What am I doing wrong? stripes.....

mikes383

LawnSite Member
Location
NY
So here I am trying to do this right, .....when I'm making my passes, I get confused with lining up the edge of my deck or my tires? Since my deck is offset and my front wheels are offset, one way my right front wheel is basically on the edge of last pass but turn around and my left front wheel is on the inside of the next cut. I seem to get different size stripes as I usually watch my front wheels to line myself up. As stupid and rookie as this sounds, I keep getting myself confused and must double pass and split the difference to even things out. Something so simple, I just keep messing up. My front wheels are the only thing I can easily see to judge where I am and I feel my different tire tracks will screw up my stripes. Sorry for the stupid question......
 

Freaky Fido

LawnSite Bronze Member
Location
Northeast USA
Try this...you may surprise yourself: Don't look down at your wheels or deck, look straight ahead. You know where your deck is better than you think. You make straight even stripes by looking up, not down. Of course you need to look down at obstacles, but otherwise try to just go where it feels right while looking straight ahead.
 

Jay84

LawnSite Member
Well most likely you are overlapping Which is fine a lot of guys do me personally I always keep an eye on the line itself next time take a picture and do you have a stripe kit.
 
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M

mikes383

LawnSite Member
Location
NY
Freaky, I understand what your saying. I do look up and pick an object furthest point out to establish my first pass. Just seems everyone after that is different widths, which is why I was trying to use my front wheels as a guide so I don't leave anything uncut . I will try what your suggesting though. Jay, no stripe kit.
 

Freaky Fido

LawnSite Bronze Member
Location
Northeast USA
Freaky, I understand what your saying. I do look up and pick an object furthest point out to establish my first pass. Just seems everyone after that is different widths, which is why I was trying to use my front wheels as a guide so I don't leave anything uncut . I will try what your suggesting though. Jay, no stripe kit.
It's kind of like when I first started driving. I would line up the crack between the front fender and the hood with the center line of the road to get my lane positioning. The sight line that is. But after a while you just know where your car is on the road and don't need to do that. Same thing with mowing. You get a feel for where the deck is and don't need to look anymore. Your results may vary.
 
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mikes383

LawnSite Member
Location
NY
Im using a 52" Exmark Radius. I guess my next question is, should I be looking for little to zero overlap regardless of what imprint my tires are showing? I suppose the amount of overlap is what's giving me the different size stripes from one pass to the next like jay mentioned?
 

Youngandfree

LawnSite Fanatic
Location
VA
Im using a 52" Exmark Radius. I guess my next question is, should I be looking for little to zero overlap regardless of what imprint my tires are showing? I suppose the amount of overlap is what's giving me the different size stripes from one pass to the next like jay mentioned?
Yes if the left side of the deck sticks out past the edge of the tires, which it should on a 52.
 

Hawkshot99

LawnSite Silver Member
Location
New York
Im using a 52" Exmark Radius. I guess my next question is, should I be looking for little to zero overlap regardless of what imprint my tires are showing? I suppose the amount of overlap is what's giving me the different size stripes from one pass to the next like jay mentioned?
You want as little overlap as possible. I usually overlap about a inch as I go. The bigger the overlap, the more passes you will need.
Do not look at the deck edge to get your alignment, this won't let you drive fast, and when looking back at the lawn it will have lots of small corrections on the line. Look ahead where you want to go. You will eventually just learn and trust where the deck is cutting. I watch my deck edge through the corner of my vision, but am mostly watching the ahead.
 

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