The Mowtown Equipment Blog

This weeks Yanmar tractor tip: WHO MOWS BEST?

This weeks Yanmar tractor tip: WHO MOWS BEST?

WHO MOWS BEST?

PRODUCT PRO-TIP: MOWER OR CUTTER, WHAT MOWS BEST?

What’s the difference between a 3-point-mounted or pull-type finish mower, a mid-mount mower, or a rotary cutter? How do you know which one is the best for your needs?

A finish mower for a compact tractor is a heavy-duty commercial mower designed for a fine cut on larger areas. It’s a great implement for those wishing to keep their land nice and neat without spending too much time and effort on lawn mowing.

A mid-mount finish mower does essentially the same job as a mounted or pull-type finish mower, except that it mounts underneath the tractor instead of behind it. Mid-mount mowers tend to better for novice operators who may not like adjusting to the tail swing of a rear-mounted finish mower. Mid-mount mowers give a sub-compact tractor the capabilities of a riding lawnmower---but with built-in tractor strength and durability that surpasses almost any riding mower you could find. And, of course, the compact tractor/mower combination is a much more versatile machine that readily powers a loader, 3‑point attachments, PTO-powered machines, and more to accomplishes various landscaping, tillage and vegetation management tasks.

Yanmar offers customers a variety of finish mowers to cut down help you quickly cross of any mowing jobs that may be on the “honey-do” list. The Yanmar 3-point-mounted finish mower options start at 54 inches and increase to 84 inches in mowing width. Some tractor owners find that a 3-point mounted finish mower is easier and faster to take on and off the tractor than a mid-mount mower.

If your finish mowing job requires more width, ask about our pull-type, flex-wing finish mower options available in a 12.5-foot estate-duty model, and 12-foot, 15-foot, and 17-foot commercial-duty models. How much lawn mower productivity is there in a 17-foot lawn mower? If you average 5.5 miles per hour, that lets you mow more than 10 acres of grass every hour!

https://www.landscapecalculator.com/calculators/mow

Now, when your vegetation management, landscaping or “mowing” job requires heavy-duty clearing and cutting, a rotary cutter is the preferred implement. A rotary cutter does not, however, produce as fine of a cut quality as a finish mower. Therefore, it should be used where the finish quality and appearance are not as important.

Basically, a rotary cutter is what people clip their “back forty” with when they want to keep the land in a pasture/meadow/prairie state and not have it have to turn into brush land or forest. Patches of thistles trying to take over your beef cow pasture and you want to avoid herbicide use? Hit those stickery pasture polluters with a rotary cutter. Very satisfying. Your lawn mowing equipment will thank you and live to mow another day.

Yanmar offers rotary cutters in several cutting widths and machine weights to match the jobs at hand and the available tractor power. Our single-spindle, 3-point -mounted cutters range from 42 inches to 84 inches in cutting width.

Wait, you’re saying that’s not wide enough? No problem! Yanmar pull-type flex-wing rotary cutters are here to the rescue. They let you do what you need to do to a lot more fescue. Yanmar flex-wing rotary cutters come in 12-foot and 15-foot widths. Those are big rotary cutter widths but these machines are designed to be both strong and efficient-and-trim to match the capabilities of 47 and 59 horsepower Yanmar YT3 Series compact tractors.

As you can see, across a wide range of lawn care and vegetation management demands, there is a cutting and mowing implement designed to help you get more done every hour and every day. Look at the lawns and land you need to maintain. Measure the true square footage or acreage you need to cover. The sum total might surprise you. Decide what needs finish mowing and what needs a rougher form of vegetation management. Factor in the tractor power you have or need to add to the mix. Then you will see which mowing or rotary cutter (or both) solutions you need to care properly for the land you are responsible for.

This Week's YANMAR Product Pro-tip: USING THE THROTTLE BOOST

This Week's YANMAR Product Pro-tip: USING THE THROTTLE BOOST

LADIES AND GENTLEMEN, REV YOUR ENGINES!

LET'S SAY YOU ARE DOING LOADER WORK WITH YOUR YT347 OR 359.....
Keeping the engine RPMS at the desired level keeps the lift & lower functions, bucket dump, and return actions on your front loader prompt and responsive to make the job go quickly and comfortably.

Throttle Boost can also help when you need to maintain the power to the wheels.  For example; you need to drive the loader bucket into the material you are trying to scoop, without stalling the engine.

Yanmar YT3 Series tractor come with a standard THROTTLE BOOST feature. The Throttle Boost control button is conveniently located on the loader joystick so you don’t have to move your hand from the joystick control to increase the engine RPMS when needed.

Often, when you are doing loader work you are in a limited space such as a hay shed, horse or cattle barn, or doing construction/landscaping work close to buildings and other obstacles. You definitely don’t want to increase your travel speed by boosting your engine RPM in these areas; you don’t want to have to rebuild that barn or gazebo!

KEEP THIS IN MIND:
When operating a Yanmar YT3 series tractor, avoid performing loader work with the range shift lever in the 3rd speed range position. When the range shift lever is at 3, Throttle Boost is turned off. Throttle Boost is only active when the range shift lever is in the 1st and 2nd speed range positions.
Also, remember that the Throttle Boost engine RPMs will not exceed the maximum RPM setting for the A/B mode settings you are simultaneously using.

Ferris Oil Guard System

Ferris Oil Guard System
We get asked what the advantage of having Oil Guard System is quite often. Here is some quick info on oil guard.

OIL GUARD SYSTEM BY VANGUARD™

500 Hours Between Oil Changes!

Ferris Commercial Mowers with the new Vanguard Oil Guard System raise the bar on how productive a landscape contractor can be on any given day. A first-of-its-kind solution for the commercial turf market, Ferris mowers with the Oil Guard System offer major productivity gains by allowing landscape contractors to operate their mower for 500 hours between oil changes. Increasing the oil change interval by 5x means less time spent changing the oil and more time cutting.
  • INCREASED PRODUCTIVITY

    Extended oil change intervals means more time cutting.
  • LOWER MAINTENANCE COST

    60% savings per season, per unit*.
  • EASIER MAINTENANCE

    Faster, easier, mess free oil changes.
  • EXTENDED ENGINE LIFE

    Cooler operating temperatures, better filtration.
Oil Guard
*Cost savings based on standard oil maintenance with 100 hour interval versus Oil Guard System 500 hour service interval.

Increasing Oil Change Intervals

Increasing the oil change interval from 100 hours to 500 hours means less time changing the oil and more time cutting. Available on Ferris mowers using Vanguard™ 810 EFI and BIG BLOCK™ commercial engines.
 

7 tips to help you get your lawn ready for mowing season.

7 tips to help you get your lawn ready for mowing season.

Some spring lawn care preparation can be done in the fall if you want to get a jump on it. But, preparing your lawn in spring is essential for a healthy lawn all summer. ReadRead on for more...

General Snow Blower Usage

General Snow Blower Usage
QUESTION:
What are some general snow throwing procedures?
ANSWER:

Pre-season (a few weeks before first snow):

  1. Review the Operator's Manual each season.  
  2. Check maintenance and adjustment items: Make sure your snow thrower is ready when you need it.
    • Single-stage snow throwers: drive belt, shave plate, auger spirals, engine oil (4-cycle only), spark plug. 
    • Multiple-stage snow throwers: slide shoes, shave plate, auger shear pins, belts, drive disc (if equipped), engine oil, spark plug.
  3. Add fresh fuel and test-run the snow thrower in an open area with plenty of room to maneuver.

First Snow:

  1. Confirm that there are no hazardous objects to be hidden by the snow in the area to be cleared.  It is better not to find that dog chain or frozen newspaper with the snow thrower.
  2. DO NOT's:
  • Do not try to clear solid ice with the snow thrower. It can damage the snow thrower.
  • Do not throw snow in the direction of anything you would not throw a rock at.
  • Do not try to clear a clogged snow thrower by hand. Turn-off the snow thrower and use snow clearing tool, broom stick, or similar tool.
  1. If the snow thrower has a throttle control, set the engine to run at maximum speed when throwing snow. It runs most efficiently there.
  2. If the snow is especially deep or heavy, slow down your clearing pace to avoid bogging down the engine.
  3. When possible, start clearing snow by creating a path down the middle of the area to be cleared. Work outward from this first path in a spiral pattern, throwing snow to the nearest edge of the area you are clearing. This will pile cleared snow on both sides of the cleared area.
  4. If snow can only be thrown in one direction, start at the side that you cannot throw snow toward. Widen the path with each pass, toward the side you can throw snow to.
  5.  When using a multiple-stage snow thrower on a gravel surface, adjust the slide shoes to raise the front of the snow thrower. For smoothly paved surfaces adjust the slide shoes to keep the shave plate ¼” above the pavement. Refer to the Operator's Manual.

After Use:

  1. Turn off the engine.
  2. Clean snow off of the snow thrower using a broom.
  3. Check shear pins. The augers overlap and a shear pin could break without the operator noticing. If one shear pin breaks, the auger will still be driving the auger next to it, but the shear pin that drives the second auger will carry twice the load.

FOR MORE INFORMATION, PLEASE CONTACT US OR YOU CAN VISIT THE CUB CADET SUPPORT WEBSITE HERE

SNOW THROWER MAINTENANCE SCHEDULE AND TIPS

SNOW THROWER MAINTENANCE SCHEDULE AND TIPS

MAINTENANCE SCHEDULE AND TIPS


TAKE CARE OF YOUR MACHINE THROUGHOUT THE WINTER WITH CUB CADET'S SNOW THROWER MAINTENANCE SCHEDULE.

Just like your riding lawn mower, your snow thrower requires maintenance throughout the season.
Whether you have a 1X single-stage snow thrower, a 2X two-stage snow thrower or a new, one-of-a-kind 3X three-stage snow thrower, the following maintenance schedule and tips will help you keep it running smoothly through blustery winter storms.
You don't want to be snowed in with a faulty snow thrower because you neglected maintenance, so be sure to follow through on these regular items and bring your snow thrower in for service if you discover a more significant issue during snow thrower maintenance.


 
After 1st 5 Hours of Use
 
After each use (or every 5 hours)
 
After every season or 25 hours
 
After every season or 50 hours
 
After every season or 100 hours
 
Change the engine oil
 
X
 

 

 
X
 

 
Check the engine oil
 

 
X
 

 

 

 
Clean the exhaust area
 

 
X
 

 

 

 
Check the spark plug
 

 

 
X
 

 

 
Lubricate the gear shaft
 

 

 
X
 

 

 
Service the spark plug
 

 

 

 

 
X
 

FOLLOW THESE SNOW THROWER MAINTENANCE TIPS FOR PROPER USE OF YOUR MACHINE.

Use these snow thrower tips to carry out maintenance throughout the year. For questions or details on more complicated repairs, check out the other how-to tutorials from Cub Cadet here.

  • Disengage all control levers and stop the engine before cleaning, repairing or inspecting the snow thrower. Wait until the auger/impeller comes to a complete stop. Disconnect the spark plug wire and ground it against the engine to prevent unintended starting.
  • Check bolts and screws for proper tightness at frequent intervals to keep the machine in safe, working condition. The natural vibration of the machine can cause them to loosen throughout the winter. Also, visually inspect the machine for any damage.
  • Do not change the engine's governor setting or over-speed the engine. The governor controls the maximum safe operating speed of the engine.
  • Check all components frequently and replace with the original equipment manufacturer's (OEM) parts only. Snow thrower shave plates and skid shoes are subject to wear and damage and proper inspection and repair can keep you safe while operating the machine. Use of parts which do not meet the OEM's specifications may lead to improper performance and compromise safety.
  • Verify control levers periodically to ensure they engage and disengage properly and adjust if necessary.
  • Maintain or replace safety and instruction labels, as necessary to ensure anyone operating the machine follows proper procedure.
  • Observe proper disposal laws and regulations for gas, oil, etc. to protect the environment.
  • Check the fuel line, tank, cap and fittings frequently for cracks or leaks. Replace if necessary.
  • Do not crank the engine with the spark plug removed.

HOW TO PREPARE YOUR SNOW THROWER FOR WINTER USE

HOW TO PREPARE YOUR SNOW THROWER FOR WINTER USE

HOW TO PREPARE YOUR SNOW THROWER FOR WINTER USE


Whether you're prepping your trusty 2X two-stage snow thrower for yet another winter, or getting your new 3X three-stage snow thrower ready to face its first blizzard, these snow thrower maintenance tips can help ensure you're prepared for cold and stormy weather this winter.

Make sure all your parts are moving smoothly, but also make sure you tighten up the nuts and bolts that may have been shaken loose by use last season.

STEP 1 - CHANGE THE OIL ON YOUR SNOW THROWER.

This should also be done after the first five hours of use this winter and after every subsequent season.

STEP 2 - INSTALL A NEW SPARK PLUG IF NECESSARY.

Check your spark plug at the start of every season. It it has become dirty, it may just need cleaning. However, rust and corrosion on your snow thrower's spark plug will call for replacement.

STEP 3 - INSPECT BELTS FOR WEAR. REPLACE THEM IF NECESSARY.

It's wise to keep a few snow thrower belts on hand in your garage or shed so you can make replacements quickly when necessary. You can check out the top-selling belts from Cub Cadet to find what you need for your model. Any significant wear and tear merits replacement to avoid the danger and frustration of a belt breaking during use.

STEP 4 - DRAIN THE GAS TANK AND REPLACE WITH FRESH FUEL.

Make sure your fuel includes stabilizer so it stays fresh even if you have a few mild weeks during the winter and don't need to run your snow thrower.

STEP 5 - LUBRICATE THE DRIVE AND CHASSIS.

Make sure all your parts are moving smoothly, but also make sure you tighten up the nuts and bolts that may have been shaken loose by use last season. 

After you've prepared your snow thrower for winter, start it up and let it run for a few minutes in a well-ventilated area just to be certain there are no surprises when it storms. Consider starting it every so often if it sits for an extended period of time

What should be checked if a riding mower cuts unevenly?

What should be checked if a riding mower cuts unevenly?

Deck Leveling - Riding Mower

What should be checked if a riding mower cuts unevenly?

We recommend that the tire pressures be checked before doing any other adjustments, as this may be the problem and any further adjustments would also require the tires be properly inflated beforehand.

Tire pressures are stated in Pounds per Square Inch (PSI) measure. The factory settings for residential riding mower tires are generally 10 PSI for rear tires and 14 PSI for front tires. But it's a good idea to always check the side wall of the tire itself, as the tires on a particular model may not always be standard equipment tires. The maximum tire pressure is embossed on each tire. This is the maximum tire pressure. Inflating tires to 2-3 PSI under the maximum is also acceptable. as long as the pressure in both front tires are the same and both rear tires are the same.

If this doesn't solve the problem, a deck leveling adjustment may be needed. The deck leveling adjustment varies by model and is explained in the Adjustments section of the Operator's Manual. Please refer to the Operator's Manual and follow these instructions as they relate to the particular tractor being serviced.

If the above actions do not correct the problem, it may also be one of two other situations:

  1. The blades and/or spindles could be worn or out of balance. 
  2. There may be bent or damaged deck hangers that would require replacement.

If further assistance is needed, please visit a local authorized service center and have them visually inspect and service the mower. 

SNOW THROWER FAQ's

Here we answer some common questions regarding Cub Cadet snow throwers...

1. 

PROBLEM
What is the proper fuel and oil mixture for a 2-cycle engine on a single-stage snow thrower?
SOLUTION

Our two-cycle snow throwers use a 50:1 ratio of gasoline to 2-cycle oil.
A 50:1 ratio is a mix consisting of 2.5 ounces of 2-cycle oil with 1 gallon of gasoline.

NOTE:  Always mix 2-cycle fuel oil and fuel in an approved gasoline safe container prior to filling the engine. Make sure to use a separate gas can for this 2-cycle fuel mixture and label it accordingly. Keep in mind that the fuel capacity of these engines normally is less than a gallon, therefore you will have to use this mixture for multiple fuel fills. Adding a fuel stabilizer will help to increase the shelf life of fuel.

2.

PROBLEM
How is the single-stage snow thrower shave plate adjusted?
SOLUTION

The shave plate adjustment on our single stage snow throwers can be made by first checking the shave plate to find how much adjustment is needed.  To do this, place snow thrower on a level surface.

Drawing auger, shave plate and wheels
Drawing that shows, the auger, shave plate and wheels.

Components on Unit
Components on an actual unit.

These components should all be touching the ground at the same time. If either the auger or wheels are not touching the ground, this means that the shave plate is adjusted too low and needs to be raised.  If the wheels and auger are both touching the ground and the shave plate is not, this means that the shave plate is too high, and needs to be lowered to meet the auger and wheel levels. The shave plate has four nuts and bolts that fasten it on. To make this adjustment, loosen these four fasteners and slide the shave plate up or down as needed.

3.

PROBLEM

How are the skid shoes on a multiple-stage snow thrower adjusted?

SOLUTION

Adjusting the "skid shoes" (a.k.a. "slide shoes" ) on a multiple-stage snow thrower allows you to select how close to the ground the unit will clear snow.

Smooth Surface Adjustment:
Note:  Something will be needed to support the auger housing during this adjustment (thin wood plank, cardboard, etc..) that is approximately 1/8" H x 20" W x 6"D. Make sure the width is slightly less than that of your snow thrower auger width. To properly support your unit for this adjustment, do not use anything that is unstable or unable to support the snow thrower.

  1. Place the supporting device below the center of the shave plate. This support should then elevate the sides of the auger housing slightly.
  2. Next loosen the hardware securing the skid shoes on both sides of the auger housing, slide both shoes until they are positioned even with the ground, then tighten the tighten the hardware and remove the support material.
  3. The shave plate should now be positioned just slightly above the ground with the shoes properly supporting the entire auger housing.

Irregular and Gravel Surface Adjustment:  
If you are clearing a surface that has an unusually irregular surface you should follow the instructions above, with the exception that you should use something thicker than 1/8 of an inch for support during the adjustment. The actual height needed will depend on the severity of the surface irregularities. 

4.

PROBLEM

How can the ground traction on a snow thrower be improved?

SOLUTION

To improve the traction on a snow thrower we have optional tire chains available for most tires. The tire size and/or the name ‘Snow Hog’ or 'X-Trac' should be molded into the side of the tire. Use the following chart to identify which chains fit the tires.

TIRE SIZE

SNOW HOG or X-TRAC

PART # FOR CHAIN SET

13 X 4.1

Yes

OEM-390-062

15 X 6

No

OEM-390-145

16 X 6.5

No

OEM-390-146

16 X 6.5

Yes

OEM-390-655

16 X 4.8

Yes

OEM-390-991

NOTE: All tire size measurements are in inches. NOTE: All chain sets above consist of 2 chains.

Tire chains installed on a snow thrower.
Tire chains installed on a snow thrower.

NEW ENGINES, SAME CUB CADET QUALITY

NEW ENGINES, SAME CUB CADET QUALITY

A POWERFUL ADDITION TO THE XT ENDURO SERIES™

CUB CADET EFI ENGINES

Like all other engines that you find in our lineup, these EFI engines are Cub Cadet certified, guaranteeing unbeatable durability and performance.

To become Cub Cadet certified, engines are evaluated using a rigorous process to ensure they have been built to uphold our standards of strength, high performance and premium quality.

MORE POWER
Cub Cadet fuel-injected engines set new standards in comfort and strength.
LESS FUEL
Electronic fuel injection (EFI) uses up to 25% less fuel versus standard carbureted engines.
EASY STORAGE
Simplifies off-season storage by eliminating the need to drain the fuel tank.

ELECTRONIC FUEL INJECTION (EFI) TECHNOLOGY

The new Cub Cadet fuel-injected engine boasts serious strength. With up to a 679cc level of power, Cub Cadet EFI engines deliver the kind of high-performance power you'd expect from Cub Cadet. While HP is the typical method for measuring power, utilizing CC's is the most reliable way to define an engine's capacity. This standard is borrowed from the power sports category.

  • It uses up to 25% less fuel, which means fewer emissions and fewer fill-ups.
  • Decrease time spent on maintenance - it has no carburetor and requires fewer oil changes.
  • Spend less money - both fuel-efficiency and ease of maintenance translate to savings.
  • Greater improved compatability with ethanol fuel blends up to E20, letting you fill up with confidence.
THE CUB CADET
54-POINT QUALITY CERTIFICATION INCLUDES:
  1. DURABILITY TESTED
    Tested to 2X the life of standard carbureted engines, Cub Cadet certified engines undergo accelerated dynamometer torture tests to ensure years of useful life.
  2. MORE USABLE POWER
    The Cub Cadet EFI engine's improved governing system provides more usable power when harsh mowing conditions - like tall, wet grass - demand it.
  3. COLD START DEPENDABILITY
    Going to extremes, Cub Cadet engines are field tested in the most challenging environments ranging from the frozen shores of Barrow, Alaska, to the scorching deserts of Arizona, to ensure dependable all-temperature starting.
  4. ETHANOL COMPATIBILITY
    EFI engine components are durability - and field-tested with ethanol fuels to certify compatibility up to E20.

EFI FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

WHAT IS EFI?
Electronic Fuel Injection (EFI) is a high pressure fuel management system. Just like on today's cars, EFI uses an onboard computer, injector nozzle, and multiple sensors to reliably deliver exactly the right amount of fuel to get the most performance and efficiency out of your engine. Cub EFI is an advanced electronically controlled "Closed Loop" system that uses real time feedback to sense the usage conditions and instantly optimize combustion to give you smooth running, and exceptional starting you can count on... no matter what.
HOW DO EFI ENGINES WORK?
EFI, or any Fuel Injection system, utilizes a special high pressure fuel delivery nozzle to inject an ultra-fine mist of fuel into the engine. An electronic control unit uses sensors around the engine to deliver the precise amount of fuel the engine needs, improving response, efficiency and starting. Cub EFI adjusts the fuel metering on-the-fly to compensate for variations in load, speed, fuels, temps, and pressures to always feed your engine the perfect charge that it needs for maximum performance at any task.
DO EFI ENGINES REQUIRE LESS MAINTENANCE?
Yes. EFI systems produce cleaner combustion resulting in a cleaner engine. Clean engines can go longer between regular oil changes and required major maintenances. We do still recommend a fuel stabilizer for long term storage to make sure the fuel in the tank stays fresh and you'll be ready to mow with a push of button next spring.
ARE EFI ENGINES MORE RESISTANT TO FUEL SYSTEM CORROSION AND "ETHANOL DAMAGE" SO OFTEN SEEN TODAY?
Yes. The fuel system is ethanol resistant and compatible with gasoline fuels up to E20 (20% ethanol) blends. Unlike carburetors, the EFI system doesn't rely on mechanical components, and easy to clog jets. Critical EFI components are totally sealed making the entire system more tolerant to today's common automotive gasoline blends.
DOES THE CUB EFI ACCEPT E85?
No. E85 is a blend of gasoline containing mostly ethanol (85% ethanol and only 15% gasoline). Today, Cub EFI engines only accept up to E20 (20% ethanol) blends.
DOES CUB EFI ACCEPT DIESEL FUEL?
No, only gasoline with blends of ethanol up to 20%.