Friday, April 19, 2013

Extention Telescoping Poles & "Down Time"

While writing this entry in the blog it took a different turn then when I started writing, moving in a different direction then intended. I went with the new direction and here is. I hope you enjoy it. 

Extension or telescoping poles are very useful attachments to have in your cleaning arsenal. You can do a lot with them reaching areas to wash while safely remaining on the ground.  Reaching higher areas and thus expanding you cleaning range making you better able to bring in more jobs or for the home owner to be able to get a cleaner house and make it easier on you. I want to throw this out here these poles take a lot of physical strength to use. Once they fill with water and are fully extended they are a handful, and a balancing act at best then takes place. Some companies offer a harness and belt that you ware to help support the pole when it is in the upright and working position which helps some people. There is also a device that helps to regulate the water flow to assist in lifting the pole to the upright working position. So you have accessory for accessory.

Still staying off ladders is just the better way to go reducing any chance from damage caused by ladders leaning on the home or guttering, Keeping you or your workers safely on the ground is a must. These extension or telescoping poles come in several different styles and lengths. They are made form two major materials or combination of them, aluminium and fibreglass. Their locking devices vary too. Pin style locks, cam locks, or twist locks are all used to set the length and keep the pole in length till reset. Construction will also be different from company to company some using  a lot of smaller sections or some using a fewer longer sections. Each pole has it own pluses and minuses each lock and material has it pluses and minuses. I can not tell you what is best for your uses, I know what I use and why what I like and why. Cost is also a deciding factor in the poles that each contractor or home owner may choose, how often are you going to use it to make it worth the while of owning it. The biggest thing I would say to help you out is what ever nozzle you use it will have a big effect on the action of the pole. Start with the widest nozzle you have other wise that 0 degree nozzle will propel the top of that pole around like a rocket ship on a string. Then you at the bottom will have to react and the dance will start. I know the first I used one when things start to go astray you want to fight the pole and you tighten up all your muscles to help in the battle. Tighten up causes you to get the death grip on things including the trigger pulling it tighter more pressure more fighting. "LGS" let go stupid! letting off the trigger will stop all this. I have to repeat this this is the most important thing in this entry. "LGS" let go stupid let off the trigger and it will stop the rocket ship, I know been there done that. The telescoping pole has helped us out here at Cleaned by Pete for washing and getting at that last dirty spot on 2 and 3 story homes and business fronts we have made some nozzle attachments and adaptors to change the angle of the exiting water and it has made all the difference in handling at full length and aids us in our cleaning method. The pole I use is a fibreglass with three sections the last being aluminium tubing with twist locks. These were what was available when I entered the business. They were designed and built local here for distribution that is why I use this style. I have not worn it out with the years of use, so I still use this older style pole, though I would really like to try one of the newer pin lock all extruded aluminium poles out one of these days.


This is where the entry was to start I did not intend to discuss the extension or telescoping pole that much but it happened so I just went with it. The entry was about "down time" the when you find yourself board, with nothing to do, can’t work, weather not cooperating, or winter keeps coming back. I'm starting to build my own telescoping pressure washing extension pole during this "down time", for something to do follow along and see if it works or if it is a flop.

I really am not handling the extended winter well this year, just too much "down time". Winter just will not go away here in "The Ozarks", Southwest and the greater Springfield MO area. Temperatures dropped to 32 degrees lastnight ounce again. We had a good week so far with patio cleanings, house washing, grease spill clean-up and bids. Today we were to start removing vinyl letters on 300 storage units and replacing them with new numbers but Mother Nature once again stepped up and said no, the company making letters also said no, will not guarantee the letters to stick if not applied with temperatures in the high 60's or above. So we once again have "down time" again and I'm looking for some thing to do...... came up with this pole project. Normally I would support my pressure washer dealer or supply house and just purchase another pole, but "down time" makes you do things just to be busy.

Take a Corona limb cutter with the blade and lopping mechanism removed, found at a flea market for $10.00, 25 foot of used older high pressure hose, the spare trigger handle ($10.99 on sale at our local dealer) and onhand from our replacement parts bin in the service truck. I always carry and have a good supply of parts, nozzles, hose repair kit, o-rings, fittings, quick connectors, bearings for surface cleaners, tools and other items for field repair, on-board at all times. Some extra time at the shop to design and weld up a mount. I'll start to build a 2 section extension washing pole should be 12 feet extended and that may work better when the 24 foot yellow banana or the longer lances really don't fit in. We are only out some time and a few bucks if it does not work, but can always still use the parts. Let's see if I have any luck doing this, here is the build so far, will try to up date as we go along. Need it the mother of invention and "down time" is the redheaded stepchild the spurs it on.  I am not out to reinventing the power washing extension pole or am I going to make any major refinements in it. I have the parts and it's something to do. "Down time" this is how I handle it. If I did not have parts, a shop, or a welder ..... but being an machinist  and having the tools and place to do this I'll play around with it. I would not under-take this pole project build if I did not, you are better off to support your pressure washing dealers local or on-line and just buy one even if it means saving for a bit till one has the money.

Designed and welded up the gun mount, Cleaned by Pete.

Trigger gun set into mount, thinking about "Trex" banding or hose clamps to put it on the pole.

Coat of paint, nipple and a washer made to fit looking a bit better, Cleaned by Pete

A fiberglass Corona pole found at a flea market will be our donner for the project, Cleaned by Pete's DIY extension pressure washing pole.

This is trigger gun mount we hope to attache onto the pole run the house through the pole to the nozzle attachment point at the top of the second section, Cleaned by Pete's DIY extension pole project

Hoping to use "Trex" banding or hose clamps to attach the handle to the pole.
There are still items to work out and the best way to do things. Stay tuned to see if I can make this extension pole work, or if it is a flop. As for right now I just had a call to clean pollen and construction dust form cutting rock off a patio, furniture and out side kitchen area. So my "down time" today is something I don't have to worry with now.

Cleaned by Pete call us for your cleaning needs, 417-459-7869

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