PDA

View Full Version : Blade Cleaning


Fareway Lawncare
03-20-2004, 04:18 PM
Hello, I am about to begin the daunting task of blade cleaning.

I use a wire wheel on a bench grinder on the blades once @ beginning of season & then they are maintained w/ a wire brush prior to sharpening & balancing. Allot of the caked on grass is too time consuming to remove throughout the season.

I was considering dumping the blades in a vat w/some kind of solvent, perhaps paint thinner, for a few days & then pressure washing them instead of using the bench grinder w/wire brush.

Has anyone done this & if so can you recommend a solvent that would be suitable for removing organic matter from steel.

BSDeality
03-20-2004, 05:34 PM
a handheld 4.5" angle grinder with a wire wheel will be much faster. i don't know about solvents though.

Flex-Deck
03-20-2004, 05:58 PM
Just set them in a tank of water overnite, and the grass is gone, or at least it is mush which can just be wiped off. Solvents do no good. Thanks, brad

JB1
03-20-2004, 06:11 PM
Ok ,here's a dumb question, why do you clean the blades?

Fareway Lawncare
03-20-2004, 06:38 PM
I'm not sure water will take off the caked stuff like a wire wheel but we shall see!

BS Dealy, I find a Bench w/wire brush faster than a hand held for the big cleaning I do @ start of season.

anyone have the 2.5k Mag blade cleaner

http://www.magna-matic.com/cleaner/mag12000/index.html

bastalker
03-20-2004, 06:41 PM
Originally posted by JBLAWN
Ok ,here's a dumb question, why do you clean the blades?

I want to ask the same question...The first time the blades are engaged, they clean themselves.

Doesn't matter how dirty or rusty they get, as long as they are sharp, an you are cutting with them, cleaning them is a waste of time....IMO

DJL
03-20-2004, 06:43 PM
I have an 8" bench grinder with a grinding pad and wire brush. I wire brush the blade down, then I use the bench grinder to take all the nicks out of em. I do a fine sharpending with a bench clamp, file, and some muscle. I then soak them in WD-40 and let them sit overnight. Looks as good as new.

John Gamba
03-20-2004, 07:28 PM
Originally posted by Flex-Deck
Just set them in a tank of water overnite, and the grass is gone, or at least it is mush which can just be wiped off. Solvents do no good. Thanks, brad

Brad is correct. This is what i do, i take them off and put them in water and they wont rust and the grass comes off. I would put them in over night.

Oh fareway you should try RAPTERS.
John

bastalker
03-20-2004, 07:45 PM
Originally posted by John Gamba
Brad is correct. This is what i do, i take them off and put them in water and they wont rust and the grass comes off. I would put them in over night.

Oh fareway you should try RAPTERS.
John

What grass??? How much grass is a blade turning 3200 rpm's gonna pick up?? You might get a blade stained, but thats about all. As far as rust, who cares......When you cut the first yard, the rust is gone....You guys cant be serious.........

NCSERVICE
03-20-2004, 07:49 PM
There is still the unawnsered question... why clean blades?

competitiveimageland
03-20-2004, 07:51 PM
i learned my lesson the hard way with cleaning and sharpening blades last week, 5 inch angle grindere to the nuckles OUCH im still hurtin from that one next time i wear gloves . but i found that if you set aside one day of the week for servicing equiptment things dont get out of control and its easier to keep blades sharp

lazer 46
03-20-2004, 09:02 PM
Originally posted by NCSERVICE
There is still the unawnsered question... why clean blades?

I have started to clean my blades since I got the Magnamatic sharpener and balancer. To get them balanced as accurately as possible they should be free of caked on grass.

JB1
03-20-2004, 09:07 PM
And to think all these years I was doing it wrong.

competitiveimageland
03-20-2004, 09:12 PM
is there an easier way out there besides using the an angle grinder

metro-hp_48
03-20-2004, 09:13 PM
Alot easier....but more $ oh...... you said easier. To me it would be easier to take them off with a 12V torque wrench, and put them on a dedicated blade grinder.

competitiveimageland
03-20-2004, 09:13 PM
i know but is there an affortable machine out there for the job

NCSERVICE
03-20-2004, 09:16 PM
Its a lawn mower blade not a tire... a cheap blade balancer is plenty accurate IMO... 1 gram of stuck on grass is not going to ace a spindle however a very unballanced blade could potentially cause problems. i still do not understand why people go through the trouble of cleaning blades.

competitiveimageland
03-20-2004, 09:18 PM
im not worried about balance im just looking for a way to sharpen without having to use the old angle grinder i mean i gets the job done but sometimes you have some that are in bad shape that need a lil more attention

metro-hp_48
03-20-2004, 09:19 PM
Just to be as balanced as they can be, NCSERVICE. On the principle of every little thing adding up to mean alot in the long run. To have it be the best it can be at all times.

bastalker
03-20-2004, 09:20 PM
you guys crack me up....LMAO!!!!

maelawncare
03-20-2004, 09:20 PM
Blade cleaner, uh NO

MAG-12000 Lawn Mower Blade Cleaner

Quantity in Basket: none
Code: MAG-12000
Price: $2,465.00

Shipping Weight: 300.00 pounds

NCSERVICE
03-20-2004, 09:22 PM
If you read the original post you would see what the discussion is about competitive

metro-hp_48
03-20-2004, 09:22 PM
Wow forgot about those (never saw the price)

competitiveimageland
03-20-2004, 09:22 PM
ughhhhhhhhhhhh








.

Fareway Lawncare
03-20-2004, 09:29 PM
Why clean the blades?

Well you can't get true balance w/out cleaning.

I get them perfectly cleaned & balanced once @ beginning of season. No need to waste time w/every sharpening.

competitiveimageland
03-20-2004, 09:30 PM
well it seemed to me that the conversation grew so i went with it pardon me

strayer1
03-20-2004, 09:34 PM
i think i heard it all now.....ive always cleaned out decks but never heard about cleaning blades......sorry had to get my .02 in

competitiveimageland
03-20-2004, 09:38 PM
im sure to an extent it may make a difference when balancing the blades but once again dont you think that the grass that you are cleaning off of your blades has been there since the first lawn you cut right after sharpening them or do you think it just collected as you were removing them from the spindles , dont you think that the engineers that designed your spindles made them tough and rugged for a reason to give a little leway on them

gene gls
03-20-2004, 09:48 PM
I change blades every day. I use a fixed vertical belt sander to remove the dried on waste before I grind. I also keep my blades in "sets" from day one use. I see in some pictures on this site that others just put the dull blades in piles waitting to be sharpened. I also adverage about 6 hours a week sharpening blades.

Gene

competitiveimageland
03-20-2004, 09:49 PM
i guess we all have differnent methods whatever works best for you

j fisher
03-20-2004, 10:48 PM
I don't know about cleaning blades. Never heard of it, never thought of it, never did it. As far as balancers, drive a nail in the wall and hang the blade on it.

GrassFearsMe
03-20-2004, 11:07 PM
Cleaning blade whats that? Seriously why, the blades get cleaned as you mow. Clean Blades?

chefdrp
03-20-2004, 11:28 PM
the caked on grass along the blade should be cleaned. yes the cutting edge will be clean from sharpening. But if you dont get all the dead grass and sh-- off you may throw a spindle out of wack.

bastalker
03-20-2004, 11:36 PM
I have never ever...Not once, had any grass cake on my blades...I havent had more than a green stain on them after cutting all day, even if I was cutting tall wet grass.

If the blades were rusted, they sure wern't after I was done with the first lawn....

If you guys are gettin caked grass on the blades, you might want to seriously consider switching mowers. I dont think the rpm's are getting to your blades!!

Fareway Lawncare
03-20-2004, 11:41 PM
The amount of grass caking depends on your grass type. In the spring we experience allot of grass that adheres to the mower blades. If not properly cleaned at least once per season & maintained throughout the season the build up will cause unbalance which leads to less efficient cutting & vibration which can damage various mower components well beond spindles.

bastalker
03-20-2004, 11:46 PM
Originally posted by Fareway Lawncare
The amount of grass caking depends on your grass type. In the spring we experience allot of grass that adheres to the mower blades. If not properly cleaned at least once per season & maintained throughout the season the build up will cause unbalance which leads to less efficient cutting & vibration which can damage various mower components well beond spindles.

Its not a grass type thing, its a physics thing. A piece of metal turning at 3200 rpms will not allow grass to adhere to it period...

Thats like saying a piece of metal you are sand blasting isn't getting clean cause the sand keeps stickin to it...

Maybe I am missing something, but no one up here has this type of problem.......

Fareway Lawncare
03-20-2004, 11:53 PM
Mr. bastalker, I am not imagining the hard caked grass on my blades. This matter must be removed w/a wire brush & adheres like glue to the metal even after 6-10 hrs of use.

I would also guess that a $2500 blade cleaner would not be offered if physics dictated that grass could not build up on mower blades.

http://www.magna-matic.com/cleaner/mag12000/index.html

Phishook
03-20-2004, 11:55 PM
Anyway... I've soaked them in soapy water, then scraped them with a stiff putty knife the next day. I thought the scraping worked better than the wire wheel when they were bad.

The ideal thing would be to clean the off after each job and spray with Lysol, but that might really get some guy's going.:angry:

DLCS
03-20-2004, 11:57 PM
Fareway,


I know exactly what you are talking about that hard caked on grass, I think its from the moisture in the grass. Every mower i have or had gets this caked on the blades. I sometimes use a small paint scraper to chip it off or a angle grinder with a flap disc.

metro-hp_48
03-21-2004, 12:00 AM
I have the same prob. down here, Fareway. How fast your blades turning bastalker?
I know my mower's RPMs are @ 3600 under load, and my blade tip speed is 18,500 per min. (well over 300 MPH, which is why it's so much more important to balance, than say a tire........ we would all agree to balance a tire going over 300 mph, I assume)

PROCUT1
03-21-2004, 12:07 AM
I prefer to wax mine with a good turtle wax to a high gloss shine .......Also keep touch-up paint with a little brush in the truck so I can touch em up between jobs.........

PROCUT1
03-21-2004, 12:09 AM
Couldn't resist

metro-hp_48
03-21-2004, 12:13 AM
Actually, I was with you on the waxing.. Considering I know people that spray their's with Pam.

competitiveimageland
03-21-2004, 12:20 AM
ive heard of the pam trick on the deck but i hear that there is a product out there for spraying up on the deck so the grass build up is removed with ease , man some people have way to much time on their hands

metro-hp_48
03-21-2004, 12:28 AM
More than 1 product out there to spray on decks..... Some get too much time on their hands, by working smarter not harder. (spray vrs scrape, scrape, scrape. (not that I personally use or recommend any product or method....to each is own)

competitiveimageland
03-21-2004, 12:40 AM
no i mean for someone to actually come up with a new pruduct wd40 works fine for me

lawnagent
03-21-2004, 12:40 AM
I am only straying off topic a little because some have already brought it up. I have said it before and I will say it again. This whole blade balancing crap is way less serious than so many make it to be. I have been mowing commercial since 1992 and I have NEVER used a blade balancer. NEVER. And if I have replaced spindles 3 times since then it is doubtful. And 1 of them was due to striking a metal pole in the yard. I have a good friend who mows commercial and use balancers. I suffer absolutly poistively no more breakdowns, spindles, other components, whatever you want to call it, than he does.:rolleyes:

metro-hp_48
03-21-2004, 12:45 AM
Originally posted by competitiveimageland
no i mean for someone to actually come up with a new pruduct wd40 works fine for me

Know the WD people, too. (you know about the real products out there, I assume........ mow-eze, ect.)

bastalker
03-21-2004, 03:22 AM
This is an absolute new one on me....I cant imagine scraping built up grass off of blades. It is definately something I have never had to do.

Hey if you guys say it is so, I am not one to argue...

I am just glad I dont have to do it...

Soupy
03-21-2004, 06:21 AM
I soak mine in a bucket of water. It doesn't take long, just 15 minutes or so. Sometimes I do this while I am sharpening them. If the blades are real bad I will work on one for a bit, then put it in the bucket to cool off and clean them at the same time. I will go through the batch and start over until each blade is were I want it.

I always run the part I am sharpening across the wire wheel on my bench grinder before touching the blade grinder. I don't want my wheel getting extra dirty because of the blades being dirty before use. My grinders are setup so I can reach them both from one position.

I'm not real hung up on getting a perfect balance either. I use the old nail in the wall method. Gets them close enough.

Fareway Lawncare
03-21-2004, 03:23 PM
Originally posted by bastalker
Its not a grass type thing, its a physics thing. A piece of metal turning at 3200 rpms will not allow grass to adhere to it period...



I guess this blade must have failed physics.

This is hard caked grass that will not fall off when the blades are engaged & is typical of 8-12 hrs use especially in spring cutting.

rvsuper
03-21-2004, 05:09 PM
bastalker,

Maybe it's because you have all that sand there?

bastalker
03-21-2004, 06:59 PM
Originally posted by rvsuper
bastalker,

Maybe it's because you have all that sand there?

Dont really have alot of sand except what the snow plows throw on the grass. We get most of it off the grass, but there is still a little left...

Fareway just proved me wrong from his pic. Never have seen that much build up before.

I will gracefully bow out now, an go sit in the corner.....

NCSERVICE
03-22-2004, 11:56 PM
Originally posted by Fareway Lawncare
I guess this blade must have failed physics.

This is hard caked grass that will not fall off when the blades are engaged & is typical of 8-12 hrs use especially in spring cutting.
Is that off a lawn boy?

NCSERVICE
03-23-2004, 12:01 AM
Originally posted by metro-hp_48
I have the same prob. down here, Fareway. How fast your blades turning bastalker?
I know my mower's RPMs are @ 3600 under load, and my blade tip speed is 18,500 per min. (well over 300 MPH, which is why it's so much more important to balance, than say a tire........ we would all agree to balance a tire going over 300 mph, I assume)
actually 3600 rpm no load. the load rpm would depend on the amount load. The most common spindle failures are from lack of grease or hitting someting. I can understand scraping off the big chunks of grass to balance a blade. but anybody that takes the time to make a blade as clean as a pin is missing out on valuable grass cutting time.

firekilr2
03-23-2004, 12:36 AM
Blades are the most important part of nice looking yards. If you clean and sharpen your blades the accounts will come. I think some of us think the little extra might just help. P.S. really have no idea what I am talking about but I even repaint mine in the winter. There is a word for people like me.

NCSERVICE
03-23-2004, 12:39 AM
haahaa. thats asking for trouble.....

Fareway Lawncare
03-23-2004, 12:58 AM
Originally posted by NCSERVICE
Is that off a lawn boy?

Good eye! that's a LB blade.

Regardless, that amount of caked grass really affects balance not to mention cut quality, which in turn creates more vibration. Vibration is your mowers enemy! You can have problems stemming from vibration that you may never associate w/unbalanced blades.

1 major cleaning per year is not that time consuming condsidering the benefits.

Karian
03-23-2004, 01:22 AM
Clean the blades?. I don't even sharpen them anymore. I just replace with new ones. My free time is worth more to me.

Doc Pete
03-23-2004, 06:32 AM
Originally posted by NCSERVICE
There is still the unawnsered question... why clean blades?

No need for an answer, any professional already knows the answer. It's a sucker's question........
DP

dobehap
03-23-2004, 10:17 AM
Originally posted by Karian
Clean the blades?. I don't even sharpen them anymore. I just replace with new ones. My free time is worth more to me.

How often do you buy new blades?

P&C Lawn Care
03-23-2004, 01:23 PM
I agree that sharp blades are best but is it worth the time to clean that litttle bit of grass off the blade? I spend enough time sharpening and do not need to add additional work. I would like to know how you guys figure blade tip speed. I mean X rpm's with an X long blade will create the same blade tip speed as the next mower doing the same rpm's and the same lenth blade. The only way to change blade tip speed would be by changing rpm's or blade size, isn't this correct? I think at a certain point how fast you slice through a blade of grass becomes irrelevant, Now if you are using dull blades VS sharp blades I believe that will have more of an effect on the quality of cut and health of the turf.

Fareway Lawncare
03-28-2004, 03:17 PM
You can't do this accurately w/ a blade w/ allot of caked on grass.

rvsuper
03-28-2004, 03:43 PM
Took you a while for you to take a picture. Only get to the shop once or twice a week?

The Lawn Boy Pro
03-28-2004, 04:36 PM
Originally posted by lazer 46
I have started to clean my blades since I got the Magnamatic sharpener and balancer. To get them balanced as accurately as possible they should be free of caked on grass. Its not that big of deal unless you work in wet conditions frequently. Ive never had a problem with grass clumping on blades. However, if you do, the easiest way to clean the blades (and the mower deck) is to engage, and then sick a hose with a "shower" sprayer beside the deck (not under, but enough to shoot water up underneath the deck) and let the mower run for a few minutes.
Otherwise, just go to the quarter carwash (or use your own power washer-a hot water power washer works best) and blast them all off.

The Lawn Boy Pro
03-28-2004, 04:38 PM
Originally posted by rvsuper
Took you a while for you to take a picture. Only get to the shop once or twice a week? I dont even think thats his shop. Its probably someone elses shop, and equipment. Thats why he never says anything about "this is mine" or "check out what I got" type of thing. He always posts something and then a picture like "These work well" and then posts a picture of hedge trimmers with a desiel fuel can next to them.

Fareway Lawncare
03-28-2004, 05:45 PM
I certainly apologize for not getting a picture for you sooner RV, I didn't realize you were in dire need of seeing a blade on my Mag balancer.

& Lawn Boy Pro, I know it's killing you so I'll let you in on a little trade secret. The Yellow cans are used for 50:1 mix to differentiate them from the red which are used for staight gas. I hope that's OK with you.

DLCS
03-28-2004, 06:14 PM
Originally posted by The Lawn Boy Pro
Its not that big of deal unless you work in wet conditions frequently. Ive never had a problem with grass clumping on blades. However, if you do, the easiest way to clean the blades (and the mower deck) is to engage, and then sick a hose with a "shower" sprayer beside the deck (not under, but enough to shoot water up underneath the deck) and let the mower run for a few minutes.
Otherwise, just go to the quarter carwash (or use your own power washer-a hot water power washer works best) and blast them all off.

How would you know if you never had that problem. FYI it won't work to use a hose, you have to scrap it off or use a wire brush.

Originally posted by The Lawn Boy Pro
I dont even think thats his shop. Its probably someone elses shop, and equipment. Thats why he never says anything about "this is mine" or "check out what I got" type of thing. He always posts something and then a picture like "These work well" and then posts a picture of hedge trimmers with a desiel fuel can next to them.

Maybe its not or maybe it is, I really don't care.