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OT: design for a 3/4" gravel screener?

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  • OT: design for a 3/4" gravel screener?

    I have a "low maintenance" rental backyard with 6 yards of 3/4 gravel put down 11 years ago, that now has so much leaf humus and crap in it that even though it's on top of heavy landscaping cloth weeds will grow in it. It seems the thing to do is just screen out all the crap and return the gravel.

    My thought was something like a simpler version of this with 1/2" steel mesh:



    Tipped at the right angle you could heap in the dirty gravel and clean gravel will come out the other end. Some sort of chain drive would be good, I was even thinking of welding old bike chain on the drum and driving it with a sprocket.

    Any useful thoughts out there? I'd be happy to rent one but the yard is accessible only by a 36" alley, most of the commercial stuff is huge.
    Location: Jersey City NJ USA

  • #2
    How do you intend to feed the tromel?
    By hand with a shovel?
    Location: The Black Forest in Germany

    How to become a millionaire: Start out with 10 million and take up machining as a hobby!

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    • #3
      How do you intend to feed the tromel?
      By hand with a shovel?
      Location: The Black Forest in Germany

      How to become a millionaire: Start out with 10 million and take up machining as a hobby!

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      • #4


        A number of years back my wife called her favorite gravel guy and ordered $400 of gravel She should have asked how much she would be getting. Turns out that at the time $400 bought 18 yards that we had to distribute by wheelbarrow!
        Errol Groff

        New England Model Engineering Society
        http://neme-s.org/

        YouTube channel: http://www.youtube.com/user/GroffErrol?feature=mhee

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        • #5
          I recently built a trommel from a 36" plastic pipe 14' long. For a company that refurbishes rifle brass cartridges.
          I kept it level with a bulkhead at the feed end. Set it on upside down casters. Used a gear reduced electric motor and belt drive around the pipe. I built a recycle chute to catch the tumbler media and had a spray bar inside to wash the brass. A fan blowing through from the down end to dry the stuff.

          Watch out for some plastic pipe and drill a bunch of 1/2" holes in it. I bet a 12 or 16" dia. pipe will do nicely. If you slope it you will have to fabricate some kind of thrust bearing at the down end or it will walk right out

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          • #6
            You know, this is a periodic thing. Even a granite tombstone supports life if the caretakers aren't careful to blow grass cuttings away from the carvings.
            Wind, birds, insects...life happens.
            The trommel will work, and make you work too. 16 ga. screen might hold up to 6 yds.
            The gravel would benefit from a washdown after screening.
            Have you thought about solarizing, less work, but not permanent either.

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            • #7
              You might try the system shown in this video

              https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=M0-_yfxTN44

              Rick

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              • #8
                Trommel huh? Learned my word for the day. I was planning to feed shovelfuls by hand (not me personally, my back is too valuable), never figured having more than a maybe 10 gallons in there at once. The plastic tube is an idea, but I'd probably lean towards cutting out windows and screwing down 1/2" mesh rather than drilling for hours and hours and never getting near the open percentage of welded mesh.

                Carm, what do you mean by solarizing in this context?
                Location: Jersey City NJ USA

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by gellfex View Post
                  I have a "low maintenance" rental backyard with 6 yards of 3/4 gravel put down 11 years ago, that now has so much leaf humus and crap in it that even though it's on top of heavy landscaping cloth weeds will grow in it. It seems the thing to do is just screen out all the crap and return the gravel.
                  Good lord man. 50/50 mix of roundup and 2,4,D sprayed 3 times a year. 6 yards of gravel moved TWICE with a shovel. No way.

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by boaterri View Post
                    You might try the system shown in this video

                    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=M0-_yfxTN44

                    Rick
                    Yup, that's the idea, perhaps mine being 1/2 scale that. Wooden pin sprocket in thin material hole? That can't last very long!
                    Location: Jersey City NJ USA

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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by H380 View Post
                      Good lord man. 50/50 mix of roundup and 2,4,D sprayed 3 times a year. 6 yards of gravel moved TWICE with a shovel. No way.
                      I DID say I wouldn't be doing the grunt work! Strong cheap backs are easy to find, skills not so much. But you have a point. I always mean to get up there in a timely way to spread pre-emergent and spray Roundup. But I never do and the place ends up a jungle.
                      Location: Jersey City NJ USA

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                      • #12
                        You might try sucking the organic material up with a strong shop vac, possibly with some sort of rake attachment to stir up the gravel, and maybe a screen to keep the gravel itself from being sucked up.

                        If you make the rotary sieve, consider adding a helical guide so the gravel follows a known path.

                        Some ideas:

                        http://www.google.com/patents/US4278543

                        https://grabcad.com/library/rotary-s...ar-or-flour-1#!

                        https://hotbincomposting.wordpress.c...-your-compost/

                        http://pauleschoen.com/pix/PM08_P76_P54.png
                        Paul , P S Technology, Inc. and MrTibbs
                        USA Maryland 21030

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                        • #13
                          Here you go,just an inclined screen deck with a motor and counterweight to make it shake.Could just as easily be made using an electric motor with an offset weight to make it shake.

                          https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CUEJ8AZiqLs
                          I just need one more tool,just one!

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                          • #14
                            I would try sodium chlorate, I've never used it, but my mother said it was very effective, and would control weeds for up to 3 years.

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                            • #15
                              I like the part where they say the finer grain stuff could be used with concrete as "blinding material". It's probably "blending" or "binding", but I'll bet it could also be "blinding" if a strong wind blew it in your face
                              http://pauleschoen.com/pix/PM08_P76_P54.png
                              Paul , P S Technology, Inc. and MrTibbs
                              USA Maryland 21030

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