36" belt style mower won't turn

Discussion in 'Mechanic and Repair' started by knowsymon, Aug 26, 2009.

  1. knowsymon

    knowsymon LawnSite Member
    Messages: 21

    Hi all... Have a weird situation. Or at least to me it's weird. I have an old 36" bobcat. It works fine except a few days ago, it's extreme;y hard to turn to the left.
    I changed the belt, the spring. I made sure the pulleys were loose. and it seems like I don't have equal power. If I'm standing behind the mower, I have more power on the right than the left. Also, if i just let the mower go straight, it curves to the right.
    Any ideas???
  2. 4.3mudder

    4.3mudder LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,227

    Sounds like the rods may not be adjusted properly. Also make sure the rear tires have the same amount of air in each one.
  3. knowsymon

    knowsymon LawnSite Member
    Messages: 21

    I'll double check those. There's two rods on each side. One long one that controls the spring. I'm not sure what the shorter one at the bottom controls just yet, but I'll check it in the morning. Thanks
  4. Restrorob

    Restrorob LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 11,029

    Which belt ?

    Both wheel belts should be changed at the same time to help prevent tracking problems.
  5. mowerknower

    mowerknower LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 766

    hydro or belt drive/
  6. knowsymon

    knowsymon LawnSite Member
    Messages: 21

    I changed both. I've got the cogged style belts
  7. B&A lawn care

    B&A lawn care LawnSite Member
    Messages: 70

    My experiance with belt drive is limited because we only own one of them but I have learned a couple things that may help. One is you never replace one of anything on the wheel drives and go straight afterwards. Belts, springs, pulleys and even the tires are replaced in pairs. Replace just one and be ready to fight it until you make another trip to town for a like part for the other side. Another thing I found is that brand new wheel belts do not pull their best until run in for a couple hours. If the drive belt tension is releasing when you want to turn left then the problem is likely in the brake band. If it quit suddenly it probably broke, rusted in two on ours. If it slowly quit turning over aperiod of time then it may be an ajustment problem. When used hard pulling my big butt around on the velke the turning barkes need weekly adjustment on our Exmark.

    JABBERS LawnSite Senior Member
    from Ohio
    Messages: 459

    I know on my old scag when i loose power to one side I take a part the pivot point there is a bolt load it up with never seize and everything is fixed. I'm just saying this is what works for me when I know all is adjusted right.
  9. knowsymon

    knowsymon LawnSite Member
    Messages: 21

    That sounds about right. I'm going in the garage now to check the brake bands. Should the brake band be tight or loose?
  10. WhitakerServices

    WhitakerServices LawnSite Member
    Messages: 159

    I will put my wb in nuetral and squeeze the handles so the brakes would engage.
    applying equal pressure to the brakes, try to move (push, pull) the mower forward and backward it should be pretty obvious from there if the adjustments are correct and equal for both sides. Adjust your rods at the brakes until you achieve good equal braking.
    when done the mower should hold still under the push and pull test.
    Now check your nuetral settings.

    Like a previous poster said always change parts in pairs on belt drives. When I purchased my 36 scag new it was pulling to one side and killing my arms. After a month or so of this i finally figured out that my tires were a different diameter, one was actually an inch larger causing my tracking problems.
    good luck

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