Many Cricket and Bowling clubs will soon be initiating their autumn renovations. It will be essential that the machinery being used is fit for purpose. It is surprising how many clubs fail to maintain their equipment properly, due to the lack of knowledge.
Edwin's machinery maintenance tips for the oncoming renovation season feature mechanical checks for the popular SISIS scarifies / rotor rakes that many bowling clubs and cricket clubs have.
It is important to spend some time checking over the machines and replacing old and worn parts.
The following information is for the Sisis Mk 1-2 Trio and Mk3-4 Auto-Rotorake.
· Check that engine oil is up to correct level or better still change the oil.
· Clean spark plug or fit a new one.
· Clean air filter and blow out.
· If possible blow out chaff to make sure the engine cooling fins are clear.
· On the machine, look at the tyre pressure. It will push a lot better and scarify a lot truer at correct pressure.
SISIS Mk1-2 Trio
On the Mk1-2 Trio remove chain cover and clean out debris.
· Check chain for wear and tension. Look at the engine sprocket for wear and on the stub drive shaft.
· Check for wear on sprockets.
· Check sprocket locking grub screws for tightness alignment.
· Grease chain.
· Where the reel shaft joins the stub shaft, check for wear on the square coupling, (when worn this can cause damage to the chasis).
· Check over the thatch removal reel. Replace worn blades, it is best to use compression tool for this job to get blades to correct tension.
· When refitting reel, grease square end of shaft, assemble bearing plates in correct order.
· Check over the front roller height control link for wear, clean and oil.
· The best way to oil the front roller is to remove and place the end into a tub of oil and let it soak.
Auto-Rotorake, Mk 3-4.
· Check the drive belt for wear and correct tension.
· On the reel drive belt there can be wear problems on the engine pulley, over years of use the sides of the V in the pulley can wear to a point where it can not work efficiently. On older machines the pulley is made out of aluminium. On latter ones it is of cast iron wears a lot better.
· Looking at the chain drive, check for wear on sprockets.
Remove chain clean and check over, soak in oil. There can be problems with the chain adjuster seizing up on the pivot bolt. It is best to remove this and clean and oil, make sure the sprocket on the adjuster arm is not worn runs free.
· Check stub shaft assembly as for Mk 1-2. Also check front roller assembly.
· Check all control rods and cables are free and oiled.
· Check rear wheel drive gear is clean and free.
It is best not to use blades, which are worn down to far, as this requires more power to drive through the ground.
As the drought continues the ground becomes ever harder this will put more stress on the scarifier or spiker so a little care will be required in there use.