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When do you really upgrade your chipper?

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Hello all,

i have had a quick look back at the old threads, tbh, my query is partially loaded towards my future earnings and not this tax year but I am pushing my arb130 harder now than at any point before.

i am a small business but have been keeping things as tight as possible for a while now so, as work has the potential, when do you suddenly break out the wallet and say, that’s it, it’s time for a bigger road tow chipper to swallow all this domestic work?

its possibly a basic business question but I didn’t go to college.

your thoughts would be appreciated 

thanks

Nathan

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Bigger chipper = bigger truck

 

If you’re still on a 3.5tonner a bigger chipper won’t change production much.

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I’d say probably when you get a job that you simply can’t do with the 130. Or when it becomes such a nightmare using just a small chipper.

Depends what’s in the bank and what you think is best.

It’s kind of a question only you can answer.

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Possibly when you realize the chipper is the bottleneck in your day, when the small chipper is the part that slows your day down the most

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Marks hit a good point about chip truck, if you have lots of chip drop off within 5 minutes of any job.  It won’t matter, if you have 30/60 minute round trip drop off you will be held up.  Which is ok if all the brash is done and the team are carrying out all the heavy and tidying up, going a chip run can be an advantage for a boss/climber.

  Then there’s terrain, my work area for 16 years was by the coast, so everything was on a hill , villages and towns with farm land in between.  I fully loaded transit was struggling and burning clutches and some routes I couldn’t take and then a muddy chip tip was a nightmare for potentially getting stuck.  Then you add a heavy chipper into the mix for the drive home and it’s a pita.

‘I used to keep my chipper in an old damp farmers shed with a tractor parked in front of it for security, so in the morning by myself I’d have to shift the tractor, reverse into a dark shed and hook up myself as the workers didn’t drive and lived in the town we would be working.  Then reversing a heavy old arbor eater up a driveway was frustrating and also chipping into the high sided back was brutal, most of the chip would sit in the middle, or splatter over the top onto the driveway, then I got a cover made up but that just meant you hurt your neck climbing in and shovelling chip to get more in.

  I wanted an 8” chipper, they were around £30k and weighed over 2 ton.  So no chance on both parts of that equation, I didn’t want to have to buy a 7.5 tonner, get o liscence etc and then get jammed in a cup de sac like I used to when I worked with that set up for someone else.

 I opted for a unimog and 8” chipper.

mog was £17k, chipper £7k.  Red diesel, no mot or rd tax .  Chipper stayed on as it was side tip and I could now tip chip quicker, more efficiently and my tip sites became the corner of any farmers field( with permission )

  I used to aim for £350 a day with 2 guys, my first morning me and 1 guy  did £300 in 2 hours effortlessly.

  No hitching up, no dodgy reversing into a really tight drive full of gravel down a hill and the bigger chipper with 120hp behind it was amazing.  Oh and it was non spill, spout right into the back and the force of a pto chipper crams the chip in so much better.  My saving on fuel alone paid the finance off in 9 months.

soi bought a bigger mog and bigger chipper and almost trembled my original turnover 10months after moving away from tow behind and transit.

  Yes mogs break down, they got fixed, did I get stopped for red diesel, nope! 

  This is my story, not advice, take from it what you need.

  The machinery suited my environment.

when I worked with Beechwoods for a week in Birmingham around 10 years ago, he used a full chip bodied 7.5 tonner and a tow behind.  It was city work.  On domestic jobs 3 guys could spend all day chipping into it and when it was full, it was home time at 3pm.  Same work and workers, different environment.  Worked perfectly.

im a 1 man band, beechwood are huge and very successful.  After typing all this I’m sceptical about my love of mogs 😀

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I upgraded as my workload increased, I had a jobeau m500 and although a good machine, being gravitated it had it's limits. From experience those little 130s aren't bad and will chomp up to 6" material, albeit a little steady. Upgrading is something only you can decide on to be honest and as has been said...bigger chipper requires more capacity via either bigger truck or a trailer. For me personaly if I were to upgrade from a 130 I'd be looking at n9 more than a 6" machine but with a bigger engine making it more productive

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Possibly when you realize the chipper is the bottleneck in your day, when the small chipper is the part that slows your day down the most
That was exactly the point I stepped up from a quad chip to a st8 then again to a bandit 90xp, sat up a tree watching staff que up while the chipper worked its arse off. A bigger machine can mean less run time so lower running costs, we use a lot less fuel in a 85hp than a 3pot 35hp for the same volume of chip produced.
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Agree with all that’s been said, look at the jobs you are doing, what’s slowing them down?

 

Bigger chippers can reduce fatigue a lot as well.

 

Obviously don’t go too big for your work or towing capacity.

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Last summer I was on a big site job felling and snedding a lot of trees.
Ditch witch to move brash and logs.
Bandit 990/925? 14/17"?Chipping onto a pile so no chip runs.
After several days the chipper went down.
Got another big bandit with a winch.
Loading brash sideways with a loader is very difficult.
But dropped in front and winched in, so quick.
Strangely satisfying.

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