Exmark Stand-On Spreader/Sprayer

Exmark Stand-On Spreader/Sprayer

Need to spread seed, fertilizer and lawn chemicals? Wish there was a way to do it that was faster than walk-behind spreaders and less awkward than trailers? Then the eXmark Spreader Sprayer may be just what you need. By combining a stand-on design with a hopper and pump system, it has the maneuverability of a walk-behind without compromising speed.

Comfort and Control

This model comes with a unique lean-to-steer system. Speed is controlled like a stander mower, combining a lever with two grab handles. However, instead of using individual motor control, power is varied left-to-right by tilting the handle assembly. This allows all movement to be controlled with one hand while the other hand is free to make adjustments to the sprayer and hopper.

With no need to worry about a deck, eXmark was able to fit the front with 13 x 6.5-6 turf tires instead of the usual small casters. In the back, a Tuff Torq transmission drives a set of 18 x 7.5-8 tires. The Spreader Sprayer can reach a top speed of 5.5 mph going forward and 4 mph in reverse. Big tires also give a softer ride, further improved by isolation mounts used to hold the stainless steel operator platform.

Thanks to light power requirements, this model is powered by a 9 hp Subaru EX27. While small, this overhead cam single cylinder has all the features you expect from a commercial engine and is backed by the longest warranty in the industry.

Altogether, this equipment keeps the Spreader Sprayer small and light at 67.5 inches long, 35.5 inches wide and a curb weight of 500 lbs. Wide contact patches at all four corners minimize scrubbing, even on wet turf, and it can pass through all but the smallest gates.

Spraying

A 20-gallon tank wraps around the operator’s feet. It’s attached to a Remco pump driven by a two hp electric motor, delivering liquid to a set of spray nozzles directly ahead of the front wheels. Both the sprayer and hopper can be running at the same time, applying seed and fertilizer in one pass.

A built-in agitation system mixes chemicals and keeps them in suspension. Even dry powders stay mixed, so they end up on the lawn, not pasted against the walls of the tank.

The sprayer has two modes. In broadcast mode, it sprays in an 11-foot wide pattern, delivering 0.69 GPM of chemicals at 30 psi or 0.80 GPM at 40 psi. In narrow mode, it sprays a 5-foot wide stream at a rate of 0.35 GPM at 30 psi or 0.40 GPM at 40 psi. There’s also an on-board wand that’s kept next to the control panel. This lets the operator spray edges and around trees and bushes without having to get off of the machine.

Spreading

The front-mounted hopper holds 175 lbs, and the top of the spray tank is shaped to hold an additional 50 lb. bag. eXmark offers three sizes of grates for the bottom of the hopper to match the seed or pellet size you’re applying.

Drop rate is adjusted using a knob just below the hopper. From there, everything else is set from the operator’s position. A deflector shield can be lowered to keep the product off of driveways and sidewalks, and delivery to the spinner can be altered to get the right distribution pattern. The spinner can be set to the desired speed then switched on and off as needed. Two distribution settings can be set up, letting you switch between seeding and pellet fertilizing throughout the day.

Warranty

eXmark guarantees the Spreader Sprayer for one year of commercial use with no hour limit. Subaru guarantees the engine for 5 years.

Ready to Add a Stander Sprayer to Your Fleet?

If you’re looking to buy some eXmark equipment or have it serviced, visit Shank’s Lawn Equipment. We’re a certified dealer for eXmark and Subaru Power, and we have over 30 years of experience helping professional landscapers with their equipment. To learn more, visit us at 4900 Molly Pitcher Highway in Chambersburg, PA. To get here from I-81, take Exit 10 to Marion and drive one mile East.

Not in the area? We can ship parts and accessories for your eXmark to any address in the U.S. and Canada. To order, visit us online at www.shankslawn.com.

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eXmark Rotary Broom

eXmark Rotary Broom

If you have problems keeping sidewalks and driveways free of debris and precipitation, a rotary broom may be just what you need. eXmark’s Power Broom combines snowblower-style controls with bristles that remove snow without damaging pavement. Add a few attachments, and it can also be used for dethatching and leaf cleanup, making it useful throughout the year.

Precision Control from Clearing to Transport

At first glance, eXmark’s patented design looks like they come from a snowblower. However, it splits control of the hydrostatic drive for unparalleled control. The shift lever has 6 positions for forward motion and two for reverse to set the base speed. From there, trigger controls allow for small steering adjustments to hug curbs and obstacles. The drive and broom engage independently using the levers over the grips for quick switches between operation and transport.

There are two more levers next to the handles to change the broom angle. This power system can swivel the broom 20 degrees to the left or right to push debris and snow away from the pavement.

Power

The Power Broom uses a 7 hp Kohler Command Pro CH270 engine. It may be a small single cylinder, but it comes with the features and build quality needed for commercial use.

Debris removal can be dusty, so this engine comes with a cyclonic air box that pre-filters incoming air, reducing wear and maintenance on the filter elements. The intake on this box can be rotated by hand to aim outside the engine or toward the engine’s cooling fins to decrease warm-up times. It also comes with Kohler’s Oil Sentry system, which cuts the ignition if the oil level is too low, protecting internal components from damage. Filters in the filler neck, tank, and carburetor remove debris from fuel and a water trap reduces moisture contamination.

Broom

The bristles are mounted on a set of discs, creating a broom that is 36 inches wide and 25-inch diameter. When in operation, the broom spins at 200 RPM.

The broom comes from the factory fitted with eXmark’s concrete/snow bristles. These are engineered for abrasion resistance against concrete without damaging the surface. A pair of casters support the broom and can be adjusted in 1/8 increments to get the right amount of ground contact as the bristles wear down.

Accessories for Year-Round Use

Turf bristle discs replace the aggressive concrete discs, letting this broom be used for dethatching. The turf caster kit adds wider wheels, spreading out the weight of the broom for less damage when operating on grass.

For winter use, chains can be added to the rear tires, while installing a cab protects the operator from wind and snow. Snow removal often can’t wait for daylight, so eXmark offers a light kit for night time operation.

The debris box mounts to the front of the broom, picking up dust and leaves as they’re pushed up by the bristles.

Warranty

The Power Broom is guaranteed by eXmark for one year of commercial use. Kohler backs the Command Pro engine with a three-year commercial warranty.

Getting Parts and Service for the eXmark Power Broom

Shank’s Lawn Equipment is more than an eXmark dealer: we’ve helped everyone from homeowners to municipal customers with their outdoor equipment for over three decades. If you think the eXmark Power Broom can help you with cleanup or you need your equipment serviced, stop by our shop. We’re located at 4900 Molly Pitcher Highway in Chambersburg, PA. That’s one mile east of I-80 — just take Exit 10 to Marion.

Not in the area? We ship parts and accessories for eXmark and many other popular equipment brands across the U.S. and Canada. To order, visit us online at www.shankslawn.com.

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eXmark Quest ZTR: A Fresh Design for Residential Mowing

eXmark Quest ZTRWant professional quality from a residential ZTR? eXmark may be known for their commercial mowers, but their Quest line offers most of the features of their professional ZTRs in sizes and prices that are within reach of homeowners. Now they’re even better thanks to a recent redesign, adding better engine protection, new styling and an easier to use control panel.

Engine

The Quest is powered by eXmark’s own 708cc air-cooled V-Twin, designed specifically for their ZTR mowers. It uses a dual barrel carburetor and a specially designed governor that delivers droop-free performance rivaled only by pricey EFI-equipped engines. Since this motor was only recently put into production, it was designed with ethanol in mind and will fine on blends up to 10%.

A lot of attention was also paid to maintenance. It has a quick drain hose for easy, mess-free oil changes, and an airbox designed so that the filter fits only one way to ensure the engine is protected from dust and debris. eXmark also makes complete kits that have everything needed for routine maintenance including oil, filters, spark plugs and fuel treatment.

Output for this engine in all models is 24.5 hp. It’s not CARB compliant, so it can’t be sold in California.

Deck

These mowers use Series 2 decks, built from 10 gauge steel with welded wear strips to resist abrasion. E-Series models use two blades, while the wider S-Series decks have three blades. These mount to eXmark’s trademark sealed maintenance-free spindles.

Comfort

People of any size can operate these mowers comfortably. The operator sits in an adjustable high back spring suspension seat equipped with fully adjustable fore and aft bars at two height positions.

This update brings a complete redesign of the area around the operator. On the right, a new control center puts throttle, starter and PTO controls within easy reach. On the left, there’s a 2.9-gallon gas tank with a molded-in cup holder and a translucent window to check the fuel level.

Models

The Quest is available in two versions: the E-Series and the S-Series.

E-Series
These mowers use a set of Hydro-Gear ZT2100 hydrostatic transmissions and can mow up to 2.8 acres per hour. Top speed is 7 mph when going forward and 3.4 mph in reverse. The E-Series is available with a 34 or 42-inch deck.

S-Series
Hydro-Gear ZT2800 transaxles provide the same top speeds as the E-Series while being strong enough to support the weight of the S-Series’ 50 and 60-inch decks. The S-Series also come with additional equipment. A large steel plate surrounds the rear of the engine to protect it from collisions when backing up, while the deck height can be changed using an assisted foot lever. This model also comes with the hitch kit installed at the factory.

Accessories

Want the foot-operated height control and hitch of an S-Series, but need the compact size of the E-Series? Accessories are available to install both functions. If you want to carry mulch and tools with you without dealing with a trailer, eXmark offers a cargo carrier that adds a small storage deck at the rear of the mower.

Kits are available for mulching, bagging and striping to get the finish you want. The mulching kit doesn’t have an impeller like the units found on the company’s larger units, but the large diameter tube of the bagging kit coupled with the sealed mowing chamber of the mulching kit ensures plenty of flow to keep clippings moving.

Is the Quest Right for You?

Shank’s Lawn Equipment is a certified dealer for eXmark, and we have over three decades of experience helping both residential and commercial customers with their lawn care equipment. If you’re looking to buy a ZTR to take care of your lawn or you need parts or service for your current mower, stop by our shop, located at 4900 Molly Pitcher Highway, Chambersburg, PA. To get here from I-81, take exit 10 to Marion and drive East one mile.

Need parts or accessories for your eXmark? We ship to the United States and Canada. To order, visit us online at www.shankslawn.com.

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Exmark Lazer Z Diesel

Exmark Lazer Z Diesel

Need the mowing power of a full-size tractor and the maneuverability of a ZTR? eXmark’s newly updated Laser Z Diesel offers Yanmar diesel power and a new winged 96-inch deck that can fold up to fit in a space intended for a 72-inch mower.

UltraCut Flex Wing: More than Just Size

An 8-foot cutting width is notable on its own, but eXmark has made the most of this winged design to get improved cutting performance.

The deck is built around a 48-inch center section with two blades flanked by a pair of 24-inch wings, each with its own blade. These wings fold up for storage, giving the mower the same overall width as a mower with a 72-inch deck so it can be loaded onto most trailers. When deployed, the wings can flex as much as 20 degrees upward and 15 degrees downward, helping the blades follow the turf with minimal scalping. By eXmark’s estimates, this mower can cover up to 10 acres per hour.

The Laser Z Diesel is also available with a regular UltraCut deck in 60 and 72-inch widths with either side or rear discharge. All decks are build using a 10 gauge top plate and 7 gauge reinforced spindle mounts. The spindles are sealed and require no greasing, a feature only available from eXmark.

Deck height can be adjusted from the operator’s position at a range of 1-5.5 inches in ¼ inch increments. A hydraulic lift comes standard on all decks.

Big Power from Yanmar

These are the first eXmark models powered by Yanmar engines, chosen for their reliability and high output. Buyers can choose from a 25 hp 1.3-liter turbocharged engine or a 37 hp 1.6 liter naturally aspirated engine. Yanmar’s RED technology helps these engines meet the EPA’s Tier 4 emissions requirements. It also has performance profiles to fit different operating conditions. These modes can be selected from the operator’s position as needed.

The engine drives a Kanzaki KPS-18T transmission paired with two Hydro-Gear HGM-H wheel motors. Top speed is 11 mph with the 1.3 liter and 12.5 mph with the 1.6-liter engine.

To fit these new engines, eXmark redesigned the rear half of the mower to lower the mounting points for the engine and radiator. This lowers the center of gravity, improving stability and traction.

Operator Comfort

The seat base and footrest are isolated both horizontally and vertically from the mower frame. The operator’s seat is mounted on eXmark’s scissor link ball bearing suspension. It’s covered in vibration-absorbing stretch fabric base help further tame vibrations. A pair of tanks flanking the operator holds a total of 12 gallons of fuel.

Accessories

With a few add-ons, these mowers can be set up for a variety of mowing tasks.

A rearguard and bumper can be added to protect the engine from impacts when working in tight spaces. Lighting and flasher kits are available to increase the visibility of the mower and allow use in low light conditions. When it’s bright out, a sunshade can be mounted to the ROPS to shield the operator.

The Micro-Mulch system seals the mowing chamber for increased vacuum and uses high lift blades to finely chop clippings. A foot-operated discharge control can be added to easily switch between mulching and side discharge. The UltraVac bagging kit uses a PTO impeller to pull clippings from the deck to maintain cutting performance. For sports fields, the turf striping kit rolls blades of grass after cutting, giving turf a fine finish.

When You Need Commercial Performance, Go to Shank’s

Shank’s Lawn Equipment is more than just an eXmark dealer: we have over three decades of experience helping professional landscapers and groundskeepers. If you’re looking to buy a mower or you need your eXmark equipment repaired, visit our shop, located at 4900 Molly Pitcher Highway in Chambersburg, PA. That’s just outside of Marion.

Need parts or accessories for your eXmark? Visit our website, www.shankslawn.com. We can ship anything you need to any address in the U.S. or Canada.

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Kohler Command Pro EFI 999cc

Kohler Command Pro EFI 999cc

Kohler’s 999cc Command Pro EFI may look like the rest of their commercial line, but this updated motor adds a new feature that greatly improves usability: an electronically controlled throttle body. While other manufacturers have EFI systems that can prevent throttle droop, this system lets the ECU precisely control both air and fuel, keeping the engine from bogging down when under heavy load.

ETB Technology

The 999-Series is the first engine line to get ETB, which stands for “Electronic Throttle Body,” commonly referred to as “throttle by wire.” Instead of using a physical linkage to rotate the butterfly valve inside the throttle body, the 999 uses a servo motor controlled by the operator and the ECU.

By using an ETB, the ECU can precisely control the air coming into the engine along with the fuel via the injectors. Operating the 999 is no different from any other engine, except the throttle lever uses an electrical connection instead of a cable. By letting the ECU step in occasionally to alter the throttle position, this engine has much smoother power delivery, especially during major load changes. Drive into tall grass with your mower, and the added deck load won’t bog down the motor. It also increases the amount of power the engine is able to deliver: 35 hp is about average in this engine category, but that’s backed by 56 lb-ft. of torque, about 10-15% higher than its competitors.

Low Running Costs and Less Hassle with EFI

On average, a fuel injected engine uses 25% less fuel than carbureted engines, which can save hundreds of dollars per year in operating costs, even with today’s low fuel prices. Since fuel delivery is adjusted automatically according to the amount of air entering the engine, there’s also no need to modify the fuel system to get it to run at high altitudes. There’s also no choking or priming required to get the engine to start, taking one less hassle out of your day whether you’re an operator or you rent 999-powered equipment. Repairs are simpler, too, thanks to real-time troubleshooting using EFI diagnostic software. This lets technicians see exactly what’s going on inside the engine without pulling it apart to examine components.

Built for Commercial Demands

While the electronics are the star of the show, a lot of attention was paid to the engine’s construction to ensure durability. The crankshaft is supported by sleeve bearings, just like you’ll find inside the engine of your car. Hydraulic lifters eliminate the need for valve adjustment, while an integrated oil cooler helps keep engine temperatures steady. This engine comes with a top mounted oil filter next to control panel for easy access, or it can be fitted with a remote filter. OEMs can also choose to have a grass screen installed to protect the cooling system from clippings when used to power a mower. This engine also comes with a regulated 15 amp charging system to operate electric PTOs and work lights.

Warranty

Kohler guarantees this engine for three years of commercial use with no hour limit.

Getting Parts and Service for the Latest Kohler Engines

Shank’s Lawn Equipment is a certified dealer for Kohler Power as well as several mower brands that use their engines including Dixon and eXmark. If you’re looking for a Kohler-powered mower or you need your equipment serviced, visit our shop located at 4900 Molly Pitcher Highway in Chambersburg, PA. That’s one mile east of I-81 via Exit 10 to Marion.

We can also ship parts and accessories for Kohler engines across the U.S. and Canada. To order, visit our website, www.shankslawn.com.

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Scag V-Ride II

Scag V-Ride II

Need the capability of a ZTR and maximum maneuverability without sacrificing deck size? Scag’s new V-Ride II updates their stander design for more comfort and better performance across the board. Available in deck size from 36 to 61 inches, there’s a model that’s perfect for your needs, whether you’re a homeowner or professional landscaper.

Deck

36-inch models come with an Advantage deck, while other models use a Velocity Plus deck. Despite the names, their designs are nearly identical. The blades are mounted on cast iron spindles with tapered roller bearings top and bottom to provide exceptional strength and durability. These spindles are topped with split steel pulleys that are formed from a single piece of metal, making them and lighter than cast or stamped pulleys, and the idler pulleys are protected by debris shields. The deck itself uses Scag’s tri-plate construction with a 0.485-inch thick steel top plate and replaceable side wear pads. Anti-scalp wheels are standard.

A front baffle chamber provides vacuum, pulling the grass straight up before cutting to get a near-stamped deck finish. Scag’s Hurricane Plus mulching system can be installed on these decks, adding high lift blades and baffles that enhance vacuum. Mowers with the Velocity Plus deck can be fitted with an operator-controlled discharge chute, letting the deck switch between mulching and side discharge by twisting a single handle. All models come with Scag’s Marbain blades, which have hardened steel and a tough outer coating for extended life.

The deck height on the V-Ride is adjusted using a handle next to the operator’s position. The deck can be raised or lowered to a height of 1 ½ to 4 ½ inches in clearly marked ¼ inch increments, and the handle has an auto lock to move the deck out of its transport position with thumb release.

The deck is engaged by an Ogura GT PTO clutch brake. It has an adjustable air gap to maintains grip as the clutch wears down, giving it a longer service life than a fixed clutch.

Operation

Massive 12 inch wide rear tires reduce scrubbing and make it easy to roll over curbs, while flat free front caster tires can withstand bumps when getting close to obstacles.

The operator stands on a textured steel plate mounted on a coil spring suspension. A new, larger pad protects operators of any height when leaning against the machine. Large, padded control levers reduce vibration transfer, while grips ahead and behind these levers provide several hand positions to reduce hand fatigue. Controls for the PTO, starter and parking brake are placed around these levers, while the fuel tank shut off and gauge are on top of the tank next to controls. The interlocked parking brake automatically disengages when the drive control levers are moved.

48” and larger models come with Scag’s Tiger Eye display that includes an hour meter and indicators for voltage, oil pressure, PTO engagement and other information. Scag offers a kit to add an air filter sensor, letting you know when it needs to be cleaned.

Models

Scag offers the V-Ride II in four deck sizes with a choice of 7 engines:

36” — 15 hp Kawasaki 541FS with recoil start or 19 hp 600FX with electric start
48” — 22hp Kawasaki 691FX
52” — 23 hp Kawasaki 730FX or 25hp Kohler EFI
61” — 25hp Kawasaki 801FX or 29hp Kohler EFI

The 36” models have a top speed of 8.5 mph, a fuel tank holds 6.75 gallons, and dual 10cc hydraulic pumps paired with 12 ci wheel motors. All other V-Ride II’s have a top speed of 10.5 mph, can carry 8 gallons of fuel, and use dual 12 cc hydraulic pumps with 14 ci wheel motors and deck fans to keep the drive system cool.

Which engine is right for you? The Kawasaki FS has a dual element air filter and single barrel carburetor, while the FX has a large canister air filter for less frequent maintenance and a twin barrel carburetor for increased power. Kohler’s EFI engines are easier to start, uses significantly less fuel and are less sensitive to fuel freshness.

Warranty

Kohler and Kawasaki both guarantee their engines for three years, while Scag covers the rest of the mower with a three-year warranty including a “no crack” guarantee on the deck.

When You think “Scag,” Think “Shank’s”

If you’re looking to buy a V-Ride II or need parts or service on your Scag, bring it to Shank’s Lawn Equipment. We’re a certified dealer for Scag, Kawasaki Engines, and Kohler Power so we can help you with everything on your stander mower. Our shop is at 4900 Molly Pitcher Highway in Chambersburg, PA. That’s one mile east of I-81 via Exit 10 to Marion.

We can also ship parts and accessories for Scag Power Equipment and their engines mowers to you no matter where you are in the U.S. or Canada. To order, visit our website, www.shankslawn.com.

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Kawasaki’s New FT730V-EFI

FT730V-EFI

Aimed at use in high-end residential and commercial lawn mowers, Kawasaki’s recently released FT730V-EFI introduces a new air filtration system and numerous upgrades to reduce maintenance and downtime. Designed for compatibility with their other 730-based engines, it shouldn’t be long before we see this new engine in ZTR, stand-on and wide walk-behind mowers.

Vortical Air Filtration

The big news for this engine is a new type of air filtration system that Kawasaki says can be used up to 50 hours before cleaning. It uses centrifugal flow to separate out heavy dust, grass, and other debris out of the air stream before it reaches the filter medium. Similar systems are already in use on a lot of small engines, but Kawasaki’s Vortical design can channel this material through a duckbill-shaped debris ejection valve instead of letting it get caked on the inside of the housing. Not only does this mean longer maintenance intervals, it keeps working at peak performance longer, resulting in a cleaner engine. The Vortical Air Filtration system also uses the filter and case as part of the centrifugal system, so there’s no separate pre-filter chamber that increases the overall size of the engine.

The air path for the cooling system has also been redesigned to work with this new air box. Overall, airflow has been improved across the cooling fins, and the wash-out ports have been relocated to the underside of the air filter cover. This provides direct access to the heads for fast cleaning while shielding the engine from dust when in operation.

EFI: More than Just Fuel Economy

In recent years, manufacturers have been switching from carburetors to fuel injectors to keep up with emissions regulations and reduce operating costs through improved fuel economy and reduced maintenance. While that’s reason enough to consider an EFI engine, Kawasaki’s system has another trick up its sleeve: an integrated e-governor. This device manages engine speed to meet current load requirements, keeping performance consistent when driving onto slopes or into thick grass, maintaining mower and blade speed for a higher quality finish. This all but eliminates the need for repeated passes so jobs can be completed faster.

The EFI system is an open loop design that doesn’t use an oxygen sensor, but otherwise, it resembles something you’d find in a new car. It uses multi-port injection, using an injector for each fuel runner to supply the cylinders individually. These injectors are supplied by a returnless fuel system that modulates fuel pressure to deliver the exact amount of gas needed, reducing the number of system components. The system’s ECU is in a sealed container to protect it from weather, vibration, and dirt. Head temperature sensors let the ECU keep fuel mixture and engine speed in check to prevent overheating and reduce oil consumption. It can also enrich the fuel mixture automatically, eliminating the need for a choke while making it easy to start in any weather. Repairs are easier thanks to an on-board diagnostic system that lets dealers plug a tablet or computer into the ECU for quick troubleshooting.

All this new technology is packaged in a way to give the FT the same size and shape as the previous carbureted versions, making it easy for manufacturers to switch from an FS or FX engine. The 730 block the FT is based on has been around for 10 years, so OEMs and dealers are already familiar with these engines, making the switch relatively painless.

Getting Parts and Service for the Kawasaki FT730V-EFI

Whether your Kawasaki engine is new or old, Shank’s Lawn Equipment can help you keep it running. We’re a certified dealer for Kawasaki Engines and many of the manufacturers who use their powerplants including Wright, Dixon, and Scag. If you need parts or service, visit our shop, located at 4900 Molly Pitcher Highway in Chambersburg, PA. That’s one mile East of I-81 via Exit 10. We also ship OEM parts and accessories across the U.S. and Canada. To order, visit us online at www.shankslawn.com.

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Briggs & Stratton Vanguard Big Block

Briggs & Stratton Vanguard Big Block

If you’ve been in the market for a big piece of outdoor equipment, and in particular a new mower, you’ve probably come across Briggs & Stratton’s Vanguard Big Block. While the name sounds like a throwback to classic muscle cars, this state-of-the-art engine has become a major player in the top end of the market. What sets it apart?

What is the Big Block?

This is a series of industrial V-twin engines producing anywhere from 28-37 hp. They’re designed specifically for use in lawn mowers but have found their way into other high power demand equipment.

What’s “big” for an engine used in outdoor equipment? In this case, it’s 896-993 cc. This puts these engines in a class at the very top of the gas market, often offered alongside small diesel engines. These sizes were chosen by Vanguard specifically for the torque demands of large ZTR mowers and lawn tractors.

Vanguard vs Briggs & Stratton

The Big Block is a Briggs & Stratton motor, but it’s also a Vanguard. What’s the difference? Realizing that they needed to have marketing, development and dealer training in place to support commercial customers, Briggs & Stratton created the Commercial Power division in the early 2000s. From there, they partnered with Daihatsu and Mitsubishi Heavy Industries to bring state-of-the-art manufacturing technologies to small engines while using the residential division’s development labs to improve usability. That includes access to the Engine Application Center (EAC) which works with equipment manufacturers to integrate the engine into the design process instead of simply designing the equipment and attaching the engine. This saves a lot of time and troubleshooting for the manufacturer and ensures the engine will work perfectly wherever it’s used.

The Vanguard Big Block is a collaborative effort between Briggs & Stratton and Daihatsu: Vanguard designed the engine and a lot of the parts are made in the U.S. Final assembly takes place at a Daihatsu plant in Japan using the same tooling and machining the company has developed for their commercial vehicles. The end result is a motor designed from the ground up for the needs of lawn care professionals with the build quality of an automobile engine.

Engine Construction

The inside of these engines looks a lot more like something that would power a car than a lawnmower: cast iron cylinders are paired with lightweight pistons and rings to ensure durability and reduce noise and vibration. These spin a crankshaft that is dynamically balanced at the factory to reduce vibration, lowering internal stresses and making the mower more comfortable to operate.

Cooling and Lubrication

While most engines in this class are liquid-cooled, the Big Block is air and oil-cooled. This makes maintenance less complicated and helps reduce weight. The oiling system is fully pressurized, drawing oil from a sump and pumping it through galleries around the entire engine from the heads to the crankshaft. The pickup point is mounted low in the center of the sump to get the system pressurized quickly after the start and prevent starvation at severe angles of operation. This oil is kept clean by an automotive-style spin-on filter.

These engines also have what Vanguard calls “Advanced Debris Management.” Everything from the grille over the flywheel to the metal plates surrounding the cylinders has been designed and tested to allow cooling while reducing dust contact. This helps keep engine temperatures down and efficiency up while reducing the need for cleaning. These components have also been tuned to reduce resonance to make the engine quieter.

EFI

Vanguard has been rolling out electronic fuel injection versions of the Big Block in the past couple years with outputs ranging from 33 to 37 hp. This is a closed loop system developed by Delphi with an oxygen sensor in the exhaust, letting the ECU track how fuel is burning and adjust the mixture accordingly. Not only is this good for the environment, it can cut operating costs significantly by increasing fuel efficiency by up to 25% over a carburetor-equipped engine. This makes these motors a compelling alternative to more expensive types of diesel.

Fuel injection systems are also far less temperamental when it comes to fuel freshness and content: straight gas with or without ethanol can be used in most situations, while the fuel can be treated when the engine is stored instead of draining the entire fuel system.

Parts and Service

Shank’s Lawn Equipment is a Vanguard dealer, and we sell a wide range of mowers and other equipment that use the Big Block. To see if this engine is a good fit for your needs or you need to have your motor serviced, visit our shop at 4900 Molly Pitcher Highway in Chambersburg, PA. That’s one mile East of I-81 via Exit 10.

Not in the area? We ship OEM parts across the U.S. and Canada. To order, visit us online at www.shankslawn.com.

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Preparing Edges and Cracks with Help from Little Wonder

Preparing Edges and Cracks with Help from Little Wonder

Sometimes, it’s the smallest jobs that can be the most difficult and time-consuming. With Little Wonder edgers and crack cleaners, you can get sharp edge on landscape features and clean soil and other debris from pavement cracks to give landscaping a quality finish with minimal effort. It doesn’t just make your work look more professional, it can lead to serious savings on labor costs.

BedShaper

This edger is designed to get a clean transition between turf and tilled soil, making it perfect for outlining ground cover, flower beds, and gardens.

This tool is designed first and foremost to handle the curves used in these landscape features. It has a hydrostatic drive with variable speed control in forward and reverse and places the blade is in line with the wheel, making it easy to guide. The drive axle has a differential, allowing different wheel speeds for easy turns with minimal scrubbing, and it has a zero radius turning during transport to get the blade lined up for the next cut. Thanks to a powerful Honda GXV390 engine, this machine can cut up to 100 feet per minute, even when turning.

The notched blade’s concave shape cuts at an angle to help blend in cuts for an even finish. It can be set in one of 7 positions to get a cut ranging from ½ to 4 ¼ inches. Little Wonder’s BladeFloat system lets the blade glide over obstructions and still cut through the soil, keeping the cut even on the surface with minimal stops. The blade is driven by a belt drive that is fully enclosed and has a spring-loaded idler pulley to eliminate the need for adjustments.

Pro Crack Cleaner and Pro Edger

At their core, the Pro Edge and Pro Crack Cleaner are the same machine, just set up for different purposes. In fact, they’re so similar that Little Wonder has kits to convert the Pro Edge into a concrete cleaner and the Pro Crack Cleaner into an edger.

Both models have a dual belt drive for less slippage and better power transfer. These belts are protected from debris by a full-length shield. Whether it’s fitted with a brush or a blade, the head height has four inches of adjustment.

These tools are supported by four wheels, eliminating the need for a curb wheel. Every wheel is mounted on steel hubs with ball bearings and full axles for durability and smooth rolling. When working on uneven surfaces, the front wheel height can be adjusted for stability. The operator is protected by a mud flap that extends below the main shield and a set of anti-vibration grips that quell bumps and engine movement.

The Pro Edger cuts into soil along the edge of pavement using a 10-inch steel blade. This blade is surrounded by a cast iron guard to deflect debris. Little Wonder offers this model with either a Briggs & Stratton Intek 550 or Honda GX120 engine fitted with an extra large gas tank. It can edge up to 90 feet per minute.

The Pro Crack Cleaner is only available with the Honda GX120. It uses a 9-inch diameter twisted wire wheel brush to pull debris out of pavement cracks. It’s perfect for cleaning up concrete and preparing it for sealing.

Warranty

Little Wonder guarantees the BedShaper, Pro Edger and Pro Crack Cleaner for one year of use, while the blade on the BedShaper has a lifetime guarantee against chipping, breaking, bending and delaminating.

Briggs & Stratton guarantees the Intek engine for two years of residential use or one year of commercial use, while Honda guarantees their engines for three years for all users.

Get the Tools You Need for Fast Lawn Cleanup

Do you need a BedShaper, Pro Crack Cleaner or Pro Edger to help you get lawn care tasks done faster? Do you need parts or service for your Little Wonder equipment? Shank’s Lawn Equipment is a certified dealer for Little Wonder, Honda and Briggs & Stratton so we can help you get the equipment you need and keep it running. We’re located at 4900 Molly Pitcher Highway in Chambersburg, PA. That’s one mile East of I-81 via Exit 10 to Marion.

Not in the area? We ship OEM parts across the U.S. and Canada. To order, visit our website, www.shankslawn.com.

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Hurricane Power X3 and Z3 Blowers

Hurricane Power X3 and Z3 Blowers

When Rick Weihl was a professional landscaper, he was constantly frustrated by the amount of time, labor, and equipment he needed to dedicate to debris cleanup, which lead him to start Hurricane. Since 2008, the company has been building compact stander blowers, greatly increasing the speed of debris removal on parking lots and other large areas. The X3 and Z3 might not be any more powerful than some walk-behinds on the market, but their clever design helps them clear areas far faster without backtracking.

Built Using Quality Components

Hurricane may be a small company, but they’ve chosen to go with proven components that can be relied on. These blowers are powered by Briggs & Stratton’s Vanguard V-Twins. The engine is sandwiched between the impeller and controls in a way that still provides access to service points including the oil filter and spark plugs.

Motivation is provided by a pair of Hydro-Gear IZT transaxles. These professional units come with built-in fans and hydraulic fluid filters for years of reliable service. These pumps can be accessed for fluid and filter changes by removing a single access panel.

A Unique Multi-Chute Air System

The housing has three chutes mounted on the left, right and center of the blower. The operator can switch air from side to side, blowing debris in one direction with each pass instead of having to backtrack to position the single nozzle found on other blowers.

The side nozzles are fixed, but they have dual deflectors inside to direct the air forward and back to get the right angle for the job. This makes the Hurricane suitable for work in fields and near buildings. When it’s time to move between work areas, all three chutes can be closed. All of these functions are controlled using a single joystick.

Logical Control and Transport

The quad control handle may be patented, but its basic design should be familiar to anyone who has used a Wright Stander mower. There are two grab handles on top of the controls surrounding the control levers for the hydrostatic motors. This lets the operator grab either handle and squeeze the lever instead of having to awkwardly push a lever away from the handle when turning or reversing. All the controls including chute opening, throttle and choke are within easy reach of these handles. A high-mounted LED work light is included for working at night.

These blowers have an automatic parking brake, letting the operator step off to pick up branches without shutting off the engine. A low center of gravity and torsion-bar mounted front wheels keep the blower stable on hills and helps it climb curbs.

When it’s time to move to a different job site, the blower can be strapped to a trailer using large built-in tie downs on the front and rear. Fueling is infrequent thanks to a massive 10-gallon tank.

Models

Hurricane makes two versions of their stander blower: the X3 and the Z3.

The X3 has a top speed of 9 mph and its blower can move 6,500 CFM at up to165 mph. At full speed, the engine is operating at just 3,200 RPM. A Donaldson air cleaner is fitted to the engine to help handle the dust raised by the blower. This model measures just 42 x 60 inches.

The Z3 has a top speed of 11 mph and its blower can move 8,500 CFM at up to 165 mph. The engine operates at 2,600 RPM to reduce noise. It’s slightly larger than the X3 at 44 x 65 inches.

For All of Your Hurricane Needs, Visit Shank’s

If you’re looking to buy a Hurricane blower or need to have yours fixed, stop by Shank’s Lawn Equipment. We’re a certified dealer for Hurricane, Hydro-Gear and Briggs & Stratton so we can provide you with parts and service for everything on your blower. Our shop is located at 4900 Molly Pitcher Highway in Chambersburg, PA. That’s one mile East of I-81 via Exit 10 to Marion.

Need parts for your Hurricane? Visit www.shankslawn.com. We ship across the U.S. and Canada.

 

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