Question about Blades/Cut

Discussion in 'Mechanic and Repair' started by johnc8407, Sep 28, 2009.

  1. johnc8407

    johnc8407 LawnSite Member
    from AR
    Messages: 15

    My title may not be what it needs to be. I am solo and small, since I do this part time. I've read a lot on here trying to learn from all the experienced people in the industry. Want to know about blades. When should they be sharpened, changed/replaced. Do you do it your self or what? I have a honda that has the dual blade on it so not sure how to sharpen it. Some of the yards I cut have those weeds that are hard to cut....and my blade hates it.
  2. grandview (2006)

    grandview (2006) LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,465

    All depends on how much you cut. If they start to feel dull time to sharpen them. Dull blades brown out the tips of lawns and rip the grass out too.
  3. johnc8407

    johnc8407 LawnSite Member
    from AR
    Messages: 15

    Thanks for your reply. Tired to private message you but dont have the option for some reason.
  4. grandview (2006)

    grandview (2006) LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,465

    You can now, you have 10 posts now.:cool2:
  5. mowerbrad

    mowerbrad LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 6,268

    I have found that it depends on the blades your running. My gator blades on my bob-cat need to be sharpened more often than my blades I run on my dixie chopper. I will usually look at the cut it leaves, you can always tell the difference between the cut of sharp blades and dull blades.
  6. Two Seasons

    Two Seasons LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 791

    This time of year we change out the blades every 4 hours.

    We own a Magna-Matic setup and love it. Expensive but worth it. Today I sharpened 12 blades in just under an hour.

    With the kind of grass you mow down south, plus the sand, you blades will need to be sharpened all the time.
  7. Breezmeister

    Breezmeister LawnSite Bronze Member
    Male, from South Jersey
    Messages: 1,793

    As you can see you will get alot of varied answers. It all comes down to how you treat the blades, dry dusty sandy places and you will need to do it more. I recommend changing blades every day.

    I spend about 2 hours a day sharpening blades and charge $3.00 a blade, I know that there are guys in my area that charge as little as $2.50 and up to $7.00 a blade. so the cost can verier as well.

    Now I have one customer that changes his blades every day, so he will bring them over to the shop and swap out his batch from the day before. He has 24 rider blades and 60 walk behind blades ready for his mowers at any time. He takes pride in his cuts.

    Now that nice thing about doing these blades is that they still have a nice edge on then, so I might have to make just a few passes on the grinder, taking only a 64th to a 32th off the edge. On average, he will get 15 sharpenings per blade.

    As for how to sharpen them, I have an 8 inch bench grinder with a 24 grit grinding wheel and only sharpen the frist 4 inches or the area in front to the air lift. Any more and you are just wasting time, only the tip does the cutting. I use the same angle that came with the blade, some where between 30 and 35 degrees I guess. Steeper in the fall when doing leaves.

    Now you can use a hand grinder, or get one of those fancy sharping machine if you like, depends on what you can afford or feel comfortable using. Me, I like to sit down at the beach grind :laugh:

    Balancing is very important, you are running a blade on the end of a crank shaft, so I can not stress how important that it is done right. You can buy an el cheapo balancer for a few bucks, but in your case, spend the money on a good balancer. Your Honda will thank you for that.

    As to when is a blade done, most blades you buy are 2 inches wide, so you can sharping back to the air lift, or about 1 inch in. If you take care of your blades, don't hit any sticks, rocks or sprinkler heads, you can get 10 to 15 sharpenings per blade.

    If you are going to change your blades every day or every other day, buy enough blades to get you through a week, so that you can save the dull blades to do the sharping when you have some free time, like on the week ends or rainy days or when ever.

    Good Luck :drinkup:

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