What do you guys use to take off you blades?

Discussion in 'Starting a Lawn Care Business' started by bigw, Dec 28, 2007.

  1. bigw

    bigw LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,540

    Do any of you use impact wrench to take off your blades and to put them back on or do you use a torque wrench and really torque them to specs? I know what you are suppose to do but what do you do?
  2. jaybow

    jaybow LawnSite Bronze Member
    from Mi
    Messages: 1,089

    Well i cant tell you that this is right but I use an impact gun. This was my first year in the buisness and I have had no problems so far. I would say just dont crank that impact to long when your tightening if you know what i am saying. You wouldnt want to strip the blade spindle.
  3. mower&more1986

    mower&more1986 LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 524

    on most of my equipment i use the blade buster http://www.gadgetcorner.com/hardw/blade/blade.htm
    but on larger equipment with more than two blades id go with a impact wrench
    you could probably find a electric one that would be good or get a air compressor and other air tool each come in handy
  4. Icemanku

    Icemanku LawnSite Member
    Messages: 190

    Use a hockey stick, take the blade off the stick of course but it works great.
  5. topsites

    topsites LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 21,653

    Just don't torque them on real hard, set the torque light and quickly 'pop' it on there, after it seats don't bore it down.
    You might then double-check with hand tools, go behind yourself the first few times, until you get the feel of it.
    Also make sure you initially hand-thread the nut on there, get it on there a good 4-5 turns, make sure it's on there before you hit it.

    Worst case scenario?
    You'll strip a bolt, it's annoying and a new bolt is like 10 friggin' dollars, but other than that it's all good, just make sure you put the nut on there by hand and give it more than a few full turns until it's on there, then hit it with the impact and go easy on it.
    If you don't have a nut because the bolt goes straight into the spindle, same thing, several full turns.
    If you can't take it off with hand tools it might be too tight, but it does need to be on there, either way it's not rocket science.

    DO take tools with you, case one should come loose (but this almost never happens), more like if you need to take one off to unwrap some crap that will get tangled up on one or the other, sooner or later :laugh:

    Hand tools, impact wrench, either way.
    I've never used a torque wrench, not for blades, thou I find I usually need a breaker bar or steel tube to assist.
  6. Roger

    Roger LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 5,940

    For my w/b with a through-bolt, I use a box end wrench on one end, a breaker bar with socket on the other. For my ZTR, I use a 1/2" drive ratchet, and one glove for my hand. In 10 seasons, I have never had to use any excessive force to get a bolt loose.

    Since I only have two machines, plus a hand mower (use a box end wrench), I only make about 10 blade changes per week. Using hand tools is much faster than getting out any power tools. If one has more machines, then I can see using power tools. I have not used a torque wrench, just as many others have stated, so I don't know how close I am to recommended measure. But, I have never had a bolt/nut come loose, and never had one too tight I couldn't remove the next time.
  7. hackitdown

    hackitdown LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,621

    I set the machine up with a Jungle Jack which takes maybe 15 seconds. Then I use a cheapo cordless electric impact wrench to remove the blade bolts. It takes about 1 minute for all three. Bought the impact at Pep Boys on sale.

    Then I sharpen the blades with a bench grinder and scrape the deck "clean" with a little spade. This part takes me the most time.

    To reinstall, I start the blade bolts by hand, then spin them on with the impact wrench, but only until they are just barely seated. I then tighten them down to spec, about 110 lbs, with a Crapsman torque ratchet. I use a 2x4 to prevent the blades from spinning.

    The key for me is to have all the tools lined up and ready, which is almost impossible for me to do.
  8. grassnazi1

    grassnazi1 LawnSite Member
    Messages: 73

    Before I got into lawncare, my father owned a small engine repair shop.... Literally since I have been 10 years old or so we have always just used an impact gun. Its faster and has never caused any issues in the 300 million plus freaking blades I've replaced in my lifetime. As long as your careful and start it by hand first and DONT over do it, I dont think you'll ever have a problem. Also, on most impact guns you can set the torque foot pounds (actually applied air pressure) so depending on if its a home cheapo walk behind or a commercial Z you can adjust the pressure your applying to the nut. Just use common sense and you'll never have an issue.
  9. Jay Ray

    Jay Ray LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 6,510

    Impact off, impact on to snug, then torque to spec.
  10. J&T Kiev

    J&T Kiev LawnSite Senior Member
    from N.W In.
    Messages: 416

    I use 15/16th inch wrench, shop jack(to raise the mower decks) and the wrench in the picture to hold the blades in position.

    Imported Photos 00056.JPG

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