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Worst thing you hit while cutting??? Damaged Engine?

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by Doogiegh, Mar 24, 2002.

  1. Doogiegh

    Doogiegh LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 871

    What's the worst thing you hit while cutting grass that you didn't know was there?

    At my parents house, I hit a huge rock, the size of a baseball in deep grass. I don't know how it got into the yard, but it was there, the blade hit it and wham, bent crankshaft of this 21" walk behind crafstman mower... I had cut the grass many times before, some one must of thrown it into the yard or my brother put it there while playing baseball for a base or something..

    Do you guys worry about hitting water/gas caps or small tree-trunks that would do damage to the mower when you're cutting a property for the first time?

    If you DO hit a large rock or tree stub, and the blade wacks it good, will the belt break or can you do internal damage to the mower? How much can a Exmark or Scag 32-36 " take before it causes real damage?

  2. 65hoss

    65hoss LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 6,360

    A few years ago when we had a HUD contract we hit junk all the time. Most memorable was a 10-speed rim. Buried in 3 foot high grass.
  3. stslawncare

    stslawncare LawnSite Bronze Member
    from DE
    Messages: 1,484

    i always look over new properties for any obstructions. i have hit my share of rocks on my own property (arnt sisters wonderful), but my worst was a few years ago with my old mower when a chunk of the deck fell off into the path of the blades, heard a loud noise then the blades stopped and so did the engine, warranty covered it (less then week old) and i got a new bigger and better mower.
  4. 2 man crew

    2 man crew LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 403

    They are not the worst thing to hit but Tennis balls are the best.
    If you catch em just right they fly. I hit one over a two story house once.
  5. lee b

    lee b LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 6,084

    Last year I hit a piece of cast iron wheel weight {about 100lbs worth} couldn't stop the blades before it stalled the motor. Broke the cast-iron into 3 pieces, was sure I had ruined my z , a Deere M665, but only damage was a ruined blade. I've heard some folks say the spindles on the 7-iron decks aren't any good, don't believe it, on the rough industrial sites I mow, I hit stuff all the time and no problems so far. It's definitely not something I like to happen, but it's one of the hazards of the job.
  6. 1grnlwn

    1grnlwn LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,261

    I hit a piece of 3/4" x 3ft rebar. Had 10 hrs on my new ferris. Killed engine (of course) bent 2 blades , 1 spindle, bent top of deck on two spindle locations. Belt broke about 20 hours after that taking out a $80 hydro belt. Makes you sick.

  7. summitgroundskeeping

    summitgroundskeeping LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 410

    I have an account in the middle of now where and sometimes there are dog toys or tennis balls in the yard. Sometimes I'll be mowing not see some like tennis ball and "thump" it just starts sailing into an open abondoned field. Thank god nothing is around because of a chance they could get hit.

    But this guy had a pool installed so I wasn't able to mow in this area for like 3 weeks, and the contractor left stuf in the yard, and after I weedwhipped down the tall grass I hit a chuck of steel in the grass and twisted a blade up bad.

    BRIAN GALLO LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 282

    Last year while mowing we hit a piece of pipe sticking up out of the ground (must have been an old closeline pole) while trimming with a lawnboy. For some reason the blade driver, which is supposed to shear off under these conditions, didn't! the motor blew to pieces. even the carburator monuts cracked off.
  9. Tyner Lawn Service

    Tyner Lawn Service LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 328

    Been pretty lucky. Had a customer forget after they put up the water hose he left the small sprinkler laying in the grass. I caught it and shot it through a window. His wife had just minutes before been cleaning the window before we got there and since her husband forgot it he took the blame. Had one of those (screw in the ground )dog chain holders hit by the blades and stick in the side of the house. It was hidden in deep grass on a new account.
  10. Doogiegh

    Doogiegh LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 871

    I can see by how quick the responses are coming, seems like everyone hit something.

    Just remembered, I was like 6 years old, my dad was cutting the grass and he told me to go inside (I was outside outback playing at the time, he was cutting the back grass).. I had no idea at the time, but he ran over a hole in the ground, which was a bunnies nest. There were babies in the nest, so of course when they went to ran, they had no idea what hit them.

    I remembered years later that he was all upset and stuff, but my parents never told me what had happened, just that something was wrong with the mower. I was 6 years old, so what did I know? As I said, it was years later that the "truth" came out.. Yuch..

    Poor bunnies..

    How many of you have hit something with a mower that has killed the machine? Is a bent/cracked crankshart all that common?

    What about better belt driven blades, like on the commercial brand stuff? Will the belt snap or the engine stall and die, hopefully without damage?


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