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Not using mowers for leaf removal

Discussion in 'Landscape Maintenance' started by lawnsaspire, Sep 29, 2012.

  1. lawnsaspire

    lawnsaspire LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,687

    Thank you. I wish my manual had exact instructions on such things.
  2. lawnsaspire

    lawnsaspire LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,687

    Like an idiot, I ran into some landscape timbers squared around a tree yesterday. Jarred the setup timbers quite a bit. That's when I noticed this.
  3. lawnsaspire

    lawnsaspire LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,687

    Ok, I'm sorry I didn't read your edited post. After 6 years of doing this, my lack of anything beyond routine mechanical knowledge and inclination is finally catching up with me.
  4. Ridin' Green

    Ridin' Green LawnSite Fanatic
    Male, from Michigan
    Messages: 17,646

    I was just looking at the manual on Scag's site for your machine. It looks like your spring is a fixed unit with no way to either tension, or loosen it like I can do with mine. I'd just change the belt out and try that before i got too worried about anything else. I bet it smooths back out. A worn belt can make it vibrate pretty badly, and it'll just get worse as the belt gets worse. eventually, you'll prolly end up on a property somewhere and have it snap. I KNOW you don't want that to happen.:nono:
  5. Turf Commando

    Turf Commando LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,186

    Leaf clean -up with tarp has been used for years why stop a tactic that's proven to work? I 'd rather tarp and drag then mow over leaves anyday.
    Posted via Mobile Device
  6. lawnsaspire

    lawnsaspire LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,687

    Yeah, thanks, you've been a big help to all my dumb questions. I'm just trying to figure out where I can get the belt before Monday since my dealer is an hour away. I'm not sure if they sell it's equivilant at Farm & Home of Advance Auto.
  7. lawnsaspire

    lawnsaspire LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,687

    The only reason I usually mulch is because of dumping costs. I still have leaves in my garden area that I dumped there last year b/c I hate going to the dumpsite. But they just called me the other day and said they were under new management and wondered why I hadn't been down there lately. There was a guy down there I called the "grass nazi" b/c he was very strict and wouldn't pick up stuff I set on my curb cause he said it was from other people's yards. It was of course, but why's he care? It was in the proper containers that they require. He must of pissed off alot of the landscapers for them to fire him. THe grass Nazi's reign of terror is no more!
  8. Ridin' Green

    Ridin' Green LawnSite Fanatic
    Male, from Michigan
    Messages: 17,646

    Take it off before it breaks, and take it into a NAPA store if you have any near you that are open on Sundays. You should be able to get a good quality belt that matches it there.
  9. StanWilhite

    StanWilhite LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,383

    I agree with Ridin'. The only difference in a belt from a dealer (OEM), and a good quality belt from an auto parts store, is the price. But make sure they're giving you a quality belt...not their cheapest belt.

    When I bought my first tractor (in 1980) it had a 60 inch "belly" mower under it, and used a belt that was 126 inches long. When I wore the first belt out, I drove a round trip of 50 miles to buy one from the dealer...it was 55.00.

    By the time I needed my second belt, I had wised up (by asking questions to experienced people) and carried it with me to a parts store that is only 2 minutes from my house. I bought the EXACT same belt, with the EXACT same numbers on it, from the EXACT same manufacturer, for 11.00. It was the very same one I drove an extra 46 miles for, and paid 5 times as much for, at the dealer.

    I was reminded of a lesson that I had learned many years before... you don't always get more by simply paying more. I do want to make this clear though, I do try to support my local dealer, but sometimes it just costs too much.....you feel like you're getting raped.

    So, in general, there are rare cases that require specialty belts, but for the average belt, it has been my experience that a good quality belt from a good auto parts store will last just as long as one from the dealer. Sometimes the manufacturer won't be the same....although many times they will be from the same manufacturer.

    One other little tidbit that might save you some future time and aggravation. The reason I always say to carry the belt with you to the store if possible, is because of the difference in the way belt manufacturers measure the length of their belts. You can't just walk in and say (for instance) "I need a B58", and be confident that you are leaving with the belt you need.

    When designating the length of a belt, some companies use the length of the inside circumference of the belt, while others use the measurement of the outside circumference of the belt. This causes a lot of confusion because there is 2.1 inches difference in the 2 measurements. The only thing that is standard with all of the belt manufacturers I'm aware of is the width. An "A" belt is 1/2" wide, while a "B" belt is 5/8" wide.

    It's the length that can be confusing. Because of the difference in the way different companies measure belt length (as I said, some using inside cir. and others using outside cir.) a "B56" from one company is 5/8" wide and 56 inches long. But from another company, a "B56" is 5/8" wide (same width) but 58.1 inches long. That difference of 2.1 inches in length will usually prevent them from being interchangeable.

    That's why you should always take the old belt with you if possible. You can lay the old one on the counter, then lay the new one on top to see if they're the same length. The old belt may be just a tad longer because it stretched over time, but it won't be anywhere around 2.1 inches difference.

    Sorry for the long post but I hope it's beneficial.

    Good luck, Stan
    Last edited: Sep 30, 2012
  10. lawnsaspire

    lawnsaspire LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,687

    I just removed the belt easily by hand. I could of removed it with a single finger almost. When I removed the belt the spring became totally loose and limp. SHould this be? It doesn't look stretched and I can't see anywhere to tighten it on the idler arm.

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