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leeave96

50 Inch Deck Question

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leeave96

Firstly - much thanks to everyone for answering my posts on this Simplicity Landlord DLX!!!!

Last night I was mowing at a Church with it and encountered some sparks from under the deck.

I was mowing some pretty tall, thick grass - all was going well when I went to trim around the edge of a picnic shelter, I noticed a few sparks blowing out he left front side of the deck when I attempted to ease the tractor forward and in a tight turn. It sounded like the blade was just touching a rock (like feathering a blade on a grinding wheel when sharpening). I backed-up, got off the tractor for a look-see and found nothing. When I pulled up again, more sparks. So I drove around the spot and all was good. Later while mowing, I got an occasional spark and towards the end a slight thump. This would always happen during a tight turn.

I haven't pulled the deck as it got dark on me last night - but will do so this evening.

My question is - do these 50 inch decks have a bit of flex to them? Anyone flexed their 50 inch deck such that the blade slightly touched the deck shell? I'm mowing lumpy, rolling ground, so the ground supported deck is great - but the deck needs to roll side to side with it and I'm concerned I'm getting some binding somewhere.

BTW - the 14 hp Vanguard which replaced the 18 hp Vanguard is doing GREAT! I kept thinking - this Landlord is a comfortable tractor, nimble and just a nice piece of work. While mowing, I was also thinking, I wouldn't mind having a Prestige one of these days - so when I got home, I looked up the Prestige and they now come with a 30 hp engine! Here I am worrying about 14 vs 18 hp downgrade with my replacement engine and Simplicity is now using a 30 hp engine????

As I said, the grass I mowed was very tall and thick. It was going on two weeks since the last mow and had a fair amount of dew on it too. The 50 inch deck cut the grass clean and dispersed the clippings nicely. Didn't try for any striping.

Any advice or experience with the 50 inch deck is much appreciated!

Thanks!

Bill

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Bruker

I have a 50" deck on my Prestige and if I press the left side of the deck up against something a little too hard the blade will contact the deck. I attribute it to close clearance, deck flexing and operator error.

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leeave96

I had a few minutes tonight and I pulled the deck off of the tractor. I could not see any interference between the blades and the deck or the blades themselves. I think what might be happening is that the deck is not pivoting from side to side as it should. I don't see a lot of flex in the pivot and so I think the deck brackets are causing the deck to bind when I hit on uneven ground. I will take a closer look tomorrow. I am hopeful this 50 inch deck is suitable for hilly lumpy uneven ground, if not I may have to go with a narrower deck.

Thanks!

Bill

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Brettw

Check the drive pulley for the deck on the bottom of the engine and the upright brackets on the deck. There may be interference there. We had that with my brother's 54" deck. You will see wear on the brackets and the pulley if that is the case.

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leeave96

Do the Simplicity decks pitch side to side directly with the front axle as it pivots? And if so, then is the free float limited to the up and down movement, driven as the rear rollers follow the ground, pivoting about the front axle attachment point?

If the side to side pitch of the deck exactly follows the front axle, as a front wheel drops, say into a hole or ditch, would the deck pivot sideways with the axle and for a moment would the front attachment force one side of the deck and rear rollers off the ground?

I can see this happening with a Sovereign's deck as the tubular structure frame that holds the deck shell to the tractor is much more substantial than that on the Landlord's 50 inch deck.

If the shell/frame of the 50 inch deck is not rigid enough to truly pitch with the front axle, than this may be the cause of the blades hitting the deck shell.

Just some thoughts.

Bill

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leeave96
quote:Originally posted by leeave96

Do the Simplicity decks pitch side to side directly with the front axle as it pivots? And if so, then is the free float limited to the up and down movement, driven as the rear rollers follow the ground, pivoting about the front axle attachment point?


id="quote">
id="quote">I think I found the answer to my question here:http://www.simplicitymfg.com/us/en/support/videos/simplicity-striping/free-floating-mower-deckPretty slick video.

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leeave96

Update: I did a little experiment, in-spite of my findings above, and took a jack, jacked up the front axle and sure enough the deck tilts up parallel with axle angle - so no need for front deck anti-scalp wheels if the deck can't dig in to the ground in the first place.

ALSO - I found where the sparks are coming from under the deck! It's actually on TOP of the deck. When you make a sharp turn or back up with a turn, the deck does not stay centered under the tractor and actually pushes the channel that holds the deck handle/attachment bracket to the deck/tractor - when the deck moves to one side, it pushes this channel/framework against the drive pulley and that is the source of the spark.

I would think there ought to be something towards the rear of the deck that would keep the deck centered under the tractor frame. I'm going to have a look-see at my Dad's Prestige and see what's there on his.

Thanks!

Bill

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Brettw
quote:ALSO - I found where the sparks are coming from under the deck! It's actually on TOP of the deck. When you make a sharp turn or back up with a turn, the deck does not stay centered under the tractor and actually pushes the channel that holds the deck handle/attachment bracket to the deck/tractor - when the deck moves to one side, it pushes this channel/framework against the drive pulley and that is the source of the spark.id="quote">
id="quote">

Yup. Same as I stated with my brother's 54" deck. The mounting bracket was a bit tweaked and that seemed to be the cause. It does not take much as the clearance is tight to begin with.

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Brettw

The actual mounting bracket with the spring loaded release is what was tweaked. On his and most I have seen it is black in color. We looked at it closely and you could see where it wasn't straight. So, out came the big hammer and a bit of tapping and persuasion seemed to help. It's not perfect, and a new one is about 90 bux, but so far, our fine tuning seems to be the ticket.

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John_in_Oxford
quote:Originally posted by Brettw

The actual mounting bracket with the spring loaded release is what was tweaked. On his and most I have seen it is black in color. We looked at it closely and you could see where it wasn't straight. So, out came the big hammer and a bit of tapping and persuasion seemed to help. It's not perfect, and a new one is about 90 bux, but so far, our fine tuning seems to be the ticket.


id="quote">
id="quote">(sniff) Tuning Hammers -well, I have a full, matched set.:D

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Brettw
quote:(sniff) Tuning Hammers -well, I have a full, matched set.id="quote">
id="quote">

Yeah. They don't work so good on carburetors and such, but for those items with a bit more "heft" to them, they are like precision alignment tools.8D

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John_in_Oxford
quote:Originally posted by Burntime

I am a fan of the big hammer theory!:D Sometimes a tap in the right place does wonders, sometimes, not so much!sm00


id="quote">
id="quote">I like that - is the Big Hammer Theory AKA "The Big Bang-Bang Theory"?I always decide whether its a pro or amateur swinging a hammer on something by whether the hammer has claws - unless it's on something GREEN....666

little boy claw hammer toy.jpg

57e05ea847c78_littleboyclawhammertoy.jpg.2a21fda2cd0e58853e9561584b7a7c81.jpg

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leeave96
quote:Originally posted by Brettw

The actual mounting bracket with the spring loaded release is what was tweaked. On his and most I have seen it is black in color. We looked at it closely and you could see where it wasn't straight. So, out came the big hammer and a bit of tapping and persuasion seemed to help. It's not perfect, and a new one is about 90 bux, but so far, our fine tuning seems to be the ticket.


id="quote">
id="quote">Good info - thanks!I found a 38 inch deck from a Broadmoor and looked up the deck parts, compared them to my 50 inch deck and the front mounting bracket you speak of is the same between the 38 and 50 inch deck. FWIW, the spindles and rollers are the same too - so it will be a nice parts deck.I've got to pull the deck and take look-see at that bracket. If I can fix it with a BFH, then I'll to that, but the spare 38 inch deck parts in my hip pocket might come in handy too.Just for kicks - I might try to mow with the 38 inch deck. It looks like it would mount right up.Also - from the tractor with the 38 inch deck, I'm getting a front axle assembly - which is the same assy from the Broadmoor to the Landlord. If I get into this and find some wear or bending on the front axle of the Landlord, I'll be able to change out the axle.

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leeave96
quote:Originally posted by Burntime

Forgot to add, check the front pivot bolt on the front axle. Every landlord I have seen had it loose. It steers so much better once tightened up reasonably so the axle still pivots...


id="quote">
id="quote">That's a GREAT tip!!!!!!!!I'll check it out this evening.Thanks!Bill

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leeave96

Update: Tightened the front axle pivot. There was about 1/16 inch, maybe a bit more - side to side movement. I tightened it up so maybe a piece of notebook paper could get between the axle and frame.

I've also thought about loosening the engine mounting bolts and moving the engine to the side opposite where the drive pulley is rubbing the deck - to the extent there is any tolerance within the frame mounting holes. Seems like a lot of trouble to go through for a premium garden tractor... :I

I also pulled off the deck to check for bending at the axle attachment bracket assy. All of that looks and measured square, so no bending there.

What I did find was the vertical brace that extends from the axle attachment bracket to the rear of the deck was broken loose at the rear. Where it is welded to the deck, maybe, is about 1 inch width sheet metal.

I really like the cut of this 50 inch deck, but there is LOT of stress on this deck when backing-up. If you hit something, back the rollers into a ditch, anything that would cause the deck to stop moving backwards and forces the deck sideways, I have to believe the stress would be incredible! I would think Simplicity would have beefed up stress points like this - not everyone mows a flat yard. Makes me wonder how the present 50 inch deck is same, different or improved in any way.

Thanks!

Bill

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leeave96

Here is a pic of the broken rear part of the bracket per my post above:

IMG_1693.JPG

and here is a pic of where the engine deck drive pulley rubs against the deck mounting frame.

IMG_1692.JPG

I know I'm probably not making any friends grumbling, but I'm just amazed at both how great a cut this mower gives and how easy it is to drive, yet how (IMHO) lacking the deck is in terms of reinforcement of stress areas (welding the bracket will be the 2nd weld job on this deck) and even the remote potential that the engine deck drive pulley would ever come in contact with the deck... :(!None the less, I think I've swerved into a mighty nice/fine mowing machine with a very much time saving 50 inch cut and want to make a go of it. :)

IMG_1693.JPG.a0ee05517147335c8963e183c5591eea.JPG

IMG_1692.JPG.e8ec9b145a1fd4e0ebc82cdf12ddbe75.JPG

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leeave96

Per my earlier post, I picked up a 38 inch deck and front axle for the Landlord this evening. The deck is for parts, the black front mounting bracket, spindles and rollers are the same between the 38 and 50 inch deck. After looking at my black front mounting bracket, I'm not sure that's the problem. But having some spare spindles and rollers on the shelf will be good to have. The spare front axle is in case the J hooks on the Landlord's axle are worn. If so, I'll replace the axle with what I got tonight. Axle came with spindles and tie rod, so again, some spare parts for the shelf.

Just for kicks, I'm going to run the Landlord with the 38 inch deck and see how it cuts and stripes until I get my 50 inch deck repaired. I think the tractor is about 2 inches wider than the deck, so trimming will have to be with the weed eater - LOL.

I should have pics tomorrow.

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leeave96

Here are some pics of the 38 inch deck I bought (paid $50 for it):

IMG_1706.JPG

The underside:

IMG_1705.JPG

The front mounting brackets. The one to the right is off my 50 inch deck. Not sure there is anything worn or damaged on it.

IMG_1709.JPG

For such a small deck, I was surprised as to how heavy and rigid it was.Thanks!Bill

IMG_1706.JPG.9060d9e775dc1d1d6fabf76b053ef4a5.JPG

IMG_1705.JPG.2e732301ab7440f31d93d50a54bd82f6.JPG

IMG_1709.JPG.af2495830afacd0e059ba3a8d4de6d69.JPG

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leeave96

Just for kicks, I mounted the 38 inch deck to the Landlord and mowed tonight. Fit the front axle - no problem. Even the belt that came with the deck (from a Broadmoor) fit the Landlord too.

The deck cut pretty good, but was about as wide as the tractor. It was much more noisy than the 50 inch deck. I had read that the 38 inch deck was/is a loud deck, but I also think this one has some bearings nearing the need to be replaced.

I think I like the 50 inch deck better and will keep working it.

Hopefully I'll get the 50 inch deck welded up this weekend and back in service.

Thanks!

Bill

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