertilizer, lime, and grass seed,, for over 20 years,,
I just put down grass seed 2 weeks ago,, it still works perfect.

My hopper is plastic,, my capacity may be over 70 pounds, it will hold more than one bag of fertilizer,,

When I bought mine, it was less than $100,, but, that was over 20 years ago,,

How do you make it last 20 years? :dunno: Wash it meticulously,, EVERY use,, even if it is only grass seed,,

I guess if you want to spread salt,, and not wash it,,
you will be buying a new one EVERY year,, even if it is stainless,,,
there is nothing magic about stainless steel,, when it comes to salt,,
it will be a little better,, but,, at the end of the season,, the spreader will be on the trash truck,, unless you wash it EVERY use,,,

AND, even if the hopper is stainless,, I would bet there are other parts that are regular steel,,, :flag_of_truce:
 

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For many years the company I work for has bent the steel and stainless tubing for commercial and upper end homeowner spreaders.
First for a company called Porcelain Steel Products which was a division of White Castle (the hamburger guys). I believe this was in collaboration with O.M.Scotts corporation at first.
They had extensive metal stamping capability as they built their own kitchens and counters for their restaurant chains.
We used to do some or all of the welding on these but later they did it all in house.

They sold that enterprise to Earthway Products who some of you may be familiar. We are currently producing the same designs for this firm.
The spreader in your link appears identical to one of the designs we happened to be bending just last week.
Im not sure if one company has copied another or if Earthway is selling some of their units to them.

I had many conversations with the design engineer at Porcelain and he stated that the stainless units were designed with the commercial customer in mind who would employ guys who might toss these units out of their van and spread ten or more properties a day.

I never did cobble one together out of parts, nor purchased one myself so I can't really speak with authority about reliability.
From what I can remember over the years was there was only one unit that we may have bent tubing for that had higher capacity and was still a push unit.
 

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I guess if you want to spread salt,, and not wash it,,
you will be buying a new one EVERY year,, even if it is stainless,,,
there is nothing magic about stainless steel,, when it comes to salt,,

to add to your point........nitrogen fertilizer is as bad or worse than salt........point is ....clean n wash :thumbup1gif:


i would also say get one you can figure out the spread ratings on....many lawn products will have the spreader settings for different brands of spreaders on the package ...if they dont it can be a pain to figure out
 

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to add to your point........nitrogen fertilizer is as bad or worse than salt........point is ....clean n wash :thumbup1gif:


i would also say get one you can figure out the spread ratings on....many lawn products will have the spreader settings for different brands of spreaders on the package ...if they dont it can be a pain to figure out
Yea, I mentioned not washing it after salt,, because,, if you need salt,, the hose is probably frozen,, :dunno:
I guess you could bring it in the house,, and use the shower to clean it in the winter,,,:good2:
that is,,, until the wife catches you doing the washing in the winter,, :nunu:
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Oh boy maybe I have to buy a throw away for winter time. In the winter I'd almost prefer a wider drop spreader so I don't waste the salt on the lawn or off the side of the driveway.

My FIL let me borrow his once and scolded me for not washing it out immediately after seeding. I thought i was being nice for not getting it wet when I knew he'd be using it an hour later for his own seeing. I didn't want the seed sticking. win some lose some :laugh:

I wouldn't be opposed to a tow behind broadcast spreader. I haven't looked at them much and figured they are less nimble since they are pulled behind. I just assumed that the ability to correct ones course and spray pattern when using a walk behind was easier.

I do believe it's important to get one with the spread ratings.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
So I pulled the trigger on the black powdercoated model. It took a hard ride via UPS and when it arrived there were multiple nicks and scratches on the black frame that if used would certainly compromise its lifespan. AM Leonard always has great CS and offered me a $50 credit and said in order to keep the initial lifetime warranty I had to repaint the frame with black or clear coat. I wasn't exactly fond of the idea so I elected to have them ship me a new one....however I spent a few bucks more and told them to ship me the stainless steel model so scratches and nicks aren't ever a concern.

Overall I'm extremely pleased with my purchase and look forward to using it this coming week to throw down some triple19 fert and some fresh seed, just following the use of my buddies walk behind power aerator. The ONLY thing I wasn't fond of was the on/off lever is black powercoat instead of being stainless. So the unit is more or less 98% stainless.
 

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My .02 on walk behind spreaders.

the things I've noticed are

1) the shape of the hopper, most have "flat" areas that hold the stuff your trying to spread, as the level gets lower the feeding out the chute gets worse and you have to "shake" the spreader to get the stuff out of the spreader. Be nice if they had a constant funnel shape so all the stuff goes out instead of leaving some behind.

2) the biggest issue, the gate for control of the amount of stuff going out. They seem to not let product out so you open it up more, nothing comes out, open a little more and all of a sudden its like the flood gates are wide open now the stuff comes out like crazy. Another issue I have is clogging of product.
It'll be spreading fine then it clogs, shake the spreader and its good to go. I think alot of this goes hand in hand with the agitator/stirring device in the bottom of the hopper. Most are too high above the gate so that the clog can occur below the agitator.

I have looked at many types but I live in a rural area and most of what you can get is the cheaper stuff.

Last time I used mine it constantly clogged so I ended up spreading seed by hand for over an 1 1/2 acres.

I use spreader for broadcasting native grass/forb seeds. You have to mix the seed with an inert "carrier" to dilute the seed. 10 lbs of seed will cover an acre. 10lbs of seed would fill about 2 - 2 1/2 gallons. Without being diluted all the seed will be gone in less than 1/8 of an acre. At $100/lb of seed its too expensive to waste. I have used fine wood chips and kitty litter for the carrier but neither one works very good for different reasons.

Maybe what I'm using it for is more than they can handle.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
My .02 on walk behind spreaders.

the things I've noticed are

1) the shape of the hopper, most have "flat" areas that hold the stuff your trying to spread, as the level gets lower the feeding out the chute gets worse and you have to "shake" the spreader to get the stuff out of the spreader. Be nice if they had a constant funnel shape so all the stuff goes out instead of leaving some behind.

2) the biggest issue, the gate for control of the amount of stuff going out. They seem to not let product out so you open it up more, nothing comes out, open a little more and all of a sudden its like the flood gates are wide open now the stuff comes out like crazy. Another issue I have is clogging of product.
It'll be spreading fine then it clogs, shake the spreader and its good to go. I think alot of this goes hand in hand with the agitator/stirring device in the bottom of the hopper. Most are too high above the gate so that the clog can occur below the agitator.

I have looked at many types but I live in a rural area and most of what you can get is the cheaper stuff.

Last time I used mine it constantly clogged so I ended up spreading seed by hand for over an 1 1/2 acres.

I use spreader for broadcasting native grass/forb seeds. You have to mix the seed with an inert "carrier" to dilute the seed. 10 lbs of seed will cover an acre. 10lbs of seed would fill about 2 - 2 1/2 gallons. Without being diluted all the seed will be gone in less than 1/8 of an acre. At $100/lb of seed its too expensive to waste. I have used fine wood chips and kitty litter for the carrier but neither one works very good for different reasons.

Maybe what I'm using it for is more than they can handle.
1.5 acres by hand sounds miserable.

I borrowed my buddies power core aerator and plan to give it a go in a couple days once the ground dries a little to pull plugs not mash the core deeper down.I have all the seed and fert and orange construction fencing ready to go just following the aerator.
 
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