Monday, December 26, 2011

New Toys

Good morning to another balmy day here at The Saw!

After the longest break of my "Blogging Career", I'm back!  It has now been exactly 24 days since my last post, and there is certainly much to tell.  So sit back, grab a nice warm drink, and enjoy this little "Christmas Story" I have to tell!

So first of all, I apologize for the delay.  Yes, I swore to several of you that I would spend a good amount of time this winter discussing some of the finer details of the Turf Operation here at Sawmill Creek.  And you are absolutely right, I have no excuse.  In fact, I have missed spending some time in front of this 300 pound, 14 inch monitor I have sitting on my desk.  (In reality, I couldn't take the abuse anymore from a couple of you, who have been bugging me for some details.....you know who you are!)

So why do I have no excuses?  Well, quite simply, it has yet to snow.  That's right, we have not had to perform any kind of snow removal operation so far this season.  Not once.  Which is a far cry from this time last year when we already had a month of snow removal under our belts, including a famous State of Emergency Storm.  Selfishly, this has been a nice break as it has allowed me to tend to a few things around the Turf Care Centre that I have had on my list since we moved up here more than 3 years ago.  However, for the golf course itself, a hard freeze, followed by a nice insulating blanket of snow would have been nice.  The weather of the last 6-8 weeks really has not properly allowed the turf to harden off as much as we desire.  In fact, even this morning you could see some varieties of turf still not completely dormant.  We have had a couple of days reach the low teens', and an abundance of moisture which has caused a bit of confusion to the turf plant.  Hopefully, we will see some cold temperatures arrive, followed by a nice insulating blanket of snow. 

The good news despite the weather, is that the flood waters have seemingly dropped, and the course has had a chance to drain .  There have been several days this month where the course looked more like a water park than a golf course, so it is certainly comforting to know that the water has receded before we do see some freezing temperatures.  Ice is one of the worst things to deal with on a golf course....

So to get to the point of the title of  this blog, we have spent a considerable amount of time this past month, in negotiations with a turf equipment supplier, in regards to our operation.  It is no secret that our equipment is certainly getting up there in terms of age and hours, and we have been battling with a few pieces over the past year or so.  Fortunately, the past two seasons have seen us replace some our most tempermental pieces such as one of our rough mowers, and one of the fairway mowers.  But this year, Christmas came a few days early!

I am very happy to report that we will be seeing two, brand new pieces join our fleet for 2012.  The first piece is a Jacobsen Greens King IV. 

Now this unit is set to take over the reigns of our primary greens mower.  Our current Toro Greensmaster 3150, is sitting at 4200 hours of use, (which I equate to a car having about 400 000 km).  The issue with this is that the greens mower is relied upon every single day when the course is open.  When we start using a machine with this many hours on it, on our most precious of assets (greens), we are simply playing with fire.  In the golf course maintenance world, there are basically three main equipment brands used for the daily maintenance.  And at the end of the day, most of the pieces that these three companies provide, will perform the job needed for what that piece is designed for; much the same as a Ford vs. Chevy comparison.  And of course, we all have our preferences....which when it comes to greensmowers, this GK IV is certainly my preference!

The second unit we will see arrive shortly, is something which is long overdue for an operation such as ours.  As you all know, the Turf Team at Sawmill is also responsible for the landscape and snow removal contract in the Residences of Sawmill Creek.  And as you loyal followers of this blog also know, snow removal can become a very labourious, and tedious task; especially when it comes to getting all of the driveways cleared.  So, keeping this in mind, when we started shopping around for a new utility vehicle to be used on the golf course, we made the decision which would allow us to essentially kill two birds with one stone. 

Say hello, to the Cushman 1600XD..........

This now becomes the first piece of turf equipment we own, which packs 4WD; something which even our tractor does not have!  This Cushman will be outfitted with a front plow blade, and a rear salter to aid us in the process of removing snow.  There are millions of utility type vehicles n the market, but this unit should help us out in more ways than one.....

I for one am very excited to see some fresh pieces enter our fleet, which will surely aid us in keeping Sawmill Creek as beautiful and pristine as we have all come to expect.!

This will be my last post until the New Year, and I wish you all a safe and happy remainder of the Holiday Season, and I look forward to serving you in 2012.

Of course, if you have any questions, comments or concerns, please feel free to contact me at jamie.downton@sawmill-creek.com

Jamie

2 comments:

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