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Low Lift vs High Lift blades

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by mac43rn, Sep 13, 2006.

  1. mac43rn

    mac43rn LawnSite Member
    Posts: 237

    I have heard so many rumors on this topic. Can I hear from the members on this forum.

    What are the pros and cons of each. Currently running 60" Lazer Z and 36" TTHP. Any suggestions for blade setup with these units. Most of our mowing is using side discharge.

  2. tacoma200

    tacoma200 LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 5,426

    Here is what Exmark says:
    Notched Air Foil
    These are factory blade and best for most applications
    Max. lift and discharge velocity
    Ideal for heavy thick grasses
    Take full advantage of hp

    Solid Air Foil
    Blades reduce flex when mowing
    Blades don’t tend to bend as easily after impact
    Can help in reducing blow out
    Helpful in cutting Bahia shoot, Dandelions, Foxtail, etc.
    Will reduce discharge velocity

    Low Lift
    Used a lot in sandy areas
    Helps reduce build-up on bottom of deck
    Reduces discharge velocity
    Reduces blow out
    Uses less hp to operate
    Lower noise

    Works well with our mulch kit
    Sharp blades are a must for max performance
    Uses maximum hp for best result
    Forces clipping back into turf
    Blades need to be sharpened more often do to increase cutting of clippings

    High lifts generate alot of air flow, pick up grasses that like to lay down and cut them off smooth. They also have the greatest discharge velocity. The down side is they may cause more grass to stick to the deck and take more power than low or medium lifts. Notched high lifts usually work best on an Exmark unless you have a mulch kit.. I will use gators in the fall. Wet conditions a medium lift will probably not make as big a mess on the underside of the deck. Exmark recommends the notched high lifts for most situations. Best all around blade for side discharge.
  3. Runner

    Runner LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 13,496

    That is what Exmark says, and that is the concept....Now, this is what MY (and Exmarks) experience is. When I use the notched foil (highlift) blades on the 60" Lazer, I get streaks. These streaks are in the forward sweep of the center blade. It looks like a 3rd wheel track, but off center just slightly. There is a LONG thread on here by me regarding this, and it contains communications from Exmark in it. They were prepared to give me a new deck if necessary. TH MACHINE WAS NEW AND I was not a happy camper. We did new belts, reset the deck, and a bunch of other things. An Exmark rep came out in the field to see what it was doing. We finally cleared it up by something as simple as putting these solid foil blades on.
  4. tacoma200

    tacoma200 LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 5,426

    I personally don't have the above problem with notched high lifts. Looks like carpet most of the time. Clipping thrown into the neighbors lawn yes, streaks no.
  5. Envy Lawn Service

    Envy Lawn Service LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 11,062


    I think I told you that I would bet your deck top is not perfectly flat/straight.
    Or atleast one spindle is not mounting up perfectly.

    If I didn't tell you that, I'm sorry I didn't.

    Yes, a solid foil blade will help that complication if it's not off too bad.
    The only explaination I have been able to come up with for that is this...
    You know that inner portion of the solid foil?... Has an 'inside flow angle'
  6. noseha

    noseha LawnSite Senior Member
    from MI
    Posts: 554

    i have nothing to say! want to follow this!
  7. Fubba

    Fubba LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 356

    It says the solid air foil will work better with bahia? Where can I get these blades? My dealer only sells mulching and notched lifts.
  8. tacoma200

    tacoma200 LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 5,426

    If you have a 5/8 hole like most lazers you can probably get them through J-Thomas. They have pretty good blades at lower cost than OEM but you will need to order enough stuff to make the shipping worth it. I just printed what Exmark gave me so I have no experience with these blades on a Lazer. I have an 05 which has a 15/16 center hole so my blade choice is much more limited. But I can tell not cut or wear difference between the J-Thomas blades and the OEM blades. Mow parts, a sponser here may have some.
  9. Dashunde

    Dashunde LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 628

    I've been getting much better lift with solid foils instead of notched.
  10. TLS

    TLS LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 7,940

    When I ran my 60" Lazer, notched foils gave me better performance in wet conditions and wet lush growth.

    Solids did better in the dry stuff, and yes, seemed to give more suction.

    But I'm not finding the same true on my modified XR-7 deck. Nothing is working good enough for me on this deck.

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