Exmark Replacement Spindles (brand preference)

Discussion in 'Mechanic and Repair' started by Snyderserv5060, Apr 24, 2008.

  1. Snyderserv5060

    Snyderserv5060 LawnSite Member
    Messages: 194

    Question is simply this, should I stick to the OEM Exmark spindles for my Lazer Z or go with a generic/aftermarket like the Oregon products I see for sale. The OEM are +$80 more but if they are going to last longer and run quieter/smoother I would go that route. I had bad success with an older spindle made for a scag mower a few years back so that's why I figured I would see if anyone had experience with Exmark spindles. I replaced one last year, due to time constraints I went with OEM and its been flawless but if I can save a bunch of money id go that route. Also is it needed that I replace the entire assemble or can should I get the housing with bearings and re-use the shaft and pulley? I guess that will also depend on the wear to the inner of the spindle.

    Just picked up a backup mower and the discharge side spindle is looser then I like so I am considering options to get it all cleaned up and ready to mow.

  2. tacoma200

    tacoma200 LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 5,426

    How much for OEM. They are sealed, correct?
  3. mowermankevin

    mowermankevin LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 270

    My 2 cents, replacing 15 to 20 a year, I've done it both ways and it comes down to time. The J-Thomas catalog spindles have done well for the price, sure is quick and easy, I try to have a supply built up over winter, but I've gotten to the point my time is more valuable than practicing rebuilding spindles. The bearings in the OEM and aftermarket are the same(cheap and getting cheaper quality) and Exmark is getting to the point there are so many different spindle/washer setups on the decks it's easy to pick up the phone and have it delivered, my only gripe is even if it's a sealed bearing, I wish the housing had a grease zerk so I could shoot a litte in there now and then, I'm not seeing any difference in longevity for sealed or grease bearing there all lasting the same number of hours. I saw that high speed bearings are available for triple the price, so that is an option.
  4. Snyderserv5060

    Snyderserv5060 LawnSite Member
    Messages: 194

    Yes these are all the sealed version so no its not an option to grease them up a bit every now and then. As far as what Exmark "says" they don't sell the bearings and such due to people incorrectly rebuilding them and them failing in such a short time period. By no means am I saying that they can not be rebuilt and the parts are not out there, just Exmark does not sell them. So you really have to by the entire housing.

    I agree time wise yes replacing the housing is a quick swap. I guess I just wanted to see how successful others have been with non OEM assemblies. For example I can get a generic version for my lazer for around $60-80 each depending where I get them and if I order a bunch. I paid $172.05 last year for one of my OEM Exmark replacement ones. If I can practically replace all the spindles on the deck for the cost of one OEM its a good deal BUT if I have to go in and replace the generic ones because they did not last, I would rather pay more upfront.

    I agree the quality has unfortunately lessened over the years... were also getting into complete throw away parts now which I am not overly happy about. Oh well I appreciate your feedback so far and more is always appreciated.
  5. mowermankevin

    mowermankevin LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 270

    This is what I have found,that 1 company(by any other name, is still the same),called J-Thomas the other day and after the order was done,asked if they had been bought out by Sten (Ariens), after a long pause, he(remain anymous) said yes, so it comes down to the small fish get swallowed... I know each individual part, and look to improve on it, as is often said "Buyer Beware", so you get what you pay for,and sometimes you get a good deal,but it's takin' your time to separate the wheat from the chaff.Nothing substitutes for good diagnostic tools and experienced friends(machinists) to cut thru the BULL:walking::walking:

Share This Page