36" Super Surfer DRIVE BELTS

Discussion in 'Great Dane' started by 4evergreenlawns, May 21, 2003.

  1. 4evergreenlawns

    4evergreenlawns LawnSite Member
    Posts: 107

    Hi Great Dane Sponsor,

    Let me begin by saying I am very, very, happy the the overall performance and cut I am getting from this product with ONE acception.

    I bought a 36" surfer new this season. Actually, I left the store with a 48" never used it to cut. Checked several of my account and the 48" was too big (gates, Islands, curbs) soI returned it for a 36". Even after I had heard all the horror stories about the drive belt problems. I was told by the dealer and an on site GD rep the problem had been resolved and as long as I adjust the belt as told there would be no problems.

    The first 9.8 hours were fine. Made a belt adjustment. Before making any adjustmetns I marked the location of the pully as set from the factory and than marked my adjustment. At 11.1 hours the belt twisted. OK, maybe I adjusted it too tight. Returned to the dealer, met with the service man and he told me how to adjust the belt 1/4" to 1/2" of deflection, we talked about it for about 30 mins. pointing out adjustments on the unit and he gave me instruction on how to change the belt. I replaced the belt, returning it ot the factory mark. Ran the unit about 10 more hours just fine made and belt adjustment (about 1/4 of my first adjustment) 5.5 hours later the belt came apart. I replaced the belt AGAIN, returned to the factory mark. Now that I am not very confident in the unit therefore, I have been checking the belt daily. Yesterday after cutting several larger jobs, I found the belt to be seperating in two places. So yes, I AGAIN changed the belt before it came apart.

    Moral of the story, 41 hours of operation, I am on my fifth drive belt. Although I have the belt change down to about 15 mins. I do not foresee changing this belt once or twice a week as I continue to grow my account list. This is my first year cutting and I have already began to consider adding a Charoit, this month but I have to get this problem resolved ASAP before I move onto any more GD products.

    Please feel free to call me at 630 675-2939, if I have any more problem with drive belt issues I will return the unit to the dealer, and we all will be talking about some type of replacement.
     
  2. 4evergreenlawns

    4evergreenlawns LawnSite Member
    Posts: 107

    Dear John and Bill,

    I have noticed both of you responding to questions on dates after I posted my issue, concern, and question but have not had ANY response at all from either of you. I have returned to my dealer and spoke to him about this matter and he has said he will address my needs after talking to someone from Great Dane but I have not heard back from him either. To date this is leaving me with the feeling that NO ONE from Great Dane has any intention of responding to my post either in a public forum or in private either VIA E-mail or a simple phone call. I would have assumed someone could have taken a few minutes to respond with sometype of reply, unless I have some how offended Great Dane but stating there is a IMO a serious problem with the 36" SS as stated in the aforemetioned post.

    Have I now become a lessor valued customer?? I do wish this could have been a more postive post but after spending $5500.00 CASH on my 1st commercial mower and after considering several different purchase options I hardly feel like a customer any more than I feel valued. To be honest I feel like an idoit. Should I add that I have been offered the use of a hyrdo walk behind from another dealer for as long as I need it should I have anymore problem with my Surfer, and that dealer (not the GD dealer) has also offered the demo of a seated rider for up to two weeks when I mentioned considering adding a second larger mower, but my dealer stated he could not be sure I would have a loaner unit should I have to leave my SS to be looked at for up to several days.

    Once again I ask, could someone from Great Dane contact me and help in some way with resolving this matter???? I can be reached by phone at 630 675 2939, by E-mail at Forevergreenlawn@aol.com, or right here.

    Left wondering "WHY DID I BUY THIS PRODUCT"??

    Ron Graziano, Owner
    Forever Green Lawns, Inc.
    PO BOX 8181
    Bartlett, IL 60103
     
  3. nor'easter1

    nor'easter1 LawnSite Member
    Posts: 25

    4EVERGREEN
    i FEEL BAD FOR YOUR TROUBLES WITH THE 36 SS. YOU HAVE DONE EVERYTHING THAT A PERSON CAN DO TO TO MAKE A MACHINE RUN OR KEEP RUNNING. DOES THE MECHANIC AT THE DEALER HAVE ANY SUGESTIONS BESIDES WHAT YOU HAVE ALREADY DONE! ALL MACHINES IN THE CUTTING INDUSTRY HAVE THERE PROBLEMS FROM TIME TO TIME, BUT THIS IS NOT AN EXCUSE. THIS MAY SOUND DUMB BUT ASK THE DEALER IF YOU CAN TRY ANOTHER BRAND OF BELT, MAYBEE KEVLAR, OR A DIFFERENT BRAND. MAYBEE THE MANUFATCURER OF THE BELT HAD A BAD RUN AND NO ONE WAS INFORMED. I UNDERSTAND YOUR FRUSTRATION I HAVE HAD THE SAME EXPERIENCE. THE MODERATORS HOW SHALL WE PUT IT, NEED A TECH GUY TO AWNSER ALOT OF THESE QUESTIONS BECAUSE FRANKLY IT IS OBVIOUS THEY ARE NOT TECH GUYS. WISH I HAD THE GOLDEN SOLUTION FOR THE MACHINE BECAUSE IT IS A GREAT COMPACT CUTTING UNIT. GOOD LUCK
     
  4. Lawn DOG

    Lawn DOG LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 276

    We used to have belt trouble with our walk behind Scaggs. We switched to Kevlar brand belts and never had anymore problems. As stated in the last post you will find that commercial grade equipment does not mean no maintenance. I have not had the problem that you are experiencing with our Danes but suggest trying the Kevlar belts.
     
  5. 4evergreenlawns

    4evergreenlawns LawnSite Member
    Posts: 107

    First, I thank both of you for your interest and advice.

    However, after the third belt I asked the dealer about any other type of belt I could get because I heard about the Kevlar belts being a fix for overheating and slipping belts. They could not offer any other brand of belt for the unit based on what they carried. As for the understanding that all commercial equipment needs maintenance, I am understanding of that, but this issue seems to be more than just maintenance.

    I did hear from John at GD, the local Dist. and my dealer all 1st thing Tuesday morning. I realize my dealer has lots of customers to support and not always having enough spare equipment to go around, my point was more toward GD in support of my dealer to get me what I needed while they looked into the problem. I drop my 36"SS at the dealer (now with 56 hours on it) and he provided a 52"SS to use while they looked at my unit.

    Let me tell anyone reading, now I truly know why so many people talk about how great Super Surfers are in the field. This unit is nothing like the 36" at all. Talk about smooth operation in zero turn, hillside, and climbing traction. Not to mention speed with a final cut as good as any other I have seen.

    I might just have been off on the size of the unit but the overal product is just OUTSTANDING. I think had I stuck with the 48" deck or stepped up to the 52" deck I am running now, I would never had to deal with any problems and most likely added a 36" Scamper at this point. I had talked to a few guy who are running the Scamper and they love it as a back up, and for use in tight conditions.

    I am confident that when the 36" problem is not resolved I will step right up to the 52" Super Surfer in exchange and never look back. I have run the unit for two days now and I has gone all of the places the 36" will not (Hillside, climbng hills, and over curbs) and has reduced my time on the lawn by 25%.

    I would like to Thank John for calling me personally, as weel as, Flint the area Dist. and my local dealer for doing all he said he would. I should add that my local dealer has promissed to credit me for the belts and time I have spent on the repairs. I will be sure to make a point that those credits are coming from GD and not him or I will not accept them. This is a design problem not a local customer service issue. I have purchased all my equipment from him and plan to keep doing do with or without GD being in my trailer.

    I will keep you all updated.
     
  6. John Joensen

    John Joensen LawnSite Member
    Posts: 68

    4evergreenlawns:

    Dear Ron,

    Thank you for the comments. We really do care about your problems. Please don't hesitate to contact me if I can any assistance to you.

    Regards,

    John Joensen
    Sales and Marketing Manager
    Great Dane Power Equipment
     
  7. 4evergreenlawns

    4evergreenlawns LawnSite Member
    Posts: 107

    John, (and anyone else watching this thread)

    You have been great to deal with once we connected. As I mentioned I had become very impressed with the 52"SS. Even though the problem with the 36"SS had been addressed and well on its way to being corrected, with the replacement of parts and future support from my local dealer with belt tention adjustments at no cost to me, you offered a full credit on my 36"SS toward the purchase of a 52"SS.

    I can very confidental say that after taking you up on the offer I am very very pleased with the overall performance of the 52"SS. I have increased my account list scince we spoke last and I am still cutting in less time than I was with less accounts on the 36"SS. Furthermore, the improved ride and handling on the 52"SS leaves me much less worn out at the end of the day.

    Although this thread started out sour I can tell you that what you and my local dealer has done for me has been just down right outstandingand IMO the true meaning of customer service and satisfaction and any cost. It is clear to me that because of you Great Dane to truly commited to keeping its product in the field and operating at levels that allow commercial operators to be successful. I am not sure I would have been treated equally as fair had I been dealing with a different manufacture. As you promissed to me that you would make this right, I give you my word, the next mower I add will be another Great Dane solely based on how you stood behind your product.


    A heartfelt Thank you, from one of the smaller guys in a very compititive industry.

    If anyone has any questions about how I was treated please feel free to call or contact me. You might not hear what you want to hear, but I will tell you the truth.

    Forever Green Lawns, Inc.
    Ron Graziano,Owner
    630 675-2939
    Forevergreenlawn@aol.com
     
  8. SCAPEASAURUSREX

    SCAPEASAURUSREX LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 835

    I had a problem with another brand of machine with the drive belts coming apart every 10 to 15 hours.. Very frustrating, I was using an aftermarket brand of belts and switched to a diff brand and havent had the problem since...... A good auto parts store or and industrial machine supplier should be able to match belts for you, more the industrial supply place for the drive belts if you still cant get oem belts to last... I know Gates makes quite a large assortment of belts for our machines.....
     

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