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Bermudagrass, 3.75 acres, Arkansas
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I bought this Classen TR-20 Turf Rake last year. It was a Home Depot rental unit that had 27 hours on the clock. It came equipped with the traditional flail blades. They seemed to work, but they were pretty aggressive with the turf - think ripping versus cutting.







I decided to order the optional slicing kit, which Classen suggests is better suited for creeping grasses like bermuda. The conversion was very simple - just a half dozen or so bolts on each side to swap the cartridge. The slicing blades are much thinner than the flail blades, and they can be rotated several times to get a new cutting edge before it is necessary to replace them.





I am very impressed with the performance of the slicing blades. This is what it did to my dormant 1/2" bermuda. The first picture is a single pass - the second photo is two perpendicular passes.



 

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Tifgrand—7,500 sq/ft—Baroness LM56
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Very nice!!! Now you need to do a lite top dressing of sand to help dilute the OM!! 😀
 

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Awesome ware!!! how deep did you go? those blades look sick! how much did you pay for those things?
since you started the topic, I also converted a similar machine into a verticutter with fixed blades and took out the flail blade setup.
I bought a similar machine (yard marvel) off of craigslist for $400 (should have offered him less but the machine was in great condition) and looked into buying the conversion kit but it was $400! So after taking some measurements, i decided to use 10" circular saw blades for my setup with pvc couplers for spacers. Blades cost $10 ea. and i used 10 blades spaced 1.5" apart.
i am able to go 1/2" deep into the soil with this setup. here are some pics!



 

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Bermudagrass, 3.75 acres, Arkansas
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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Iriasj2009 said:
Awesome ware!!! how deep did you go? those blades look sick! how much did you pay for those things?
since you started the topic, I also converted a similar machine into a verticutter with fixed blades and took out the flail blade setup.
I bought a similar machine (yard marvel) off of craigslist for $400 (should have offered him less but the machine was in great condition) and looked into buying the conversion kit but it was $400! So after taking some measurements, i decided to use 10" circular saw blades for my setup with pvc couplers for spacers. Blades cost $10 ea. and i used 10 blades spaced 1.5" apart.
i am able to go 1/2" deep into the soil with this setup. here are some pics!
Per the Classen manual, it is set up to go about 1/2" deep with the slicing blades set on the highest setting - coincidentally it was just scratching the dirt on my 1/2" bermuda.


The manual suggests the next setting would be 3/4" depth. but I feel like that might be too deep for what I want to use it for. My primary goal was to have something I could use to thin the canopy mid-season while maintaining some level of appearance. The flail blades just weren't going to maintain the appearance I wanted. I have thought about modifying the depth adjustment linkage in some way to gain the ability to fine tune the depth, but that's another project for another day.

The conversion was over $400 for the Classen.
 

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the machine has a squared shaft with 3/4" sides. Initially I used a squared punch and it worked great but after 3 blades I ended up ruining it. I ended up using a flat and a triangle file and put some elbow grease into it. took me 30mins/blade to file a square hole into them.
Red, I used it on about half my yard before throwing the towel. the machine kept turning off on me and after dissecting the carburetor, I found out that the float needle was missing its o-ring. must have fallen off when I gave the carb a good cleaning prior to putting on the blades. now I'm just waiting for a replacement oring.
 

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Bermudagrass, 3.75 acres, Arkansas
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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
TulsaFan said:
Ware,

After buying that other forum members verticutter this summer, how does it compare to your Classen modified setup? Are they two different types of tools or is one going to replace the other?
I will settle in on one or the other, but I haven't made up my mind yet. I ordered a dynaBLADE set for the Toro, as I wasn't super pleased with the slicing ability of the star blades. I haven't had a chance to install them yet, so it will likely be spring before I get to try them.

 

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Ware said:
TulsaFan said:
Ware,

After buying that other forum members verticutter this summer, how does it compare to your Classen modified setup? Are they two different types of tools or is one going to replace the other?
I will settle in on one or the other, but I haven't made up my mind yet. I ordered a dynaBLADE set for the Toro, as I wasn't super pleased with the slicing ability of the star blades. I haven't had a chance to install them yet, so it will likely be spring before I get to try them.

So how's this going to work for your setup? Do you have another head that you use for your Toro?
 

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Bermudagrass, 3.75 acres, Arkansas
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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
$9/blade - I think there are 35 of them. I'm not sure about the time required to change the blades, but it's not something that will need to be done often with the carbide tipped dynaBLADE's. As for the dethatching kit itself, it's a permanent swap for the GM1000.

 

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Old thread here, but I was curious if there was an update on the delta type setup of blades versus flail once the grass was actively growing. In season type verticutting results. I feel like I need to verticut my yard, but don't want to destroy it with the flail type blades, which is all I could find at Home Depot.

Sunbelt rentals has a delta machine, I think, but they are not open on Saturdays so there are some logistical challenges there. Sorry for the redundancy if there is another thread out there with these results, but I just searched on "flail" to find this oldie but goodie. Thanks in advance.
 

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Bermudagrass, 3.75 acres, Arkansas
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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
The blades on my Classen are sharper/thinner than the verticutter blades on the Swardman cartridge. I like that the Swardman has infinitely adjustable depth adjustment. The Classen has notches.
 
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