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  • drum or sectional?

    I am going to purchase a sewer machine but don't know which type. It will be used on 4'' sewer lines for cleaning blockages includeing roots.Please give me your opinions on that , not my spelling! Thanks Bryan

  • #2
    Bryan,

    A lot of it has to do with what type of cleaning you will be doing. When I had my shop we had both and some guys like drum and some liked sectional. I have since sold my shop yet retained a K-50, K-60, KM1500 and a K-500. All four machines are sectional machines.

    If you are in a hurry and you want tyo get the job done quickly I think a drum machine will be best for you. If you dont mind spending a little extra time with a machine which will do a better job go with the sectional machine.

    Another advantage to a sectional machine is when you need to carry your equipment up/down stairs or ladders. With a drum machine you can break it down but you still have a heavy drum to carry. With a sectional machine you could take up one lenght of cable at a time if you wanted to.

    Mark
    "Somewhere a Village is Missing Twelve Idiots!" - Casey Anthony

    I never lost a cent on the jobs I didn't get!

    Comment


    • #3
      bryan, i just purchased a few sectional machines. a k-50, k-60 and a general 88. the main thing i like about the section is the rpm speed of the cutters, cable. there is a whole lot more hands on cable handling with a sectional. also it's very awkward to run a sectional inside a house, not to mention the waste water on the cable to deal with. with an enclosed drum machine, there is very little cable handling and the waste water will stay in the drum til you're outside.

      what is interesting is that on the west coast, they sell very few sectional machines and on the east coast, very little drum machines.
      i guess i'm on the fence here. for your first machine, i would go with a drum machine. a k-7500 and a k-3800 should do you quite well. i also have a hand full of k-39 drain guns with auto feed and keyless chuck. the standard slide chuck is worthless.

      rick.
      phoebe it is

      Comment


      • #4
        Bought Ridgid 1500 B

        thanks for your help.
        Bryan

        Comment


        • #5
          Bryan,
          I run a K1500 everyday. My most used accessory is sheets of cardboard. 700 rpm slings stuff everywhere. Keep water running when possible to cool the cable. Try to keep the cable moving in or out. At this rpm if you stay in one place too long you'll shorten cable life. A 90 degree turn is bending the cable 180 degrees 700 times a minute. This is my personal experience for whats its worth.
          Best, Dennis.........

          Comment


          • #6
            When I did drain cleaning full time, I simply could'nt imagine myself using a sectional all the time. It would have taken me twice or three times as long to get anything done. Half the time I got called out to old houses with NO clean-outs, and had no other option but to pull a downstairs toilet and run it through. The drum machines are enclosed, so there is little to no splash and spill and drip with them....long as you make sure your drum is drained before you start. When you pull back the cable, obviously it goes right back into the drum and the onlt thing you have to worry about really is a little splatter from the spinning cable on return between the pipe and the machine, and that's easily caught and cleaned up. And half the time again, the runs were pretty darn long, many times going over 100 feet and requiring a drum switch-out.....I just can't imagine hauling in cable section after cable section, having to lay them out and then de-section them when it's time to pull out, wipe them or put down a tarp??? Oh puhleeze.....I just can't see it. Sure, the drum machine is pretty heavy to negotiate up and down some stairs, but I have hardly ever run into a situation where I just could'nt, and they allowed me to get in and out with minimal mess in the shortest amount of time, because when you are actually a drain cleaning pro, you don't have alot of time to waste with silliness like sectionals because your cell is ringing.......

            Just my two cents.

            Comment


            • #7
              What you are missing is the sectional rodder uses a more flexible cable so you can use a larger cable and do a better job. You also are turning less weight thus giving more power to the stoppage. Whenever we had a drain a drum machine could not clear we would break out a sectional machine. I have used a 5/8 cable through a bathtub overflow and cleared a stoppage with a K-50 could you do that with a drum machine?

              By the way I'm not sure what you mean by laying the sections out as you just uncouple them out of the cage as you need them.

              Mark
              "Somewhere a Village is Missing Twelve Idiots!" - Casey Anthony

              I never lost a cent on the jobs I didn't get!

              Comment


              • #8
                mark, i finally got around to using my k-50. first job was a kitchen and laundry common 2'' stoppage with no c/o. ran the 5/8'' sectional from the 2'' washer standpipe. had the machine sitting on top of the dryer with a towel. after mastering the sequence of putting a small loop in the cable to allow for feeding, i got pretty quick with it. still tuff to couply and uncouple the cables with the "ugly" gloves on

                was a bit slower than a drum machine, but i didn't have to move the machine or cut out the abs trap to get a larger cable and cutter in.

                job #2 was a what if a 6' closet auger was too short to clear a toilet only stoppage. so what if i try the 5/8'' sectional through the toilet, china and all. i put a pvc hose into the china to prevent scratching. no problem, i went 6 sections out (42'). the issue was the slab line is backgraded for the first 12' and the toto drake toilet wouldn't push past this. had to camera the line to see why the line is clear and the toilet continued to plug. i switched over to a pressure flush and it should do till a major remodel.

                still waiting to take my 7/8'' k60 up to the roof. not looking foward to a roof job, but sometimes it beats taking a toilet off when the house has a tub full of

                got to go to the palisades and attempt to clear an area drain 70' clay hillside root stoppage. people never maintain their area drains. will try the trailer jetter with a rotary warthog nozzle. then to a 140' stoppage through a lower neighbors easement. all in a days work

                rick.
                phoebe it is

                Comment


                • #9
                  Thanks for the report Rick. I'm glad you finally got to take it for a test ride. Actually I had to snake my laundry last week and my wife has the big machines which are on pedestals. I couldn't get to my K-50 (motorcycles in the way) so I used my K-60 with 5/8 cable.

                  Mark
                  Last edited by ToUtahNow; 03-08-2006, 02:21 PM.
                  "Somewhere a Village is Missing Twelve Idiots!" - Casey Anthony

                  I never lost a cent on the jobs I didn't get!

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by ToUtahNow
                    What you are missing is the sectional rodder uses a more flexible cable so you can use a larger cable and do a better job. You also are turning less weight thus giving more power to the stoppage. Whenever we had a drain a drum machine could not clear we would break out a sectional machine. I have used a 5/8 cable through a bathtub overflow and cleared a stoppage with a K-50 could you do that with a drum machine?

                    By the way I'm not sure what you mean by laying the sections out as you just uncouple them out of the cage as you need them.

                    Mark
                    I'm sure the sectionals do a "better job", however I rarely got any call-backs using drum machines, so I assume they do a reasonably good job even with just a 3/4" cable. Far as bathtubs go, I have a Spartan Model 81 that does an excellent job (small tub drum machine), through tub overflows all the time. What are you talking about??

                    What I mean by laying out sections is as you are pulling back the line after clearing the blockage....don't you have to un-couple them as they are being brought back section by section? And certainly you have all that extra baggage to haul in and out....first you have to get the machine in, then start going back and forth getting cable sections as you need them. Plus, the extra space required in vans or trucks for hauling all those cable sections....just don't have it when there's a jetter in there, cameras, along with everything else. Just seems like more of a PITA that it's worth. I own a different drum machine for differing jobs...the Spartan for tubs, another Spartan 100 plus a Ridgid K-380 for sinks, floor drains, etc, and a Gorlitz 62 for mains. If I can't get anything open with one of these, which VERY rarely happens, then I use a jetter.

                    To each their own I guess. I just don't have time or patience for sectionals.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      The sections and guide hose asre stored in a basket you carry in with you. I can carry my K-50 with the guide hose, 105' of 5/8, a drop cloth and a cord all in one trip. As far as storage goes a K-50 with 105' of 5/8 plus a canister with 3/8 and a canister with 5/16 takes about the same amount of room as a K-380. On a regular service truck it takes one half of a 24" vertical bin.

                      Mark
                      "Somewhere a Village is Missing Twelve Idiots!" - Casey Anthony

                      I never lost a cent on the jobs I didn't get!

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by ToUtahNow
                        The sections and guide hose asre stored in a basket you carry in with you. I can carry my K-50 with the guide hose, 105' of 5/8, a drop cloth and a cord all in one trip. As far as storage goes a K-50 with 105' of 5/8 plus a canister with 3/8 and a canister with 5/16 takes about the same amount of room as a K-380. On a regular service truck it takes one half of a 24" vertical bin.

                        Mark
                        Thanks for the reply.

                        I'm not condemning them. Certainly I'm sure you're right, they probably do a much better job at actually cleaning the line. But the time consumption factor is what kills me with them. Even if you can lug everything in that you need all in one trip, the sections still have to be attached and dis-attached, and the resultant mess is another problem for me.....I do NOT want to be messing with drop cloths and splatter, pulling sections apart again....I just want to pull that cable back into that drum ASAP and get OUT of there. The Spartan tub machines are life-savers.....all you need really is just the machine! No extra stuff to deal with, and the cable negotiates down just about any over-flow, bend or even P-trap if necessary. Anyway, I'm not knocking your preferred equipment, to each their own. I've been doing drain cleaning for almost 10 years and not once have I ever used or owned a sectional....some guys around here are starting to use the Electric Eel sectionals and they are singing their praises, so they are'nt bad I'm sure. I'm just more focused on getting in and out in mimimum time and with minimum mess, period, and I view enclosed drum machines as the only real way of accomplishing that.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          AZPlumber,

                          You never know 25 years from now you would have been doing it as long as me and you may come around.

                          I'm just messing with you but to be honest the sectional machines do not make a mess and can be neater than a drum machine if you use the front guide hose. I have purchased 100s of machines over the years and could have kept which ever ones I wanted when I sold my shop. I choose to keep all sectional machine and not a single drum machine.

                          Mark
                          "Somewhere a Village is Missing Twelve Idiots!" - Casey Anthony

                          I never lost a cent on the jobs I didn't get!

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by ToUtahNow
                            AZPlumber,

                            You never know 25 years from now you would have been doing it as long as me and you may come around.

                            I'm just messing with you but to be honest the sectional machines do not make a mess and can be neater than a drum machine if you use the front guide hose. I have purchased 100s of machines over the years and could have kept which ever ones I wanted when I sold my shop. I choose to keep all sectional machine and not a single drum machine.

                            Mark
                            Thanks again. I guess I'm just biased because to be honest, I have'nt used the sectionals, ever, so maybe I have something to learn from you. Next time I have a chance to try one I will, maybe an old dog CAn learn new tricks lol.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              well now that we have the drum and sectional debate ended. those 2 jetter jobs that i did today worked out great. 55' of 4'' clay area drain piping full of dirt, gravel, and roots. try to do that with a cable or sectional

                              next one was a 130' run through a lower neighbors side yard approx. 15' lower in elevation. with the jetter and rotary warthog nozzle i was able to get the line running. as i was jetting, my buddies plumber was down below listening at the city manhole. he heard the nozzle and also felt the tree roots in the planter vibrating. i have a remote controll to turn on and off the water flow to the nozzle. so now that it's running, i will be going back to camera the line and see what i looks like under the tree. would be great to install twin cleanouts.

                              not tomorrow though, need to spend the day in jury duty hopefully a 1 day wait and see.

                              so a jetter with the proper nozzle will out do both the drum and sectional

                              rick.
                              phoebe it is

                              Comment

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