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View Full Version : Ferris IS1500 Spindle and Idler Pulley replacement


BeautifulBlooms
01-09-2012, 05:59 PM
My dealer was doing the 600 hour service (combustion chamber and valve service basically) on my mower and they have told me that all three spindles need to be replaced . . .is 600 hours too soon for this? meaning am I greasing properly? Should I expect to have to do this again in 600 more hours?

I have not noticed anything wrong with the cut, nor do they sound overly loud, but they also told me if I felt them with the belt tension off I would be able to see what they are talking about. I am not 100% confident in this dealer (only because I have had some issues before) but they are close to me and the only Ferris dealer around. I only take it in for this major service, otherwise I would be doing all the work myself.

He quoted me $700 for the 3 spindles and idler pulleys.

Any insight into my issue here? Please let me know what your expectations are on pulleys and spindles.

Mike

dutch1
01-09-2012, 06:50 PM
The necessity of replacing spindle assemblies is dependent upon the care you have taken to maintain them. I have no idea if the model I selected is representative of your machine, however the schematic does indicate that the spindles are greasable. If your mowing conditions include a lot of wet grass or if you powerwash your unit on a regular basis, it's possible that the spindle bearings could easily be noisy at 600 hours if you don't grease properly.

It's entirely your call, but I can't see why you would give a dealer $700 to replace three oem spindles that retail around $120/ea, particularly if you are mechanically inclined. Better yet, the oem bearing set looks to sell at around $25 per spindle and you can likely save some extra bucks by purchasing at an automotive/bearing supply.

I'm quite sure you're not mowing any grass in Wisconsin this time of the year and unless you're otherwise obligated, you could easily replace the bearing sets and idler(s) for $100+/- in a few short hours. It ain't brain surgery.

But again, it's your call and you can make the decision on how you spend your dollars.

piston slapper
01-09-2012, 07:31 PM
Ditto. Dutch.
If a couple of old guys like us can change these parts, it can't be that tough.
Sounds like a fundraiser.
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BeautifulBlooms
01-09-2012, 08:08 PM
Would I need a torque wrench or an impact gun to accomplish this? or any other special tools? Is it as easy as spinning of the bolts on the spindles and throwing the new ones back in? I know that is going to be $300 or so in parts and if it is that easy I could do that myself as opposed to redoing the bearings completely and not being able to pull he races (assuming they are two piece bearings?

I currently am not set up as a full service shop for maintenance, partly because I am not the most mechanical, but we also do not have all the tools and equipment to accomplish some of the big things and most certainly i do not touch engine work as I have no experience with repair or troubleshooting engine problems. I do what I can and let the guys who know what they are doing do the things I am uncomfortable.

Putting the repair to the side my question remains . . .since these are greasable spindles, is 600 hours extremely low before failure, or should I be happy I got 600 hours out of the first set of spindles. . . should they remain in good shape as long as they are greased properly?

I do not pressure wash my machine (just once a year before I park it) all i do is blow out the grass clippings and rinse it down every few weeks under regular hose pressure.

dutch1
01-09-2012, 08:14 PM
Right on Slapper. At $700, a two hour job and dealer cost on the spindles, it absolutely is a fundraiser----for the dealer. If I wasn't so relaxed and content at the moment, I'd take a little winter ride for some of that action, provided I could stay away from the white stuff.

piston slapper
01-09-2012, 08:21 PM
Take a look at the parts manual, and then look at the deck.
Only you know your abilities. If you have the right tools and a good clean area to work, its not that tough.
600 hours is ok for spindle bearings. If you get replacement spindles, save the old ones and try to rebuild them.
You,ll have at least 600 to figure them out.
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ashgrove landscaping
01-09-2012, 08:22 PM
Stop by and check for yourself. If you fill them up with grease once a week they will last 2000 hrs. I don't believe all three would go at the same time. It s usually one on a fluke and then maybe another. Either way you can easily do it yourself. Sounds like they re taking advantage of you. Just say money is tight right now and you ll bring it back in the spring if they try to sell ya the idea. Save your cash man.

BeautifulBlooms
01-09-2012, 08:34 PM
Take a look at the parts manual, and then look at the deck.
Only you know your abilities. If you have the right tools and a good clean area to work, its not that tough.
600 hours is ok for spindle bearings. If you get replacement spindles, save the old ones and try to rebuild them.
You,ll have at least 600 to figure them out.
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Now that is what I am talking about . . .I think I will give that a shot . . . learning how to save myself money for the future!

The other pertinent piece of information here is that I only have 1 mower so a midseason breakdown would be devastating with no backup mower.

My mower has typically only run 3 days a week though so it isn't as high stress and a 5 or 6 day mowing route like some of you guys do.

dutch1
01-09-2012, 08:41 PM
Blooms,

This just my opinion and others will feel free to disagree. Under normal usage and proper maintenance, greasable spindle bearing should last 1200-1500 hours. If decks/spindles are washed when the spindles are still hot/warm, the spindle is a heat sink and sucks water into the bearing assemblies, thereby shortening life.

You don't need special tools or an impact, although it would certainly shorten the process.

piston slapper
01-09-2012, 08:53 PM
Dutch. In Florida, its always water,heat,and humidty.
Except for winter. I'm sure that better conditions and maintenance could probably double the usefulness.

I'll bet restrorob could do the job in 45 mins, and still have time for a plate of Jimmy Deans.
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dutch1
01-09-2012, 09:24 PM
You're absolutely correct on Florida conditions--been there twice and was miserable twice.

I don't know what Rob's up to, he's been pretty scarce lately although I know he had some computer problems. As good as Rob is, he could do it in less than 45 minutes if Jimmy Dean on the menu.

mattfromNY
01-10-2012, 07:34 PM
We currently run 3 ferris mowers, and have had two others in the past. In 6 mowing seasons, I have NEVER replaced a spindle due to wear (one was replaced once b/c an employee tried to mow over a 6" tall manhole cover). We grease all machines daily, whether we mow one or one hundred lawns. I think the dealer is selling you a bill of goods.