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Mulching Kit

Discussion in 'eXmark' started by Bruce, Jun 18, 2002.

  1. Bruce

    Bruce LawnSite Member
    from MN
    Posts: 45

    I have the 27 hp lazer Z. I just bought the mulching kit for it. the problem Iam having is it blows clumps of grass out and leaveing grass standing in spots.I tried going slow and also fast and in between.So i know it isnt the ground speed. what else is there that i could check.need help with this soon .thanks Bruce
  2. eXmark

    eXmark Manufacturer / Sponsor
    Posts: 4,258


    Thanks for the question.

    If you could provide a little information on the following we may be better able to diagnose the problem. Is the grass still growing fast, lush and full of moisture? How tall is the grass? How much are your cutting off or what height are you cutting at? What type of grass are you cutting? Are you using the mulch kit with the baffles and the Exmark blades?

    If you would like you can call me at 800-667-5296 with the information as well.


  3. gogetter

    gogetter Banned
    Posts: 3,256

    Bruce, I have the mulch kit on my 36" metro. I have the same problem with missed blades of grass. That's the only thing I don't like about the mulch kit!

    I only had a problem with clumping on one lawn. I raised the deck a 1/4" and it solved the problem. They fertilize thier lawn and it was growing faster then rest, so I was taking off too much at once (about half).

    So Terry, what causes those uncut blades of grass? I've heard others on LS mention this problem with the kit.
    Could it be where the baffles meet between the blades? Possibly they are pushing the grass over or aside in some way so that the blades aren't hitting it? If it wasn't for this, the kit would be one of my best purchases. :(
  4. eXmark

    eXmark Manufacturer / Sponsor
    Posts: 4,258


    When mulching there are other factors that must be considered. First we must consider that all cutting modes (bag, side discharge or mulch) have limitations. Some of these limitations are the same for each however one may be more susceptible than the other. In the case of mulching the moisture content, length of grass and cutting height are all factors. It's rare if ever we get complaints about mulching when cutting at 3.0" or lower. We'll hear a few at 3" and the numbers begin to increase more rapidly at 3.5" and up. Personally I believe the entire issue of missed grass, stragglers, or streaks are almost always due to airflow and seldom have much if anything to do with grass being pushed down. It happens where we'll get a quality of cut issue from grass that's been pushed down but not very common.

    Knowing that most decks cut fine at 3.0" you begin to look at what the biggest change is when you raise the cutting height, so we start looking at vacuum. The vacuum is decreased or less effective the farther away from the ground the blade is. Also more air can be pushed out or pulled into the deck depending upon how high the deck sits from the ground.

    Most machines will mulch most lawns at heights above 3.0" but we've got to make sure we do our part and have the deck set up correctly. As the machine gets some hours on it, the tires wear, the deck lift gets a little wear etc. the deck rake as an example can change and then we need to go in and re-adjust it. Not a huge deal but one we can all experience sooner or later. It's also not unheard of that the deck rake may be off a little from the factory. Most of the time you'll never notice it until your mulching and the lawn is a little stressed either from water requirements or nutrient requirements. That's when that slight difference in deck rake shows up. That's when we go to work with your dealer and find out what the rake is at, what type of grass your cutting and what the conditions are. Some grass types like 1/4" of rake but most prefer 1/8" and others like a flat deck. Most often it won't matter all that much but if the lawn is a little stressed for what ever reason that's when you'll start to see those stragglers, stringers and uncut grass.

    Keep in mind that the when we were all cutting at 2,3, and 4 mph 15 years ago none of this was an issue. Very few people were mulching and not many wanted to cut grass faster than that. Now we build machines to run like it's the Daytona 500 every day, day in and day out. If we're going to push the speeds needed to make a living cutting grass in todays competitive landscaper market we need to dot the "I's" and cross the "T's".

    Like I said in an earlier post. These mowers are designed to cut grass (actually they're designed to cut grass very fast and leave it looking great) when that doesn't happen we can generally fix it. With in reason anyway.

    What compounds all of this is changing cutting height on fixed deck walk behind mowers. These are great mowers but far too often when changing the cutting heights we can forget the basics of deck rake, blade height in relationship to the deck etc. When this happens we find that often we may not be utilizing all of the cutting height adjustments and getting by with just the caster spacer adjustment or the blades spacer adjustment.


  5. conepile

    conepile LawnSite Member
    Posts: 78

    I had the same problem with my 36" Metro, and found the solution was simply to clean the underside of the deck. Anytime I cut too much grass when it had high moisture content, the build-up under the deck was enough to cause the problem you describe. In every instance this was what caused it. This usually happens early in the season, when I first switch to mulch blades. For reference, I cut Bluegrass at 3.5".

    I just put the mulch kit on my 52" Lazer HP, and it seems to work great. I never had any problems with dispersion, but once all of the planting beds have fresh mulch in them, I would be shot for laying a carpet of clippings on them. Of course, an operator controlled discharge chute could work, but I chose to mulch instead.

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