bahaia grass

Discussion in 'eXmark' started by hoytman, Aug 25, 2004.

  1. hoytman

    hoytman LawnSite Member
    Posts: 10

    just a question but I have a hp52 and it cuts bahaia grass bad wether with new blades resharpned blades cutting fast cutting slow it always leaves stems is there spacers or a certian deck adjustment for this any advice would be great.
  2. eXmark

    eXmark Manufacturer / Sponsor
    Posts: 4,258


    If you side discharging simply switcing to the solid air foil Excalibur blade should help. It's also a good idea to have your dealer check your deck settings as well.

  3. dvmcmrhp52

    dvmcmrhp52 LawnSite Platinum Member
    from Pa.
    Posts: 4,205

    Please explain what you think the difference is between solid foil and notched foil blades when it comes to cut quality.
    I'm not being a smartazz, trying to get a bit more education.
  4. Keith

    Keith LawnSite Gold Member
    Posts: 3,977

    That stuff is hard to cut! I have never found a mower that will get all the seed heads when you have a field full of them. That said, my 60" Lazer, in side-discharge mode, does as good or better than any mower I have had before it. With all due respect to Terry, I found the notched air foil hi-lifts to do a better job than the solids on bahia. I tried the solids, two sets in fact, but to me the notched Excaliburs did better.

    That said, my 60" may cut bahia better than a 52" just because of the physical dimensions of the deck. I had a 48" Scag walkbehind that would not cut heads at all. It did not leave a left most of them! I came to the conclusion that is was due to the width of the deck front to back. With bahia stalks that can grow 18" high in a week, they simply did not have a chance to pop up before the rear of the deck was now forcing them down again. That is why I think a hi-lift blade has a better chance of sucking them into the upright position to be cut. I could be way off base, but it works for me.
  5. hoytman

    hoytman LawnSite Member
    Posts: 10

    thanks a bunch I've been using the extreme mulching blades and with the sand and heavy grass they only last about 2 days between resharpening. But we cut large areas of grass.
  6. Supertiger

    Supertiger LawnSite Member
    Posts: 189

    ive been fighting this problem for 6 years and all i can say is keep you blades sharp and you might have to mow it twice going the oposite way the second time. I know that this sound bad since it takes twice as long to earn the same money but thats what seems to work for me, especially if you are still havening to use the mulching decks
  7. hoytman

    hoytman LawnSite Member
    Posts: 10

    I do mow twice on some of the yards. The blades I'm using only until they wear out. They are good for my yards in town. But the big country yards they just wont last. But I like the country yards not as much nitpicking as city folks.
  8. eXmark

    eXmark Manufacturer / Sponsor
    Posts: 4,258

    Hey guys,

    I think I can jump in and help you all out on this one. I have recently done some Bahia testing in Houston and here is what I found.

    To cut Bahia clean and fast 2 things was key, blade tip speed and cut it low.

    To keep the blade tip speed up we used low lift blades. The Bahia grass is stiff like wire so we didn't need much air foil to lift the grass. This frees up a lot of HP. Also use a blade that has a cutting edge all the way to the hole of the blade.

    Next cutting it 2.5" or lower left a very clean cut. The higher we went the more stragglers we seen. The areas in Texas people like it cut that low because this stuff grows by the hour.

    One other set-up we changes is we put about 1/8" negative rake in the decks (front higher than the rear). This with the full length sharpen blades cut the grass like butter!

    This set up worked really well for over grown areas also (a little brush hogging, I had to try it). Of coarse we were using Exmarks but I would bet this set-up would work well with many of the other fine makers of machines out there.

    Can you tell I'm in service and not sales!!

    So blade tip speed low lift blades, engine rpm (check them with a tach) and grease up the idler pivots.
    Cut it low, 2 to 2.5" work in all cases that we had. Measure the blade tips. I would not just go by the height selector they can vary even more so with older machines.
    We ran negative rake in our machines and it work the best.

    Give this a try I think you will see a great improvement.

    Thanks, Fred.
  9. hoytman

    hoytman LawnSite Member
    Posts: 10

    Hey Fred does exmark sale a blade with that long of a cutting edge. if so what are they called. Also I bought some coating for blades at the local welding supply store it is applied with a special torch tip. my question is will this weaken the blade or would it help make the blades last. It is made for bushhog blades.
  10. eXmark

    eXmark Manufacturer / Sponsor
    Posts: 4,258


    Here is a link that has the info you need. They are called Excalibur low lifts. Open this link, scroll down and click on the blade fit chart.

    I am guessing your guy is doing some sort of case hardening? You would almost need him to answer the question on weaking the blade. If done right it should hurt anything, but there is a lot of different case hardenings.

    Thanks, Fred.

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