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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello,

I have a steep hill on my property that I cannot mow up and down as it is too steep, but have been able to mow by going crossways on the hill. To do this, I sit half way off the seat, hold the fender, and lean as far up hill as I can.

On my 300 this worked reasonably well, although I wish I had a seat extension :) On the GT235 I have two issues:

1. I don't know if there is a difference in the center of gravity, but because I have a 48C deck, your told not to put the rear wheels in the "wide" mode, probably because they would hit the mower wheels. On my 300 I run the rear wheels in wide mode and they are no where near the deck wheels? Do I have to get a 54C deck to avoid that problem? Why did they screw up something that worked on the 300?

2. When I lean to the right, the cruise control lever is in the way, preventing me from sliding over, off the seat as much as I need to. I didn't envision this problem with getting my weight shifted on the tractor. I guess that means I could go in the other direction and then just drive back, then mow back across again. The other option is to remove the cruise control lever. Less than 15% of my place can be mowed on cruise control so it wouldn't be a huge loss.

Other ideas? Am I missing some other reason the GT235 is not as stable on the hill?

Thanks!

Lew
 

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Shop = My Therapy
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You could fill them with RimGuard too.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
My Ford has brine in the tires so I get that concept, which is yet another way to add weight to the wheels. Let me go back in time. While living at the same place, I have had (and still have) a 140, the 300, and the newer GT235.

I just went out to move the GT235 and did a wheel check. All three have the exact same size tires front and rear. I remember reading about the GT having bigger tires...bigger than what, a LX? Anyway, I thought I was actually moving up in tire size from what I have, but I didn't. So in some respects, at least for going sideways across the hill, they were all equal from this perspective. I know the forced oil system is better than a splash system when on a hill. I am guessing the Kawi weighs less than the Kohlers, but that could be good or bad I guess.

The one big difference is the wheel spacing on the rear and the stupid cruise control lever. If the 300 that I drove up until 2 weeks ago has the same tires, same 48" deck, virtually the same in all respects, other than wheel spacing, then it seems that is what makes this one less stable.

I never had wheel weights or brine on any of them. Maybe someone with a similar steep hill can tell me how they manage to mow it (goats?).

:praying:
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
I just added two pictures of the hill....doesn't seem as steep in the pix, but when you are on the tractor you feel like you would roll all the way down the hill, and I did once, rolling the tractor over me.

http://goldenpondfarm.com/gt235/index.html
 

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I would only drive up and down the hill (No way in He!! that i'd mow that side ways!!) Get some HDAP's or Ag's for it fill the tires.
 

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Looks pretty steep to me! I would set them wide and see if they interfere with the deck wheels. I've never heard of JD making a deck that was in the way of the wheels in the wide position! Then I would load the tires, I did mine this year with windshield washer fluid and seem good to me!
 

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A semi-retired senior cit
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I think the reason why is because you sound like your going way beyond what JD had designed as a safe use for your GT235.
 

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Yeah i would not want to cut that hill sideways. All it would take is one little slip on some green grass and you would end up sliding to the bottom like grease lightning ending up in a heap with the mower on top.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
I think the reason why is because you sound like your going way beyond what JD had designed as a safe use for your GT235.
I totally agree, but I would like it to work equally as bad as the 300 at the same task, giving everything seems equal but the wheel width.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Looks pretty steep to me! I would set them wide and see if they interfere with the deck wheels. I've never heard of JD making a deck that was in the way of the wheels in the wide position! Then I would load the tires, I did mine this year with windshield washer fluid and seem good to me!
The GT235 manual says right in it that you can't set the wheels wide with the 48C deck. I looked at my older decks and the one on the GT. The new deck has a whole different way of attaching the wheel and how the adjuster is done. They made the whole thing a lot wider, and spread that width in, making the space between mower wheels narrower than on the older style deck. That is why you have to have a 54" deck to set wheels wider.

The 54" deck would also give more lower than center of gravity weight.

Still would like to hear about some before and after wheel weight comparisons.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Yeah i would not want to cut that hill sideways. All it would take is one little slip on some green grass and you would end up sliding to the bottom like grease lightning ending up in a heap with the mower on top.
When I slip when going sideways, it starts to charge down the hill, but at least in a forward manner and in every case I was able to take control before ending up in the pond.

I don't try to mow straight up or down hill as slipping is more dangerous. Do you want to be mowing straight up the hill, have the wheels slip, and then find yourself sliding backwards at a faster and faster speed. At least when mowing downhill, you get to see what you run into, but I am not convinced that if sliding backwards it wouldn't be inclined to flip nose over rear. :crybaby:

Lots of great suggestions, and best one would be not to mow it at all, but that isn't going to happen so I have to find a way to make this happen. I have wanted to plant sumacs on the worse part, but haven't.

Thanks guys...
 

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My hill is about that steep in the worst part. Although mine is a LOT smaller over all. With that said, add some front weight and HDAP's and drive right up. Weight is your friend in these situations. With lots of it, no worries at all. If the grass is wet, either don't mow or only mow going down. You hill has diff lock written all over it!
 

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You can do a hill like that but you must get the rear wheels in that wide position.
I have a hill in my yard just like that.....1974 john Deere 140 with Ag tires on the rear set in the wide position. I can mow it sideways or up and down.

But, I would not do it if the wheels were in the narrow position.
 

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I like the idea of using goats myself.....safer 2!
 

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AKA Moses Lawnagan
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Hello,

I have a steep hill on my property that I cannot mow up and down as it is too steep, but have been able to mow by going crossways on the hill. To do this, I sit half way off the seat, hold the fender, and lean as far up hill as I can.


Other ideas? Am I missing some other reason the GT235 is not as stable on the hill?

Thanks!

Lew

I, too, have a steep hill I have to mow, and I, too mowed it for a long time with a GT235 with a 48C deck. Previously I had tried mowing it with a 110 with turf tires, and it wouldn't pull the hill without slipping and spinning. When I bought the GT235, I had ag tires put on the rear, and had no problems mowing either up and down the hill, or across. I still chose mowing across the hill, because there is a small pond at the bottom of the hill, and should I ever start sliding down the hill, I didn't particularly want to go swimming (almost did, several years later, with a bigger tractor). Like you, I hung off the uphill side, the cruise control knob was a PITA, literally, but I just sat a bit more forward on that side. Personally, I'd take the dang thing off, I never have used the cruise control on any of my machines that have it.

The only way to know for sure about tire/wheel clearance is to switch the wheels and see. I traded out the ags on the GT235 for a larger set of turfs, (I don't mow that hill with the GT any more and wanted the ags for my 214). The bigger turf tires (24x12-12) still clear the deck, but I never reversed the wheels as I never felt i needed the wider track on the hill. I used an inclinometer to measure my hill and it comes out to a bit over 20 degrees. That looks similar to your hill (see my pics below)

I'd recommend some HDAP or ag treads on the rear, but not necessarily weighted. If you slide anyway, the extra mass can work against you. On the steepest portion, I'd mow up the hill, back down, and mow up again. This keeps the driving wheels and braking wheels with the greatest weight transfer on them, so you're less likely to slide down the hill. Mow only when it's dry, wet grass can be like ice.

I always found my GT235 to be very "sure-footed" and the c/g is very low with the deck down. The pics below are the X748, which takes all the effort out of mowing a hill, up/down or crossways.
 

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See if you can borrow an X500 series multi terrain / HDAP's. Mine does well both ways
( up and across )but each situation is different and mine isn't as steep !! Just a thought
 

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I agree with Katt. Try the x500 series. I tested my new (to me) x540 yesterday evening on my hill and it worked perfectly. What used to take an hour took 25 min. I never felt unsafe either and my hill is as steep as yours.
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
You can do a hill like that but you must get the rear wheels in that wide position.
I have a hill in my yard just like that.....1974 john Deere 140 with Ag tires on the rear set in the wide position. I can mow it sideways or up and down.

But, I would not do it if the wheels were in the narrow position.
The only way to go wide on this tractor is with the wider 54" deck...
 
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