Surface Cleaner Question

John B

New member
On one of the post from the hot water wizard website on MSN he has the spec for building your own surface cleaner..

I have come to the conclusion that the people who build these surface cleaners really rip people off.
$ 1000.00 bucks for a $125.00 swivel and about $ 100.00 worth of material,,

I have also noticed that most of the $ 500.00 to $700.00 dollar units only handle like 180 degrees.. My machine runs at 200 +

I have my silver eagle and it works good , the alladian works good but I need a 20 inch one that will handle the heat.. I think I am going to attempt to build one..

It brings me to a couple of questions where to buy the swivel and such..

Also I found out something intresting the other day , when you go to your pressure washer store and they sell you nozzles for your surface cleaner make sure they are the same size and spray width..

My Alladin had 2.5 / 15 degree... the pressure washer store put in 2.5 /25 degree and yes it works but for some reason it steams after a period of time and it also leaves stripes in the concrete if you don't walk slow enough..

Well anyway I am going to try and build a surface cleaner so I will be taking photos as I get Started in April..
 

Slim Pickens

New member
Hey John

I'am in the process of making one right now got all parts at home depot I went to a local junk yard and got the handle they gave to me for free .And if no junk yards close by wait till they have big junk day in your neighborhood and look for one then. John when I'am done i will post a pic still have to paint the deck just don't know what color.
 

John B

New member
Cool I would like to see it .. I think I am going to paint mine bright red or orange so I won't forget and leave it behind LOL
 

Henry Bockman

Maryland Pressure Washing
You got parts for it from Home Depot? You may want to check the stats on what you got there, most of the stuff they sell won't work at high pressure, heat and speeds that a surface cleaner uses. The connectors and pipe fitting parts are fine but ball valves and swivels are completly different and also the main parts of the machine.
I just bought one of the Bad Boy surface cleaners for around $900 and it's got a 30" path with a lifetime warranty on the spinner bar. (they part that always gets messed up)
 

John B

New member
You ought to see the bottom of my Alladin which is really a Siver Eagle .. It has like compression fittings that hook into the swivel and then lite aluminum tubes going out with brass 90 degrees and then the nozzles. Damn thing was like 1200 dollars and I really believe I can Build one better.. My base is going to be a 55 gallon drum bottom cut out . You can also by the swivels for $145.00 and the swivels bars from jacks small engines.

Also I bought a 12" surface Cleaner From Northern tools and it was about $ 119.00 it said tempatures not to exceed 300 degrees.. Well they lied .. I ran it at about 200 degrees with my small machine and the whole swivel blew apart. LOL It is a peice of junk..

Actually bought a $ 600.00 surface cleaner from northern tool and it is sitting out behind the shed because the o ring in the swivel keeps blowing out.. It said temps of 212 degrees and it blew out while using it with cold water..

This is why I believe building your own surface cleaner is a good idea .. you know exactly what parts are going in to it.
 

John B

New member
I found all this on the Hotwater Wizard Website on MSN.
 

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John B

New member
here is more
 

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Slim Pickens

New member
Henry I 'am not going to use it on my bigger machine the most pressure I'am going to be using is 2000 psi @ 3.5 gpm .I'am building the surface cleaner because I have nothing else to do if it works it works if it does'nt it does'nt I'am off till the weather gets a little better hope to start back by the end of the month. Also did'nt get swivels from home depot bought from a supplier the only thing i bought was pipe and fittings.I 'am only doing Pw part-time my main buiss is window cleaning .
 

John B

New member
Ok I got my 22 inch lawnmower frame and ordered my swivel today from jacks small engines..photo below ... now it is time to do a little cutting and welding.

The swivel is rated for higher than most expensive units..

250 degree max
2000 rpm
4000 psi max

only $ 145.00
 

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Slim Pickens

New member
hey john make sure you find the middle of the circle before you cut for the swivel in the center because it will throw off the arms underneath measure twice cut once good luck.
 

Squirtgun

New member
Johnn B,
Give the info on the swivel you are getting for $145.I have a 30" steel eagle we have to get a new swivel for.
 

John B

New member
Ok now we got the metal mounted in the center .. I mounted it from the bottom with JB WELD and this afternoon we will bolt it on.. Only Problem I see is this is going to be one heavy surface cleaner...
Total cost so far
$ 5.00 for lawnmower
$ 38.00 worth of parts including caster
$ 150.00 for swivel that is on order
 

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John B

New member
ok, I changed my mind I been working for 1 whole day on this . I used the bottom of a plastic drum it's 22 " everything is done but the swivel and a few special touches
 

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Clean County PW

Active member
John B,
It looks good. Can that plastic bell housing handle heat?? I had a whir-a-way that had a plastic housing and I warped the heck out of it when I ran heat thru it once. You should have seen the modified job that I had to do to get this thing to work right after that incident. I just threw that surface cleaner in the garbage last year after nine years of use but with only 1 year with the melted bell housing.

My thinking is different then yours on this. Since it took you a day to do this so far and who knows how durable it will be down the road for you, for me I would just buy one and after a great day of powerwashing the money used there goes towards the surface cleaner. The end result- a days work for you and I but I have the brand new tested Surface Cleaner.(This would be great payday days work for me)

But then again if you have a great design there of course you would be way ahead of the game if you made them and sold them like some others did.
 

John B

New member
I have a 30 " steel eagle .. actually it is made by alladin but I think it is the same thing.
It is big and bulky... Sometimes I just got to try and build stuff just to see if I can do it.. .. This is sort of how B&R Fire Protection Got Started..

The Heat factor bothered me so I have called southern roofing and Sheet Metal.. I am going to buy a scrap peice of Stainless Steel Cut exactly 22" round .. Now I know I am going tohave to remove all the bolts at the top of the unit and slide the stainless thru..

If the stainless works .. then I will start working on surface cleaner number 4 . I have a 20" round peice of stainlees steel I am going to get a 3" strip to weld all the way around it.. I think this will make a great base... The main Reason for the plastic Bottom on the one I am Building Now is weight issues.. ...

When I first started cleaning sidewalks along with vent hood cleanings I bought a $120 `12" Plastic unit from Northern tool.. It said will handle temps up to 300 degrees I used it one time for 15 Minutes at 200 degrees and blew the swivel seal out......
 

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beyoungsr

New member
The plastic drum will not hold up to the heat. It will quickly distort.
A metal 55 gallon drum works the best.

Also are the swivels you are purchasing rebuildable?

The swivel that is pictured in the plans you a following is. I beleive that they are on there third generation design. They are produced with an internal adjustment for wear and a grease zerk on top.

The plans work well. The old boy who designed them(Richard Craig) lives in the next city here. He still builds all his own surface cleaners. Richard also has one heck of a power wash business.
 

John B

New member
Ok I have decided to make a form out of stainless steel to go on the under side of the plastic barrel.. .. I was going to use the lawn mower frame, the I was going to put the blue barrel bottom under the lawn mower frame ... But I need something light weight.
Hey What do yall think about using a surface cleaner on a white rubber roof to clean the grease off of it.. ( bad idea huh.... )
 

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John B

New member
Ok I used the Lawnmower Frame with the plastic inserted .. check out BIG RED
 

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John B

New member
Ordered Mosmatic 39.173 Swivel ( ceramic) rated 4000 psi at 250 degrees $ 150.00 Today it is rebuildable .. Kit Cost about 40.00...

Some one at mosmatic said the carbide swivel would last longer but I have good luck with cermaic before... I think thats whats in my alladin surface cleaner .. Any preferences from you guys... ????
 
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