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First time walkbehind

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by Josh18, Jun 28, 2004.

  1. Josh18

    Josh18 LawnSite Member
    from AL
    Messages: 64

    I recently bought an exmark metro with the pistol grips. It's not my primary mower so I bought the cheapest version I could get ( 32"/ 12.5 hp with pistol grips) I know the pistol grips have many disadvantages to the ECS but I couldnt afford the extra for them. My question is this. When going down a steep hill, I fell completely out of control with the mower. I can't seem to slow it down at all, it just goes how fast it wants( even when in 1st gear) Is there any way that I can control it while going down a steep hill or is this just a downside of the pistol grips?
  2. all degree

    all degree LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 344

    How about squeezing the handles all the way so that it brakes as you go?????????
  3. chuckers

    chuckers LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 657

    lmao you control the wheels with the pistols by pulling in it slows down the machine
  4. impactlandscaping

    impactlandscaping LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,332

    How about no brakes? Don't squeeze at all b/c you will lock up the bands and slide the tires.Use a lower gear to hold you back some, and don't use any brakes.I wouldn't try this on a really steep hill, I'm talking about a slight grade in a yard, not a bank..
  5. chuckers

    chuckers LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 657

    im not talking abt locking them up use them in moderation...
  6. locutus

    locutus LawnSite Bronze Member
    from NC
    Messages: 1,266

    A commercial w/b mower that is gear driven does have "downhill runaway" which cannot be solved by putting the mower in a lower gear. There is no dynamic braking with these machines. The only think you can do is to use the brakes to reduce your downhill speed. You could also try cutting across the slope as much as possible to reduce going downhill.
  7. Josh18

    Josh18 LawnSite Member
    from AL
    Messages: 64

    Yea I kind of realized that you squeeze the pistols to control the brakes. Didnt need much of an explanation on that. And if you squeeze them all the way it locks and slides to the bottom. I've tried pumping the brakes to see if it helps, but it was minimal. I guess its just the "downhill runaway" that was mentioned.
  8. RobH

    RobH LawnSite Member
    Messages: 142

    I have the same problem with my belt drive machine.

    You could try to do like anti-lock braking where you squeeze and release the brakes rapidly in order to avoid the tires from ripping up the turf. However, this could be hard to do when the hill is quite steep.

    Like Locutus said, try to cut the hill sideways or at an angle to reduce the downhill problem that you have.
  9. lqmustang

    lqmustang LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 620

    Practice, practice, practice. It's takes a bit of finesse to stay in control on steeper inclines. I have a couple yards that are scary steep, but I get up and down pretty easily with my belt drive and pistol grips. Might also help to adjust the levers to give you a bit more brake. My dealer likes to adjust them to where there is very little braking action if the levers are pulled tight. I adjust the rods an extra turn to give me the feel I like. HTH
  10. fga

    fga LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,449

    what locutus said.
    I have several hills i cut with a 21" lawnboy. i used to go down, I mean DOWN, grass stains on my....... go across, its safer.

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