Gravely 472 Demo

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing Equipment' started by puppypaws, Jul 10, 2013.

  1. mag360

    mag360 LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,446

    It is much better with the baffles out but the blades still don't generate enough flow to perform as well as the old deck. With the baffles in the lower position there seems to be an increase in discharge velocity with the stock blades since the sail is centered within the channel created by the baffles. It's a good design but gravely needs to source a better blade for the 72's ASAP.

    Stock scag and exmark blades don't seem to have a high lift sail on them but definitely generate more airflow out the chute on our other machines due to the notched sail so hopefully they will be the ticket here.

    For anyone new to the comparison notched sail blades generate more horizontal airflow and don't plaster the top of the deck as much with clippings because they don't have the transitional section of blade between the flat part and the sail that directs airflow straight up or up and in.
     
  2. GMLC

    GMLC LawnSite Platinum Member
    Posts: 4,353

    This is an understatement. I agree 100%. All I can think of is these were a sand blade for the southeast or Texas?
     
  3. puppypaws

    puppypaws LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 8,854

    I think "mag360" just stated with the baffle out he saw exactly the same thing I saw, to me that's saying if I had totally removed the baffle I would have seen the same results with the 72" deck. We are now down to blades making all the difference. I would love for you to get you hands on a 72 if the chance ever comes up, this way we would know for sure if the smaller deck could be making the difference you are seeing. Twenty inches more grass in a cutting width for a deck to deal with is a lot of grass.
     
  4. GMLC

    GMLC LawnSite Platinum Member
    Posts: 4,353

    I would love to try a 472. Mag has posted many times in several threads that removing the baffles greatly helps. The low lift blades are giving him a serious problem now because they cant generate enough velocity in a wide open deck. My scag velocity decks and XF1 were the same way with low lifts and Id bet the VX4 would be as well.
     
    Last edited: Jul 20, 2013
  5. mag360

    mag360 LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,446

    Much better with the baffles out - I'll try to find my earlier post with pictures of clumping without baffles. That's as bad as I've seen it. I know the grass doesn't look high but that is a south facing open field full of thick, weedy field grass and is one of the most challenging properties to get a good result on for any mower - scag included. The bush hogging yesterday was on a hot, dry day and the material didn't stick together as much. It was just interesting to see the difference in discharge velocity while moving at a snail's pace so I could really concentrate on it. We were mowing 4-6 ft tall grass and reeds in some places that hadn't been touched since fall 2012 so I was happy the deck was able to handle the little bit of mowing around the edges where we didn't want to take the takeuchi and ambusher. So again, just noting that the xf1 deck with high lifts and 60 inch cutting width has a better discharge than the xf2 with standard blades, baffles removed, and 72 inch cutting width.
     
  6. puppypaws

    puppypaws LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 8,854

    I just finished mowing some areas with the XR-7, when I came back down my drive I turned the deck on to see the difference in discharge air speed while blowing a little trash off the asphalt. The XR-7 I've never considered very good when blowing off asphalt, mediocre at best, but when comparing to the discharge velocity of the 472 it was much more powerful.

    I can fully understand the grass falling out of the discharge opening, the 472 virtually had no discharge velocity at all, to the point it will blow some grass off the pavement, but leave more than it moves if the clippings are scattered and thin.

    This is something that definitely needs to be addressed, the only good clean cut I saw with the 472 while producing a reasonable discharge was in somewhat drier grass while cutting at 2.75" on the dial-a-height, but when measuring the cutting edge of the blade to concrete, it was actually 1/4" lower.

    These mowers should go to the owner or person demoing the mower ready to cut grass to the best of its ability. You should not need to figure out what blades you need to install, or whether you do need, or don't need the baffle. This can cause a lot of sales to be lost, many people have not had experience playing with these changes, and for a mower to be demoed new with the results I saw, most people want say anything, they will just try another mower.
     
  7. GMLC

    GMLC LawnSite Platinum Member
    Posts: 4,353

    I agree those blades should not be on that machine. Baffles would have been fine if you actually cut a lawn, even a semi wet lawn. As a commercial cutter that cuts in all different conditions everyday the adjustable baffles are a huge plus. I can fine tune my lift on thick and thin lawns. And when I have to cut in the rain baffles come off. No other deck offers that versatility.
     
    Last edited: Jul 20, 2013
  8. CurbAppealKS

    CurbAppealKS LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 448

    The condition that puppy lets his property get to in between mowings is borderline too much for even commercial mowers to produce a good cut in. I understand there has been a lot of rain, but two weeks in between cutting on rain soaked, naturally fertilized grass is too much. No mower will live up to commercial cutters' expectations in those conditions.
     
  9. GMLC

    GMLC LawnSite Platinum Member
    Posts: 4,353

    I agree and stated several times that both machines produced an unacceptable cut in all of his pics. Even the double cut pics. I know he has manicured grass because I have seen his pics in other threads about the VX4 cut quality. In those threads only 1-2" of grass was taken off. It would of been nice to see the 472 cut in those conditions and then we could compare cut quality.
     
  10. CurbAppealKS

    CurbAppealKS LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 448

    I agree completely. His manicured stuff looks great, but I'm confident that any mower could give the same results. I feel like this wasn't a completely thorough review if all variables weren't equal. I think the gravely should have at least been given a chance on that stuff and he should have tried different combos with the baffles. I understand what everyone is saying about the blades as that would have a huge impact on the results. That's just my opinion though.
     

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