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  1. #1
    Platinum Member Syncro's Avatar
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    Oct 2004
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    506
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    NW Nevada
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    MF 1240, JD 210C TLB

    Default Flexible top link for bush hog?

    How important is the flexible top link shown in this pic? I notice some people use either a chain or this flexable link.

    I've used bush hog type cutters for many years without one with no apparant problems, however I may have been in error. [img]/forums/images/graemlins/shocked.gif[/img] If so I'd sure like to know what the reason is to use one. [img]/forums/images/graemlins/confused.gif[/img]
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  2. #2
    Super Star Member
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    Aug 2001
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    13,545
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    Upper Midwest USA
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    JD_4x2_Gator, JD_4300, JD_X485, JD_425, JD_455, JD_110

    Default Re: Flexible top link for bush hog?

    If your ground is perfectly flat, no need for one. If you carry your rotary cutter, and don't set it on the wheels, then no need for one.
    But otherwise, it's much easier on the cutter when uneven ground is trying to push up the rear of the cutter, and restricted by a fixed linkage through the top arm.
    For me, a chain works better and with more flexibility than the short flexible link shown.
    All your choice, however.

  3. #3
    Platinum Member
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    Nov 2003
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    954
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    Theresa, NY
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    NH2120 RTV500 Bobcat S250 Kubota BX2360

    Default Re: Flexible top link for bush hog?

    Good question. My JD didn't come with it, but looking through the manual I saw a pic of it. I went back to the dealer, some of their mowers came with and some didn't. I got one and use it. I presume it's to provide some slack for going into and out of depressions. For that matter, I forgot my toplink when bringing my york rake to where my tractor was, used a chain instead and it worked just fine. So how come we use toplinks instead of chains. Not trying to steal your thread, jiust wanting to further the discussion.

  4. #4
    Platinum Member
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    Nov 2003
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    Theresa, NY
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    NH2120 RTV500 Bobcat S250 Kubota BX2360

    Default Re: Flexible top link for bush hog?

    Gosh darn you, beenthere. I take too long thinking and composing and not trying to sound stupid, then you post whilst I'm doing all that and make me look dumb anyways.

  5. #5
    Platinum Member Syncro's Avatar
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    Oct 2004
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    NW Nevada
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    MF 1240, JD 210C TLB

    Default Re: Flexible top link for bush hog?

    <font color="blue">....it's much easier on the cutter when uneven ground is trying to push up the rear of the cutter, and restricted by a fixed linkage through the top arm.... </font>

    Roger that, makes sense. I wonder though since the side arms on the 3pt will freely move up anyways why there would be any strain. It would seem if the back wheel were to raise over a bump that the entire deck would pivot on the lower arms? [img]/forums/images/graemlins/confused.gif[/img]

    I can see where some flex would make for a better more even cut, my concern was that I may have put undue strain on the tractor housing, but from what you say probably not.


  6. #6
    Super Star Member
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    Default Re: Flexible top link for bush hog?

    </font><font color="blue" class="small">( Gosh darn you, beenthere. I take too long thinking and composing and not trying to sound stupid, then you post whilst I'm doing all that and make me look dumb anyways. )</font>

    [img]/forums/images/graemlins/wink.gif[/img] Sorry, but nothing you said makes you look 'dumb' IMO. [img]/forums/images/graemlins/wink.gif[/img]
    Looks to be supportive of what I said.

    Syncro
    I think with no chain or loose link in the upper support system, when the rear wheel of the rotary cutter raises, it puts a lot of undue compression on the 'stiff' linkage. In fact, it will bend the support bars (strap steel) that connects the top link to the rear of the cutter deck (at least it did on my Deere RC). I replaced these 'bars' with chain.
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  7. #7
    Platinum Member
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    May 2005
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    Farwell, Michigan
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    JD 2010

    Default Re: Flexible top link for bush hog?

    I was thinking about using a chain instead of my top link until I read one of the TBN threads that posted an article about someone having the brush cutter going over something that made it flip up and nail the operator. Not sure if this is possible but the way it was explained made me change my mind and continue using my top link.
    Farwell

  8. #8
    Super Member greg_g's Avatar
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    Dec 2003
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    6,086
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    Western Kentucky
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    JD3720 Cab, 300X loader with 4-in-1 bucket

    Default Re: Flexible top link for bush hog?

    </font><font color="blue" class="small">( How important is the flexible top link shown in this pic? )</font>

    Unless you're mowing a billiard table, it's extremely important. With that type, you have a transport position and an operating position. For transport, you shorten the toplink until it's drawn up tight - with the flexible bracket pointing towards the tractor. Once you get to where you're going to mow, you lengthen the toplink so that the flexible bracket is pointing straight up. That permits the bracket to move forward and rearward as the mower deck floats with the terrain. That way there's no undue strain on the metal straps mentioned above either. When you're done, shorten the toplink, lift the mower, head back to the barn.

    FWIW, I don't think chain makes a safe permanent replacement for either the toplink or rear lift linkage. The only thing I use chain for is if/when a tractor needs lower lift arm stabilizers.

    //greg//

  9. #9
    Platinum Member
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    Nov 2003
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    800
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    Winn Parish, LA
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    Case 380B, Super C

    Default Re: Flexible top link for bush hog?

    </font><font color="blue" class="small">( brush cutter going over something that made it flip up and nail the operator )</font>

    It's what cutter doesn't go over that causes front flip. Like hanging it up on hidden stump. Large cutters can be hard to load on some trailers if there isn't a flex point somewhere also. Some, like mine, have chain from A-frame to the rear for flex.

  10. #10
    Platinum Member
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    Farwell, Michigan
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    JD 2010

    Default Re: Flexible top link for bush hog?

    I just finished Beenthere's thread and saw the photo of his brush cutter backed up a bank. If you haven't checked it out, take a look. This is what I would like to do in a couple of areas on my property but do not see how I can do it with out using a chain on my top link and am nervous about the strain on my PTO link. I will have to do a little experimenting. I have seen the A-frame chain set up and will give that a try.
    Farwell

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