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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I'm having trouble with my McLane Reel - Bought off CL 2 seasons ago for $125 - Briggs & Stratton 3hp -
Ok....stop laughing. It actually was doing a great job for me most of last year until mid-season and that's when the trouble began.

-As I get to the thicker areas of my yard the reel quits spinning or seems to bog down. I can pull back and get it spinning again and sometimes try and muscle it through but it's quite tedious. I realize it's 3hp and a cheap find but if I can get it going again with a cheap fix I'm all for that. I spent the past winter looking at better reel's but never pulled the trigger.

**I'm not trying to scalp or break the 1/3 rule..........I just fired it up this morning and had the same problem barely cutting 1/8 of an inch off the top.

I'm not really that mechanically inclined but can follow directions pretty well - not sure if replacing the chain would help or making some other kind of adjustments is necessary.

I completely quit using it and went back to the rotary but I really miss the great cuts that I had.

Any ideas would be appreciated.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
J_nick said:
What shape is the belt in? It might just be slipping on the pulleys.

Does the motor bog down when the reel starts getting stuck or does it hold at a steady RPM?
I actually replaced the belt shortly after I bought it........it's not slipping and seems to be fine. The motor keeps a steady RPM when the reel gets stuck.
 

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Mine does that but only when I have the reel to bed clearance to close, which was why I was asking. It doesn't have to spin like a fan but it shouldn't be hard to spin, in which in your case the clearance seems just fine. And If it's not the belt I can't really think of anything else right now, sorry hopefully others can chime in. If I can think of something else I'll let you know.
 

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booneatl said:
J_nick said:
What shape is the belt in? It might just be slipping on the pulleys.

Does the motor bog down when the reel starts getting stuck or does it hold at a steady RPM?
I actually replaced the belt shortly after I bought it........it's not slipping and seems to be fine. The motor keeps a steady RPM when the reel gets stuck.
I would check the belt again. If it was a chain that was slipping it would be very obvious. Since the motor stays at a steady RPM it's slipping somewhere and the belt is the most likely place. Might try cleaning the pulleys with a carb cleaner or brake cleaner to get any oily residue off of them.
 

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I had a mclane that did the same exact thing you are talking about. I sold it after I got my TGM1000. The reel to bedknife on that used mclane was way way out of line so I sold it for $50. Person who bought it probably thought it was a deal. I am assuming from looking at it that they would have needed a new bedknife assembly. Reel was tweaked in placed as well. I was just happy to get it out of my garage so I could regain some storage space.

I am sorry to hear about your woes. I hope you can get them worked out. My suggestion, although its a costly one, is to keep on the lookout for a greens mower that fits in your price range and spring for that. You will not regret it.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Thanks J_Nick for the suggestion on the belt- it is very loose and stretched so I'll replace and see if this makes a difference.

Wardconner - I'll probably move up to a larger Tru-cut as I'm currently using a 20" McClane. My yard isn't quite ready for the greens mowers - I would probably need to level with sand like MQ and Ware before considering that. My bedknife and reel are really in good shape considering the age of the thing. I do like the look of them though !!
 

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A pro for the case of the greens mower is the roller on the back. These mowers are HEAVY. The roller on the back flattens out the lawn over time. It stripes awesome as well. I find that, in addition to the leveling that I have done, the mower helps flatten out the lawn significantly. That being said, I am a cool season guy that deals with frost heaves and yucky snow.

The trick is to rotate every time I cut so it does not develop ruts. Also mowing when the soil is damp helps flatten it out as well.

The con is that it compacts the soil as it rolls the heavy roller over the lawn.

IMO the main thing that makes a lawn look good, when cut short, is its flatness. The grade of the yard is not what I mean by the flatness. The grade, roll, and slope are one thing, but the flatness is what makes the turf look awesome.

Do not be scared to level with sand. Its easy to do. It just takes time and effort.
 

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Tifgrand—7,500 sq/ft—Baroness LM56
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wardconnor said:
A pro for the case of the greens mower is the roller on the back. These mowers are HEAVY. The roller on the back flattens out the lawn over time. It stripes awesome as well. I find that, in addition to the leveling that I have done, the mower helps flatten out the lawn significantly. That being said, I am a cool season guy that deals with frost heaves and yucky snow.

The trick is to rotate every time I cut so it does not develop ruts. Also mowing when the soil is damp helps flatten it out as well.

The con is that it compacts the soil as it rolls the heavy roller over the lawn.

IMO the main thing that makes a lawn look good, when cut short, is its flatness. The grade of the yard is not what I mean by the flatness. The grade, roll, and slope are one thing, but the flatness is what makes the turf look awesome.

Do not be scared to level with sand. Its easy to do. It just takes time and effort.
I agree with everything Conner mentioned above except I don't think the mower really contributes to soil compaction in a considerable way. Yes, it is heavy but that weight is spread out over a 22" roller. Agree to disagree? :D
 

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booneatl said:
Thanks J_Nick for the suggestion on the belt- it is very loose and stretched so I'll replace and see if this makes a difference.
This!! I had the same problem this year, especially during my spring scalp. Replaced the belt and adjusted the clutch rod to make it tight but not overly tight. Worked so much better after that.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
J_nick said:
I would check the belt again. If it was a chain that was slipping it would be very obvious. Since the motor stays at a steady RPM it's slipping somewhere and the belt is the most likely place. Might try cleaning the pulleys with a carb cleaner or brake cleaner to get any oily residue off of them.
WINNER !! Thanks for great advice. This was the problem and I solved it for $6.99!! Replaced the belt today and cut my entire front yard without any of the issues I was having. It was like I had a brand new turbo charged mower. The funny thing is that I originally replaced the belt because of this same problem..........I just forgot about what a difference a new belt made.

Thank you !!
 

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Pamboys09 said:
Quick question, mclane mower have 19.5 belt can i use any belt thats that size? Or i really need to buy to the website of mclane?
Same size should be fine. I found one on amazon recently that worked well. Search there for replacement McLane belt.
 
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