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View Full Version : Exmark Blades on my Gravely......WOW


dwost
07-07-2006, 08:48 AM
Ok, so i've experimented over the years with differentblade setups. The stock Gravely blades (notched hi-lift) have always left a very nice cut, however, due to all the turbulance under the deck didn't suck up the matted grass under the tires as much as I'd like. I've run doubles with gators on top which do well but it still didn't quite finish it off. So I started doing some reading and decided to try standard solid foil hi-lift blades. I didn't realize how difficult these are to find!! Almost all the mfg make notched but very few have solid foil hi-lifts. I decided to get a set of Exmarks from Mowmore (by the way, they are FANTASTIC to deal with. Ordered them on Wednesday and they arrived the next day!!)

So I went out last night and gave them a shot. WOW what a difference!!! I get great vacuume without all the turbulance under the deck. I'm side discharging and it did a really nice job of pulling up the grass in the treadmarks and cutting it even with the rest. I'm now anxious to stick these on with my Gators and see how they perform in a double setup. Just wanted to post my experience as many may benefit from switching to a solid foil if you are experiencing an uneven cut. The only item I'm not wild about is these are only available in .204 and I'd really like to stick with .240 but we'll see how they hold up!!!

Don

Runner
07-07-2006, 11:38 AM
This is what I've been saying on here for years. Its not so much the brand of the blades (since there are no "Gravely" or "Exmark" blades) that you use, it is the difference btween solid foil and notched foil. Now, to easier find a solid foil blade in the future, just ask for standard lift blades. The vast majority of solid foil highlift blades out there are actually just standard foil blades. Now, if you REALLY want to try a nice blade, find a set of DC (Dixie Chopper) style blades - that are TRUE DC style. These blades have not only a solid foil, but they have a much longer bevel area that extends almost all the way to the center. This longer bevel doesn't cut the grass off more (all blades only cut with the tip) but the longer bevel DOES give it more area for recutting and mulching up, and also allows the blade to spin with much less resistance due to the aerodynamic factor of the longer bevel.

dwost
07-07-2006, 11:43 AM
Sweet!!! Thanks Joe for the recommendation, however, in checking on the Dixie blades the only comparable size is 17". I'm running a 48" deck and they don't have anything that I've found to fit the 16 1/4 range. Any ideas??

ProStreetCamaro
07-07-2006, 11:53 AM
Sweet!!! Thanks Joe for the recommendation, however, in checking on the Dixie blades the only comparable size is 17". I'm running a 48" deck and they don't have anything that I've found to fit the 16 1/4 range. Any ideas??


6 1/4"? Our Tank M48 uses 17" blades. Then again come to think of it it has more blade overlap than any other mower on the market. Do you know of any 17" high lift solid foil blades? I want to try out some of the oregon fusion blades but they dont have any that would fit directly on my mower.

lawnmaniac883
07-07-2006, 12:08 PM
Sweet!!! Thanks Joe for the recommendation, however, in checking on the Dixie blades the only comparable size is 17". I'm running a 48" deck and they don't have anything that I've found to fit the 16 1/4 range. Any ideas??


Just so you know, blades are measured from one corner to the other sides opposite corner. Think of a rectangle, you measure diagonally from one corner to the other got it?

John Gamba
07-07-2006, 01:33 PM
Just so you know, blades are measured from one corner to the other sides opposite corner. Think of a rectangle, you measure diagonally from one corner to the other got it?




Or how you measure a TV*newusflag*

John Gamba
07-07-2006, 01:35 PM
Don
What size deck do you have??*trucewhiteflag*

lawnmaniac883
07-07-2006, 04:59 PM
Or how you measure a TV*newusflag*


Thats a better way of putting it...

John Gamba
07-07-2006, 05:19 PM
Thats a better way of putting it...


Thank You*newusflag*

John Gamba
07-07-2006, 05:21 PM
Sweet!!! Thanks Joe for the recommendation, however, in checking on the Dixie blades the only comparable size is 17". I'm running a 48" deck and they don't have anything that I've found to fit the 16 1/4 range. Any ideas??



Its a 48" Thank you. I didnt have my glasses on:hammerhead:

Dashunde
07-07-2006, 11:31 PM
Don... I have the exact same problem with my Gravely 48" wb.
I switched to 16.25" highlift notch blades (same as stock, but with wider foil), they made an improvement, but still not good enough.

I'd like to know exactly what blades you got! (numbers please)
I assume yours are also 16.25 with a 5/8 hole, right?
Do they come from the Oregon book?

Envy Lawn Service
07-08-2006, 01:31 AM
6 1/4"? Our Tank M48 uses 17" blades. Then again come to think of it it has more blade overlap than any other mower on the market. Do you know of any 17" high lift solid foil blades? I want to try out some of the oregon fusion blades but they dont have any that would fit directly on my mower.

Your mower should have came stock with 3" wide marbane steel solid foil highlifts.
If it didn't, let me know and I will give you some numbers.
Great blades.

UNFORTUNATELY we are the 'odd man out' on blades.
Way more blade overlap, so the blades are longer than 'standard'.
We also have larger diameter shafts so the center holes are also larger (3/4")

I'm thinking John Deere Z-Track blades might be close (?)
Other than that, that's it.

I'm luckier than you though... mine uses 21" blades and there are a ton of those.
But it doesn't do much good since nothing else is 3/4' center hole.

I'd like to get set up to precision re-bore the center holes out larger.
That way I could do a lot of tinkering/playing/testing... which I enjoy.

David Haggerty
07-08-2006, 07:19 AM
I'd like to get set up to precision re-bore the center holes out larger.


While I don't recommend it, I've done that. I'd messed up and ordered some 1/2" center hole blades when I needed 5/8" There were 6 of them. I thought I'd just bore them out. Blades are pretty hard.
I have a good drill press. But an overhead mill would have been better. I had to sharpen the bit twice to get 6 holes bored out.
So it's possible, just not very practical.

Dave

ProStreetCamaro
07-08-2006, 08:57 AM
Your mower should have came stock with 3" wide marbane steel solid foil highlifts.
If it didn't, let me know and I will give you some numbers.
Great blades.

UNFORTUNATELY we are the 'odd man out' on blades.
Way more blade overlap, so the blades are longer than 'standard'.
We also have larger diameter shafts so the center holes are also larger (3/4")

I'm thinking John Deere Z-Track blades might be close (?)
Other than that, that's it.

I'm luckier than you though... mine uses 21" blades and there are a ton of those.
But it doesn't do much good since nothing else is 3/4' center hole.

I'd like to get set up to precision re-bore the center holes out larger.
That way I could do a lot of tinkering/playing/testing... which I enjoy.


Yeah thats what mine came with but I was wanting to try some other brand of blades to tinker with. Mine just dont stay sharp very longand out 34Z has marbane also with 17" blades and they stay sharpe forever. I am going to PM you with something kid iof funny.

Runner
07-09-2006, 03:27 AM
Yeah, sorry. If you guys are talking about 48s, all bets are off on my advice for the DCs. I was refering to the 60" decks that take 20 1/2" blades.

dwost
07-10-2006, 09:26 AM
Your mower should have came stock with 3" wide marbane steel solid foil highlifts.
If it didn't, let me know and I will give you some numbers.
Great blades.

UNFORTUNATELY we are the 'odd man out' on blades.
Way more blade overlap, so the blades are longer than 'standard'.
We also have larger diameter shafts so the center holes are also larger (3/4")

I'm thinking John Deere Z-Track blades might be close (?)
Other than that, that's it.

I'm luckier than you though... mine uses 21" blades and there are a ton of those.
But it doesn't do much good since nothing else is 3/4' center hole.

I'd like to get set up to precision re-bore the center holes out larger.
That way I could do a lot of tinkering/playing/testing... which I enjoy.

Envy, Mine did come with Marbane notched hi-lift, however, they are 2 1/2" wide not 3" this may be different for the larger units but not for the 48". They really are great blades and the cut was great with the exception of the wheel tracks. As for the John Deere, they only have a 16.5 which might work but I'd have to measure.

I got mine through mowmore.com and went through the catalog this weekend. Here are the only ones I could find that were hi-lift solid foil in a 16.25 x 5/8 x 2.5 that would work with part numbers. I was told that the Husqvarna blades have a longer, higher foil for added lift. I may give those a shot as well. Any others to add?

Bobcat/Ransomes - BC16A
Exmark - EX0419 (these are the ones I bought)
Husqvarna/Yazoo/Kees - HQ6500

jim163
07-11-2006, 07:22 PM
I feel like my gravely could cut a little better so Im trying the same thing. I found a web site that sells every blade for every mower you can think of. I ordered a set of exmark notched foil hi lifts, and a set of true dixie choper solid foil high lifts. I'll let you guys know how it turns out they should be here tomarrow.

Dashunde
07-11-2006, 09:18 PM
I ordered the same ones that dwost did, they oughta be here Thursday.

John Gamba
07-12-2006, 07:03 AM
I ordered the same ones that dwost did, they oughta be here Thursday.



My blades should be here today or tomorrow. Other then it not picking up the caster wheel grass this deck is nice.

General Landscaping
07-12-2006, 07:24 AM
I'd like to get set up to precision re-bore the center holes out larger.

These always make a nice round hole without getting off center.Unibit (http://www.irwin.com/irwin/consumer/jhtml/detail.jhtml?prodId=IrwinProd100048)
The key to making it last is to turn it at slow drilling speed and use lots of pressure.

You may have to drill from both sides to get through without too much chamfer.

dwost
07-12-2006, 08:11 AM
I feel like my gravely could cut a little better so Im trying the same thing. I found a web site that sells every blade for every mower you can think of. I ordered a set of exmark notched foil hi lifts, and a set of true dixie choper solid foil high lifts. I'll let you guys know how it turns out they should be here tomarrow.

Jim, which site are you referencing?

jim163
07-12-2006, 08:45 AM
expressmowerparts.com

Grassman6
07-12-2006, 09:13 AM
I've been making my own blades for years...since I run a 60" 7 Iron deck I just recover any damaged 72" blades from my dealer since they end up in the scrap pile anyway. Like you said only the tip is doing the cutting so I use a 14" cut off saw and make short choppy passes with the blade standing on edge. Then balance on the Magna Matic and sharpen on a Dewalt hand held grinder. If the center hole is a problem I use a 3/8" grinding stone in a die grinder and rebalance. Time consuming...yea but we have four months of non-cutting time in TN so I prep about 10 sets of blades over the winter. I learned to grind out the center mounting hole of a standard gator blade with a slow circular motion with the grinding stone. Suprising is how long the stone has lasted. Check for staightness on the Magna Matic before proceeding witht the project...I throw away about 1 in 10 of these free steel acquisitions.

dwost
07-14-2006, 09:28 AM
Update!! We had a bunch of rain here earlier this week so I've gone about 5 days without cutting (usually only go 3) so it was longer than usual. I let it dry out as much as possible yesterday and cut when I got home from work. The ground was still soft and the grass was quite lush. I'm happy to report the same findings as before, very level cut even in the ruts. I can't get over what a difference a set of blades make!! I was taking off about 1 - 1.5" of grass and it turned out beautifully. I also noticed that it still discharges a good 12-16 feet and the dispursment of the clippings is the same as before. I'll try and snap some shots later today. Did you guys get yours mounted up yet?? If so, what are your findings??

Don

Envy Lawn Service
07-15-2006, 09:44 PM
Yeah thats what mine came with but I was wanting to try some other brand of blades to tinker with. Mine just dont stay sharp very longand out 34Z has marbane also with 17" blades and they stay sharpe forever. I am going to PM you with something kid iof funny.

Hummm.... mine stay sharp forever. I have to wonder if they didn't stop shipping them with the marbane blades.

Yeah, I read that PM and got a good laugh from it too.
But I have to agree that these things do have too much leg room on them.
I like to be able to scrunch up and wedge myself it the seat with my legs.
Can't reach the foot wedge that well on these....

John Gamba
07-16-2006, 06:36 AM
Update!! We had a bunch of rain here earlier this week so I've gone about 5 days without cutting (usually only go 3) so it was longer than usual. I let it dry out as much as possible yesterday and cut when I got home from work. The ground was still soft and the grass was quite lush. I'm happy to report the same findings as before, very level cut even in the ruts. I can't get over what a difference a set of blades make!! I was taking off about 1 - 1.5" of grass and it turned out beautifully. I also noticed that it still discharges a good 12-16 feet and the dispursment of the clippings is the same as before. I'll try and snap some shots later today. Did you guys get yours mounted up yet?? If so, what are your findings??

Don

The same as yours. I need to try them in the wet next.