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 04-16-2002, 08:40 Post: 37491
DRankin



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 PTO Powered Water Pumps

Has anyone out there used a PTO powered water pump? I am looking at the pumps in the Northern Tool catalogwebsite and wonder if there is any experience I can tap into. Fire season is coming to my neighborhood and I am planning a 225 gallon water trailer and a PTO pump to hold the line until the boys in the red suspenders can get here.






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 04-16-2002, 09:30 Post: 37492
TomG

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 PTO Powered Water Pumps

We live in an area where there are no red suspenders. There is a volunteer force, but there is little actual fire equipment. Shovels and sand mostly. A lot of public land around here and the natural resources fight those fires but can do little for private property. There also is no water system and no high capacity wells.

I do think about these things, and there have been three fires in four years around here. None of which went out of control, but mostly due to fortunate accidents. It was raining when a 14KV electrical line went down. When a transport burnt up, there was a dump truck with a full load of gravel nearby and a driver willing to spread the load. A train started a fire in crossing timbers, but somebody coming back from fishing in the bush saw it in time. It's not too comfortable depending on dumb luck, and a tank of water might help the piece of mind.

Off the top of my head, my reaction is that a tractor with a pump wouldn't be too useful here. I'd have to start the tractor, mount the pump, tow or organize the water tank. If the tank wasn't full or I ran out of water, I'd have to drive to the river and pump water. Then, I'd have to drive to the fire. I think that loading a tank and electric pump along with a generator into my utility trailer might be faster. Trouble with tractors is that they don't go that fast and the community here is spread out over twenty miles along a highway.






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 04-16-2002, 09:52 Post: 37496
Murf



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 PTO Powered Water Pumps

Mark, a couple of observations based a few years experience with a similar idea, and similar concerns. First, I don't know what area you are in or what size tractor you have, but 225 gals. of water weighs nearly a ton, add in the weight of the tank & trailer and I'm not sure you will be 'rushing' to put out any fires. We built the same basic setup as you described but used a gas-powered water pump mounted on the trailer next to the tank, and using several valves and a bit of piping we can pull up to a water supply (lake in our case) and pump the tank full of water also. The whole unit is pulled by a pickup with ease, and a LOT quicker than a tractor could accomplish. Best of luck.






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 04-16-2002, 09:58 Post: 37497
MikeB
2002-04-16 00:00:00
Post: 37497
 PTO Powered Water Pumps

Mark,

Any time you are planning on operating a tractor with no one on the seat, no one is watching the gauges. I would recomend a set of murphy switches one for coolant temp, the other for eng oil pressure. Murphy switches will shut down the engine if readings are not within set paremeters. This may save you an engine.

Another thought,

225 gal. of water aint much when fighting a fire, It's better than nothing though I guess. I have been involved with quite a few field fires, geeze, now I feel like a gynx. Seriously, I am in charge of a large wildlife area and we have controled burning to help maintain the praire grasses, and from experience, I can tell you one man, 225 gal. and a pump with 100 gal/min. capacity will do no good other than make you feel better.

If you want to feel truely safe, instal a sprinkler system around your house and water regularly. As soon as you here or smell fire turn it in and leave it on. Use your tractor and PTO pump to run the system in case of power failure, and if you have an on site well, that is even better yet. Just don't forget to put the switches I mentioned on the power unit.

Plan B:

A disc will make fire breaks pretty fast and efficiantly, and are a good idea for mother nature as well. they help diversify the enviroment and promote a different habitat for animals and also coo season grasses, depending on your location.






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 04-16-2002, 10:32 Post: 37500
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Interesting input, Thanks. Since I rarely use my rear PTO (and have never used the mid PTO)I plan on leaving the pump mounted all the time and the hoses will have quick connects. My well is deep, 250+ feet but it will produce 20 GPM all day, albeit at pretty low pressures, and I plan on keeping the tank filled from the well. My intention is to defend only my 2 1/2 acres, although I will certainly help the immediate neighbors, so the farthest I will travel will be about a thousand feet. The weight does concern me as I am operating with a JD 4100, but if it proves to be too much I can fill the tank less or carry a 55 gallon drum on the 3ph. The water trailer will certainly see more use as a mobile drip irrigation system than as a fire fighting tool. The fire station is about 5 miles away, so I would only need to hold the line alone for 10 or 15 minutes. The pump is listed as 24 GPM at over 400 lbs of pressure. If I keep the tank filled, all I will have to do is get it hitched to the tractor, snap on the hoses and go. Check out the links and let me know what you think.






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 04-16-2002, 10:53 Post: 37501
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Mike, the engine company that is the first responder only carries 750 gallons, and the last time they were here they had to grind up my steep driveway in double rectified granny gear. When the city guys run low they call in the BLM tanker and they in turn call the aerial bombers based twenty miles away. If a fire starts even 500 yards away I think they will be here before it gets to me unless the wind is really whipping. I live in tall sagebrush at 5000 ft above sea level and the concern is that one of the hundreds and hundreds of lightning strikes we get every year will land on the property. So the idea is to whack the problem before it gets out of hand. I plan on having shovels on the trailer too, and if worse comes to worse I guess I'll urinate on it and run. I have also considered a rainbird on the roof.






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 04-16-2002, 12:18 Post: 37508
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 PTO Powered Water Pumps

i have two of the northern pumps that you are talking about, and they work as advertized. to attach you need to slip the pump on the pto shaft, and then tighten a large allen screw to hold it in place, attached to the pump are two chains, one on each side, you hook these to your 3pt arms, or the hitch, and they keep the hitch from spinning, the chains have hooks on the ends, one of the hooks is fashioned from the allen wrench you use to tighten the screw to the pto shaft. i usually use them to irrigate transplanted trees that are away from the house. the pressure pump has an inlet and outlet hose and hose connectors included. i think you could use the pump as needed if the tank is full. the one pump will empty a 30 gal garbage can in less than a minute if you are running the pto at 540 rpm. i usually dont run that fast to water trees. they also make a larger pump with 2" in and outlets, if you had enough water you could run a regular fire hose, but you would need a pond or swimming pool to supply the water. the pumps arent very expensive, and have worked well for me, i dont use them a lot about 5-6 times a year more or less.

alex






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 04-16-2002, 12:39 Post: 37509
Murf



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Mark, you make an interesting observation, your machine has a mid-pto. Why then wouldn't you spend a little extra time and make up a mounting system whereby the pump could be permanently mounted on the FRONT of the tractor, and then the 3pth would not be affected at all. The only concern would be that if you don't have a machine that allows the rear-pto to be engaged without running the mid-pto you would then need to make a circular hose arrangement and keep the pump full of water so as not to burn up the seals when using the rear-pto. This would also keep it out of the way if you are hooking up to the drawbar, etc. Who knows, you will probably find many more uses for it. Best of luck.






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 04-16-2002, 17:16 Post: 37515
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Alex, many thanks for the information. Good to know the pump works as advertised.
Murf, The only other PTO driven implement I have is a posthole digger. So keeping it permanently occupied is no big deal. My 4100 will allow me to operate the rear PTO while off the tractor but will only run the mid PTO if there is weight on the driver seat. I suppose I could wire around it but that is like removing the safety on a gun. Not a real good idea in our litigious society.






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 04-17-2002, 08:33 Post: 37533
Murf



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Mark, you are correct indeed, by-passing a safety mechanism is NOT a good idea. My idea was based on the fact that a pump of this nature takes very little power (relative to what your machine can produce) to operate, if it was mounted on the mid-pto the engine would not have to run at much above a fast idle to produce enough speed & power to run the pump. Best of luck.






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Discussion Boards > Active Subjects > Messages as Posted > Tractor Implements Forum

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