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Service - Cutting Units


Avoid Injury from Contacting Blades

c CAUTION: Avoid injury! Residual hydraulic pressure in the system can cause cutting cylinder rotation when cutting unit blockage is removed.

• Before you dismount to unplug or service cutting units:

– Stop machine.

– Disengage PTO by pressing down on PTO switch.

– Lock the park brake.

– Lower cutting units to the ground.

– Stop engine and remove key.

– Wait for reels to stop.

• Keep hands, feet, and clothing away from cutting units when engine is running.

Rotating Reel Cutting Units

Rotate for Service™ (RFS)

c CAUTION: Avoid injury! Always use the mower’s hydraulic system to rotate the units. DO NOT attempt to rotate units manually. Keep others away from mower during RFS operation to prevent injury.

1. Lock park brake.

2. Lower units to the ground and stop engine.


MX18947

3. Pull out pin (A) of rear cutting unit and insert the pin with the short leg in the hole and the long leg in the channel (B).


MX18949

4. Turn the cutting unit (C) outward.

5. Repeat for second rear cutting unit.


MX22901

6. Remove pins (D) from rear reel stabilizers (E) and slide stabilizers off the machine

c CAUTION: Avoid injury! Units must be on the ground when releasing the spring levers. DO NOT release spring levers with units raised, to prevent injury.


MX10837

7. Push down spring (G) on each cutting unit until spring holds in down position.


MX18951

8. The unique spring design has two settings: The bottom hole (H) locks the cutting units in the normal operating position. The top hole (I) locks the cutting unit in forward position to present the blades.


MX20824

9. With the mow-transport lever (J) pulled down to the transport position, start the engine while in the seat.

10. move the mow-transport lever (J) to the mow position and pull back the mow-lift lever (K) to raise the cutting units.

11. Move the mow-transport lever (J) to the transport position.

12. Lock the park brake and shut off the engine.


MX18946

13. The cutting units (C) are pointing up because the retaining pins are not in place.


MX18952

14. Pull the spring lever (G) back up to the normal position. Then, pull the cutting unit up by the front roller so the pins align with the top hole (I) and lock the cutting unit in place.

NOTE: Lock the rear cutting units in place facing the side.

15. Restart the machine.


MX18953

16. Lower the cutting units so the back roller (L) is on the floor. This stabilizes the cutting units and takes the load off the lock pins. The cutting units are now ready for servicing.

Preparing Cutting Units for Mowing

c CAUTION: Avoid injury! Units must be on the ground when releasing the spring levers. DO NOT release spring levers with units raised, to prevent injury.


MX18954

1. When finished servicing the cutting units, release the spring levers (G) on all five units.

2. Start the machine and pull the lift lever back to raise the cutting units, causing them to hang in their normal free positions.

3. Push the lift lever forward to lower them back down.


MX18955

4. Shut off the engine and put the spring levers back up on each cutting unit. Jiggle them to make sure the pins lock in place (H).


MX22901

5. Install rear reel stabilizers (E) and pins (D).

IMPORTANT: Avoid damage! Do not install pin in channel except for servicing the rear units.


MX18957

Fixed steer cutting unit position is where the longer leg of pin (A) is inserted into the front hole (M).

Normal steer is where pin (A) is inserted into rear hole (N).

Adjusting Rear Stabilizer


MX22903

If the yolk contacts the stabilizer bracket loosen the hardware (A) and move the rubber pad (B) down so there is no metal to metal contact. Tighten hardware.

Adjusting Cutting Units (22 ESP)

NOTE: Adjustments may affect each other. It is important that adjustments be made in the following sequence.

1. Adjust the reel-to-bed knife clearance.

2. Set units for the height-of-cut.

3. Perform the backlapping operation.

4. Check reel-to-bed knife clearance and adjust if necessary.

Removing Cutting Units (22 ESP)

c CAUTION: Avoid injury! Lower cutting units completely before removing front pin.

1. Park machine safely. (See Park Safely in the SAFETY section.)


MX18604

2. Push spring (B) down and remove front pin (A).

3. Pull unit away from the mower.

4. Refer to technical manual to remove reel motor.

Backlapping Cutting Units

c CAUTION: Avoid injury! Avoid injury from rotating blades. Keep hands and feet away from blades while machine is running.

Always wear protective gloves when working on or near the reel or bed knife. Severe personal injury can result from contact with the sharp cutting edges.

Never allow more than one person at a time to work on any one cutting unit. Never allow work to be performed on more than one unit at the same time.

IMPORTANT: Avoid damage! Backlapping of cutting units must be done by trained personnel on a routine basis to prolong reel life, prevent downtime, and provide sharp cutting action.

To backlap, the reel-to-bed knife clearance should be adjusted to approximately 0.076 mm (0.003 in.) at the ends.


NOTE: Reel-to-bed knife clearance should be checked before and after backlapping.

1. Lock park brake.

2. Lower the cutting units to the ground. The cutting units should be in the Rotate for Service™ position (22 ESP) or in the mowing position (2500M).

c CAUTION: Avoid injury! Keep hands and feet away while machine is operating. Never touch any blade while engine is running.

NOTE: Multiple cutting units are backlapped at the same time.

3. Start the engine, and set the throttle to slow idle.

NOTE: If the seat switch is depressed (operator on seat) during backlapping, the mow-transport lever will disengage, and the cutting units will stop rotating.

4. With the park brake locked, step down from the machine.


MX18585

5. Pull forward/reverse knob (A) out for each backlapping valve.

6. Turn both speed control knobs (B) clockwise to (1) on knob.


MX20824

7. Push forward on the mow-transport lever (C) to engage. Push the lift-lower lever (D) forward to lower position.

• Cutting units will begin rotating in reverse for backlapping.

8. Slowly rotate the speed control knob counterclockwise to adjust the reel speed. Adjust reel speed so backlapping compound will not be thrown off during backlapping.

c CAUTION: Avoid injury! Do not use the speed control knob to turn the reels off. This is not a shut-off valve. Reels may turn if engine remains on.


M79054

9. Use a long handled brush to carefully apply reel sharpening compound uniformly, from one end of the reel to the other. Repeat application in opposite direction. Allow unit to continue running backwards until reel is quiet.

10. Periodically disengage cutting units by pushing the forward/reverse knob (A) in and shutting engine off to visually check blade appearance.


MX18603

11. Adjust reel-to-bed knife clearance by loosening jam nut (E) and turning adjusting nut (F) and jam nut (E) to proper clearance on both ends. Check for uniform clearance across entire bed knife. If clearance is not uniform, repeat steps 5 through 9 until clearance is uniform across entire bed knife.

IMPORTANT: Avoid damage! Do not operate units in the forward direction until reel sharpening compound is washed from the unit. Unless properly washed, the reels can be dulled by the compound.


12. Use low pressure water to thoroughly wash off all reel sharpening compound while reels are turning in reverse.

13. Push forward/reverse knobs (A) in.

IMPORTANT: Avoid damage! Both reel speed control knobs must be set at the same speed when backlapping procedure is completed.


14. Shut off engine. Turn reel speed control knobs (B) fully counterclockwise to (6) on the knob.

Removing and Installing Front Roller (2500M)

Removing Front Roller

1. Remove cutting unit from Lightweight Fairway Mower.

2. Position cutting unit upright on a flat surface or workbench.


M97008

3. Loosen and remove hardware from left roller bracket.

• Remove nut (A) and carriage bolt from lower hole.

• Remove nut (B), eccentric adjuster (C), serrated washer (D) and carriage bolt.


M97009

4. Loosen and remove hardware from right roller bracket.

• Remove nuts (E) and carriage bolts.

5. Remove roller and bracket assembly from cutting unit frame.


M97007

Picture Note: Photo shows left roller bracket being removed.

6. Remove roller brackets.

• Loosen jam nut (F) and set screw (G).

• Remove bracket (H) from each bearing spindle shaft end.

7. Replace roller.

Installing Front Roller

NOTE: Roller brackets are offset. For standard use, the bracket should be installed to the roller with the offset to the rear of the base cutting unit to allow close proximity of front roller to rear roller.

Install the roller bracket with the larger holes and adjustment slot on the left side of the cutting unit, in the direction of travel.

The roller bearing spindle shaft has holes drilled in each end. Do not tighten set screws into the holes. Rotate holes in shaft 90 degrees from set screw.

1. Install roller brackets (H) onto each bearing spindle shaft end.

• Install set screws (G) and jam nuts (F) loosely. Do not tighten.


M96838D

2. Select height-of-cut (HOC) adjustment range.

• Alignment of roller bracket (H) and cutting unit frame (I) adjustment holes will determine HOC adjustment range.

• Refer to chart for desired setting.

Height-of-Cut

(2-Inch Front Roller)

Roller Bracket Hole

Cutting Unit Frame Hole

mm

in.

0 - 9.5

0 - 3/8

Top (J)

Top (L)

6.4 - 16

1/4 - 5/8

Bottom (K)

Bottom (N)

12.7 - 22.0

1/2 - 7/8

Top (J)

Middle (M)


Height-of-Cut

(3-Inch Front Roller)

Roller Bracket Hole

Cutting Unit Frame Hole

mm

in.

12.7 - 22

1/2 - 7/8

Top (J)

Top (L)

19 - 28.5

3/4 - 1-1/8

Bottom (K)

Bottom (N)

25.4 - 32

1 - 1-1/4

Top (J)

Middle (M)


3. Install front roller and roller bracket assembly.

• Slide assembly roller brackets (H) into cutting unit frame slots.

• Align selected HOC adjustment holes.

NOTE: Install carriage bolts from the inside.

• Fasten bottom of left roller bracket to frame using one M8 x 20 carriage bolt and one M8 nut (A).

NOTE: Install serrated washer with cupped side facing cutting unit frame.

• Fasten top of left roller bracket to frame using one M8 x 40 carriage bolt, one serrated washer (D), one eccentric adjuster (C) and one M8 locknut (B).

• Fasten right roller bracket to frame using two M8 x 20 carriage bolts and two M8 nuts (E).

• Tighten roller bracket attaching hardware.

NOTE: Make sure the roller bracket set screw locations are not aligned with the holes in each bearing spindle shaft end. Set screws must engage the bearing spindle shaft at each end.

• Center front roller. Tighten set screws (G) and jam nuts (F) on both roller brackets.

Parallelism Adjustment with Bench Plate

1. Position cutting unit upright on flat surface or workbench.

2. Loosen nut (A) and nut (B) on the left roller bracket.


M97254

3. Set bench plate on a level surface. Set cutting unit on top of bench plate (O). Bed knife (P) must rest firmly against plate stop (Q) with cutting reel blade (R) on top of plate stop.


M97255

4. Rotate eccentric adjuster (C) until the front roller (S) sits flat and parallel with the bench plate. Gap (T) should not exceed 0.050 mm (0.002 in.) maximum.

5. Tighten left roller bracket nut (A).

6. Tighten left roller bracket nut (B).

7. Adjust height-of-cut.

Removing and Installing Rear Roller (2500M)

Removing Rear Roller

1. Remove cutting unit from machine.

2. Position cutting unit on a flat surface or workbench.


M97427

3. On each side of rear roller, loosen jam nut (A) and set screw (B).

4. Loosen jam nut (C) on each adjuster tower.

5. Remove carriage bolt (D), flat washer (E) and locknut (F) attaching each height-of-cut (HOC) adjustment bracket (G) to the cutting unit frame.


M97428

6. Move height-of-cut (HOC) brackets (G) away from each bearing spindle shaft end.

7. Remove rear roller (H).

Installing Rear Roller


M97429

1. Install roller bearing spindle shafts (A) into each height-of-cut (HOC) bracket (B).

2. Attach both height-of-cut brackets to cutting unit frame.

NOTE: Install carriage bolts from the inside.

• Install carriage bolt (C), flat washer (D) and locknut (E).

• Tighten hardware.

3. Center rear roller (F) inside HOC brackets.

4. Tighten set screws (G) and jam nuts (H).

5. Loosen locknuts (E) approximately 1/4 turn.

6. Tighten jam nut (I) on each adjuster tower.

7. Tighten locknuts (E).

8. Adjust height-of-cut.

Grinding Reel and Bed Knife

Reel and Bed Knife Relationship

Reel mowers are precision machines requiring daily maintenance to maintain the well-groomed appearance of turfgrass. The scissor-like shearing action, that only a reel mower is capable of achieving, is only possible if the reel and bed knife are sharp and the reel-to-bed knife clearance is maintained.

Close examination of the reel-to-bed knife relationship reveals two square edges passing one another with approximately 0.051 mm (0.002 in.) clearance. There are several reasons why this clearance is necessary.

• When the reel is allowed to contact the bed knife, the square (sharp) edges of the reel and bed knife will roll over, becoming dull.

• Contact between the reel and bed knife generates heat. Heat generated through this contact will distort the shape of the bed knife. Distortion causes the bed knife to draw closer to the reel, resulting in more rollover of the cutting surfaces and more heat generated in the bed knife.

• Drag produced by an improperly adjusted cutting unit may result in an unacceptable clip ratio, undue strain on drive mechanisms and premature wear of the cutting unit.

Reasons for Grinding

• To restore the cylindrical shape of a reel that has become cone-shaped due to improper adjustment of the reel-to-bed knife clearance or worn reel bearings.

• To restore the edge when the grass is not being cut across the entire length of the bed knife, evidenced by streaks of grass left after the mower has passed. Usually the result of nicked blades caused by hitting foreign objects in the grass.

• To restore the edge when the lack of frequent backlapping allowed the edge to be rounded beyond the capability of the backlapping procedure to restore the edge.

• To restore the edge when the reel-to-bed knife clearance has been improperly adjusted (reel contacting bed knife).

Cutting action begins as the bed knife positions the grass to be cut at the cutting edge. The reel then pulls the grass toward the bed knife where it is sheared by the cutting edges as they pass one another.

In order for the grass to be cut at the proper height, it must contact the bed knife at the cutting edge. This is accomplished by grinding a 5? relief angle on the front face of the bed knife. Without a relief angle, the blade of grass will contact the lower edge of the bed knife and be bent over at too much of an angle prior to being cut. In the case of mowing greens, where very small cuts are being taken, the reel may not capture the grass at all, and no grass will be cut.

Although some spin grinding machine manufacturers say backlapping is not necessary, John Deere recommends backlapping after spin grinding to remove burrs and rough edges left from the spin grinding procedure. Backlapping produces a honed edge that will cut the grass evenly and leave the tops of the grass with clean, straight edges.

It is important to note, dull cutting edges will tear rather than shear the grass drawn into the bed knife. This will shock the grass plant and retard its growth.

Grinding the Bed Knife

NOTE: Bed knife and support assembly must be ground as a complete unit.


M47199

1. When grinding the bed knife, it is important to have a 6.5? relief angle on the top surface (A) and a 5? relief angle on the front surface (B).

2. Put entire bed knife support and bed knife in a suitable grinder and grind until material is consistently removed from the entire length of the top and front surfaces of the bed knife.

Grinding the Reel

MIF

John Deere recommends relief grinding the reels before spin grinding for these reasons:

• Reduced blade contact area results in less friction, requiring less horsepower to drive the reel and increases fuel efficiency.

• Ensures longer wear life.

• Less time is required to backlap.

• Reduces pulling and tearing of the grass as the unit gets dull by use.

• Provides an area for backlapping compound to be trapped to more effectively backlap reels.

• Relief grinding removes metal from the trailing edge of the blade, forming an angle (relief angle) to reduce the contact area of the cutting edges.

• Because of the relief grind it is possible, with backlapping, to true a reel (make it round) if a blade is 0.025-0.051 mm (0.001-0.002 in.) too high.

Replacing Bed Knife (2500M)

c CAUTION: Avoid injury! Blades are sharp and rotate quickly:

• Keeps hands and feet away from cutting reels while machine is running.

• Always wear gloves while working on cutting reels.

• Watch for rotation of cutting reels. Rotating one cutting reel can cause another blade or cutting reel to rotate.

Removing Bed Knife

1. Remove the cutting unit from machine.

2. Position cutting unit with the bottom side down on a flat surface or workbench.

3. Relieve tension from bed knife tension springs on both sides of cutting unit.


M07412

• Turn jam nuts (A) counterclockwise until springs are completely compressed.

4. Loosen each adjuster (B).


M97413

5. Rotate each adjustment assembly away from reel housing bracket (C).

6. Rotate cutting unit and position with bottom side up on flat surface or workbench as shown.


M97414

7. Remove shoulder bolt (D) from each end of cutting unit.


M97415

8. Slide bed knife assembly (E) out of the cutting unit housing.

9. If original bed knife is to be used again, grind the bedknife. (See Grinding the Bed Knife in this section.)

Installing Bed Knife

1. Remove and discard thirteen screws attaching bed knife to assembly support. Discard bed knife.

NOTE: Remove debris, corrosion, and rust from bottom surface of bed knife support.

2. Install bed knife using new screws. Alternate tightening by starting with center screws and working out to the ends. Tighten screws to 7 N•m (62 lb-in).

3. If installing a used bed knife, grind the bed knife. (See Grinding the Bed Knife in this section.)


M97418

4. Slide bed knife and support assembly (E) into position inside locator shoe (F).

5. Install both shoulder bolts (D). Tighten hardware to 55 N•m (40 lb-ft).

6. Position cutting unit with bottom side down on flat surface or workbench.

7. Install each adjustment assembly inside housing mounting bracket.


M97419

• Restore bed knife spring tension by turning jam nuts (A) clockwise. Turn jam nuts only midway up the threaded adjustment.

8. Adjust bed knife-to-reel.

9. Set height-of-cut.

10. Backlap reel.

11. Check height-of-cut and adjust as necessary.

Removing and Installing Bed Knife (22 ESP)


MX18602

1. Remove six bolts (A) attaching bed knife support to cutting unit housing (three on each end).

2. Remove bed knife support. Remove and discard screws (B) and nuts attaching bed knife to support. Discard bed knife.

3. If original bed knife is to be used again, grind the bedknife. (See Grinding the Bed Knife in this section.)

4. Remove debris, corrosion, and rust from bottom surface of bed knife support.

5. Install the outer screws and nuts loosely to position the bed knife. Starting with the center mounting hardware and working towards the ends of the bed knife and alternating from side to side, torque hardware in two steps to a final torque of 51 N•m (38 lb-ft.).

6. If installing a used bed knife, grind the bed knife. (See Grinding the Bed Knife in this section.)


MX18603

7. Raise reel, by turning the reel adjusting nut (C) clockwise and nut (D) counterclockwise, until the knife and support can be installed.


M18602

8. Install the bed knife support assembly, and snug bolts (A) on both ends.

9. Tap both ends of bed knife (E) with a brass hammer to remove any play in bed knife support. Tighten bolts to 63 N•m (46 lb-ft).

10. Adjust the reel-to-bed knife clearance.

11. Set the height-of-cut.

12. Backlap reel.

13. Check the reel-to-bed knife clearance and adjust as necessary.

Cleaning Roller Scraper (22 ESP)

c CAUTION: Avoid injury! Do not place fingers between rollers and scraper or injury may result. Scraper edge can be sharp. Use a tool to clean debris from area.


M75839

1. Place screwdriver in either slot (A) in scraper and push towards reels. Scraper will lift for easier cleaning.

Installing Reel Adjustment Washers (22 ESP)


MX18018

NOTE: It is NOT necessary to remove reel adjustment hardware (A) to adjust reel-to-bed knife clearance.


MX18018

1. Install flat pivot washer (B) onto bolt.

2. Install one spring washer (C) onto bolt with cupped side toward flat washer.

3. Install second spring washer (D) with cupped side out and install last spring washer (E) with cupped side in. The cupped sides of D and E should face each other.

4. Install adjuster nut and tighten. Do not overtighten.

Removing and Installing Blades (Rotary)

Removing

1. Stop machine on a level surface.

2. Lock park brake.

3. Raise mower decks completely.

4. Stop engine and remove the key.

5. Insert a wooden block between end of blade and edge of deck to prevent blade from turning while removing attaching hardware.


MX17929

6. Remove bolt (A), washer (B) and blade (C) by turning the bolt counterclockwise.

7. Inspect the blades for damage. Replace all damaged blades.

8. Sharpen and balance all blades.

Installing

Installation is performed in reverse order of removal.

• Tighten blade bolt to 54 N•m (40 lb-ft).

Removing and Installing Cutting Units (Rotary)

Removing

1. Park machine safely. See “Parking Safely” in the SAFETY section.

2. Remove blade from cutting unit.


MX20173

3. Remove both clevis pins (A).

4. Remove clevis pin (B).

5. If needed, remove two bolts (C) and remove hydraulic motor from cutting unit.

6. Slide deck forward away from mower.

Installing

Installation is performed in reverse order of removal.

Sharpening Blades

c CAUTION: Avoid injury! Mower blades are dangerous!

• Always wear gloves while working on blades.

• Always wear safety eye protection when grinding.

• Sharpen blades with grinder, hand file, or electric blade sharpener.


MIF

• Keep original bevel (A) when grinding.

• Blade should have 0.40 mm (1/64 in.) cutting edge (B) or less.

• Balance blades before installing.

Balancing Blades

c CAUTION: Avoid injury! Mower blades are sharp. Always wear gloves when handling mower blades or working near blades.

1. Clean blade.


M61524

2. Put blade on nail in a vise. Turn blade to horizontal position.

3. Check balance. If blade is not balanced, heavy end of blade will drop.

4. Grind bevel of heavy end. Do not change blade bevel.