Spreading

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11 years 3 months ago #33966 by steve1983
Spreading was created by steve1983
Hi everyone,
Ive been approached by a few people over the past week who struggle to get companies to come and spread lime, urea etc on their smaller blocks as the larger companies appraently would rather go to the big farms. (Obviously)
Starting out in the contracting has been great but I am always up for widening the things I do. So I thought I ask you guys is their really a market for this. The cost of a spreader isnt that much but is the demand there?

Steve Brown Rural Contracting LTD
Fencing Contractor in Canterbury
FCANZ Member

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11 years 3 months ago #449316 by X-Toma
Replied by X-Toma on topic Spreading
We'll be moving into our property out your way in the next couple of weeks and will be looking at having some lime/fert put on quite soon. So if you were doing something by then we would definitely look at using you :)

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11 years 3 months ago #449317 by steve1983
Replied by steve1983 on topic Spreading
Well thats a good start. Just grab my email below to contact me

Steve Brown Rural Contracting LTD
Fencing Contractor in Canterbury
FCANZ Member

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11 years 3 months ago #449319 by Andrea1
Replied by Andrea1 on topic Spreading
Yep, we'll be looking to do it again in the autumn, and since we've made the 5 acre paddock in 4 smaller ones, we can't get the big trucks in anymore, so would be good to have that!

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11 years 3 months ago #449324 by DiDi
Replied by DiDi on topic Spreading
Steve - there is no question that people on smaller blocks are finding it hard to get service such as you are offering. The big question is can you, as a small contractor cover the costs of doing small blocks? The price of Diesel has gone through the roof just as the cost of Small Business has gone through the roof.

We see on this site the number of people setting up their LSB's and apologies but sometimes the ignorance of what the lifestyle will acutally cost them is not on the page. If everyone put aside $20 a week for the Vet and $20 a week for Fertilizer then that would make sense. Reality is that most won't and Fertiliser will be the poor loser in this scenario.

My answer is totally geared to feed back if you are considering setting up such a business and just something to think about as part of your assessment of it's viability.

No question - this is needed particularly in South Auckland (knowing you are in Canterbury) where hay is being baled at least two months (if not more) past it's ideal time because the priority for the balers (not many left) is bigger is better return. It scares me that in the past the balers had Lucerne etc to crop but with the advent of Palm Oil it is cheaper to buy in than crop and that is the threat to the rural people.

Why would you invest in a $100,000+ machine if the income isn't there to pay it off? Much of this comes from having a Contracter down the road with Millions invested in machines and eventually it wasn't working.

However Steve - if you can make it work - then do it. There is certainly a market out there if they can afford to pay for your services. All the best - honestly!

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11 years 3 months ago #449326 by 3scoremiles10
Replied by 3scoremiles10 on topic Spreading
Just had lime spread on our 10 acres, and it took two months and several phone calls and a lot of chasing up to make it happen. Wouldn't say the contractors weren't interested, but I did get the impression our little job wasn't high on their list.

If you were offering this sort of service, we would certainly be interested next time around. Especially since having had you do a couple of building jobs at our place that we are very pleased with!

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11 years 3 months ago #449329 by steve1983
Replied by steve1983 on topic Spreading
I think if a service is needed and there isnt many providers you have to pay for it. I learnt that when we built - mainpower was the only provider we were allowed to use to connect, their bill was horrid but we had no choice, just pay it. Spreading can b done manually tho but for alot of people it easier to get someone in. For me my running costs are low, i own all my gear and i need to pay the mortgage so every cent counts. A. 500. Dollar spreader doesnt take long to pay for itself. But... it needs to be worth it. Would a supply and distribute work better than a distribute only on hourly rate ( tractor and labour) . This was merely an idea to see the response...

Steve Brown Rural Contracting LTD
Fencing Contractor in Canterbury
FCANZ Member

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11 years 3 months ago #449337 by LongRidge
Replied by LongRidge on topic Spreading
If I were spreading commercially I would be a Ravensdown or Ballance shareholder, so buy the fertiliser from them and add on a mark-up for transport. That would require you being able to carry and unload off the truck, and load into the spreader hopper, out of 1 tonne bulk bags. So 2 tractors, one with an FEL, or a forklift.
Using bulk bags means that you could supply special mixes of fertiliser for each client.
But you would need assistance to get 2 tractors to each client.
To do urea, and the ammonias will at some stage require precision spreading and proof of placement.
The tractor will need to be enclosed and probably air-conditioned. Breathing lime dust won't do your lungs or gut any good at all.
Insurance in case you fertilise the neighbours property with something they do not want.
A place to store the full bulk bags to protect them from rain.

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11 years 3 months ago #449341 by DiDi
Replied by DiDi on topic Spreading
Steve - you own your own gear until it breaks. I am a Librian and cannot look at any situation without seeing both the positives and the negatives. Drove the ex nuts!

Any chance you can take this idea thought a Small Business rural adviser in your area. Hell sometimes there is money available to set a business up!

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11 years 3 months ago #449352 by Mich
Replied by Mich on topic Spreading
I made enquiries just recently about getting this done. Being in Wellington, the closest place is Ravensdown in the Wairarapa. There is at least one spreading company that comes down to Wellington from there, but the main stumbling block isn't the distance they have to come (which means big $$$ if they have to make 2 trips using the small spreader because they can't get around in the big one), it's the size of your gates and whether the spreading trucks, including their 'small' spreader will go through them. The 8 foot gates (which most of ours are) aren't big enough for the company I contacted - you need something larger for even their small spreader, plus the siting of the gates in relation to ease of access to all paddocks is also important.

We could get the bags delivered and spread from those ourselves, but they're really heavy and as LongRidge said, you need to make sure they stay dry.

So having a contractor who would be prepared to spread when requested, using a smaller tractor-driven machine when the fertiliser arrived would be just wonderful.

Cheers, Mich.

Good exercise for the heart is to bend down and help someone up. Anon.

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11 years 3 months ago #449353 by steve1983
Replied by steve1983 on topic Spreading
Good points here guys. I have the room here to store but only the single tractor, with cab but no a/c. For me id be easier to have the client buy and store the goods and I just turn up they fill and I spread. But some of these applications need to be done prior to rainfall dont they? So all I need is 10 people ringing me up when Im driving posts saying can you come and spread some lime for me. Driving posts would be better $$$, but I spose the only way to get around it would be to put aside a period of time to do it, either over the course of a month and let people know.
Im just going over the different ways it could work out for both parties.

Steve Brown Rural Contracting LTD
Fencing Contractor in Canterbury
FCANZ Member

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11 years 3 months ago #449370 by kalnetta
Replied by kalnetta on topic Spreading
Just looking at it from another way.I can hire a trailed spreader for $70.00 a day that gives Me ample time to do My 10 acres.
$10.00 for petrol for the Quad.
Pick up the speader while in Rangiora for something else then its only the cost of taking it back.
.

View Hill Oxford ,23 ewes 2 lambs ,1 ram,, 1cat,the 2 of us,6 granddaughters,one grandson,2 surrogate granddaughters and one step grandson,poor boy.

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11 years 3 months ago #449372 by Andrea1
Replied by Andrea1 on topic Spreading
That's assuming that one has a quad bike or some other small towing vehicle, which not everyone does. I can't see ourselves using it often enough to justify the expense. We get a local bloke in one a year to scrape out our sheds and level the winter feeding area, and that's a very small one off cost with no ongoing maintenance expenses, so it what works for us. Would love to be able to get someone in to spread fert more often.

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11 years 3 months ago #449434 by LongRidge
Replied by LongRidge on topic Spreading
Only the fertilisers that contain urea or ammonia need to be done just before rain, so that not much ammonia evaporates before it gets washed into the ground.
The other fertilisers should have had some rain on them (25mm is advised) before the animals are allowed to graze the paddock. This is to reduce the risk of fluoride poisoning, a contaminant of some overseas rock phosphate suppliers.
Fertilising should be done when the grass is dry so that it falls to the ground rather than sticks to wet grass/pasture. Finding a not too windy day in the afternoon is a bit of a problem in most places.
Lime is put on at 1 ton per acre and upwards, so you would need a big spreader and a slow tractor to get this rate on.
Most LSBers do not have a big enough tractor with a FEL to lift 1 tonne, I suspect.

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