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mroman59

sharpening blades & balance

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mroman59
Those of you who sharpen your own blades, how do you balance them? I saw a balancer of some sort at my Simplicity dealer sitting on the counter. It had a blade on it and it appeared that it could accommodate blades with different arbor sizes. It wasn't until after I left the shop that I thought about if that was an item for sale or just sitting on the counter for show. Anyone have any links to balance tools that you use and like. Thanks, MR

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UCD
Cheapest balancer is a screw Screwed in to a bench or a 1/4" rod in a vice and set the center hole over it when both ends of blade are level blade is balanced. You must have gotten your $10.00 worth of info by now

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JohnMBerst
Purchased a stepped cone balance which you put the blade on. Will take different size holes, but hove to make sure the bench/table it it on is level to begin with. The screw/nail idea also works well.

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powerking_one
I have bought cheapy ball bearings with the O.D. matching the bore size of the blade, then removed the oil seals/shields to minimize the stiction/rolling resistance. Then put a bolt with spacers on it mounted to a piece of wood in the horizontal plane. This gives pretty good alternative to the expensive Magna_Matic $500 machines that the better mower shops (should?) use. Tom (PK)

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mroman59
My gator blades have a larger arbor size than a screw or nail. But you gave me an idea of what I can use instead. When using a screw or nail in the work bench, I find I can balance it by slightly adjusting it on the screw or nail. So I really never know if it is my balancing act (talent) on them that makes the blade look balanced when it is not or if the blade is really balanced. The stepped cone balance is the one I saw at the Simplicity dealer and I may pick one up next time I am at the hardware store or dealer. I have seen them on the internet also. I probably would have forgotten to make sure my work bench was balance first. For all the above information, I would say I got my $10 worth today. I hope to make my next question a little more challenging and squeeze some greater money saving ideas out of you guys nest time.

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UCD
quote:
Originally posted by mroman59
For all the above information, I would say I got my $10 worth today.
$10.00 that you didn't spend a dime for. Some people appeciate the help they get and join the club.
quote:
Originally posted by mroman59
I hope to make my next question a little more challenging and squeeze some greater money saving ideas out of you guys nest time.
There might not be any money saving ideas next time, Sometimes the help drys up with that attitude.

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mroman59
quote:
$10.00 that you didn't spend a dime for. Some people appeciate the help they get and join the club.
I was not trying to be sarcastic or make it sound like I did not appreciate the help. In most of my posts I try to make it a point to say thanks, as you can see by looking at my initial post on this thread. If I was not appreciative I would not have said thanks! I have also had correspondence by email and pm's with members which I thank them for there help and I also give help to them when I can from my Simplicity experience. I was just trying to be a little funny in my last post. As far as the fees for membership, I assume that is what you are referring too, when you say $10, I am not that quick to join yet because I am dying of cancer. I was diagnosed with 4th stage leukemia in 2003 and have never been in remission. I spend each year going from hospital to hospital, from clinical trial to clinical trial just trying to stay alive. I am sick most of my days and sleep a lot to try to recover from the disease and side affects of the drugs I am on. I am not sure how long I will live. I am selling one of my Simplicity tractors this spring because I don't have the energy to keep it up. I am fixing up the other to use plus have ready to sell, if things don't look good for me. I am planning on trying to buy a new tractor, so my wife won't have to worry about tractors breaking down for a few years if I die. I have been on disability for the last 8 years. Money is tight, but that is not the reason I have not joined yet. It's just that from month to month I don't know if I will be here or not. I was admitted to the hospital right before Christmas and almost died of kidney failure caused by the cancer. Then I was admitted to the hospital one month ago and almost died from a severe reaction to a chemotherapy drug that I tried. Because I cant take that drug, I now have to travel to another city to see if that hospital has a trial drug that will keep me alive. There is no cure. They just keep you alive as long as they can. Hope this helps.

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sovereign72
Well I guess I have to be the heartless one, while I sympathize with your condition the best I can, there isnt a one of us who will live forever, all humans die. I could be hit by a bus tomorrow but it didnt stop me from joining the club and paying the dues to help keep this place going because I get so much help from it. It's just my personal feeling that I wouldnt want to come here and freeload no matter what my life circumstance. My appologies in advance to the club if I have offended anyone here. I certainly mean no disrespect to any member or non member.

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Burntime
If you can swing it then so be it. If not you at least found a good group of guys that all enjoy a common interest. Hope you feel better and live a long time giving your wife a hard time with many tractors!:D

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Allis_HB112
I've tried the screwdriver method, but after buying the cone 20+ years ago, that's the only thing I use anymore. It helps balance not only end to end, but if the back lip gets REAL bad (as usual) it helps me balance front to back, also, which I've had to do, either with some extra grinding, or a few spots of weld to add weight.

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Burntime
Good point. I have gators for something like 9 years and they are still in good shape. I have no idea why with all the hickory and acorn nuts that get shot thru them, but they are still good. I am going to have to try the cone to see if mine are off or if I have just been luck...

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AC_B-1Novice
Get the thinnest nail you can get such as a paneling nail or brad, a level, a ruler and a pencil. Drive the nail where you wish on a work bench side, a wall, a cabinet or other vertical surface. Put the blade on the nail with it sticking through the hole of the blade. Measure up ½ to an 1 inch above your blade at the nail and make a mark. Take your level and strike a line at that point a foot or so beyond the nail at each side of it. If your blade sits level to the line by eye, that is good enough and simple to adjust if not. If the blade is not level grind more off the heavy side such as a notch on the back of the blade until it is level. A quick check on the nail will let you see how you are doing. Fast and easy. larry

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TimJr
I am not real fond of the stepped cone type balancers - the OD of the steps usually don't fit the ID of the blade real well. If you don't carefully center the blade, it is easy to be off by 1/8", which will immediately give you a false out-of-balance reading. This is one job that the nail on the wall is the best, unless you want to throw down some bucks for the MagnaMatic, which is really cool and accurate. Also - if you don't thoroughly clean your blade off before balancing it, you are wasting your time. That dried on grass has some weight to it. Tim

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Boney
I sharpen them with a hand file, read once that if you are not careful using a grinder can heat the blade and change the hardness of the blade making it easier to get dull, not knowing if it is true or not and that it takes me maybe 20 minutes to sharpen my blades by hand, i use a hand file and a nail on the wall. I have heard of people using a grinder and dipping the blades into water to cool them off.

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TimJr
If you turn the blade blue when sharpening, let off it! There is no need to discolor the metal when using a grinder. Dipping it is riskier than letting it air cool, I would think. Even if sharpened with a grinder, it is smart to finish off the edge with a file and emory paper. It isn't supposed to be a razor sharp edge - that will wear off right away anyway. Tim

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