Towing capacity

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  #1  
Old 03-18-12, 09:38 AM
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Towing capacity

How can the towing capacity of a riding mower be determined? I use a Poulan Pro with a 22hp BS v series and hydrostatic trans. Pedal controlled. I am about to use this aerator which can be up to 700 lbs when filled with water and I want ensure that I do not mess anything up. I read the manual but not specific weight was quoted. Is there some formula that can be used to determine the towing capacity?
 
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Old 03-18-12, 10:37 AM
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Hydrostatic transmissions get hot when pulling weight. I think the best way to approach this would be to pull the aerator around for 30 minutes or so, then shut it down and let it cool for an hour or two, then repeat. 700 lbs is a lot of weight for this little mower to pull around. It should be able to, but for how long continuously I don't know. 700 lbs is probably more than the mower weighs. Make sure your brakes are in good shape. Maybe fill it with water halfway instead.
 
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Old 03-18-12, 10:53 AM
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ok cool, the aerator has the capacity of 45 gallons, Not saying that I need to add that much water but just saying. It's about 2 acres of yard so it will take some time. Maybe I could just waiting on a good rain so that I can get through the job without the need for the added weight in the aerator.
 
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Old 03-18-12, 11:00 AM
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Boy....the aerator must be one heavy sucker even when empty. 45 gallons of water only weighs about 375 lbs.

Is it a core aerator? Spike aerators can make the problem worse.
 
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Old 03-18-12, 11:16 AM
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Is it a core aerator? Spike aerators can make the problem worse.
spike I guess... the aerator is barrel shaped with these triangular wedges all around.
 
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Old 03-18-12, 11:17 AM
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Yeah...core aerators are hollow and leave the cores on top of the lawn to break down over time.
 
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Old 03-19-12, 06:21 PM
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The rough rule of thumb is to tow no more weight than what the tractor weighs. Aerators are particularly hard on transmissions as they are locked into the ground with their spikes. So making turns causes a pretty large load on the drivetrain as you have to force the aerator to pivot when it really does not want to. Keeping this in mind, Cheese's recommendations at running 30 minutes and then taking a break really are good to follow. Excessive heat is a common cause of hydro failure, and heat is caused by high loads.
 
  #8  
Old 03-20-12, 05:28 AM
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All I can add is go easy with it. Your lawn mower is just that, a lawn mower. It is not a tractor in the true sense so it was not designed for high pulling torque or for pulling in general. You can tell a bit by the sound of the transmission since many will whine or groan when under heavy load. If you find yourself very slow or stopped and you're pressing on the pedal and not moving and the transmission is whining, STOP. That situation is quite hard on the hydrostatic. So, only start and stop with the tractor and aerator pointed straight ahead. If you stop or slow too much in a sharp turn you may not be able to get moving again.
 
  #9  
Old 03-20-12, 10:18 AM
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Rather than ruin your mower, don't you know anyone with a 4 wheeler? Wouldn't take long at all.
 
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