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Lazer HP Spindles

Discussion in 'eXmark' started by statman, Jun 4, 2004.

  1. statman

    statman LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 271

    New mower, love it!! I cannot find any reference or zerks for lube the spindles. Am I overlooking them or are they sealed?
  2. eXmark

    eXmark Manufacturer / Sponsor
    Posts: 4,258


    Just keep looking....................just kidding.

    We haven't put zerks in the spindles for a long time now. The sealed bearing last longer and since there is no maintenance there is less for you to worry about.


  3. GreenQuest Lawn

    GreenQuest Lawn LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 822

    Hey i have a question that would fit in this thread. Why can you not buy just the replacement bearings for the spindles?

    I am in need of a bearing change (actually replacing most all bearings and bushings on the machine) and I come to find out I have to buy the whole assembly and not just the bearings.

    Last time I replaced them was cause of a nice piece of steel I hit that toasted all three spindles/blades/bearings/ect.

    So now I am the proud owner of 9 spindle housings and only need 3. They are all in good shape still.

    Its not a huge deal, does save some time installing the bearings but I can imagine the cost if FAR more.
  4. eXmark

    eXmark Manufacturer / Sponsor
    Posts: 4,258

  5. Dave

    Dave LawnSite Senior Member
    from RI
    Posts: 315

    Go and buy yourself a press,then go and buy some bearings from a machinery place ,and put them in .no OEM makes there own bearings ,and noone is going to tell me different .There are a handfull of bearing manufactures ,like belt manufactures,they can be bought to OEM specs ,when your muffler is rotten on your car .who goes to the dealer and buys there oem muffler ,I have changed numerous bearings ,cars ,trailers ,and no one them came
    from the Dealer,I you want them to last even longer ,drill a hole in the housing ,tap a fitting in ,pull the dust covers off the inner part of the bearings and grease away,I feel the reasons why the
    oems went to a non greasble spindle is ,its cheaper for them to make ,and they were out faster than a greaseable spindle,and you have to buy a new one,just like they did in the automotive industry ,some can be fooled on here but some of us have been there and done that
  6. ProStreetCamaro

    ProStreetCamaro LawnSite Platinum Member
    Posts: 4,140

    Our Lazer Z HP 48" is the first mower in over 20 years of being in the business that we have ever had to replace the spindles. I feel the reason for this is because there is no Zerk fittings. We have one right now that is starting to sound "DRY" and I am sure will need to be replaced in the next couple weeks. Our other mowers have gone over 5,000 hours with original spindles before we sell them. This lazer only has 1,500 hours on it and we are about to replace our 2nd spindle. PUT THE ZERK FITTINGS BACK!!!!!!
  7. eXmark

    eXmark Manufacturer / Sponsor
    Posts: 4,258


    Thanks for the post. We could put the zerks back on the spindles but you're probably not going to like the results.

    All of the old spindles lasted a very long time............that is until we began pressing the outer limits of blade tip speed. Once we did that the old greaseable spindles really didn't last that well for most operators. Some operators still had good life with the greaseable bearings but they were the minority. The current generation of spindle is however holding up nearly as well as the old styles that you are more familiar with.

    One of the big reasons for eliminating the zerks was over greasing. If the bearing received too much grease it would create heat due to drag. Think of it like running in water up to your ankles. You can run pretty fast or at least relative to how fast you can run on dry land. Now go out to your waist. Now you can’t run nearly as fast due to the drag and you get more tired the more quickly you try to move through the water. Excessive grease in the spindle function in much the same way except the extra grease created more drag which meant more friction and more heat. When this happens the grease could begin to break down or worse expand and ultimately damage the seals from the inside out. Once this happened dirt and debris can work their way into the spindle bearing and cause a failure.

    Synthetic greases rule when you start spinning a bearing as fast as we are. With traditional grease and even some very good synthetic greases it’s still possible to over heat them. When this happens the grease can expand as I mention earlier but also the oil can evaporate from the carrier (grease is basically oil for lubrication and a carrier to keep the oil on the bearing surface) leaving nothing but the carrier on the bearing. Once this happens the bearing is basically running dry for not more lubrication than it is getting. Also with traditional greases they can literally be thrown off the bearing through centrifugal force generated from the high rotational speeds. Most of the high speed synthetic greases actually become “stringy” when they are spun at a high rate of speed.

    The no-maintenance spindles are getting much better. In fact the current generation is really impressive. Generally when I hear of a spindle bearing failure today it's not the fault of the bearing or the grease. Please keep in mind however that we've had many changes to these bearing assemblies in the past several years.

    You’ll find that most (not all) of the greasable spindles have a few things in common. They are tapered roller bearings, they have lower blade tip speeds and do not offer the same quality of cut you’ve come to expect form your Exmark mowers.

    I will however pass your suggestion on to our product development team.


  8. ProStreetCamaro

    ProStreetCamaro LawnSite Platinum Member
    Posts: 4,140

    Terry I never really thought of it that way. It does make sense that the higher blade tip speed would wear them out faster and to much grease would cause extra drag. I still think there should be fittings that could have maybe 2-3 pumps of synthetic grease maybe once a year. What I am thinking is that with the spindles that you can not grease what is happening is the grease, no matter how good it is, is slowly breaking down and after a while the bearings start to sound "dry" and when this happens you know you dont have long before they start to wobble.

    What I am about to say I dont want anybody to take wrong. The no grease spindles seem's more like a gimmick to me. Exmark and all the other company's know that the grease will break down and not long after the warranty will need to be replaced. This makes profit for the manufacturer because thats just another part they can sell. Maybe I am wrong.
  9. MikeLT1Z28

    MikeLT1Z28 LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,732

    i can see both sides to the story here. maybe exmark could put a plug in where the zerk should be, like on the front caster forks of my lazer. that way it's not done regularly, but can be accomplished if need be.
  10. EJK2352

    EJK2352 LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,150

    Amen ProStreet!!!!!!!!!! I bought a used Lazer earlier this year. It has greasable spindles w/ over 2500 hrs. of use. The original owner greased the spindles twice a month w/ Mobil 1 synthetic grease and it still has the original bearings. I also have a Lazer HP 52 w/ non-greasable spindles that failed in less than one years use. After I got the HP back from the spindle replacement I decided to drill the housings and install zerks. Once I got the zerks installed I greased them w/ Mobil 1 and low and behold I haven't had a bearing problem since. I agree w/ the profiting from spindle sales. And Terry if you don't believe me just call my dealer Bill's Sales and Service and ask him. He has filled 55 gallon drums w/ failed spindles.

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