Thursday, January 27, 2011

Bearings, Grease, Seals, and Paint!

January is nearing an end and we have had a busy month. The week of January 17- 21 we attended the Iowa Turfgrass Conference and Trade Show. We attended classes for three days. These conferences help us keep up- to- date on current research and products which improve turf health, course playability, and environmental sensitivity.

We have also been busy in the shop while we wait for favorable weather for tree pruning to continue. Assistant Shawn Fopma has logged many hours in the office preparing forms and evaluations regarding our Audubon Sanctuary Program.

Equipment maintenance continues... Above the bearings and seals are removed from a rotary mower spindle to our intercut mower. Below a fairway unit is being reassembled and is nearing completion. We have also completed preventive maintenance on our fleet of more than 40 articles of small power equipment- weed eaters, chainsaws, blowers, and mowers. Time spent on preventive maintenance in the winter prevents downtime during the height of our season and streamlines our operations while our seasonal staff is present.

These photos are of work being completed by technician Beto Ramirez. Beto has spent the past two weeks reconditioning our tee markers- we have over 200 and the work is all completed by hand. The tee markers are cut from Mahogany and need to be sanded down and repainted each winter. Below you see a faded marker and one that has been repainted.

Finally, our new sprayer has arrived from TORO. This particular unit is a brand new model and was just put into production. Wakonda should be proud to own this machine. It utilizes the latest technology to increase the accuracy of fertilizer and plant protection applications.

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Can You Guess?

Don't cheat - no scrolling down! Have a look at the first photo and see if you can guess what we are working on this week. (Click on the photo to zoom in.)

If you guessed that we are doing winter maintenance on our fairway mowers then you are correct! Above, you see the parts for an individual cutting unit waiting for new bearings and reassembly.

The second and third photos are of a completed cutting unit. Above you will see the mower as it would appear mowing a fairway. Below, we took a photo of the bottom of the mower where the turf is cut.

Each year we must replace all the bearings in each cutting unit. When the bearings become worn we are unable to attain precise quality and height of cut.

We have three fairway mowers and each has five cutting units. Each cutting unit has 10 bearings that must be replaced. Above, technician John Phillips is replacing the bearings and seals in a roller. Below, the fairway units are lined up in various stages of service. These mowers are expensive and the parts are as well. Each mower will require more than $1700 in parts and fluids.