possible to mulch without mulch kit

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by bmxican, Sep 18, 2005.

  1. bmxican

    bmxican LawnSite Member
    Messages: 22

    my main mower for the past four seasons has been a toro 44" ztr. Every year about now I put on the mulch kit and lose performance. When the kit is on I'm getting much less suction, leaving random weeds and blades of grass still standing uncut, but it does chew the leaves up real good. Without the kit on, in side discharge mode, the air flow, suction, cut, and dispersal are great. It just doesn't mulch the leaves, spits them out mostly whole.
    Is there a way to get the leaves mulched without having the mulch kit on. The deck is a toro SFS and per recommendations on this sight I have removed the 4 small metal "kickers" (for more airflow) but have also tried reinstalling them with similar results - unmulched leaves. I've tried the atomic blades, side discharge blades, and the solid mulching blade.
    any suggestions? a different type or combnation of blades, double blades, and or kickers maybe? Or am I stuck with having to use the mulch kit. thanks!

    :gunsfirin mulch kit
  2. QualityLawnCare4u

    QualityLawnCare4u LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,758

    What I have done when I don't have the mulch kit on is to windrow (throw the leaves where you still have to mow) and keep running over them as you work your way to the inside. Using gators this works real good with leaves. Did not have my JD Monday when I did a yard with oak and dog wood leaves and the exmark using just stock blades did a decent job when I windrowed them. You are right though about the mulch kit making you lose performance, it makes a BIG difference if you are cutting tall grass or weeds, slows you down big time.
  3. Soupy

    Soupy LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,125

    Your stuck between a hard place. Sounds like you are losing performance with both setups. It's up to you which one you would rather do without.

    I wait until October too put the mulch kit on and by then the grass is growing slow enough I don't see a problem. I don't worry about leaving a few leaves this time of year. If I get in an area with lots of leaves (under a tree) then I close the OCDC and run over that area a few times.
  4. Envy Lawn Service

    Envy Lawn Service LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 11,087

    There are TWO different mulch kits for the SFS deck.
    Which one do you have?
  5. South Florida Lawns

    South Florida Lawns LawnSite Platinum Member
    from usa
    Messages: 4,783

    Toro 44'' 19hp engine that cannot handle mulching very well. I just keep the blades razor sharp and that helps a lot. There are two mulch kits available? The one I have came from the dealer so its probably the crappier one.
  6. Envy Lawn Service

    Envy Lawn Service LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 11,087

    Yeah, there are two different mulch kits for the SFS available from Toro.
  7. burns60

    burns60 LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 291

    Here is a way to get rid of some leaves and grass. Mow everything to the inside(clockewise) until you get it down to a pile just where you are starting to discharge beyond the pile. Then start going counter clockwise around the pile, but only take about a 4 inch "bite" from the pile all the way around. Keep doing this until you have completely gone throung the whole pile of grass and leaves. Don't give in to the temptation to take more than that 4 inch bite, and when you get through the leaves and grass mixture will be gone. It may take a bit of time, but much faster than raking or bagging.

    This sounds crazy I know, but isn't this what this board is about, learning new things. I'm not saying I do this all the time, just if I don't have the mulchers on yet.
  8. bmxican

    bmxican LawnSite Member
    Messages: 22

    I have the molded hollow plastic 2 piece kit. It came from the dealer, he didn't offer me a different one. What is the other kit like?

    thanks for all the tips.
  9. Meg-Mo

    Meg-Mo Inactive
    Messages: 1,020

    Try the MEG MO blades with the ACS closure. We did what you are doing now with the MEG MO blades you don't have to have mess. Now that leaves are coming the MEG MO blades just cuts them up to nothing.
  10. South Florida Lawns

    South Florida Lawns LawnSite Platinum Member
    from usa
    Messages: 4,783

    However with only 19hp the meg-mo still burn up to much power as in thick grass. I have tried them and the results are the same as a mulch kit.

    The other mulch kit for the 44'' SFS deck is steel. Thats the one the dealer installed on my rig.

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