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  1. #1
    Super Star Member RoyJackson's Avatar
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    Nov 2001
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    18,052
    Location
    Bethel, Vermont
    Tractor
    John Deere 4400 MFWD, Deere 855D UTV and assorted implements

    Default Lateral Sway adjustments

    Question for y'all...

    How much sway (side to side) is allowable, practically speaking?

    I've never adjusted my sway links. The aft end of the 3PH mower (a Befco C-30 60") moves ~ 6" or 7" side to side....especially when reverse cutting. The lower links don't hit the tires, but the cotters pins in the sway links come mighty close.

    A while back (on TBN, but another forum) John Miller III said no sway in transport (raised) condition. His concern was the "tail wagging the dog".

    However, I'm more concerned about just reverse mowing. I've got to do a fair amount of that due to how my property slopes.
    The mower came hooked up to the tractor. I mowed with it two or three times last season before I unhooked it to rig up the rear blade. I didn't see any need to adjust the sway links (although that may have been ignorance on my part), although the blade did tend to drift sideways (while at transport height), especially if the moldboard was angled for pushing snow. I attributed the movement then to the weight distribution of the blade (an ancient 6' blade).

  2. #2
    Veteran Member
    Join Date
    Jan 2001
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    1,293
    Location
    Alberta
    Tractor
    Kubota B2410 with turfs

    Default Re: Lateral Sway adjustments

    Hmmm....interesting question. I don't know what the correct answer is, but I can tell you what I do. I loosen the sway links for removing/attaching implements and then snug them up for use. I do not "over tighten" them, but I ensure they are snug and that there is little drift from side to side. I'm pretty sure I remember reading on the board here (a long time ago) that there are a couple of implements that "they" recommend you leave a little play. Don't recall what they were, just that when I read it, I didn't have them!! [img]/w3tcompact/icons/wink.gif[/img][img]/w3tcompact/icons/smile.gif[/img]

    Kevin

  3. #3
    Epic Contributor Bird's Avatar
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    Mar 2000
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    37,000
    Location
    Texas

    Default Re: Lateral Sway adjustments

    I can't say what the "proper" way is, but I always did it like Kevin; didn't want anything swinging back and forth back there.

  4. #4

    Join Date
    Apr 2002
    Posts
    107
    Location
    Verona KY
    Tractor
    John Deere 4200 mfwd

    Default Re: Lateral Sway adjustments

    Roy - I'm new here so take what I say with a couple grains of salt. When I took delivery of my 4200 with 5' finish mower the dealer explained that mowers shouldn't have much sway. Other implements like plows should have sway. There are a couple holes in the sway bars that are "slots" that will give some sway, others are round holes that won't. When you put your mower on you may have put the pins in the wrong holes. Check to see if that is the case. Good luck, Bud

  5. #5

    Join Date
    Feb 2002
    Posts
    129
    Tractor
    Kubota BX2200

    Default Re: Lateral Sway adjustments


    You want a few inches of sway at the far end of the mower or brushcutter. Think of what will happen when you nudge an immovable object. You have a big lever acting on your 3pt arms. Your better off allowing a bit of sway to compensate for that. At least thats what the old timers always have told me. It gives you a small amount of reaction time before you break something. As long as nothing is hitting the insides of your tires I wouldnt worry about it too much. You dont want it sloppy though.

    You definitely want sway when you have a ground engaging implement. There are plenty of hidden joys that will gladly stop your tractor in its tracks under a few inches of topsoil.

  6. #6
    Veteran Member
    Join Date
    Feb 2001
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    1,444
    Location
    South-central Michigan
    Tractor
    New Holland TC40D

    Default Re: Lateral Sway adjustments

    Roy, I'd say little to no sway. Otherwise, your getting additional wear on all the support points and tend to not be sure where the edge of the mower is at any particular time. I'd think that would make mowing near objects such as trees, fences, etc also more difficult. A slight amount, something like an inch or so would probably be OK.

  7. #7
    Platinum Member
    Join Date
    Apr 2000
    Posts
    752
    Location
    Saline, Michigan
    Tractor
    L3700SU

    Default Re: Lateral Sway adjustments

    I have noticed that I cannot remove all the slack from the system as a whole. But if I don't tighten the 3PT arms to remove the slack in them, any time I backup with the mower on the ground, the mower will steer itself (usually toward a tree et al).

  8. #8
    Veteran Member
    Join Date
    Jan 2002
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    1,927
    Location
    Home-1+ acres New Hope, TX / 24 acres-Fannin County
    Tractor
    JD 950

    Default Re: Lateral Sway adjustments

    I tighten mine to where the lifting arm has no more than an inch of side movement after the implement is attached. The main reason is that when I am mowing on a side slope, my 6' rotary cutter will swing pretty far down slope if there is much travel allowed.

  9. #9
    Veteran Member
    Join Date
    Feb 2001
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    1,444
    Location
    South-central Michigan
    Tractor
    New Holland TC40D

    Default Re: Lateral Sway adjustments

    Attached is the "check chains" setup I have used for years to keep the mower (and same on my brush hog) mowing level. To use this setup you must have a flexible top link connection at the mower and merely lower the 3-pt control to the lowest position. On my brush hog, I don't have the turnbuckles since the height adjustment is less critical. With this setup, unless mowing on extremely unlevel ground, you are virtually assured of level mowing. Just drop the 3-pt control all the way and mow.

    Attached Images Attached Images

  10. #10
    Veteran Member Dozernut's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2002
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    1,494
    Location
    South Eastern Illinois
    Tractor
    Kubota L4610, ZD21, RTV900, B2630

    Default Re: Lateral Sway adjustments

    Check the owners manual of the implement you are using. I know there are exceptions to every case, but all the implements I own give recomendations for implement sway. Some require sway others don't.

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