What am I doing wrong?

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by clallen03, Feb 5, 2006.

  1. clallen03

    clallen03 LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 514

    I have a Exmark 36" metro. I just got it used a couple of weeks ago. Here in Georgia the weather has been a little warm so the grass is starting to look like it needs a little touching up. So I fired up the 36" and begin to cut but I realized that when I turn around at the end of every pass the tires are ripping my grass down to the soil.

    I dont know what Im doing wrong. Can someone tell me what I need to do to make this stop. The growing season is right around the corner and I really want to have this worked out before I get on my clients lawns.

    Thanks in advance for your help.


    JKOOPERS LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,259

    you are braking too hard , you want to keep all the wheels moving
  3. Mark McC

    Mark McC LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,565

    I have to do a three-point turn (or if using a hydro, a zero turn) with any mower other than a 21. Hydro or belt, if you pivot on one wheel, you'll tear turf on all but the deepest grass.

    One thing about zero turns is that they do not align you with the next strip of mowing. I like the zero turn capability for those occasions when they're needed, but most of the time, I use a three-point turn even with my TTHP.
  4. clallen03

    clallen03 LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 514

    I understand what you are saying, but when I keep the wheels moving I am so far off my last pass that I would have to go in reverse to get back lined up with the last row.

    What do you think?
  5. clallen03

    clallen03 LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 514

    Now when you say the three point turn, does this mean I have to turn slightly, pull the mower back, then go forward? This will have me wore out by my third lawn of the day. This mower doesn't have a true reverse and if it did it would take more time to switch it into reverse after every pass.

    If this is what I have to do then I'll do it, but Im really just trying to see if any one else has a easier more effective way of doing it.
  6. Mark McC

    Mark McC LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,565

    Unfortunately, the need to put the critter into reverse to align with the next strip of mowing is hard to avoid, at least in my experience. I know it's a drag, but I have no solution.

    Here's something to consider, if it helps at all. My eXmark Metro 36 (12.5 Kawasaki) will mow an acre of grass about 20% faster than a John Deere L110 with the 17.5 Kohler Command and a 42-inch cutting deck, which has a top speed of 5 mph. I could not mow at 5mph with that mower and yes, it is a homeowner model, but still...

    Sorry about having no solution to the three-point turn dilemma, but I just have not encountered one.
  7. clallen03

    clallen03 LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 514

    Thank for that advice. If no one else has any other suggestion then that may be that answer to my problem.

    Anyone else have a different solution to the problem?
  8. boatdude

    boatdude LawnSite Member
    Messages: 55

    I'm not in the business but I have the same mower as you and experience the same thing. Unfortunately the belt drives must be manhandled in the turns...and even though it is only a 36 inch mower it is heavy. I have found the reverse assist to be a joke...it is totally ineffective...if anyone has any suggestions on how to make it at least provide some "assist" I would love to hear it.
  9. beautifullawns

    beautifullawns LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 313

    When i take turn the mower i go real slow around the turn and then speed back up that will stop the rutting. It will take sometime and practice.
  10. Mark McC

    Mark McC LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,565

    My eXmark Metro 36 actually has a reverse gear, but it's not worth much. I saw something here on Lawnsite about someone installing chain drive on such a mower. That would solve the problem real fast.

    I've thought about putting some sort of belt guide that would increase the contact between the belt and the pulleys, which would presumably help with reverse, but never acted on it. Chains sound great, but one suspects it'd be expensive to install and a colossal pain to change.

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