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Back With Cyclone Rake Questions

Posted By: Old as Dirt

Back With Cyclone Rake Questions - 01/01/2022 01:42 AM


First question: Do you own a Cyclone Rake

Several years ago I bought a used Cyclone Rake. It was relatively cheap as compared to new and needed a new impeller which I purchased and installed.

Screwed around with it. Never could get the POS Tecumseh engine to run above 1/2 speed. Just the place to use a HF Predator engine.

What worries me is the orig engine and vacuum housing are close coupled, with the exhaust away from the plastic vacuum housing. The HF engine places the exhaust next to the vacuum housing and I'm worried about melting or warping the vacuum housing.
Configuration: Org is vac-space-eng-exhaust, New is vac-space-exhaust-eng. Both are left to right.

Looking at sales images of newer models it appears that the exhaust on the B&S engine exhaust now matches the HF and a aluminum heat shield has been added between the vac & exhaust to help dissipate heat. I have cut the HF exhaust to bring the pipe closer to vertical to increase horz space vac and eng.

I need to know if my take on the new configuration is correct and construction of the heat of the heat shield.

I've been dicking around with this for several years and I need to get it going. Seems like every tree dropped it's leaves this fall at one time and I'm up to my backside in leaves. Usually, the leaves drop in waves and I run my mower in mulcher mode and vacuum up the rest.

If you have a newer Cyclone and can answer my question please post a reply or email me if you prefer. Yard vacs are few and far between here as well as Cyclone dealers.

As an aside you will be pleased to learn that Generac purchased Woodland Power Products (Cyclone Rake). Sent an email to the new Co to see if they could supply a new engine or at least a P/N to cross into a modern equal. Need a S/N which is on a little silver stick on label, long gone.

Thanks for reading, best wishes for a better new year. Only thing missing this year is a little person hasn't jumped out of the bushes and hit me with a 2 x 4.

JLG

Posted By: sonny

Re: Back With Cyclone Rake Questions - 01/02/2022 09:44 PM

Not sure what brand Agri-fab used, but they sound like what you are talking about.
I have one with an 8 hp Tech. that kinda quit, ( what Tech. didnt quit!! lol!), anyway its out here in the junkpile out back in the weeds.
Years back I had a unit that was on the back of my 147 IH cadet mower. The motor on it was a 5 hp B&S and the exhaust on it was turned straight up with an elbow in the block and a 8" pipe in the elbow.
You could do the heat shield thingy and if you can get it thick enough it should guard the plastic.
The new motor could possibly run a bit cooler than the old Techs did.
You might have to rest it often during use to let things cool down a bit but at least you could get your leaves picked up.
All of my fans and outer stuff was thick tin.
Posted By: JIM

Re: Back With Cyclone Rake Questions - 01/02/2022 10:20 PM

the Tech on my Troybuilt is still kicking. Does get a new carb every other year but now I'm only running NON-eth gas so hopefully I won't need to do it again. OH shit I hope my foot heals well enough to run the tiller in March.
Posted By: Old as Dirt

Re: Back With Cyclone Rake Questions - 01/03/2022 03:22 PM

Sonny
Jim

I have owned several yard items that had a Tecumseh engine, all were POS.

Actually my Cub does a good job as a yard vacuum, my biggest problem is the limited capacity of the bags and humping the contents onto the fire.

All of the yard vacs work about the same. The Cyclone's claim to fame is the flexible impeller and the attachment of the bin to the back of the mower. Bin is bolted to the mower and uses pneumatic (8") casters to support bin weight. I do think making the bin and mower one unit will be interesting to use as I have numerous trees.

I hoped that someone had a newer unit using B&S engines could supply a picture. There are several "Dealers" listed in Houston. I have never seen a local ad by them for Cyclone products. I need to give them a call and see if they have one one display.

I will use Sonny's suggestion on a heat shield as I have several 1/8 AL sheets that would work.

Thanks for taking the time to comment. If you have an Epiphany on my question please post.

JLG



Posted By: JIM

Re: Back With Cyclone Rake Questions - 01/04/2022 10:56 PM

Well honestly the Troy-Bilt tiller is the only Tecumseh engine that's ever been worth a shit. I have to milk it as long as I can because of the reverse shaft and there's no replacement engine for it. I wouldn't be able to run that tiller in my garden without reverse.
Posted By: sonny

Re: Back With Cyclone Rake Questions - 01/05/2022 06:55 AM

The only pics. I can find all show B&S motors on them. ---- older ones must have used Techs. on them.
Jim, I also just bought a TB ECONO-HORSE that has the reverse pulley on it!! lol! Also have a Deere 624? that uses the pulley for reverse,---that motor has the rod thru the block!--go figure!
I can go without reverse,-- BUT they are a big help IF they work!

My old agri-fab vac has an 8 hp Tech. and it did still run somewhat but that was 6 years ago. The unit is all steel on mine,--no plastic anywhere on it, so James must have a little newer one but not new enough to have the factory Briggs on it! Hmmmm
Posted By: Old as Dirt

Re: Back With Cyclone Rake Questions - 01/05/2022 01:16 PM

Sonny

I think Cyclone is the only vac that uses the flexible impeller, however that is MY assumption. You know the old "ass u me" conundrum.

Pull up the Cyclone, site it will show the construction of the units. The one I bought as parts had a failed impeller. It appeared to have fragmented while running.

Hopefully it will warm up here and I can attempt to post some pictures of the Cyclone pieces.

You are correct Cyclone went to B&S engines when Tec went toes up.

Appreciate you comments.

JLG
Posted By: JIM

Re: Back With Cyclone Rake Questions - 01/06/2022 12:51 PM

The reverse pulley is attached to an extended cam shaft. as far as I know there aren't any small engine Manufacturers that still make an engine like that. Mine is an econo horse as well I gave $1300.00 for it new 32 years ago. Needs new rims Mine are sooooo rusted that I'm afraid to change the tires in fear that the rim will fall apart.
Posted By: bunkclimber

Re: Back With Cyclone Rake Questions - 01/09/2022 12:20 PM

James I saw two Cyclone vacs at a customer's farm shop yesterday, they were both put up for the winter,high up on a pallet rack in the shop..anyway best I could tell,the vacs use a B+S engine, looking at the tongue,the vac is on the left,then the metal heat shield(which redirects engine cooling air as well)then the engine..the exhaust comes out the front of the engine,with a curved pipe on the outside front of the muffler to direct exhaust flow down and away from the front of the engine.
Posted By: Old as Dirt

Re: Back With Cyclone Rake Questions - 01/10/2022 02:44 AM

Bunk

Thanks for taking the time to look and post.

Your comments confirm my examination of ad photos for Cyclone. Stupidly, I did not print the ad, but I am reasonably sure it showed (what appeared to be) a aluminum plate between the vac housing and the engine and it did show a vertical exhaust pipe exiting downward. Need to search again and print the ad IF I can find it.

There seem to be very few lawn vacs in this area. Most seem to be in the high rent parts of town. I did check and Cyclone lists several locations as dealers. I have not contacted them to check if they have display models. Need to do that this month.

Lots of lawn services around, but most are using sweepers.

You are correct as to the use of B&S engines. The Cyclone website lists them in several rating to match the vacuum impellers and inlet (hose) sizes.

Again appreciate your taking the time.

JLG
Posted By: bunkclimber

Re: Back With Cyclone Rake Questions - 01/13/2022 08:58 PM

James I have to go back and work on a quote there,if this is still an issue for you let me see if they will pull one down for me and I'll take some pix for you..the shop supervisor got hurt and cant run the lift,maybe he'll let me
Posted By: Old as Dirt

Re: Back With Cyclone Rake Questions - 01/14/2022 03:59 PM

Bunk

I appreciate your offer to take pictures for my use, however, if your visit is for business purposes PLEASE do not jeopardize your visit in anyway to take photos for me.

Plainly don't FU your chances to make a sale by pissing off your potential customer by asking favors. Having been in the service business I know customers can be funny.

Again I appreciate your efforts. The Cyclone redo is a get it "ready for summer" project. I have had the Cyclone for 4 or 5 years. Decided it needs to run or leave as scrap.

JLG
Posted By: JIM

Re: Back With Cyclone Rake Questions - 01/15/2022 01:43 AM

Okay guys on the point of Cyclone Rake. I understand what it is. now I'm going to ask a question. my sister-in-law wants to buy something like that for her husband for his birthday they have a very large piece of property in South Carolina with lots of pine trees pine needles pine cones Etc. Is the Cyclone brand the one you would recommend or is there something different you might think is better? I personally have no experience with them I have a billy goat which is basically a lawn vac looks like a freaking lawnmower. I bought it to suck up gumballs from sweet gum trees but it's not very good at it, the lawn mower does better. However it is great for leaves. He doesn't want anything to push he wants something that will Tow and I was telling him about this post and how this thing will attach to the mower deck. Am I correct in that?
Posted By: bunkclimber

Re: Back With Cyclone Rake Questions - 01/15/2022 12:29 PM

I can say that the Cyclone vac adds about 7ft to the rear of the mower you pull it with, the ones I saw were working with long open stretches of grass,to try to use one in tight confines around a lot of trees and turning around might take some practice.
Posted By: Old as Dirt

Re: Back With Cyclone Rake Questions - 01/15/2022 03:18 PM

There are numerous variations on the pull type lawn vacuum with corresponding variations in price. Agri-Fab, DR, Cyclone, etc. I can't recommend one over the other.

I have used my Cub with a bagging attachment for years. Works great! Downside is having to empty bags often. Humping bags of leaves onto a fire is backbreaking, dirty work. STILL it is a helluva lot easier than raking the leaves. Dumping the bags into a cart helps but it's still a s**t job and requires handling them twice.

I bought the Cyclone used as it was priced right and I liked the fact the the vac cart becomes a part of the tractor (easier to back up I'm sh**y at backing) + the impeller is poly with a metal liner in the vac housing. Most of the others have steel or alum impellers. The thought of a large metal lump rotating at 3600 RPM right behind me causes major butt puckers.

Various attachments are available to allow you to back up, attach a hose and suck the leaves out of the vac cart and onto your leaf pile (fire). Remember the leaves are shredded at this point and heavy. Same hose will allow you to suck up leaves in and around shrubs, leaves will be unshredded.

Cyclone was an independent company with an excellent customer service rep. Generac bought them recently, time will tell if it remains so.

Bunk's comments on trees and adding length are true. Cyclone was advertising a "try - it send it back if you don't like it"

Please note I'm not a shill for Cyclone. Check everyone's website for deals. Those living on the East coast will likely find used units available. Dr, Cyclone are located in the NE.

JIM: I suggest you peruse the DR, Cyclone websites. They will show you how the units attach. It will require some Fiberglas cutting to mount the vacuum inlet to the mower deck and possibly some modifications to the mower to attach the vacuum cart hitch.

I have 1.5 acre lot with mostly pines and my bagger works well to suck up pine needles (pine straw y'all). The vacuum cart simply increases the airflow thru the deck and blows the shredded leaves into the cart. Use high lift mower blades. Some mower decks have provisions for adding a apron to the the deck to increase air speed and consequently vacuum.

Questions, comments. Please ask. Sorry did't start out to write a versions of the dead scrolls.
JLG


Posted By: sonny

Re: Back With Cyclone Rake Questions - 01/15/2022 08:32 PM

I used to use a Dixon 4422(I think), that had a small blower mounted right on the 44 inch deck and drove with a short belt from outer blade pully. double bags hung on the back and worked good for its size.--it was a mechanical Z-turn mower and everything mounted on the back, drove good til you got both bags full of wet grass and started up hill! lol! --- now in leaves it steered great. In heavy leaves you spent more time stopping and emptying bags than driving!

Guess my favorite unit was the old cub cadet 147 that the blower and motor unit mounted high behind the seat and the trailer was hooked up short to the mower. A boot mounted on the outlet of the deck and plastic tube went to the inlet side of the blower, from there a outlet hose came out the top and was hooked to the front of the trailer that had a plastic cover with the back half vented so air could go out, screened area caught the course material and it stayed in the wagon.

Now on to the one here in the junkpile! Agri-Fab 1000. This is actually a chipper-vac combo. It has the branch intake that you are sposed to chip/shred your small limbs that wind always dropes in your yard.
The problem with this one is that it dont produce enough suction to work very good.
On this one you still mount the boot and hose to the mower deck and hook to the inlet side of vac unit which is mounted back on the extended trailer hitch and the outlet from blower is up thru the black square lookin piece on the front of the trailer.
The beds dump on these 2 that I had.
Its not hard to back them, but this one is strung out behind a ways. You have to allow rom to turn around as you cant do a 360 with them! lol!

In the pix, the motor is a Tec 8-hp and muffler is on the front side of the motor with a baffle directing the exhaust away from the blower.
The blower flywheel has a chipper knife on the back side and the blowing vanes have small swinging hammers within them so that cuts down on the suction volume on it.
I tried it in grass and ended up with grass juice running out the back door! Chops too fine for grass. Anyway I put a quarter acre in it and only had a wheelbarrow full when I dumped it.
Pics will give you a general idea of what it looks like,---suction hose and connector plate is in the shed.






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Posted By: Old as Dirt

Re: Back With Cyclone Rake Questions - 01/16/2022 12:09 AM

Sonny

The earlier vacs were clunky. The recent units are lighter and do a much better job of sucking the leaves up. I use Sten lift blades and they do improve lift both to mow and to blow the grass/leaves into my bagger. Everything has to be dry for good bagging operation.

Thanks for posting the pictures. That vac impeller is a perfect example of the butt puckering I mentioned above. Not likely to grenade, but one of those vanes would slice and dice your liver just fine if it let loose.

Thanks
JLG
Posted By: JIM

Re: Back With Cyclone Rake Questions - 01/16/2022 01:33 PM

Appreciate everybody's feedback. we did some research it looks like they're probably going to go with the Agri Fab. it's the only brand that comes with a chipper for cleaning up branches and stuff up to 2 in. Agri-fab is the only manufacturer I can find with that feature.
Posted By: Old as Dirt

Re: Back With Cyclone Rake Questions - 01/16/2022 04:08 PM

Jim

I think any of the major brands will work well. Each one of the brands has their avid followers. I don't chip any branches, etc as I can burn the residue. In fact I have to get my ass in gear and start cutting trees and burning while it is cold.

I do think some of the brands are overpriced, BUT I'm cheap.

JLG
Posted By: sonny

Re: Back With Cyclone Rake Questions - 01/16/2022 07:38 PM

The blower flywheel on this one is THICK and heavy. IF one of the blades came off,--well with 8 hp tec motor it would just go klunk and the heavy outer housing would contain the parts with ease!
The ones with the chipper feature on them are made way heavier than the vac only models are.
This one would work better if you used hi-lift mower blades to help create more air movement to assist tossing the cut material faster up to the blower. --- I only tried it on the 185 IH lo-boy Woods deck with low volume blades, so it didnt have a good chance to do its thing very well. -- I was mostly just messin with it to see what it would do.
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