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How do I balance my blades???

Discussion in 'Starting a Lawn Care Business' started by green-pa, Jun 10, 2008.

  1. green-pa

    green-pa LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 737

    Was wondering what I'm doing wrong or if I'm using the wrong tools to sharpen these blades. I've taken them in 'til now for $7/blade but wanted to see if I could do it and save some time, $, and gas. It was easy enough to sharpen them, only took a few minutes per blade, but then I can't seem to get either blade balanced! Neither appears bent. I grinded for about 10 minutes straight per blade, on the side that was tilted down on the balancer. I didn't want to wear down the cutting edge too much since it was already sharp so I grinded on other parts of that side, mainly near the end. Still no luck, not balanced. The kit I'm using is from lowes, it was about $7 for the sharpening kit that I just attatch to my plug in black and decker drill. Should it be harder to balance a blade than it is just to sharpen it? I'm sick of this and feel like putting them back on the machine since they are both good and sharp. Anyone know if I should or what I'm doing wrong?
  2. bill8379

    bill8379 LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 778

    Once you get it sharp, only grind the side that dips down.. to make it lighter so they balance.

    I guess you should make sure your balancer is working right, I used the cone type that sits on top of a needle and base. It's cheap and perfect. I also don't think you should be grinding any where on the blade except where you are supposed to.

    Edit: Ten minutes a blade LOL.
  3. green-pa

    green-pa LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 737

    I have the same type of balancer. I'm concerned that if I keep grinding on the side that is the cutting side, I will grind it too much.
  4. bill8379

    bill8379 LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 778

    If you're grinding for ten minutes you definetly are but once they are balanced then you will be grinding equally on both sides. That would make them balanced.

    I mean, if a blade is badly out of balance, it probably means you have too much blade on the heavy side and so you have to grind it down. There's really no point in trying to make one side last longer then the other because when you throw the blade out you throw the entire blade out.

    Once they're balanced though, it's a snap. Just try not to go nuts grinding out every gouge in your blade because you'll have to grind an equal amount of weight on the other side.
  5. green-pa

    green-pa LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 737

    Well I tried what u said and sharpened the cutting edge just about a minute more on each blade and now they are much more balanced. Guess I was just scratching it a little the way I was trying to cut metal off of other parts. Thanks man!
  6. jameson

    jameson LawnSite Fanatic
    from PNW
    Messages: 7,388

    Balancing blades?

    I haven't balanced a blade in years, and there hasn't been an attributable mechanical problem on any of my machines resulting from that decision. The second you engage the blades, any stray rock, pebble, twig or what-have-you that nicks a blade, brings it into an immediate state of unbalance.

    Just imagine what you could do with all that spare time spent not balancing blades?
  7. green-pa

    green-pa LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 737

    So balancing blades is not so important? I woulda saved myself a lot of time if I woulda just put em back. But, I guess if u know what ur doing balancing may not be hard. So u just sharpen yours and go? How many sharpenings do blades usually last would u say? 10-20? I wonder why they make it seem important to balance?
  8. JB1

    JB1 LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 5,904

    I have never balanced a blade in my life and have had no problems, worked at a dealership for several years and nobody there ever balanced blades either.
  9. BillyRgn

    BillyRgn LawnSite Member
    Messages: 248

    maybe the table you had the balancer on was not exactly leval, check the table to see if it is leval, o and by the way, i have never balanced my blades either, if they are that so far out of balance it is time for new blades anyway
  10. bill8379

    bill8379 LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 778

    I balance my blades and I can sharpen and balance a blade in 2-4 minutes with a bench grinder. Mind you I sharpen them every 8 hours or so and half the time they are already balanced but I do always check and touch up.

    WAY more then that unless you go crazy with the grinding. When I sharpen I just do enough to make the blade edge look clean then I use the fine grinding wheel to go quickly over the under side of the blade.

    My angles are way off and I wish I had a magnamatic but I get the job done.

    One problem I have is the last inch of my blades seem to get grinded more as they taper off at a slight angle.

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