Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Electric Equipment Initiative at The Bear Trace at Harrison Bay

How great for the environment would it be to be able to maintain the golf course without burning a single drop of fuel?  Well, that may seem like a dream but it is one that we are going to chase at Harrison Bay.  In an effort to reduce our impact on the environment through the emission of carbon emitted by our current gasoline engines we are converting the majority of our golf course maintenance equipment to a fully electric battery powered fleet.

This Electric Equipment Initiative, as we like to call it, will involve the replacement of gasoline combustion engines on our greens, tees, approaches, bunker rakes, greens rollers, and our staff utility vehicles with fully, 100% electric equipment.  It will be a total of 19 pieces of equipment which will allow us to maintain the golf course without polluting the air with carbon emissions and will allow us to not disturb our golfers and guests with the operation of loud equipment.

Working with the great people in the Office of Sustainable Practices in the Tennessee Department of Environment and Conservation we were able to obtain funding from Tennessee State Parks and the Tennessee Valley Authority for this project through the Clean Tennessee Energy grant.  By converting our gasoline burning equipment to all electric equipment we estimate we will reduce our gasoline consumption by over 12,000 gallons, eliminate the emission of over 215,000 pounds of point source carbon, and reduce our maintenance expenses by over $30,000.00.

It has taken a while to get the project off the ground but we are getting very close to seeing it be a reality.  The equipment we chose for the project is the Jacobsen Eclipse 322  triplex mower for greens, tees, and approaches, the Smithco Super Star 48 volt bunker rake, the Tru Turf R52  greens roller, the Toro Workman MDE, and the Club Car Carry All Turf II.  These units will allow us on many days to maintain our golf course without burning a single drop of fuel or emitting a single pound of point source carbon emission.  The goal of the whole project.

We have taken delivery of a couple pieces of equipment last week which have already been placed into service and are operating beyond our expectations.

Mitch is trying out the new Smithco Super Star bunker rake.

Left is a video of Willie operating one of the new fully electric bunker rakes.  Be sure to turn your volume up so you can hear the full experience.

We also chose to replace the staff vehicles with fully electric Toro Workman MDE vehicles.  These vehicles will allow the golf course staff to perform their duties around the golf course quietly so as not to disturb the golfers or the wildlife.  Win Win for everyone.

The Toro Workman MDEs are powered by a powerful 48 volt system which we have already found to have all the power we need to haul fertilizer, sand, and a trailer around the golf course.

We are anxiously awaiting the arrival of the remaining equipment and the onset of spring so we can put it all into operation.  We can already tell that one of the biggest things we are going to have to get used to is not hearing the sound of the gasoline engines as we perform our work but that is something we will gladly get used to.


  1. that is fantastic, Paul ! will be anxious to hear how it works out.

  2. Really nice post thanks for posting that stuff. I like that kind of amazing and useful posts thanks for sharing.
    environmental equipment

  3. Amazing post!! Looking forward to know how it really works.