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  1. #11
    Veteran Member SpringHollow's Avatar
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    Dec 2006
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    1,713
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    South of Rochester, NY
    Tractor
    Power Trac 1850, NH 2120

    Default Re: Propane Powered Ice / Snow Melter ???

    An ice melt system using antifreeze in pex is reasonably common in commercial applications. I installed one in my steep driveway between the house and barn. Ideally, some insulation below the pex would help. I used old carpet over and under mine to keep sharp stones away. The antifreeze is heated by the wood boiler so efficiency is not extremely important. I will know how well it works this Winter.

    ken
    PT1850, mini hoe, grapple, stump grinder, brush hog

    http://www.usadiscountgenerators.com...T1850Home.html

  2. #12
    Silver Member
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    Aug 2011
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    108
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    Komatsu D21S

    Default Re: Propane Powered Ice / Snow Melter ???

    Quote Originally Posted by NC4AB View Post
    Drive way is gravel.

    The ground does not freeze all that deep here in NC but the past 2 winters have been exceptionally cold. Normally with in a few days the surface thaws out from the sun shine and I can make it in and out of the driveway. The problem I have had is a thin layer of ice makes the driveay like a bob sled run.

    Ice melt works but I was trying to come up with a whiz bang solution that would impress the wife.


    Go to bing.com and do a search on pavement heaters or infared pavement heaters.

    Here is a pic of a small one:



    These heaters run on diesel or propane and will heat pavement up for patching or to melt ice. They vary in size from small hand pulled units all the way up to large truck mounted units. Making something that works on your tractor should be really easy. Based on your location I think the idea has merit. Even if the ground re-froze the surface would not be a sheet of ice.



    Mr. HE

  3. #13
    Silver Member Lightnsound's Avatar
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    Jan 2011
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    135
    Location
    Pen Argyl PA
    Tractor
    Kubota B7610

    Default

    If you have a York rake, you can try to mix some gravel up into the ice. This makes bumpy ice that has some tooth and isn't nearly as slippery. If you don't have a York rake but you have a rear blade, set the blade so it chatters when you drag it. It will give the ice a bit of washboard texture. I've done both techniques and had some success, at least enough to keep me from sliding into the swale.

  4. #14
    Bronze Member NC4AB's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
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    60
    Location
    Wallburg NC
    Tractor
    B21 TLB; L4240 GST; 8N

    Default Re: Propane Powered Ice / Snow Melter ???

    HDDNIS -

    That is exactly what I am looking to build. Just didn't know what to call it. I hadn't thought of doing infrared but that would be more effiecent than using direct flame.

    May thanks, now I have another project to add to my list of things to do !!
    Andy

    --------------------------------------------
    Kubota B21 TLB / Ford 8N / Farmall 140 / Kubota L4240 GST / CAT 941

  5. #15
    Gold Member SensibleNick's Avatar
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    Feb 2010
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    446
    Location
    Ystad, Sweden
    Tractor
    Foton FT254

    Default Re: Propane Powered Ice / Snow Melter ???

    Quote Originally Posted by NC4AB View Post
    HDDNIS -

    That is exactly what I am looking to build. Just didn't know what to call it. I hadn't thought of doing infrared but that would be more effiecent than using direct flame.

    May thanks, now I have another project to add to my list of things to do !!
    Those pavement heaters need to sit in place for a LONG time before they heat a pavement sufficiently. The wheels are for transportation: not for moving it while working. They're not that fast.

    Ice has quite a high SHC (Specific Heat Capacity) and you're going to spend a lot of time simply wasting gas/heat. Also, it is not a lasting effect.

    On top of that, It's one of the more environmentally irresponsible ways of getting rid of ice. You'll find it takes less time, less effort, and less money to do as others have suggested: put something *on* the ice. Grit, sand, salt, ashes... but burning fuel to temporarily heat the ground is just wasteful and expensive. and with 400 feet... your talking hours and hours of heating.
    4 Acres, an 1890 Farmhouse and a Foton 254 + bits

  6. #16
    Gold Member yankeerider's Avatar
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    May 2007
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    458
    Location
    North Central Connecticut
    Tractor
    Deere 755

    Default Re: Propane Powered Ice / Snow Melter ???

    Don't overlook the effectiveness of the time-honored combination of sand and salt. The salt doesn't melt the ice away, it just creates enough enough "tooth" to get the sand to stay in place in many small craters. Here in New England, many towns used to make it available for residents. That seems to be disappearing for a number of reasons, so think about how to mix up your own.
    Jerry

    JD 755 w/70 loader, 60" MMM, Brush Bandit chipper, Woods RB60 blade, 48" KKII tiller, 8 hp tow behind Giant Vac
    Gator HPX 4x4 Gas,Cat 303c CR mini-ex

  7. #17
    Veteran Member
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    SE Wa

    Default Re: Propane Powered Ice / Snow Melter ???

    Quote Originally Posted by SensibleNick View Post
    Those pavement heaters need to sit in place for a LONG time before they heat a pavement sufficiently. The wheels are for transportation: not for moving it while working. They're not that fast.

    Ice has quite a high SHC (Specific Heat Capacity) and you're going to spend a lot of time simply wasting gas/heat. Also, it is not a lasting effect.

    On top of that, It's one of the more environmentally irresponsible ways of getting rid of ice. You'll find it takes less time, less effort, and less money to do as others have suggested: put something *on* the ice. Grit, sand, salt, ashes... but burning fuel to temporarily heat the ground is just wasteful and expensive. and with 400 feet... your talking hours and hours of heating.
    Amen to that. Anyone who has spent time defrosted a freezer knows that ice does not give up easily. Any method of heating other than by sun is a very expensive proposition fuel wise.

    Toss soem commercial ice melter (not salt)on it and it will go away.

    Harry K

  8. #18
    Platinum Member
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    Nov 2008
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    697
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    Brampton, On\lot Powassan, ON Canada
    Tractor
    Kubota B4200\MF 135\Kubota B3200

    Default Re: Propane Powered Ice / Snow Melter ???

    Wonder if a power broom might be better. It might give you a pattern on what ever Ice remains.
    Unimogdave

  9. #19
    Silver Member
    Join Date
    Aug 2011
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    108
    Tractor
    Komatsu D21S

    Default Re: Propane Powered Ice / Snow Melter ???

    Quote Originally Posted by SensibleNick View Post
    Those pavement heaters need to sit in place for a LONG time before they heat a pavement sufficiently. The wheels are for transportation: not for moving it while working. They're not that fast.

    Ice has quite a high SHC (Specific Heat Capacity) and you're going to spend a lot of time simply wasting gas/heat. Also, it is not a lasting effect.

    On top of that, It's one of the more environmentally irresponsible ways of getting rid of ice. You'll find it takes less time, less effort, and less money to do as others have suggested: put something *on* the ice. Grit, sand, salt, ashes... but burning fuel to temporarily heat the ground is just wasteful and expensive. and with 400 feet... your talking hours and hours of heating.


    You are totally missing the point of what he is trying to accomplish. He is not heating pavement for a patch.

    Just FYI more and more heat based ice melting systems are being installed every year on roofs, in parking lots, on bridges, in sidewalks, etc. They are considered to be more environmentally responsible and more effective than salt use. While I don't agree that salt or ice melter use is really a problem it shows that the use of heat is feasible, proven and growing. These are in ground systems, he wants to heat from above. Maybe not the very best in every case, but might be the best in his situation.



    Mr. HE

  10. #20
    Bronze Member NC4AB's Avatar
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    Jan 2006
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    Wallburg NC
    Tractor
    B21 TLB; L4240 GST; 8N

    Default Re: Propane Powered Ice / Snow Melter ???

    Thanks all of the suggestions, I now have a design based around a "MrHeater" infrared propane shop heater. The steel for the frame and the wheels will come from the scrap pile so my total out of pocket cost for the heater will run around $130.00 for the heater from Northern Tool. Nice thing is if the design doesn't work I can still use the heater in the shop.

    Just for clarification what I have is a steep gravel driveway that after being scraped can have a thin layer of ice and I plan on melting 2 tracks ~ 18" wide in the areas that don't get much sun.

    I'll take pictures of the final design and post some pictures when we get some snow.
    Andy

    --------------------------------------------
    Kubota B21 TLB / Ford 8N / Farmall 140 / Kubota L4240 GST / CAT 941

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