Friday, June 20, 2014

Fairway cutting problem

This past week one of the fairway units was showing a very different cut after a jump in growth . 
         Regular adjustments are done on both machines . It was surprising to see this line dead center of cut . At first I assumed the jump in growth might have slowed down the reel motor . They were cutting/grooming pretty hard that day . 

After talking to the dealer for suggestions I checked the HOC again and did a test of the front reel motors by removing the small line and plugging the hose end and running the reel to check for bypassing fluid .Just a dribble on all three . Then center and wing reels were switched to see if it made any difference . The above pic showed some difference.But the cut still didn't look right . After the last test I switched the center reel motors on fairway units with pretty much the same effect .The problem didn't follow to the other machine which rules out the reel motor. Yesterday I had time to regrind reels on the problem unit .

Problem solved . These are the new reels I had put on last winter . They came with just a light spin grind . I'm use to having a full relief and don't usually grind the reels till the end of next month . Hard to believe the little core nursery we restarted in October 2013 is ready for sod removal to do some repairs on the course . 

Checking the cut on the first hole this morning when he went out ,dark strips on side are just wheel marks they fade out pretty quick . 

and then again 3/4 way into his mow set . Cut still looking great . Triplex on the side . I was mowing collars and approaches . Drove by for a picture . 

The cut from the other 5410 unit . Still looking good but will be time to get it in for a spin grind .

 Sometimes when you get stuck in a routine you may over look what is reely going on . 

Always learning . Thanks again Bill at Vesey's

Sunday, June 15, 2014

Local Turf News

Welcome local Turf News readers . 

I was approached to write some information for a tech section of the local Turf News . I'll be providing an insight on the tech side of the business for the next few issues . Last issue featured the artical I submitted below . 

Winter has finally made way for the season we have all been waiting and planning for “SPRING”.
It was a good long winter to get most of the gear back in shape.
 The greens wintered OK considering the extended winter.  Most of the gear has been sitting idle for almost 5 months except for winter servicing. When the crew start showing up is the time I’ll start up all the mowing gear and get them to operating temperatures. A good fifteen minutes will get the batteries charged back up. Run them wide open after they warm up for a bit. After they run and cool I’ll check for leaks .Some of the gear had their hydraulic fluids changed as per service interval. It’s a good time to double check your work before they start mowing. Our course provide some mowing challenges and the large area mowers are gone over very well paying attention to frame welds ,loose or damaged hydraulic lines ,dented rotary decks and damaged reels . After all our reels and bed knives are ground, I wait for the first down time chance to service both grinders and tarp them so their ready to grind. It will also be time to bring in one of these Ryan’s 24 and install the job savers. Normal routine here so they will be ready for when the Superintendent needs them. When you’re working in this part of the business be aware of the seasons and jobs being done on the course. If you can get things ready just before they are needed you will be able to hopefully stay ahead of the game. Good communication or weekly meetings will get everyone on the same page make jobs flow more easily. Next up: think about what happens next .For me it’s the tarps came off and after they acclimatise for a bit Jason (superintendent) will measure the height of cut and will let me know what HOC to set greens mowers to for the first cut. Yes my greens mowers are kept right where I can see them, that way they won’t “accidently” get bumped or get run over .I take pride in how the machines cut and constantly adjusting them daily during the season. Does it take more time? Not really, tweaking adjustments prolongs your cutting edges benefitting the health of the turf and prolongs the need for grinding. All the machines have next service hour’s intervals written on filters to speed up servicing. If you’re looking for ideas in turf tech area I also have a Blog that you can check out. 
Good luck to everyone this season and keep them rolling and sharp.
Thanks for reading .

Wednesday, June 4, 2014

Toro rough mowers damaged front roller bearing repair

I have had pretty good luck with this style roller so far . After checking the newer 4300 grounds master I noticed one of the upgrade bearings was broken . I'm starting to think that the ball bearing failures on the fairway unit Reel mower are breaking do to impact of underlying bedrock on the course .

Only have a stick welder and made my first attempt using a washer . Started to move but broke the welds .

Next up was a 1/2 " nut I used the bolt to hang on to weld . No problem to beat the remaining piece of the race out . 

Pressed in one new bearing and pumped  grease in a good 30 times before installing spacer and then pressing in the other bearing . 

Use red loc-tight . About the only thing that will keep the bolt in place . 

Torqued it in place . The metal roller will wear out if you have a lot of cart paths . Some of the guys are going with Nylon aftermarket ones with good success.  

Tru turf roller in for a check up

Our tru turf is used more and more for rolling greens and leveling out new sod . It was time to get it in for a check up . It's a pretty easy nuts and bolts machine to repair and is wise to keep some wearable items in stock . Today I noticed the chain needed replacing .

New chain cut and installed . I use rope ratchets and bungy cords to keep tensioners off the chain .  

The top gear bearing has lots of play so more parts where ordered now before it starts leaking . It's good to know where your machine is manufactured because sometimes parts will take 4 + weeks to to show up . Not a good thing when it's your only one. So I'm planning ahead now to get the parts in time  . This machine is made in Australia.  Another machine I have waited for parts if not available on our continent is the Cushman (rear end parts at the sister course years ago).( British made)

Also found the bearing that holds and and gives the smoothing decks its movement was starting to let go . This is by far the best way to change the bearing out . Two tripod stands and a piece of ply wood and left the linkage hooked up . 

Loosen the set screws on the collar (2) and remove the 4 bolts . 

Raising the lift gives you access to the bolt holding the bearing on the shaft . 

And done . I also keep linkage parts and smoothing roller bearings in stock They can go at any time . 

Monday, June 2, 2014

Stihl came to my shop today

Last week Bryce from Stihl stopped by the shop . We talked shop for a bit and discussed about some maintenance pointers and a quick look at all the Stihl gear we had and some suggestions for future purchases. We have been replacing the old FS 85 R we have with the FS 110 . The staff find them a little heavy .After a quick over view of the new FS 94 I was very impressed and looks like a product more suited for the golf course . Stihl a 2 cycle but a little more efficient then the old fs 85 . The handle had throttle lock adjustment to use at what ever the operator chooses and can be over ridden to full throttle at any time and reverts back to the original adjustment . Plus you don't have to run the new snipper at full throttle anymore . The choke will kick out when throttle is being used by the trigger( big plus )Also had a stop switch on the handle easily activated by your thumb . Fantastic visit from a company with  great products . Thanks .