Cutting height question

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by Lawnboy48195, Jul 1, 2008.

  1. Lawnboy48195

    Lawnboy48195 LawnSite Member
    Messages: 57

    Hey guys, I have a Toro 36" WB and have a question about my cutting height. I had my height at 3 inches according to the manual and when I mow the lawn (mine or my customers) it seems a bit short but is cut perfect, meaning almost like a crew cut that some guys get on their head! Anyway, I raised it up to 3 1/2 inches (according to the manual), my grass looks much greener, as does my customers BUT the mower seems to leave blades of grass uncut. I mostly cut the lawns in 3rd gear but I slowed down to 2nd which is a snails pace but got the same results. Any ideas as to why 1/2 inch makes such a huge difference? I am very happy with the 3 1/2 inch cut because the lawn doesn't look so darn short but I can't figure out why it doesn't give it a cleaner look when up close. Yes, I do sharpen my blades frequently, about every other week!

  2. TPendagast

    TPendagast LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 10,390

    you have a fixed deck mower, I assume from your sig line.
    You adjusted ( i assume) the front spacers on the caster.
    By doing this you changed to angle of your deck and it isnt gtting enough vaccum to suck up all the grass straiht enough to cut it, so its missing "hairs"
    Drop the spacers back so it is cutting (by the manual) at 3". then take your blades off and use those spacers to make up the extra 1/2" difference. This probably means taking two spacers off between the blade and the spndle and then putting them up on top of the shaft (so you dont loose them)
  3. NINER

    NINER LawnSite Member
    Messages: 204

    Yea Sounds Like A Suction Issue Check The Hieght Of The Blades On Flat Ground ,concrete Works Best. Check At The Front Of The Mower Deck And At The Back See If You Are Getting 3.5 Inches In The Front And 3.75 In The Back, If Not You Should Be Able To Adjust The Rear Hieght Where It Is Bolted To The Engine Deck. If Not Try To Put A Little Air In Or Take A Little Out Of The Rear Tires And The Front.there May Be Spacers On The Blades Themselves Play With Them A Little Putting Them On Top Of Blade Or The Bottom Get As Close As You Can And Roll. Most Grasses Can Be Trained Into Being Cut At A Certain Hieght To.
  4. Lawnboy48195

    Lawnboy48195 LawnSite Member
    Messages: 57

    Actually all I did was take 2 spacers from underneath the spindle to get to 3 1/2" and kept the others below the caster.
  5. Lawnboy48195

    Lawnboy48195 LawnSite Member
    Messages: 57

    And yes it's a fixed deck!!
  6. ITL

    ITL LawnSite Member
    from SW OH
    Messages: 188

    Are you running high lift blades. If not you can go to a high lift (taller sail section) to increase the lift action of the blade.

    Try different blades and experiment. We cut all cool season grass (fescue and blue grass) at 3.5 inches with greener lawns than the properties on the other sides of our customers. Have a few customers that at first think they are not getting their moneys worth unless it is cut 2.5 inches or less. All but one have seen the benefit to higher cutting heights.


    CLARK LAWN LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,526

    when i raise mine up i go a 1/4 inch at a time. ive tried going 1/2 inch and got the results that you said. cut at 3 1/4 for a few weeks then go up to 3 1/2 and see if that helps
  8. Lawnboy48195

    Lawnboy48195 LawnSite Member
    Messages: 57

    I do have the Toro Atomic blades and long story short, I dropped my deck lower and raised the blades closer to the spindle and I measured from the cement to the blade and it's 3". I cut my lawn and it's a good height but I leave a row of stringers up the middle! If I double cut, then it's fine. :mad:

    CLARK LAWN LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,526

    take the mulching blades off until fall. run high lifts till then
  10. brucec32

    brucec32 LawnSite Platinum Member
    Messages: 4,403

    You need to measure the blade height from the front tip of the blade. You can buy devices to do this easily at mower shops or online. Your manual should have a chart of the proper settings (axle, spindle spacers, caster spacers) to acheive the cut height you want, but it's good to double check.

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