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mulching on 46" 300-series deck ? (help)


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#1 saintb OFFLINE  

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Posted October 14, 2011 - 10:14 AM

I just bought my first garden tractor. Yeah. I researched long and hard and set my eyes on a JD 332 diesel.

I finally bought her via Craigslist after missing a few on eBay and Craigslist. Yeah.

I had my choice of decks (46, 48, or 1 larger), and chose the 46" deck as my lot had tons of trees and hills, valleys, and divets, and it seems (or so I heard/read) that the smaller deck will perform better given these numerous obstacles. Unfortunately, I was just told by John Deere that mulching blades aren't available for this size deck....

What is my next step? I do not want to bag grass or leaves... and the seller lives 2.5 hrs away, so swapping the decks is unlikely.

Are there other 16" blades from other manufacturers? What else do I need? Can I just rig a cover for the exit shoot or is there more to the grass-flow aerodynamics than that?

thanks from a newbie,

saintb

#2 dave8338 OFFLINE  

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Posted October 14, 2011 - 03:02 PM

I picked up a set of 16" mulching blades for my 46" deck, at Home Depot. Nothing real complicated about the blades except they have a high loft pitch. They have been on there for the past 5-years.

#3 dockter OFFLINE  

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Posted October 14, 2011 - 09:09 PM

There was a tricycler for the 46" decks (model 46, 47 and 48). It is BM17877. It mounts with two holes - not sure if all decks can use it or if only later model decks can. I'm not sure what part number the blades for this kit are - maybe someone at the Deere dealership can help you. If I were you I would call the seller up and see if you can get the 48" deck for it. It is a much more modern design. There is a tricycler kit still available for it. I had a model 48 (46") on my 317 and finally found a 48" replacement deck. It is a night and day difference!

#4 saintb OFFLINE  

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Posted October 14, 2011 - 10:12 PM

There was a tricycler for the 46" decks (model 46, 47 and 48). It is BM17877. It mounts with two holes - not sure if all decks can use it or if only later model decks can. I'm not sure what part number the blades for this kit are - maybe someone at the Deere dealership can help you. If I were you I would call the seller up and see if you can get the 48" deck for it. It is a much more modern design. There is a tricycler kit still available for it. I had a model 48 (46") on my 317 and finally found a 48" replacement deck. It is a night and day difference!


can you elaborate on the improvements? did it cut better? faster? cleaner? it would mean a 5 hr round trip plus the awkward exchange..

thanks

#5 dockter OFFLINE  

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Posted October 14, 2011 - 11:13 PM

Well for 5 hours it probably isn't worth it. I think the 48" gives a better cut. It has a lot more suction to it. The deck is a lot deeper than the 46" decks.

#6 Gibby OFFLINE  

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Posted October 15, 2011 - 12:54 AM

How about Gator Blades?
  • saintb said thank you

#7 saintb OFFLINE  

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Posted October 15, 2011 - 10:28 AM

I'm not even sure this tractor came with a 46" deck... It is model# m00596x576051
is it the 46" deck?

My local dealer just me sold me (primary) belt# m89112, but it is too short. It looks like they sold me the belt for the 50" deck. and I would need the M82718, instead. true?
Posted Image
What are Gator blades?

Why are some of the 48" decks called replacement decks? one of my options was the replacement deck, but he said the 46" was in the best condition.

#8 dockter OFFLINE  

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Posted October 15, 2011 - 01:38 PM

This is a little beyond my direct knowledge but it looks like your deck is a newer version of the older 46" decks (models 46,47, and 48). It is documented in PC1935 whereas my model 48 (46") deck is documented in PC1069. The parts catalog does say that M89112 is the correct belt for your 332 but it wouldn't be the first time the catalog is wrong. Where are you getting the information that makes you think that M82718 is correct? How much too short is the belt? Do you have the mule drive completely loosened (the knob for the belt tension)?

Deere made a modern style 48" deck that is called the 48" replacement deck for the older 300 series tractors. It looks like the deck in this pdf:
https://jdparts.deer...LawnTractor.pdf
It is a deeper deck and has better suction than the 46" and the 50" decks. There is a tricycler attachment available for it as well.
  • saintb said thank you

#9 saintb OFFLINE  

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Posted October 15, 2011 - 09:25 PM

I have the tensioner completely loosened and it appears to be 3-4" too tight... which is close to the length of the other belt I found:
John Deere Drive Belt - M82718

I found the part number on tractordata.com for the 318 (accessories tab): TractorData.com John Deere 318 tractor attachments information

#10 dockter OFFLINE  

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Posted October 15, 2011 - 11:44 PM

I did some searching and can't find anything definitive but it still looks like M89112 is the correct belt. Can you post some pictures of the deck, the front and rear draft arms, and the belt?

#11 saintb OFFLINE  

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Posted October 18, 2011 - 12:54 PM

I will post pics soon. I bought the belt for the 318 today, and the dealer is pretty sure that the 1st one I recevied is correct. I will try both tonight.

#12 sgtrock1976 OFFLINE  

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Posted October 19, 2011 - 04:18 PM

I have a 41"-42" on my 316. I never hear anyone talk about anything but 46 and bigger. Is there a manual on how to set up the mule drive?

#13 dockter OFFLINE  

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Posted October 19, 2011 - 07:10 PM

Is that the model 41 (38") deck you have? There is an owner's manual for that, I believe it is the same manual for the model 48 (46") deck. The instructions for the mule drive should be on the pulley shield. There is a pointer on the left side (spring loaded) pulley (as you face the mule drive). Adjust the knob until the pointer is almost to the top of the window in the pulley shield. This adjustment is supposed to be done with the deck in the raised position.

#14 saintb OFFLINE  

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Posted November 13, 2011 - 02:09 PM

M89112 is the correct belt. Due to my inexperience I did not realize that the left pully (on the mule drive) was spring loaded. The belt is a perfect fit once I pressed that pully in and slipped it on.

now the real challenge begins. finding a mulching kit for my 46" deck... (or trading up to replacement deck)

#15 Alc ONLINE  

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Posted November 13, 2011 - 05:50 PM

I have a 318 with a 50" deck and when I use the pull behind sweeper I have a piece of sheet metal that covers the chute once the deflector is raised up then it kinds of holds it in place , doesn't do a good as a mulching plate because it leaves about 2" pile on the right side ( chute side ) just have to always move the tractor to the right on the next pass , Al




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