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Magna-Matic Lawn Mower Blade Balancers, Sharpeners, and more

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  #1  
Old 05-29-2012, 07:15 PM
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dcgreenspro dcgreenspro is offline
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A little help

I have had the 9000 for about two years. It has spent the better part of a year and half on the shelf out of frustration. I cannot for the life of me get this thing to sharpen correctly. It grinds the crap out of the top of the blade and never works down to sharpening the whole face of the blade in one swipe. I talked with a gentleman from magna matic when I bought it and was expieriencing this problem. He explained that I did not set it up properly. I was told to have the wheel knick the table and turn it a half turn up for your perfect 30 degrees. I have done all of this with no success. Any help or tips would be greatly appreciated.
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  #2  
Old 05-30-2012, 10:06 AM
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Magna-Matic Magna-Matic is offline
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Hello dcgreenspro,

Thank you for posting.

Just as a point of reference here is a link to the manual.
http://www.magna-matic.com/instruction-manuals.html
Page 20 has the info about angles, and angle adjustment.

When the grinding wheel is within about 1/32 to 1/16 of touching the plastic blade rest (just so you see a little space between the two). The MAG-9000 or MAG-8000 will grind a blade to 30 degrees.

If the grinding wheel only grinds the TRAILING EDGE the angle on the blade is greater than 30 degrees.

If the grinding wheel only grinds the LEADING EDGE the angle on the blade is less than 30 degrees.


By your description your blades are at a greater than 30 degree angle. It is not an issue with the MAG-9000 but rather the blades. Lawn mower blades can come in a range of 20 to 40 degrees, but the industry average is 30.

You have two choices moving forward:
1. Grind your edges to 30 - the first grinding will take a little time, but subsequent sharpenings will be very fast.

2. Set your MAG-9000 to grind the "steeper angle" (this is explained in the manual - please call if you would like to be walked through the process.)

KEEP IN MIND - you should not go with option two unless you know the blades you use are greater than 30 degrees when they are NEW. Often people have blades that are all altered by using other methods, so check a NEW BLADE before modifying your MAG-9000, again call for more detail.

Feel free to ask for me if you call.
Thank you,
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Magna-Matic Corporation
Waldo WI USA
800-328-1110 (toll free USA & Canda)
920-564-2366 (PHONE)
gbauer2@magna-matic.com
www.magna-matic.com
www.magna-matic-direct.com
www.youtube.com/magnamaticcorp
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  #3  
Old 05-30-2012, 01:04 PM
CQ_DX CQ_DX is offline
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FYI - you can buy digital protractors to measure the angles, but they won't work very well on mulching blades but with a 9000 you most likely are not sharpening this blade type. What brand machines and blade types are you sharpening?

I suspect you are a LSC, so would think your blades are consistent - meaning you aren't a sharpening business and are in complete control of how your blades are serviced. If true, haven't you ever achieved the 30 degree angle at some point? Or do you, as Gerd mentioned, stop before you have altered whatever the existing angle is and changed it to 30 degrees?

For old blades - how were they previously sharpened before the 9000? By you or someone else, and what tools were used? And while you've periodically parked the 9000, who and how have your blades been sharpened?

How many hours are put on the blades between sharpening them? Do you mow areas with a high amount of grit such as roadside sand? or sandy turf? How about other debris? In other words, the aforementioned conditions can really round over the cutting edge requiring a much longer amount of time to sharpen the blade and get back a beveled 30 degree edge ... and you'll NEVER EVER sharpen abused blades with "one swipe". To get this "one swipe" process you need to be sharpening very frequently, and unless your deck tilts up, my guess is you are not and instead put it off.

And as for new blades, TRUE - the angles of many won't be 30 degrees and YES, you have to grind longer. But if you are a LSC, how often are you actually dealing with new blades?
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  #4  
Old 05-30-2012, 09:35 PM
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dcgreenspro dcgreenspro is offline
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I have just bought two new sets of Scag blades. My issue was the first sharpening like both of you talked about. I think the scag blades are at a greater angle in which case I am in the process of grinding them down to the 30 degree angle.
I used a angle grinder for the past year with marginal success. My last 2 sets of blades lasted me 2+ years. But, I paid good money for the machine and wanted to give it another shot. I just felt like I was ruining blades when I used this machine before.
I live in pa so I don't have to worry about mowing roadside junk and sand. I normally remove all branches and crap as I am mowing as to not damage the blades. I am a solo op, so my machines are never abused.
When I talked about the one swipe deal..what I meant was for the whole grinding wheel to make contact with the entire face of the blade as I am sharpening.
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  #5  
Old 05-31-2012, 07:52 AM
CQ_DX CQ_DX is offline
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OK, now we are getting somewhere!
  • SCAG blades are 30 degree blades - follow the setup instructions and grind off any manufacturing/ milling marks.
  • A right angle grinder cannot yield a consistent angle so any of your old blades would have had angles of any degree, and process time can be lengthy to return them to a uniform 30 degree angle.
  • How were you balancing when using the right angle grinder? and how are you balancing now? Balancing is critical to extending spindle, gear box, and crankshaft life.
  • How were you / are you checking to ensure every blade is flat when you service them?
  • SCAG suggests checking the blades every 8 hours of mowing time which is pretty much the manufacturers' suggested every 10 hours. Depending on how many cuts you do per day and per week, you probably should sharpen every few days (20 hours) and at least once per week if you are mowing for 30 to 40 hours per week. You can tell if you check your blades at day's end how quickly you are wearing down the edge and go from there.
  • You'll find it faster to sharpen the more frequently you do it. A torque wrench and anti-seize are good things to have handy.
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  #6  
Old 06-03-2012, 08:22 PM
Dennis Davis Dennis Davis is offline
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Great replies to your query. I've sharpened a number of blades that were really out of whack and it seemed to take forever to get them back in shape. I just resharpened some blades that I had sharpened previously and it took three passes to bring them back to a keen edge. Keep working at it and you will have success. Patience during the learning process is key. Best of luck to you.
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  #7  
Old 06-03-2012, 08:39 PM
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dcgreenspro dcgreenspro is offline
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I would like to thank all of you for your great responses. The new set I purchased needed sharpening the other day and I think I finally set the dam thing up the right way was about 6- 7 passes and the whole blade was sharpened perfectly. I then took remaining blades and sharpened them at the same angle. Took a while because they were a little out of whack but I now have three sets to use this whole week. Thank you again
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  #8  
Old 06-03-2012, 08:42 PM
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dcgreenspro dcgreenspro is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CQ_DX View Post
OK, now we are getting somewhere!
  • SCAG blades are 30 degree blades - follow the setup instructions and grind off any manufacturing/ milling marks.
  • A right angle grinder cannot yield a consistent angle so any of your old blades would have had angles of any degree, and process time can be lengthy to return them to a uniform 30 degree angle.
  • How were you balancing when using the right angle grinder? and how are you balancing now? Balancing is critical to extending spindle, gear box, and crankshaft life.
  • How were you / are you checking to ensure every blade is flat when you service them?
  • SCAG suggests checking the blades every 8 hours of mowing time which is pretty much the manufacturers' suggested every 10 hours. Depending on how many cuts you do per day and per week, you probably should sharpen every few days (20 hours) and at least once per week if you are mowing for 30 to 40 hours per week. You can tell if you check your blades at day's end how quickly you are wearing down the edge and go from there.
  • You'll find it faster to sharpen the more frequently you do it. A torque wrench and anti-seize are good things to have handy.
I was using the nail on the wall. I know, not gonna work. I always rotate blades every day. Have to. I would like to buy the balancer from magna matic but don't have the money.
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Jack Burton: Like I told my last wife, I said, "Honey, I never drive faster than I can see, and besides... it's all in the reflexes."
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  #9  
Old 06-03-2012, 11:12 PM
Dennis Davis Dennis Davis is offline
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Hey, I'm glad to hear that things are starting to fall in place for you. I did things a bit backwards, bought the balancer first and continued to sharpen the blades with grinder/file and thought I was doing well. The blades were balanced, but the sharpness left much to be desired. That was when I decided to get the 8000 and do things right. It was the right move for me. On a side note: I met with a gentleman (homeowner) last night and I had sharpened his blade about 2 weeks ago. He grinned and said, "You've been holding out on me," then he told me his lawnmower was cutting better than it has ever done in the past. A testament to the quality of the Magna_Matic products.
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  #10  
Old 06-04-2012, 07:42 AM
CQ_DX CQ_DX is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dcgreenspro View Post
I was using the nail on the wall. I know, not gonna work. I always rotate blades every day. Have to. I would like to buy the balancer from magna matic but don't have the money.
Just an FYI - a few points ...
1. I showed a customer who was using a nail the difference. Did this with two brand new Craftsman LT blades he bought and which I was checking their balance for him. Both had looked reasonably balanced on his nail - until they went on our MAG-1000 balancer. One was off a fair amount but the other was way off balance. Happens all the time where the MAG-1000 immediately displays an off-balance condition. And the nail thought they were just fine ...

2. Your nail CANNOT tell if your blade is flat. And yes, from the factory I have seen blades not flat. Rare, but happens. Used blades are a different story. The MAG-1000 very quickly shows if a blade is still flat and this is done while you check the initial balance. I rejected a Craftsman blade for this two weeks ago (that's why the fellow mentioned above went and bought new blades).

3. I can't stress this enough - your blades need to be spotless clean when you check their balance. You have to get all of the vegetation off. Otherwise it's like balancing a car tire with stones jammed into the tread and caked-on mud. Get a cup brush for your right angle grinder. Another tip for dried-on, stubborn vegetation - keep a long plastic storage tub with water in it and submerge the blades in it. Leave submerged while you go do something else (other blades) then remove and scrape off the junk. Dry and brush clean - for you, use a cup brush if/as needed. Don't worry - submerged metal won't rust for the time you'll have it under water, it's when wet metal is exposed to the air that it rusts quickly.
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