Z920M Mulch lines/clumps!

Tb582

LawnSite Member
Location
Southern NJ
So I have a 2018 JD z920M with the OEM mulch kit.

what I’ve found using it over the last 1.5 years is that where my grass is either longer, thicker, etc the mower will bog down and leave grass clumps which I hate and also don’t want to mow twice.

Looking around at some options it sounds like I might be better off removing the entire mulch kit, including the baffles, and side discharge plate; upgrade my blades gators, and call it a day.

My other option, keep the mulch kit but get a grassflap and or advanced chute that I can mow with closed most of the time to get the mulching BUT open the side discharge when I get to the thicker areas.

though with the second option keeping the mulch kit seems like an issue as the baffles are designed to keep the grass mostly in each of the three blades, hence really only the right blade will side discharge which just seems odd…

thoughts?
 

Youngandfree

LawnSite Fanatic
Location
VA
I’d like the best of both lol but maybe I can just keep the mulch kit but change the blades to gators, in the hopes that the new blades are so awesome it just handles my issue…
It likely won't. Gator blades are still meant to discharge. Typical mulch blades don't have a sail and don't provide much lift, which keeps the grass "in place" and helps push clippings down.

You said you know the problem. The solution is don't let the grass get too tall.
 

Freaky Fido

LawnSite Bronze Member
Location
Northeast USA
Mow higher, more often and only when it's dry if you want to keep the mulch kit on. It's surprising how much less grass you process just moving the deck up 1/4 or 1/2 inch. If you're running a mulch kit all a grassflap is going to do it open up the right cutting chamber and you'll have little discharge velocity - not likely to have much benefit. As far as Gators go, the G5 and G6 are high lift mulching blades, the only difference being that the G6 are thicker steel. I find the G6 to be too heavy for my machines to spin well. I run G5 blades on my Exmark walk-behind at all times and when I can on my Bob-Cat zero-turn. They don't do well in heavy spring growth on my Bob-Cat - cut quality suffers. So my vote is to try the Gator G5 blades. You may still get some windrows but not the sort of problematic clumping you can get with a mulch kit. Edit - And ditto for NO on Gator blades with a mulch kit. It will be the worst of both worlds, not the best.
 

Hawkshot99

LawnSite Silver Member
Location
New York
On my previous mower I ran a mulch kit for a while. Loved it on my personal lawn, and many of my customers.
The issue was the crap lawns, or if the grass got overgrown, it was just to much to handle.
I removed the kit and got a ocdc so I could get close to beds and been very happy.

I personally run a highlift blade and a G5 on each spindle. Gives a great cut, and leaves basically no clippings on a non overgrown lawn. Many on here tell me its dumb and waste of blades, but the results work for me, and I won't go back to a single blade.
 
OP
Tb582

Tb582

LawnSite Member
Location
Southern NJ
Yeah gotta choose one or the other.
Yeah, exactly what I’m having an issue deciding.
It likely won't. Gator blades are still meant to discharge. Typical mulch blades don't have a sail and don't provide much lift, which keeps the grass "in place" and helps push clippings down.

You said you know the problem. The solution is don't let the grass get too tall.
Not sure where you got your info.. gators have mulching blades too
Mow higher, more often and only when it's dry if you want to keep the mulch kit on. It's surprising how much less grass you process just moving the deck up 1/4 or 1/2 inch. If you're running a mulch kit all a grassflap is going to do it open up the right cutting chamber and you'll have little discharge velocity - not likely to have much benefit. As far as Gators go, the G5 and G6 are high lift mulching blades, the only difference being that the G6 are thicker steel. I find the G6 to be too heavy for my machines to spin well. I run G5 blades on my Exmark walk-behind at all times and when I can on my Bob-Cat zero-turn. They don't do well in heavy spring growth on my Bob-Cat - cut quality suffers. So my vote is to try the Gator G5 blades. You may still get some windrows but not the sort of problematic clumping you can get with a mulch kit. Edit - And ditto for NO on Gator blades with a mulch kit. It will be the worst of both worlds, not the best.
if I try the gator blades I need to remove the entire mulch kit lol - need to be convinced that the gators are going to be so worth it and that the clippings are going to be so small anyone would think it was mulched!

I personally run a highlift blade and a G5 on each spindle. Gives a great cut, and leaves basically no clippings on a non overgrown lawn. Many on here tell me its dumb and waste of blades, but the results work for me, and I won't go back to a single blade.
Two! That sounds crazy
 

Youngandfree

LawnSite Fanatic
Location
VA
Yeah, exactly what I’m having an issue deciding.
Not sure where you got your info.. gators have mulching blades too

Well you did come here asking professionals about the problem you are having. Yes, gator blades are CALLED mulching blades, but they aren't DESIGNED to be used with a mulching kit. It's marketing semantics. Good luck on your quest.
 

Hawkshot99

LawnSite Silver Member
Location
New York
Well you did come here asking professionals about the problem you are having. Yes, gator blades are CALLED mulching blades, but they aren't DESIGNED to be used with a mulching kit. It's marketing semantics. Good luck on your quest.
Not exactly......This is the original Gator blade, that I have been aware of for quite a long time. I use them in the fall for leaf destruction.
http://gatorblade.com/
THese have been around alot longer then the Oregon G series.
 

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