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Front Brakes on a Zero Turn Mower!!

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by ted corriher, Jan 22, 2009.

  1. This is a great idea, lets just carry it one step further and put a roll cage something like this around it and a 5 point harness, that with the front brakes we will be safe and secure on our mowers. With the optional milk shake maker.

    .ROLL CAGE.jpg
  2. TLS

    TLS LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 7,940

    Still want to know about drilling the caster stem out. How is this done?
  3. jkilov

    jkilov LawnSite Bronze Member
    from MS
    Posts: 1,415

    Well my first thought watching the video is : you need tread pattern caster tires to make the brakes useful. What's the point with the slicks on?

    Second though is why hydraulics? Mechanical or cable drive brakes are more than enough to handle the weight of a ZTR, plus they're cheaper and more reliable.
  4. TLS

    TLS LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 7,940

    Slicks will stop just fine.

    Hydraulic, because the caster is a free spinning object. How would you actuate them. Cables would get tangled up.
  5. jkilov

    jkilov LawnSite Bronze Member
    from MS
    Posts: 1,415

    I think about the spinning joint is actually harder to make it hydraulic actuated. There's no doubt one could make a rotating mechanical joint on top of the caster. Cheap, wouldn't leak and wouldn't get snagged.

    Think of clutch actuation, just facing upward, the pressure bearing allows all the rotation you want whilst the actuation is axial.
  6. Big Bad Bob

    Big Bad Bob LawnSite Bronze Member
    from zone 5
    Posts: 1,074

    Well said. :laugh:
  7. kjslawn

    kjslawn LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 618

    Very well put Ted good luck from me as well this is a great idea dont let some of the know it alls on this sight to discourage you. Just like rops were down played years ago I see this as being a great safty feature.
  8. zman2307

    zman2307 LawnSite Senior Member
    from OR
    Posts: 328

    interesting concept. you need to set up a booth at EXPO to get some exposure this year! It's expensive, but you should be able to get a lot more visibility there. And if you get an outdoor demo booth, it costs like $6000, but people would be able to see how it worked in person then.
  9. LawnGuy73

    LawnGuy73 LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,945

    Interesting, but I think that they will be a servicing nightmare. I can see them getting ripped off, or bent up.
  10. ted corriher

    ted corriher LawnSite Member
    Posts: 119

    Hey Everyone,
    Thanks for the comments and ideas. I will try to sum up all the questions I've read thus far.

    1. I already have a new routing for the hoses, which will have them run along the frame to the yoke and 90 into the spindle. This will keep them clear of obstructions of any kind.

    2. I also have a 4 wheeled brake version working as well. We are testing with it and will have pics and video up soon.

    3. I already have a booth at the EXPO, GIE (green industries expo) in Louisville, KY for this year.

    4. I tried a mechanical version, the only thing with it was the actuation and stroke of the drag on the tire. It was tough to get it adjusted correctly and then keep it adjusted, you had to give it constant attention because of stretch in the cables, not to mention the force applied is not that of hydraulic pressure. With hydraulics, you get on it and mow, press the pedal and it works. YES there will be maintenance, YES some of you will bend the spindle or yoke or whole wheel assembly, but this happens anyway, even without brakes. You've seen how I drive mine, I've yet to bend or break any part of this.

    5. In reference to dragging metal on your tires....KEEP YOUR TIRE PRESSURE IN CHECK! Which I assume all of you do anyways, to keep your mowing level correct and even. Or use run flats, which brings a question,
    How many of you use run flat tires on the front? and why or why not? And this works on slick tires or ones with tread, my model is on slicks.

    6. COST.....well as I've said, I spent 300 at a Nascar shop for parts, this is full retail. I machined all the other parts in my shop.
    With the manufacturers looking at this as full production installment, they will buy the parts by the container load, as well as have any machined parts done in bulk as well, bringing cost to a very affordable level. How much they intend to charge is a big question, but with the simplicity of the design and the added safety it provides, we are pushing them to bring this to market as low cost as possible. YOU CAN HELP WITH THIS, by contacting your favorite manufacturer and expressing your interest in this low cost addition.

    6. We will have more pics of the complete system, parts, spindle etc. next week, as we are testing and meeting to get this to you!

    A serious thanks to all of you who support this idea. I just wanted to improve upon the safety of this industry, there are lots of injuries and some deaths on these machines. You cannot pre-qualify all operators as either stupid or not, as many of you have said, for if this were the case, half of america would not have a drivers license. Operator safety comes down to using common sense while mowing AND having a machine that has all available safety options installed.

    Ted Corriher

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