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Have Dog - Will Travel
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Do you engage your deck at engine operating speed, or something closer to half throttle and then increase engine speed to operating speed? I personally prefer to tach the engine up to about half or two-thirds, engage the PTO to get the deck blades spinning, then increase engine to operating speed. But I admit, I've never read or heard a recommendation on this. Now that almost all PTO switches are electrical, I imagine the answer might have changed.
So, I'd like to hear any opinions: informed, expert, experienced, or otherwise.

Thanks,
 

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To reduce wear and tear, engage the PTO with enough throttle so it does not stall the engine, then bring it up to full power. Usually that is at about half or two-third throttle once warmed up. A little more than that if MCS is hooked up (PowerFlow).
 

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I Love All Color Tractors
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I agree with low speed. On any tractor that I am running, I engage the PTO at an engine speed just above idle and then bring it up to speed.

This is just my opinion and preference and is not based on anything but my own thoughts. Take it for what its worth.
 

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Full speed on my x728 for the tiller and blower before I engage it, I don't have a mower for it.

My LT155 rider I run it full speed before engaging mower deck, been like that for the 9 years I have had it, and I have never had to fix anything on it.

Just mower blades, no belts or anything.

Rob
 

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My JD dealer told me to always engage mine at just above idle, to prevent wear to the clutch faces.

For safe measure I always idle down before disengaging too, due to the braking action of the clutch.
 

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I just went out in the garage and got the John Deere owner manuals for the X728 and LT155.

The LT155 says.

Push throttle lever up to the full throttle position.

Push mower engagement lever forward to start the mower.

So wide open on the LT155 before you engage the mower.

Now I have all three owner manuals here from John Deere, this is for the X728 I bought new in Dec. 2009.

I'm confused on this, but here is what it says.

This manual covers the x700 x720 x724 x728 and x729.

It says.

Using the PTO.

After engine has warmed, move throttle lever up to maximum engine speed.

Pull PTO/RIO switch up. Instrument panel PTO indicator lights will come on when PTO is engaged


Now here is the tiller (647 tiller) manual from John Deere.

Engaging and disengaging tiller.

Position machine in tilling area.

Adjust engine speed to full throttle and rear PTO speed to 540 rpm.

Follow machine operators manual instructions to engage rear PTo and to lower tiller into ground.

Now here is the blower (quick hitch 47 inch snowblower manual from John Deere.

Start engine.

Push lever forward to lower attachment to ground and lock in float position.

Then this in bold letters outlined in bold letters.

Important: Avoid damage! To help prevent damage to PTO clutch:

Do not engage PTO with throttle in the fast position.
Operate attachment at full throttle position for best performance.

Rob
 

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A semi-retired senior cit
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My machines operating speed is WOT.
 

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Wide open!! If it can't handle it, get something that can!!
 

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Likes Vintage JDs
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I just went out in the garage and got the John Deere owner manuals for the X728 and LT155.

The LT155 says.

Push throttle lever up to the full throttle position.

Push mower engagement lever forward to start the mower.

So wide open on the LT155 before you engage the mower.

Now I have all three owner manuals here from John Deere, this is for the X728 I bought new in Dec. 2009.

I'm confused on this, but here is what it says.

This manual covers the x700 x720 x724 x728 and x729.

It says.

Using the PTO.

After engine has warmed, move throttle lever up to maximum engine speed.

Pull PTO/RIO switch up. Instrument panel PTO indicator lights will come on when PTO is engaged


Now here is the tiller (647 tiller) manual from John Deere.

Engaging and disengaging tiller.

Position machine in tilling area.

Adjust engine speed to full throttle and rear PTO speed to 540 rpm.

Follow machine operators manual instructions to engage rear PTo and to lower tiller into ground.

Now here is the blower (quick hitch 47 inch snowblower manual from John Deere.

Start engine.

Push lever forward to lower attachment to ground and lock in float position.

Then this in bold letters outlined in bold letters.

Important: Avoid damage! To help prevent damage to PTO clutch:

Do not engage PTO with throttle in the fast position.
Operate attachment at full throttle position for best performance.

Rob

Rob,

That's interesting.

I've seen a few PTO-engagement-speed threads here on MTF. While I personally find it counter-intuitive, I recall that folks quoting from manuals have always said "full throttle". So that's what I expected to hear as I read your post.

But that bit about the 47 snowblower sure is contradictory. Maybe the answer to this question is partially implement-dependent?

Also, wouldn't there be a difference whether you have belt, shaft, or hydraulic PTO's? Seems to me that shaft PTOs wouldn't like the abrupt engagement from full throttle, but I'm just speculating. Maybe they're engineered for it after all.
 

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I engage at partial throttle and then advance to wot as per the JD operators manual.
 

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I start and stop the tractor at slow idle.. soon after I start I go to Max RPM and stay there until I'm done. Back to slow idle just before shutting off.

The only thing missing is the cool down for a diesel engine. Of course I've never had to wait for the "glow plug" to warm up either.
 

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This thread should be in Backyard Round Table.

I engage mine just off idle.

When you're driving a manual transmission car do you rev the engine to redline and dump the clutch? Same principle on your tractor. The slower both faces of the clutch are turning initially, the less wear there is.
 
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