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Mower is leaving long grass spots when mowing

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by Green Skapes, May 21, 2009.

  1. Green Skapes

    Green Skapes LawnSite Member
    Messages: 20

    I have a Ferris Hydro Walk 48" walk behind. I've been cutting some long grass lately and the mower is leaving long spots when I cut. It's leaving like a mowhawk in the grass. I was told to make sure the deck was clean. I cleaned it out good and put some new belts on the mower. I took it out today and cut and it cut good with normal length grass. When I cut the long grass it leaves long spots. I'm assuming the grass is just too long. I have to literly cut it twice to make it look good.

    Is the grass just too long? Or, do I need to sharpen the blades?

    Any help would be appreciated!


  2. Lawnboy48195

    Lawnboy48195 LawnSite Member
    Messages: 57

    I had the same problem last year with my 36" Toro and I posted the question. Everybody told me to get rid of my mulching blades and go with the high lift. I did and there are no more "mowhawks" at all. I get a nice even cut - looks like shag carpet. Hope this helps!
  3. dmcdade

    dmcdade LawnSite Member
    Messages: 50

    Long grass. I just did five vacant lots that the grass was about 1-2 ft tall with weeds even higher (almost 6ft). I had to double mow each, which kinda sucked cause my 1 employee decided to call in sick, then quit the next day..lol.

    But anyways, I set my husg casters all the way up for the first pass, then removed 2 spacers for the second pass and everything looked good.

    It sure would have been alot fast with a sulkie though, my fricking legs were tired!

  4. Roger

    Roger LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 5,937

    Greenskapes ... You did not include the kind of blades you were using in your post. Also, some better definitions of "long grass," "long spots," kind of grass, etc. would be helpful in getting an answer to your question. How about some pics? That too would be helpful.
  5. JDiepstra

    JDiepstra LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,511

    How often are you sharpening? Sharpen often! Every other day or so.
  6. Green Skapes

    Green Skapes LawnSite Member
    Messages: 20

    I think they are Gator Blades. I bought the machine used and they are the blades that were on it when I bought it. They look like Gators though. The grass I have been cutting has been pretty long. They are vacant homes that haven't been cut this year. I'm assuming that grass is just too long. I don't know what kind of grass it is. It almost looks like a fescue or something. It's longer than the other grass and has like a tasle on the end. The lawns I've been cutting are loaded with this crap and it seems impossible to cut.

    I do have another customers who's grass just doesn't seem to ever stop growing. I cut it every week and every week it's so long. I find that if I go a bit too fast, I leave long spots behind me. I changed my belts and I'm scheduled to cut their lawn tomorrow so we'll see if it helps.
  7. Green Skapes

    Green Skapes LawnSite Member
    Messages: 20

    I actually haven't sharpened the blades yet. So, I was thinking that was part of the problem. I have used the mower quite a bit the last month. That brings me to my next question. How sharp should the blades be?
  8. eaglescout

    eaglescout LawnSite Member
    Messages: 65

    Sharp enough to shave with. just kidding that could be quite dangerous. I like to sharpen the top with the bench grinder and the use a flat file to cut a little off the bottom. You can see when they look like a knife. If they are dull the front edge will be rounded. Look at a new blade, that will give you a good idea. When you put the new blades on you will be able to go at least twice as fast(or more). Your mower will not have to work as hard neither will you. I cut 12 acres today (4 commercial shopping centers) I am ready to change out the blades.By the way i am running a Ferris 2000 with the 61" deck. It was wet with rain showers and I was running wide open which is about 10 mph. The cut was excellent.
  9. Roger

    Roger LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 5,937

    Get rid of the Gator blades, and put on high-lift ones that are sharpened every few hours of work. That would be a place to start to get better result.
  10. eaglescout

    eaglescout LawnSite Member
    Messages: 65

    yes the gator blades might be part of the problem, however that is what I am running I am cutting the shopping centers every 2 weeks here in sc. the grass, clover, weeds combo is about 6" high and wet breezed right thru it. Motto the sharper the blades the better. I used to mow Bahia (Pensacola) grass in Florida. Strictly seed head type of grass. Like cutting wire, I changed the blades as needed sometimes several times a day. I was running a snapper rider and 21" selfpropelled. If you ever mowed that sh@t, you will know what I am taking about.
    Last edited: May 21, 2009

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