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Rollers, Chains, or Mud flaps?

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by ho5tile, Jun 2, 2006.

  1. ho5tile

    ho5tile LawnSite Member
    Posts: 42

    Tell me what works best for stripes with a ztr. I can buy it or build it either way, I just want to know what you guys get the best results from.
  2. topsites

    topsites LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 21,653

    I have both the roller and the chain kit, the roller on the newer mower but the chains on the older (both mowers same make and model, but 7 years apart).

    Before we get into what turns out the best stripes, I also consider the pita factor of the kit... With rollers, you almost need to have some type of quick-connect system so you can hook / unhook them in a jiffy because they can and do get caught on things - The wider the roller, the bigger this problem. In a yard rich with obstacles, there is no way I'm wasting time to ensure the stupid rollers don't get caught, but if the roller is on the machine you need to watch it because if it catches, it can spell disaster.

    With chains, so long they're not long enough to catch on the blades when backing up or get caught under the tires when turning, the kit I built is permanently attached, it never comes off and does not need to, in a year I have never had a problem with the loops getting caught, other than it rattles coming off the trailer and you need to make sure the chain is a big enough grade (mine is 30 grade), and galvanized so it doesn't rust helps.

    Weight also plays an important role, the heavier the kit, the better the stripes but the more it drags on the machine. With the rollers, I find my mower is more likely to pop wheelies under sudden acceleration and I can feel the drag... With the chains, this problem is absent: Also playing a role in this is the fact the chains are under the rear deck while the roller rides behind the machine.

    Far as the best stripes, I would lean towards the rollers, but it's such a pita for me to deal with this 80-pound kit that I leave it at home and do without more often than not.

    In the end, the new mower without a kit and the old mower with the chains both turn out nice stripes, haven't compared the chains to the roller side by side yet thou between doing it without and then hooking it up, yes it makes some difference.

    Dunno about mud flaps...
  3. Buckeye1

    Buckeye1 LawnSite Member
    from Ohio
    Posts: 170

    If you are talking about a roller that mounts to the mower deck there is no comparison. Nothing can outstripe a roller rolling on the turf.

    Topsites - Are you talking about a tow behind weighted roller? Or possible some sort of homemade roller? I have never heard of a deck mounted roller weighing 80 lbs or hanging up on things. Since the deck floats its almost impossible to hang it up. If it hits something it just rides up over top of it.
  4. topsites

    topsites LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 21,653

    Yes, tow-behind... Sorry I never knew about deck-mount rollers, got any pics or links?
  5. Daner

    Daner LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,308

    I also have wondered about the rollers getting caught on things...How are they when you come on and off the trailer??
    The roller kits that i have seen all monted behind the wheels.
    I USE A MUD FLAP... thought the chains would be too heavy

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  6. 6'7 330

    6'7 330 LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,823

    Rollers patterned after the Exmark type,that bolt on the deck can be useful in enhancing a machine that stripes poorly,or just so-so_Our Exmarks stripe excellent stock,our Toro's stripe nice stock , but the roller helps define and enhance the Toro's stripes.

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