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42" mower eats belts


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I Have a 42" mower mounted on a 3416H Sovereign that has a hearty appetite for belts. I went completely through the deck rebuilding the hubs and replacing the idler. Everything seems to be aligned correctly, even checked for burrs that could be possibly cutting belts. I tried using the oem belts but they lasted the same length of time. So far the longest running belt has been the Dayco Top Cog 17710 that has lasted the longest.Anyone have any idea's on this problem? My blades are are little thin which need to be replaced however according to the exploded diagram I have on this mower show the blades being secured to the shafts using 2 bolts each. I have one bolt in the center of each and the hub has a spline shaft. Does anyone know where I can purchase the correct blades? My Serial # on the mower deck is 020287. Please reply
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Hi, Your deck may have had some of or all of the arbors replaced with "new style kits", if they have they will have aluminum spacers around the flanges. Or you may just have a newer deck than your book. The newer decks ude 1 bolt blades. Only the late decks use the Gull wing Blades. which are 1 bolt also but use different hdwe. I would check the pivot bracket on the PTO [2 idler pulleys on it] If the pivot shaft is worn, or the frame side plate is worn it will contribute to the problem. Also mowing with the mower raised off the ground. If this shaft is worn, the bracket can be replaced. If the frame is worn this plate is no longer available. Cut the piece that is welded to the frame off and cut off a piece of shafting about the same diameter and thicknes and drill a hole in it to fit the shaft. align this hole with the lowest rearward part of the worn eggshaped hole in the plate and weld it on. Due to pressure of the belt the hole will be worn up and forward. You may want to try adding a washer under ther idler pulley, if it helps belt alignment. Hope this is not too confusing, if it is yell and I'll try to do better, Good luck, AL
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grandpawrichard
Joe, Contact my Good Friend Jeff Nemes at jnem@worldnet.att.net . Or at Joseph J Nemes & Sons, Inc. 1233 Highway 206 North Princeton, New Jersey 08540 He can get you the proper blades for your mower, as well as any other Simplicity part that you need! I"ve bought several parts from him, he's very honest, and straight forward, as well as Quick! (Jeff, If you read this, don't get a swelled up head!) Sincerely, Dick Raymond
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Joe, I had the same problem once with a trac. a 712 AC eating OEM belts.The thing I discovered was the belts were touching where they go under the idler pulleys toward the mower.Adjust the clevises in the front of the deck till you get the proper front to back blade difference in height, of 1/8".That is the front of the blade tip while deck is on a flat surface should be 1/8" higher than the rear when blades are facing front to rear.When done right you should have 1/4'-3/4" clearance between the belts at said location.Hope this helps as well as everyone elses helpful tips! dlc
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Bill, Which belt is failing, the deck belt or the PTO belt? I also have a 3416H with a 42" deck, but worn hubs were my problem. I've only seen single bolted hubs on the center hub. Can someone confirm you have the correct hubs? Also the hubs should turn freely by hand with little resistance. Your dealer should have genuine Simplicity Blades. I'm currently using a gullwing shape blade on my new Sovereign, works very nice.
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Bill - can you describe what is actually happening to the belts? Are they torn, frayed, snapped, chunked, cracked, burnt, ripped or all of the above? Also which belt/belts and how long do they actually last might help us find your problem. Thanks for the plug Dick - the check is in the mail! :)
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Thanks for all the responses from everyone. Joe, it's the pto belt that is failing. I took the deck off tractor and measured the deck. I was told when I purchased that it was 42" but it measured 48". The blades are approximately 17" in length.They are flat except for the tips which are curved. All hubs had the bearings replaced and turn freely by hand.The idler was worn and was replaced. Al, the 2 pto idlers are new and the pivoting mounting plate that the idlers are mounted on is new. That should have been a clue to me when I bought the the tractor, this was in a box of misc. parts.The new plate fits well, not much play. Dick, thanks for the connect. Dlc, I have not tried to adjust the front to back angle on the blade. I will try that considering I go through a belt almost after every other mow. Jeff, all of the above to your question would describe it best.Ocassionally the belt will flip on the idler pulley's and if I do not catch it in time it will wear very shortly. My lawn has lots of trees and slopes off in many directions. A normal rider would never last long on it. Thats why I bought this unit. If the blades are incorrect for this deck do you think this could cause the belt to break? They don't seem to fit this deck correctly. The hole in the center of the blade is considerably larger than the hub shaft. BillK
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Bill, My 42" deck also has the large hole in the center blade and a smaller hole in the shaft. (The outside arbors each use two bolts). The solution is a flat washer used as an "adapter" that's the same or less thickness as the blade, fits tightly in the hole in the blade, and has a hole that matches the bolt size in the arbor shaft. Then, a much larger flat washer with a small hole is used on top of this, holding this adapter firmly in the blade, while overlapping enough onto the blade so that it doesn't slip. This may be confusing since the bolt goes up, rather than down. To clarify, they go on the arbor shaft bolt in this sequence: 1) the larger flat washer with a small hole, then 2)the smaller flat washer that you use as an adapter, then the blade. Have you tried adjusting the tension on the PTO engagement lever and belt? Is this PTO drive belt the correct one? I'm talking about the one on the outside of the frame, with its own idler, that connects the center PTO to the bevel gear box. I've found that if this tension is not correct, the deck drive belt can ride out of the groove in the center PTO drive and quickly destroy itself. The PTO "pre-loading" spring (and rear lever that controls it) don't seem to compensate for either too long or a poorly adjusted PTO drive belt. A final question. Does your deck happen to have two belt grooves on the top center pulley? Some of the older decks used a special "double belt." Mine does, and I found that I could not use a single belt. It would eventually jump out and get shredded.... Kent
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