Craftsman Tractor Mower deck not straight

Old 10-25-07, 08:53 AM
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Craftsman Tractor Mower deck not straight

I hit a tree stump and this bent my deck somewhat. I stripped the deck completely and checked for cracks or other damage, but the only visible damage is the bent area where the spindle attaches. I managed to straighten out this area with a press. My approach was to lay the deck on a level surface and measure the gap from the spindle holes to the floor on the unbent side, then repeat on the bent side and press the deck until all the measurements were the same. I replaced the spindles (no obvious damage) and new blades, and the blades are not level, but they are close. So far so good.
My plan is to hang the deck on the mower and check if the deck is level, and straighten the deck if needed, then go on to check is the blades are level (side-side & front-back) and do some more deck straightening. What comes first? Straighten the deck or get the blades level?
Old 10-25-07, 09:32 PM
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I'd be concerned with the level of the blades regardless of what the deck looks like, since you probably won't get the blades AND the deck level.
Old 10-26-07, 03:51 PM
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It is very hard to strighten a bent deck. If this is a 42" deck they have reinfocement rings to keep it from bending. After you replaced the blades did you rotate the blade 180 degrees to see if the shaft was bent? If you get the blades lined up the you should be able to level the deck. Remember the front tip of the blade should be 1/8" to 1/4" lower to give you a good cut.
Old 10-27-07, 05:12 AM
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It sound like you're looking for perfection and you will be hard pressed to get the deck back to new condition. I'd straighten the deck as best you are able then worry about the level once installed back in the chassis. Good luck and if you want new-like, you'll likely have to buy new (mower deck pan). You'll have to sacrifice a bit I'm affraid.

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