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Old 06-04-2012, 02:29 PM
stevieachi stevieachi is offline
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Join Date: Jun 2012
Location: Strongsville, OH
Posts: 3
Snapper Pro Express 36"

Hi, just a homeowner but bought a commercial walk behind yesterday. I have a corner lot, completely flat and was using a push only 21" before. The 36" is more mower than I need but I like equipment and didn't want a small rider so I can a least walk for a bit.

Got a used snapper pro express 36" - SPE 1250 KW - the 12.5 HP Kawasaki engine w/ filter and pressurized lube. It's about 10 years old and looks to be in good shape. They bought it new and had the manuals for it. The story is that it was used for only their yard and does look well maintained. They said between 16-18 hours a year so 160-180 total hours over the life so far...I figure even if that is off by more than double at 500 hours I'm not in bad shape? I'm very happy with the price I paid and machine I got vs the 33" wide area mowers I was looking at new for double what I paid and no steering.

It has a new carb and rapture mulching blades but original belts - blade pulleys and steering. I'm a little worried those might be the first issue I have down the line (10 years old)? It ran great with no issues for my first cut last night. Starts easy and cut looks great - should be even better after I sharpen the blade and clean out the deck a little better.

Just wanted to say hi to the forum and if anyone has any advice for me on things to look at or check or stock up on parts, etc etc.
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Old 06-04-2012, 02:53 PM
macgyver_GA macgyver_GA is offline
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Join Date: May 2010
Location: Canton, GA
Posts: 815
Quote:
Originally Posted by stevieachi View Post
Hi, just a homeowner but bought a commercial walk behind yesterday. I have a corner lot, completely flat and was using a push only 21" before. The 36" is more mower than I need but I like equipment and didn't want a small rider so I can a least walk for a bit.

Got a used snapper pro express 36" - SPE 1250 KW - the 12.5 HP Kawasaki engine w/ filter and pressurized lube. It's about 10 years old and looks to be in good shape. They bought it new and had the manuals for it. The story is that it was used for only their yard and does look well maintained. They said between 16-18 hours a year so 160-180 total hours over the life so far...I figure even if that is off by more than double at 500 hours I'm not in bad shape? I'm very happy with the price I paid and machine I got vs the 33" wide area mowers I was looking at new for double what I paid and no steering.

It has a new carb and rapture mulching blades but original belts - blade pulleys and steering. I'm a little worried those might be the first issue I have down the line (10 years old)? It ran great with no issues for my first cut last night. Starts easy and cut looks great - should be even better after I sharpen the blade and clean out the deck a little better.

Just wanted to say hi to the forum and if anyone has any advice for me on things to look at or check or stock up on parts, etc etc.
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Good purchase. I have the exact same mower. I'm on my 3rd year now using it commercially (light commercial). It gets about 150-200 hours of use per year. I bought mine from a Homeowner used for $1k 3 years ago in really good shape, I have no idea how many hours were on it but it looked in great shape.

The maintenance I've done so far is:
Oil changes, oil filters, fuel filters, spark plugs obviously

I replaced both the drive belts about mid season the first year since one of the belts was dry rotting a little ($140)
I replaced the engine to transmission belt last year because it started to slip. I went to Napa and they found a direct match for it. I think I only paid like $8 for the replacement.
This year I replaced the rear tires (Carlisle Turf Savers, $100 shipped from Amazon)
The front tires were replaced with No-flats by the previous owner.

The only things that have broken so far are the little plastic wing things in the starter recoil assembly broke last year. I replaced the pull cord at the same time just to be safe. $5 a piece and I bought extras in case the break again. I also had one of the pulley covers break off (studs broke) when I accidentally ran into a deck support post.

I almost exclusively mulch with mine (just using a chute blocker and mulch blades). I bag during my spring scalp (bermuda) with an Accelerator bagger I bought. The last two years I mulched with Ninja mulching blades but this year I'm giving the Wavy blades a try since I can't seem to find replacement ninjas anywhere. They wavy blades seem to have a little more front blowout when it's dry but it's not too bad. I'm assuming it's because they have more lift than the ninjas. I use Gators if I side discharge.

I also bought a 2 wheeled sulky for it this year. It pulls me around just fine but I'm also not that big of a guy. I only weigh 150.

Good luck with yours. Mine has made me a lot of money.
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Old 06-04-2012, 03:28 PM
stevieachi stevieachi is offline
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Join Date: Jun 2012
Location: Strongsville, OH
Posts: 3
Thanks! Super helpful reply. Feeling even better about the purchase after your stated usage hours without engine issue. I will keep Napa in mind. Mine also has the flatless front tires installed already. Rears are worn but not bare but since my yard is so flat I'm worried about some of the other systems over them. One front caster spacer is missing (top) but I found a place to order an exact replacement so I will get on that. Not sure if any fitting washer will work but might as well get the real ones since I want to raise it one spacer anyway - cut was a touch lower than I want. Hopefully that does it (think there was was 2 spacers below now and I'll make it 3) or I'll also check out if the blade spacing allows any play up - don't really want to mess with the deck/frame connection.

Mine has the mulch kit plate on the side and I can't really see myself ever side discharging, but I have the chute if needed. Sulkey sounds fun (185 lbs all flat yard prob doable) but I'll walk for now! Thanks again.
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Old 06-04-2012, 04:49 PM
macgyver_GA macgyver_GA is offline
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Join Date: May 2010
Location: Canton, GA
Posts: 815
Quote:
Originally Posted by stevieachi View Post
Thanks! Super helpful reply. Feeling even better about the purchase after your stated usage hours without engine issue. I will keep Napa in mind. Mine also has the flatless front tires installed already. Rears are worn but not bare but since my yard is so flat I'm worried about some of the other systems over them. One front caster spacer is missing (top) but I found a place to order an exact replacement so I will get on that. Not sure if any fitting washer will work but might as well get the real ones since I want to raise it one spacer anyway - cut was a touch lower than I want. Hopefully that does it (think there was was 2 spacers below now and I'll make it 3) or I'll also check out if the blade spacing allows any play up - don't really want to mess with the deck/frame connection.

Mine has the mulch kit plate on the side and I can't really see myself ever side discharging, but I have the chute if needed. Sulkey sounds fun (185 lbs all flat yard prob doable) but I'll walk for now! Thanks again.
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You should have 3-4 spacers between each blade and the spindle to allow adjustment. I keep my blades all the way down. You may want to adjust the deck frame connection. I had to adjust mine when I bought it because the previous owner mowed his tall fescue lawn with it at ~3.5" whereas I mow only bermuda lawns with mine at 1.5" right now (2" once we get in the heat of summer). Just use a jackstand at the back of the mower to keep the mower from tilting backwards when you loosen up the bolts and use a small floor jack to align the deck to the proper new bolts. I also keep my deck pitched about .5" lower in the front than the back. Seems to cut better that way. Almost all the lawns I mow are small yards so I mulch to keep the clippings out of the flower beds. Currently I only side discharge one of my accounts because it's a relatively wide open lawn and it's a crappy weed infested lawn that's never had a drop of fertilizer or herbicide on it in its existance. The rest of the lawns I do are thick healthy tif 419 bermuda because I do the fert program on them.
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  #5  
Old 06-06-2012, 11:41 PM
stevieachi stevieachi is offline
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Join Date: Jun 2012
Location: Strongsville, OH
Posts: 3
Thanks. With the blades will any 18" blade with a 5/8" center work or do I have that wrong?
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  #6  
Old 06-07-2012, 10:05 AM
macgyver_GA macgyver_GA is offline
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Join Date: May 2010
Location: Canton, GA
Posts: 815
Quote:
Originally Posted by stevieachi View Post
Thanks. With the blades will any 18" blade with a 5/8" center work or do I have that wrong?
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Yep. You got it. 18" with 5/8" center is what you need.
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