dirty deck= poor cut?

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by linemech31, Jul 21, 2006.

  1. linemech31

    linemech31 LawnSite Member
    Messages: 7

    I have a gravely pro 1544 with only 15 hours on it at first it seemed to cut O.K . Now i have noticed it seems to miss more grass and lay it down. I have not hit anything with the blades and dont think they are damaged. Could it be because of clumped grass on the bottom of the deck that i have never cleaned?? Are the factory blades junk? I have yet to be impressed with the cut. What should i look at first. And what would be a better blade set up for side discharge? I am new at this thanks for the input
  2. mhussey

    mhussey LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 523

    You should sharpen your blades every 10 to 15 hours depending on what you cut. Sometimes the blade life is less depending on what type of grass/weed you are cutting. However, you should scrape your deck because if not your vacuum will be reduced therefore not getting the suction required for a clean cut.
  3. dvmcmrhp52

    dvmcmrhp52 LawnSite Platinum Member
    from Pa.
    Messages: 4,205

    If you haven't cleaned the deck yet then you won't get a decent cut.
    No vacuum equals lousy cut.
  4. linemech31

    linemech31 LawnSite Member
    Messages: 7

    I had no idea that i had to sharpen so often. The loss of suction from a dirty deck sounds reasonable to me thanks.

    HOOLIE LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,981

    Certainly could be grass build-up under the deck, that's easy to fix. Blade sharpening frequency should vary depending on conditions and the type of grass you're dealing with...after 15 hours it shouldn't be terrible but wouldn't hurt to sharpen them. Check the pitch of your deck, make sure the front is slightly lower than the back.
  6. topsites

    topsites LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 21,653

    Not to disagree with you but I think it is different from machine to machine, mine likes to be slightly higher in the front, either way yes pitch is very important.

    Also, how low are your blades in relation to the bottom edge of the skirt? The lower your blades sit, the better the cut (keep in mind that as you lower your blades, you'll need to raise the rest of the machine to compensate or you'll cut too low).

    As for the deck being dirty, I could not tell you if it helps or hurts but if I notice a bad cut and I look under the deck and it is dirty, cleaning it is an easy way to see if it improves things, can't hurt.

    Sharp blades always.
  7. linemech31

    linemech31 LawnSite Member
    Messages: 7

    how do you lower the blades in relation to the skirt? and how do you adjust the pitch of the deck washers under the front Castor's and changing air pressure in the rear tires?
  8. Proscapez LLC

    Proscapez LLC LawnSite Member
    Messages: 115

    a quick comment, I replace my blades every night with a sharp set

    HOOLIE LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,981

    Should be spacers on the blade bolts...like on my Exmarks there are 4 spacers, if you put all 4 under the deck (between blade and deck) this gives you a better quality cut...I normally keep 2 above and 2 below. There might be a chart in your owner's manual that will show you all the various combinations of front caster/blade/rear axle settings.

    I don't change the rear axle setting...you can change it but much easier to have it at a good height then adjust things with the front casters, IMO
  10. grass_cuttin_fool

    grass_cuttin_fool LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,526

    I agree witht he other guys on its probably a dirty deck, I change blades daily also


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