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Pivot Marks

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by cincymower, May 20, 2004.

  1. cincymower

    cincymower LawnSite Member
    Posts: 19

    Great forum guys, I've learned a lot.

    I've got a 48" MTD walk behind with a sulky, about 4 yrs old. The main tires are kind of worn. I love the mower but it tends to leave what I call pivot marks in the grass if I turn sharply. With all the rain we've had all spring, it will easily tear out all the grass/roots if I'm not babying it, and even then sometimes it still does. I'm wondering if there's some trick to preventing this that I don't know, and also if getting new tires ($125) would help. I kinda think it might make things worse because the tires would grab better.

    I just can't win. Either the lawns are super lush and thick and take forever, or they're thin and muddy and it's all I can do not to tear up the turf.

    Any input is appreciated!
  2. mkwl

    mkwl LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,701

    I just got a new Bob-Cat 48" WB that I love!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    Insted if locking the wheel when you turn, let the wheel move a little bit, thus makeing less of a pivot mark.
  3. RedWingsDet

    RedWingsDet LawnSite Gold Member
    from Detroit
    Posts: 3,556

    i had the same problem when i first started using my 48. but when u turn, pull the side (the side that is stopped) backwords while you turn.
  4. Doc Pete

    Doc Pete LawnSite Gold Member
    Posts: 3,469

    You can make a bigger turn at the end of the pass, by going off to one side a bit and swing back, kinda like "half" of a figure 8. Or, you can keep your speed, make a much bigger turn, and cut every other pass, leaving approximately one mower's width uncut. Then, at the end of the lawn come back and cut what you've left. There's a bit of overlap involved, but the speed is much faster and no divots.
  5. JB Landscape

    JB Landscape LawnSite Member
    Posts: 22

    Never lock your wheel. Make a Y like turn.
  6. 1MajorTom

    1MajorTom Senior Moderator
    Posts: 6,074

    Why do you keep saying this in every post that you make?
  7. Matts Mowing

    Matts Mowing LawnSite Member
    Posts: 53

    I think he is a Bobcat dealer .......:p
  8. naturescape

    naturescape LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,694

    If it's a belt drive -- put the side you are turning into in neutral, and pull that side pull back while the other side is turning. DON'T FORGET TO TAKE IT OUT OF NEUTRAL when you come out of the turn! This is the easiest way on your hands to pull back on the one side as you turn. End result is you get a zero turn. You'll have to step off the sulky to do this turn.
  9. mkwl

    mkwl LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,701

    Actually, I am not a dealer, I just really love my Bob-Cat!!!!!!!!!!!!
  10. Rather Be Fishing

    Rather Be Fishing LawnSite Member
    from Ohio
    Posts: 109

    I experienced the same thing when I was new to walk-behind mowers, I was turning so hard I kept leaving a small section of lawn that wasn't cut with each pass.

    The previous advise is right on the money, particularly never fully locking the brake. We've always called it "feathering the brake", pull in enough to make the turn while pulling back on the braking side. When you hit the sweet spot the tire will rotate backwards as your driving wheel is completing the turn. Should line you up nice and straight without the divit. Of course, wet grass is always a challenge.

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