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Floating Weed Cutter Cleans Up Lakes, Ponds
"There are big commercial units available, but there was nothing on the market for smaller jobs," says Brian Gifford who designed and built a floating weed "harvester" that he and his stepson Dave Lyttle use to cut weeds in area lakes and canals.
  The Stony Plain, Alberta, inventor built his "Sea Horse", as it's called, out of an assortment of odds and ends and commercial parts.
  It's powered by an 11 hp Honda engine mid-mounted in the 14-ft. long by 8 1/2- ft. wide watercraft, which weighs about 1,500 lbs. It's equipped with a pair of 14-ft. long plastic pontoons and 5-bladed steel paddlewheels on each side. The hydraulic-driven paddlewheels are powered independently so it turns on a dime, Gifford says.
  The front is fitted with a 12-ft. wide swather sicklebar Gifford got from a local farm equipment dealer. It's lowered hydraulically to a cutterbar depth of up to 4 ft. Extensions increase cutting depth to a maximum of 7 ft.
  Once weeds are cut, the sicklebar is replaced by a 12-ft. wide wire mesh basket to collect the clippings.
  Gifford uses the machine to cut weeds in ponds in parks, golf courses and canals across the province and says business has never been better.
  Cost of building the harvester was about $20,000 (Canadian), including the trailer he uses to pull it behind his pickup.
  Contact: FARM SHOW Followup, Brian Gifford, Box 32, Site 270, R.R. 2, Stony Plain, Alberta, Canada T7Z 1X2 (ph 780 963-4773; fax 8923).

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1999 - Volume #23, Issue #2