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Mulch Kit to Bagging Conversion...

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by sandman23, Mar 8, 2007.

  1. sandman23

    sandman23 LawnSite Member
    from GA
    Messages: 212

    I have bought a mulch kit for my 36" Metro HP and love it. I plan on bagging as little as possible. However, I do not see that I will be able to completely eliminate bagging. I feel that there are times of the season where bagging is necessary (i.e. Scalping Bermuda in the spring and possibly during heavy growing season). I work on very small, well manicured Bermuda lawns and customers don't like to see clippings.

    My questions are; What is the best method for converting from mulching to bagging? I know that I need to take the baffles off but do I need to change the blades as well? Also, can I just leave the baffles off and run some sort of mulching blade? Will this give me the same quality cut? The mulch kit came with Wavy blades. Would these be sufficient to run as both mulching blades without baffles and be able to work with a bagger?

    I will appreciate any suggestions.
  2. dave k

    dave k LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,177

    I think just removing the baffles would be ok, I run gators all the time on my exmark walk behing and walker, no problem, used to have baffles on my Bob Cat walkbehind, but had to remove them in the summer, bermuda way to thick and wet in the am.
  3. Roger

    Roger LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 5,943

    I have an Exmark Viking, 36", and it may have the same fixed deck as your Metro. I bought a mulching kit a few years ago, but was confronted with same issue. Most of my properties I could discharge, some needed to be bagged. However, I had a couple that had so many beds, and lots of growth. I did not want to bag, but discharge would leave too many clippings in beds.

    My intent was to mount/dismount the kit for these properties. I worked hard to get the procedure down to as simple, streamlined, and quick as possible. But, the best I could do was about 20 minutes on, and 20 minutes off. I did make a blade change, that that part was only an extra minute, two at the most.

    The cover, the weldment, the baffle kit, the chute blocker, the front caster bracket, .... I just couldn't find any quicker way.

    Bottom line, for a job that required about 1:15 to mow and bag (perhaps 6-10 Grass Gobblers) was quicker to bag than to mount/dismount the kit and not bag. The kit has been sitting unused in the garage for years. I did use it a couple of years in the Fall for leaves, but now have found better ways of dealing with leaves.

    My grasses are cool weather, northern grasses, very wet and sappy in the Spring. I had to use a low-lift mulching blade with the kit, and that blade did not have enough discharge force to bag, not even enough to do a good job of discharging clippings.

    Your conditions may be so much different that my experiences are of no value to you.
  4. sandman23

    sandman23 LawnSite Member
    from GA
    Messages: 212

    Thanks for the input. Sounds like the baffles might be comming off. I guess I will just have to try some different blades until I find the ones work for me.
  5. lawnprosteveo

    lawnprosteveo LawnSite Bronze Member
    from Tulsa
    Messages: 1,930

    I just bought a John Deere Quik Trak from a guy that had the discharge cover of the mulch kit on but not the baffles. He liked it better that way. So far, doing some spring cleanups, it is mulching the leaves very well....

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