Bobcats New Engine to Deck Idler Breaking Bolts

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by KatKutter, Jul 19, 2007.

  1. KatKutter

    KatKutter LawnSite Member
    Messages: 48

    Just wondering if anyone else is dealing with this. Been useing Bobcat for 12 years or longer. Great Machines, They have changed the idlers on the new ztrs on the 61" its giving me fits. At 5 hours snaped the bolt, again at 40, and at 90 it has ripped the stud and weld completely from the deck. The old system was simple just a bushing over a stud with a grease fitting. I guess people were not useing the grease guns, so they changed to a bolt thru bearing idea, problem is there is absoulty no play, and on a floating deck the least bind on those idlers and something has to give. I replaced the bolt with a harder bolt as they suggested at the factory, didnt break the bolt this time, just tore the heck out of the new deck. Talked with engineers at bobcat and they are very aware of this problem, they just dont have a fix. And now I wait, while a new 10,000.00 dollars mower sets. Thank God I have others, been a week, and there still taking there sweet time. These guys need to understand, we are what makes them there money, and when we are down we need them to go to bat for us. Need a fix for this CGC real soon.

    DOLMARatOS LawnSite Member
    Messages: 173

    I've never had this problem with a 61" bob-Cat but have seen it with older Snapper ZTRs.

    I took a 4" by 4" piece of 1/2" steel plate and welded it on the bottom of the deck with a longer bolt. If you really wanna go nuts you can tap the plat and put a locking nut on the bottom.

    Bob-Cats have a lifetime warranty against deck cracking, wonder if this applies?
  3. Envy Lawn Service

    Envy Lawn Service LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 11,087

    Well, the trouble is that "we" are really not the biggest piece of the pie when it comes to their sales.

    Single use homeowners alone buy over half of all ZTR's sold.

    Good luck though... I hope they get you taken care of.
    Many eyes, including mine will be watching to see how they take care of their customers.
  4. KatKutter

    KatKutter LawnSite Member
    Messages: 48

    There waranty covers this no problem, against any defects in material or workmanship. The down time kills me, and i dont want to go welding on a machine thats 3 weeks old. I have used bobcats for years, but this change they made works great on the belt idler, and pump idler, there stationary. The engine to deck is where the trouble is, and its only on the new ones, there still assembying them this way right now. This is going to be a biggy. I no these machines, this is not going to work. The new deck will do the same thing.
  5. Envy Lawn Service

    Envy Lawn Service LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 11,087

    I wonder why they changed it anyway?
  6. Mark in MD

    Mark in MD LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 322

    I heard Ransomes was bought out by some European company a few years ago. Can anybody confirm this?

    I've been buying Bob-Cats since the late 70s. I think I'll be switching to somebody else for my next purchase.

    DOLMARatOS LawnSite Member
    Messages: 173

    Copied from's web page:

    CGC, a Schiller-Pfeiffer affiliate, was formed in August 2006 after acquiring Jacobsen's Commercial Grounds Care brands: BOB-CAT, Bunton, Ryan, Steiner and Brouwer. CGC divested of the Brouwer line a couple months later, allowing it to focus on the remaining four brands.
  8. Breezmeister

    Breezmeister LawnSite Bronze Member
    Male, from South Jersey
    Messages: 1,758

    This is what happens when you have an engineer on the payroll, he has to justify his existence, build a better mouse, upgrade the mouse trap.
    ericg likes this.
  9. BMLS

    BMLS LawnSite Member
    Messages: 28

    I will be getting my ne BC Preditor this week. I'll keep you posted.
  10. KatKutter

    KatKutter LawnSite Member
    Messages: 48

    Thumbs up to CGC, They shipped me a new deck, actually within a day after I called the company myself. Gonna have to do the same thing to this one though. That tiny little stud in the back of the deck that the idler mounts to just isnt beefy enough. Welded a piece of flat quarter inch steel plat to the other and a v-weld around the stud itself. That worked. So to avoid breaking this one, im gonna do it before it ever goes under the mower.

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