I’m constantly amazed at the ingenuity and perseverance of the do it yourself pest control people. There are so many home made contraptions to catch or treat everything from flies to fleas. Some of these ingenious devices are truly amazing while others look downright dangerous or hopelessly complicated. My favorite is the beer can on a wire to catch unwanted mice and the ones that worry me the most are home made insecticides that even a chemist would have trouble figuring out.
I’ve never been extremely good with mechanics but working in the pest control field for as long as I have I’ve come to a decent understanding of the simple plumbing it takes to get a liquid from a tank to the end of a 300 foot hose. While I’ve mainly worked with rigs already built and parts in place, some of you have started from scratch and built handy little rigs to conquer lawn, shrub or even termite spraying. I’ve seen small 3 gallon back pack types to larger 50 gallon capacity rigs on wheels. These people must be decedents of Edison because they use every spare part known to man and come up with some of the greatest ideas. I can only imagine the hours of work and thought put into it but when it’s finished it looks so simple.
The idea of course is to save money while building something that best suits your needs. I’d be careful however before you go diving into rig building headfirst. There are many little plumbing issues you’ll need to think through such as connecting the hose to the tank, agitation, filter and power to run the pump. While the parts aren’t real expensive I find myself running back and forth to Lowes 3 and 4 times just for a little connector I didn’t think I needed. $50.00 bucks later I have my siphon hose in with extra parts to boot but now I need smaller hose clamps for my screen filter so back to town I go. Also, there are many ready made ‘pony rigs’ available at tool supply or feed stores. While you may still want to modify them to your specific use it will give you a good solid start and the prices I’ve seen are not really that bad.
In today’s world of fast paced living I don’t see as many of the home made rigs as I used to. As mentioned prices are not as big an issue as they once were and the manufacturers have even added a lot of the features you might have wanted saving you the hassle. Still there are the inventive minority out there who will continue to tinker and build convinced they can do it better. They’ll continue to save old sprinkler heads or the half rusted shower head from a watering pail just knowing that someday it will come in handy. I for one salute those people and will always take the time to admire their hard work and creativeness. Who knows maybe some executive from John Deere will see them treating their yard as he passes by and want to offer them a deal for their bicycle powered weed sprayer/fertilizer.