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leeave96

Simplicity Deck Old vs New Questions

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leeave96
My Dad bought a Simplicity Prestige last Spring and aside from the crap dealer, this is a very fine machine. He has the 44" deck and has the anti-blowout kit on the front of the deck. Here's where he is at with the deck. Though blowout is not as much a problem, grass still piles-up on the front of the deck. Infact, he removed the guards around the spindles because the grass would pack into them and he thought it a fire hazard - don't want the new machine burning to the ground after only one year ;) In addition this deck has a large diameter steel rod that connects the bottom exit of the grass chute front to back - sort of a reinforcement and I'm sure a rock deflector too. Problem is - grass piles-up behind it and then randemly spits out a huge glob of grass. Finally, there is a lot of grass build-up under the deck. Even though the deck has a lot of space between the tip of the blades and the front of the deck, grass seems to build-up right to the edge of the blade. I think that is helping stall grass from quickly exiting the deck too. My questions are: 1. Did the old Simplicity decks have the steel rod at the bottom chute exit? My old Wheelhorse deck does not and it does not clog like the Simplicity deck my Dad has. The WH also does not suffer from grass build-up under and on top of the deck nearly to the extent of the Simplicity. 2. Has anyone removed this steel rod? My Dad thought if he did remove it, he'd fab a wrap around piece of steel that would fit over the outside of the chute for the reinforcement. 3. How is the grass build-up on your decks and how do you combat it? BTW, my Dad mows about once a week at his house and once every other week at a camp of his. Sometimes the grass is short and thin, sometimes it is tall and thick - depends on the time of year and rainfall. Thanks in advance, Bill

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RayS
I have the Prestige with 50 inch deck. The rod at the bottom is a rock deflector but also stiffens the deck in that area. When you say guard around the spindles do you mean the baffle, if so that improves lift. Mine only has grass stick bad when I cut wet grass and clumps it when it is to tall.

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Al
HI, I believe your buildup is due to the anti blowout kit. In deck design there is a trade off on blowout and lift. If the front of the deck is at the same or nearly the same level as the blade cutting edge, you get the best lift and wheel track removal. The trade off is blowout, particularly if blades with more aggressive lift are used. I talked to Simplicity about why they didn't put the anti blowout kits on all the tractors. We have installed them under warranty for anyone with a new tractor that had a problem with the blowout. The are included with the mulchers now as with the mulcher, blowout becomes unacceptable. They told me that in certain areas of the country the grass is soft and mushy and that the decks tend to cake up. Up in our area we have predominately Kentucky blue grass and some fescues. With the new 44 inch deck these typically spread the discharge about 4 to 6 feet and there is NO bunching. The grass tends to collect up the 3 or 4 inches deep on the deck, but it is loose and can be blown off easily. In deck design , blowout can be reduced by tucking the blades up behind the leading edge of the deck. This reduces the blowout, but also reduces the lift, so wheel tracks are not picked up as well. Simplicity came out with a little baffle that can be installed under warranty if the unit is in warranty. This is a small piece just a few inches long that goes on the left front corner of the deck and significantly reduces the blow out from the left blade which puts the most of the grass up on the deck. These should be standard on the 2005s and any dealer can put them on the earlier tractors under warranty if still under warranty. These new decks blow the grass and spread it better than any deck we have seen including the old deep decks in normal lawn applications. They have a lot of lift and maximun allowed tip speed. I am sure in other types of grasses and grass that is soft and moisture laden, this may not be true. With the grass we have (had before the drought) I will put the new 44 inch deck up against any deck on anything. As to the guard and reinforcing bar, in our area no grass EVER sticks to it, even if we mow in the rain. I am not disputing your experience, I am only sharing our experience and what I have learned about deck design problems from Simplicity, Gravely and others. Al Eden

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leeave96
My feeling, having worked in design of HVAC stuff where airflow issues are front and center (OK - I've opened myself up to showing how little I really know!), is that you are right in that the blowout kit holds grass that would blow out and up onto the front of the deck. IMHO, the deck design leaves a little to be desired because the angle of discharge is not perpendicular to the direction of cut. Soooo, you loose some of your velocity that would carry the clippings out to the side of the deck. As such, the energy that is carried with the airflow and clippings are forced into the front of the deck as it angles towards discharge. That causes two things. One is grass blowing out the front at the center spindle and non-discharge side spindle, hence the anti-blowout bracket on that side as standard today. Second, as the grass tries to blowout and/or exit the chute, it piles-up on the angled part of the deck from the center blade towards the chute. It is a no-win situation. The trade-off is that you have a LOT of blade overlap and so it is seldom that a blade of grass is left standing after mowing - especially during turns. Bottom line is that the deck gives a good cut and the Prestige is a great machine. If my Dad does the mod's, I'll post a report! Oh, one other thing. As I said earlier, my Dad does NOT mow when he should. Once a week at the house, once every other week at the camp. I can't say that he really gets a better cut that my Wheelhorse's 48" SD deck (when the blades are sharp), but he does get much more grass piled-up onto the deck via blowout and clumping out of the chute. Just some thoughts. Thanks again everyone! Bill

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