Gone are the days when a lorry mounted sweeper trundling along our roads fulfilled a council’s street cleaning obligations. With the advent of retail parks, large pedestrian areas and fast food retailing, cleaning activity had to become more effective and pedestrian friendly.
New Breed of Street Cleaners
The first and most noticeable change was the size of the machines. Truck mounted sweepers were fine on the open road but way too big and ungainly for a shopping centre. This brought about the compact street sweeper, a purpose built road sweeper that was smaller, lighter and much more pedestrian friendly. Typically these machines are the size of a small town car and have large front mounted glass cabs giving the operator excellent vision when working in crowded pedestrian areas. Compact they might be but quiet and efficient diesel motors make them perform at a level way above anything previously available.
Pedestrian Area and Pavement Cleaning
With more pedestrian areas to keep clean councils turned to these compact road sweepers as a solution. Being sweepers they are great for collecting dust, waste paper, litter and fast food containers. However, the fast food industry presented an additional problem; pavement staining. Drop your cup of coffee on a York stone pavement and you leave a stain. Spill your chips on the pavement, they get walked on, the grease and the ketchup get absorbed; more staining. Imagine this 24/7 in all our major cities and you see the issue.
Scrubbers to the Rescue
Technology that has been in use in industrial scrubber driers came to the rescue. We took the wet wash and scrubbing head from a large industrial scrubber drier and combined it with a compact road sweeper chassis. Add an over-size squeegee and voila you have a brilliant pavement and road cleaner. Obviously other essential changes were made, not least of all the addition of twin water tanks but the end result works, and works brilliantly. Take a look at the before and after pictures of a York stone pavement cleaned with plain water.
In addition to producing a stunning end result it was pointed out to us that as our Powerflex street scrubber drier collects the waste water it solves another problem: Washing streets with high pressure hoses is done with limited success – the real downside of this approach is that all the dirt and grease is washed into the drains – not popular with the water boards. The Street scrubber drier collects its own waste water, and the grease and filth – result.
Whenever a totally new model comes along there is always a great deal of anticipation and excitement and the new Kubota RTVs are no exception. And now they’re here!
Four Wheel Drive
Small, light and agile the new Kubota RTV400 and RTV500 deliver exceptional performance and reliability in a compact size. Both machines have four wheel drive with selectable two wheel drive and differential lock plus disc brakes and independent suspension.
Different Strokes for Different Folks
Where the new machines differ is their engines and transmissions. One has a single cylinder air cooled motor, the other a twin cylinder water cooled motor. Both have fuel injection. The single cylinder motor is paired with continuously variable transmission (CVT) and an inertia clutch. The other machine has variable hydro transmission (VHT).
Comfortable and Safe
Whichever model you choose you can be assured of Kubota’s renown reliability, a comfortable cabin and standard rollover protection. You can specify either orange or camouflage paintwork and front guards to make your RTV match your needs precisely.
So new they are not on our website yet, so if you want to see one of these exciting machines in the metal then call us and we’ll arrange for it to happen.
We are at it again!! Our show programme carries on in June with two events on the same weekend. Firstly the Nottinghamshire Charity Country Fair in support of the GWCT on Saturday 29th June 2013 at North Lodge Farm, Widmerpool, Nottinghamshire, NG12 5QE. From there we move onto the Blaston Show on Sunday 30th June in Blaston Road, Slawston, Near Market Harborough. Follow these links (NCCF) and (BLASTON) to the organisers websites for directions.
Events attended this year include a tremendously successful début at the Brigstock International Horse Trials at Rockingham Castle. Then we moved on to the Rutland Show at Burley on the Hill for one day only on Sunday June 2nd.
Not to be confused with the Burghley as in horse trials in nearby Stamford, Burley on the Hill is famous as the wonderful house and grounds bought by Asil Nadir immediately prior to his company’s spectacular collapse. Now restored to its previous splendour the house and grounds make a wonderful setting for the most British of occasions.
At the Rutland Show we were on stand 22 with our range of mowers, tractors and powered machinery that is so popular with the farming and equestrian industries. As at Rockingham the centre of attention was our new range of Kubota RTVs (illustrated) which includes two new smaller models to cover the needs of most landowners and managers.
There are few offers that are as powerful as the famous two for one offers in the supermarkets. Something you need and you can get two of them for the price of one! Now the saying; “if it seems too good to be true it probably is” comes to mind but sometimes, as in the supermarket’s offers, these things are real bargains with no strings attached.
Too Good to be True?
In our range is a machine that offers certain users a similar two for one opportunity. Combo as its been creatively named combines the capabilities of a sweeper with a scrubber drier.
Activate the Scrubber Drier
So how does that help? You run a splendid retail shopping mall and keep it clean sweeping up fast food wrappings, litter, and dust. Great everything’s clean and shiney and then someone’s pride and joy throws their fizzy drink all over the floor and the crowds walk it around an area the size of a football pitch. Slippery floor then sticky floor – urgh!!! Our trusty sweeper cannot clear it up, the fizzy drink sticks the dirt and grime to the floor and will not let go. If our sweeper is a Combo though we just activate the scrubber drier function and it now sweeps up all the loose dirt prior to scrubbing and drying the floor. Simple, quick and impresses the shoppers – wow maybe that’s a three for one offer!
We are off to the Brigstock International Horse Trials at Rockingham Castle. The dates for your diary are 17th – 19th May 2013. As a sponsor we will of course be making a spectacle of ourselves and showing our vast range of ground care equipment. During the event two of our RTV’s will be used by the organisers to travel the course and generally stay on top of things.
Rockingham Castle will have a new course set in the beautiful Great Park overlooking the Welland Valley. It is currently under construction having been designed by Philip Herbert. Philip has a reputation for building imaginative and creative courses featuring jumps enjoyed by riders and spectators alike. His skills were honed on the international courses at Burghley.
The RTV Camo being used at the event
There will be something for everyone. For international riders there is a cross country course of the highest standard with challenging and exciting fences. Dressage, show jumping, entertainment for children in the form of a bouncy castle, climbing wall, animals and Xtreme Falconry will all be going on.
A good day out for equestrian sport lovers, the family and anyone who has never visited the fascinating Rockingham Castle. Put it in your diary and make a point of looking us up. Rockingham Castle is near Corby, its full postal address is: Rockingham Castle, Rockingham, Market Harborough, Leicestershire, LE16 8TH telephone :+44(0)1536 770240.
The Commercial Vehicle Show is on at the NEC from 9th to 11th of April and we are there! Come along to stand 4G61 and experience our unique hospitality and see some of the most productive floor cleaning machines available.
At the show for the first time will be our PowerFlex multipurpose street sweeper. Compact and extremely powerful this machine is ideal for large distribution centres, industrial estate roadways and of course regular road sweeping. Come to our stand and book a demonstration at your premises. If its snowing then we will also be able to show you how effective its snow plough and snow brush are! Would book early though as May is approaching and we may not get much snow in May!
The PowerFlex 2200 Street Sweeper
Also on display will be a large selection of walk behind and ride on sweepers. Our Brava will be there rubbing shoulders with the Boxer large ride-on sweeper. Two of our unique scrubber-driers will also be on show illustrating how far this type of technology has come.
Whether it’s demanding daily professional use, or for your garden at home, ride-on mowers deliver unmatched performance, efficiency and finish whatever the size of the task. We handle a very wide range of products from three of the top manufacturers; Kubota, Stiga and Mountfield.
Reliable Ride-on Mowers
Why those manufacturers? Well we don’t only supply the products, we also support them and we know that these manufacturers produce the most reliable machines and that therefore they are the most cost effective.
Cut and Collect Mowers
The technology varies, we handle traditional cut-and-collect tractors, mulch mowers and zero turn mowers. Dependent upon your application and in some cases personal preference you will opt for the machine that you think is best for you.
Mulch or Collect?
One choice you will be confronted with is mulch versus bag. Do you want to collect and then dispose of your grass cuttings or do you invest in a mulch mower that has additional blades which produce very small cuttings that are not collected? The environmental lobby will always favour the mulch solution arguing that you are returning the nutrients and moisture in the clippings to the soil which is good for the grass. Keen gardeners worry about the possible build up of “thatch” due to the clippings being left on the lawn. This is not really a factor as grass leaves are around 90% water so they breakdown quickly. Whatever your preference you can see both types of machine in our showroom and try them out to satisfy yourself.
With the vast array of cleaning machines available which one do you choose? This post attempts to give you some insight into the questions you will need to answer. Not rocket science but maybe help you prepare for your discussions with prospective suppliers. Also it might help you avoid overlooking an obvious but important point.
Dry or wet?
Dust and debris that is dry can be collected by a sweeper. Introduce water, grease or oil and the situation changes. So the first consideration is just that, will your cleaning be in a dry environment? Yes; look at sweepers. No; then you will need a scrubber drier or a combination machine.
Cleaning Result Required
If you just want to collect dust and debris and are happy with the appearance of the floor then again a sweeper will do just that. However if you want to remove marks and staining from the floor you will want the scrubbing action of a scrubber drier.
Where do you want to clean?
Working inside vs outside introduces a number of considerations. I addition to the wet vs dry situations we have already considered there is the machine’s motor – if its not electric it will produce fumes. Is this acceptable? If not electric power is a your only way to go. When looking at the sweeper’s power requirement look for synergy with the forklifts you might have on site already. Do you have LPG powered forklifts or red diesel on site for tractors then could your sweeper’s motor take advantage of these resources?
Size of the problem
This is a trade off. Cleaning machines have a theoretical cleaning capacity, this is derived from the machine’s cleaning width and its working speed. So, if you want to clean your warehouse floor you could choose a large machine that cleans it in an hour. A machine with a smaller cleaning capacity might take two hours but cost 30% less. There is your dilemma!
A walk behind sweeper can clean a large car park. But, the time it takes when you consider the speed at which it can operate, the number of trips to empty the hopper and that the operator might be exhausted by the amount of walking would make it unacceptable: Then you have to figure out how much you want to pay to reduce or eliminate these factors.
So there you have it. Not exhaustive and it does not cover everything, but this might be useful as a starting point. At the end of the day talking to your suppliers engineers will be the best way to get just the right machine for your application.
Powered sweepers use brushes to pick-up the dirt and debris from the floor and deposit it in the hopper. This post talks a little about the different brushes and their function.
The main brush sweeps dust and refuse into the bin at the rear of the motor-sweeper. Never sweep up string, wire, etc., which can become entangled in the brush and damage the bristles. Periodically check the condition of the brush. The main brush rotates against the direction of travel of the motor-sweeper and throws the dirt and debris over itself into the rear hopper on motor-sweepers having an up-and-over sweeping system.
Adjusting the main brush
The main brush should just touch the floor. While the motor-sweeper is stationary on an even floor the section of floor covered by the bristles should be 3 cm wide. If the main brush no longer touches the floor, or leaves lines of dirt, it has worn down and must be lowered. Once beyond the limit of adjustment the main brush should be replaced, a simple procedure on our sweepers.
The side brush sweeps dirt from the edges of floors and from corners, and directs it to the centre of the sweeper where it can be picked up by the main brush. Looking from the operator’s position, the left hand side brush turns clockwise, the right hand side brush turns counter clockwise. On large machines the side brushes can oscillate so that when they meet an obstruction they will swing out of the way. Up to three side brushes can be fitted to extend the sweeping width of a machine.
Adjusting the side brush
Check that the shape of the trace left by the side brush is circular. As the bristles of the side brush wear down, adjust the height of the brush from the floor. When the motor-sweeper is not in use, the side brush must always be raised above the ground, to prevent its bristles from becoming bent.
After only 1 year as a new supplier of Mountfield and Stiga mowers, the task of learning the trade inside out and excellent customer service have paid dividends in helping Euromec Contracts Ltd to build a strong and loyal customer base.
In any specialist industry, manufacturers and retailers must work closely together to ensure the customer receives the service they deserve throughout the life of the product they have purchased. It is with this in mind that Euromec Contracts Ltd has been recognised by Mountfield and Stiga for the excellence of the sales and service back up they provide for the owners of Mountfield and Stiga garden machinery.
Graham Hill, pictured with the special commemorative plaque commented:,
“We have been supplying and servicing Mountfield and Stiga lawn and garden machinery for only 1 year but our relationship with this manufacturer is a solid today as the day we took on the dealership, as a consequence we are extremely proud to have received this recognition from a supplier who really cares about the customer and shares our belief in providing good old fashioned customer service.”