Hustler Zeon battery connections and other questions

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Hustler Zeon battery connections and other questions

Postby dtimmel » Fri Sep 26, 2014 6:27 pm

I just purchased one of the last new Zeons from the dealer in Florida. (New as in not preowned but sitting in a crate for a couple of years). For $500 he put in new Interstate SRM-29 batteries. Hope those are right for the job.
So far I love the machine. Have always wanted to ditch my noisy gas tractor. I have a couple of questions I can't figure out from other posts.

1) I can't tell what kind of battery the SRM-29 is as far as how deep I dare discharge it, and how to charge it (like gel is different than glass mat, or something?)

2) You all recommend not using the OEM charger, and buying a 4 bank 6+ amp alternative. How do you use one? Is it necessary to unhook the serial battery cables each time, or it is possible to permanently wire a set of charger cables to each battery, run them to an accessible location, and plug in the charger to those each time without having to open the battery compartment and do a lot of hooking and unhooking?

2) Is there a place in the circuitry to take off a 12v tap for lights and other accessories? I'd rather not just draw from one battery, if possible. In addition to some LED lights, I'll be fabricating an attachment for the electric Johnny Bucket jr. I previously had on a Craftsman lawn tractor. And would seem really handy to be able to use an inverter, (obviously Zeon as a mobile battery stand, not engaging the mower deck) since this Zeon will have more stored energy than my Escape Hybrid. Any of those uses would be less draw than the mower deck, but they are 12 volt.

3) Am I correct that closest Hustler model to a Zeon is the Sport? Since the Zeon grass catcher is no longer available from Hustler, I was able to determine that the critical deck attachment parts were the same #s for the Zeon as for the still-available Sport bagger kit, so I ordered those parts and am fabricating my own frame on which to hang a Craftsman 3-bagger I had around.

Probably I will encounter more puzzles that you have already figured out. Thanks.

Oh, and having not had ROPS previously, mfrerking's note to self on the tree made me laugh --- I was sure I would remember to put down the ROPS under our low Redbud. But was momentarily flabbergasted to be suddenly front in the air, looking at the sky, drive wheels spinning, testing the seatbelt and wheelie brackets. Learn the hard way I guess.
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Re: Hustler Zeon battery connections and other questions

Postby mfrerking » Sat Sep 27, 2014 3:50 pm

dtimmel wrote:1) I can't tell what kind of battery the SRM-29 is as far as how deep I dare discharge it, and how to charge it (like gel is different than glass mat, or something?)


To get maximum life out of your batteries, only discharge 50%. The gauge is fairly accurate. I run for about 45 minutes between charges. Depending on how thick the grass is, this sometimes discharges more than 50%. The Interstate SRM-29 is a flooded lead acid battery. Slightly less reserve capacity than the original Trojans. The caps should pop off for checking and adding water. Consistently discharging down to where the deck motors shuts off will greatly diminish the battery life. Just keep an eye on the gauge. When down to two or three bars you should head to an outlet for charging.

When you replace the batteries, it will hold a 31 series battery, which has more reserve capacity.

dtimmel wrote:2) You all recommend not using the OEM charger, and buying a 4 bank 6+ amp alternative. How do you use one? Is it necessary to unhook the serial battery cables each time, or it is possible to permanently wire a set of charger cables to each battery, run them to an accessible location, and plug in the charger to those each time without having to open the battery compartment and do a lot of hooking and unhooking?


Yes. Ditch the original charger. I wired my charger up to be an on-board charger. It sets behind my feet. You could set it up to be an off board charger with wires running to each battery left available outside the battery box to plug into. However, if you cut, splice, or change ends from the original wires on the charger, you will void the warranty. You do not have to change or disconnect anything about the Zeon's wiring. There will be four sets of wires coming from the charger to charge each battery independently.

dtimmel wrote:2) Is there a place in the circuitry to take off a 12v tap for lights and other accessories? I'd rather not just draw from one battery, if possible. In addition to some LED lights, I'll be fabricating an attachment for the electric Johnny Bucket jr. I previously had on a Craftsman lawn tractor. And would seem really handy to be able to use an inverter, (obviously Zeon as a mobile battery stand, not engaging the mower deck) since this Zeon will have more stored energy than my Escape Hybrid. Any of those uses would be less draw than the mower deck, but they are 12 volt.


I have not located a place for a 12v tap. Believe the system is all 48v. Not sure if the Zeon light kit was 48 volt. It likely had leads to run to a single battery. Tapping one or two batteries for LED lights shouldn't cause any problems. They use very little energy and by using a four bank charger you will not cause an unbalanced battery pack. You should be able to locate a 48v inverter. They would be more common and less expensive than the 36v inverters available. There are 48v to 12v dc to dc inverters available. So, you could get one for the Bucket.

dtimmel wrote:3) Am I correct that closest Hustler model to a Zeon is the Sport? Since the Zeon grass catcher is no longer available from Hustler, I was able to determine that the critical deck attachment parts were the same #s for the Zeon as for the still-available Sport bagger kit, so I ordered those parts and am fabricating my own frame on which to hang a Craftsman 3-bagger I had around.


No idea on the "Sport" model. Let us know how this turns out.

dtimmel wrote:Oh, and having not had ROPS previously, mfrerking's note to self on the tree made me laugh --- I was sure I would remember to put down the ROPS under our low Redbud. But was momentarily flabbergasted to be suddenly front in the air, looking at the sky, drive wheels spinning, testing the seatbelt and wheelie brackets. Learn the hard way I guess.


LOL...Happens so fast all you can do is say "Yee Haw" and hang on. I leave mine in the down position due to the number of low hanging branches.
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Re: Hustler Zeon battery connections and other questions

Postby dtimmel » Sun Sep 28, 2014 12:42 am

Thanks so much. Had no idea 48 v inverters are available.

Hope to get lights and bagger on by next weekend. Will update when I do.
I can already report that the 42" deck attachment for the Sport bagger fits perfectly on the Zeon. What does not look applicable is the frame, because the rear end of the mower is different on the ZEON, so I did not even try ordering that. The kit from Hustler is pretty expensive.

Dan
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Re: Hustler Zeon battery connections and other questions

Postby mfrerking » Sun Sep 28, 2014 8:38 pm

Checked Amazon.com. There is a discontinued 2500W 48 volt inverter for $180.89 with free shipping. It is a modified sign inverter though. Depending on what you want to run, it would be a good deal: http://www.amazon.com/Whistler-Pro-2500W-Inverter-Discontinued-Manufacturer/dp/B003R7LQDI/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1411934666&sr=8-1&keywords=48+volt+inverter Comment section says to use 00 cables.

Also a 48v to 12v 10A voltage reducer for $23.38. Comes with free shipping if the order is over $35. Not sure if it can be combined with the other inverter..http://www.amazon.com/GOLF-CART-voltage-reducer-converter/dp/B008CM4WZ2/ref=sr_1_2?ie=UTF8&qid=1411936006&sr=8-2&keywords=48+volt+inverter
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Re: Hustler Zeon battery connections and other questions

Postby Evblazer » Mon Sep 29, 2014 4:47 pm

dtimmel wrote:I can already report that the 42" deck attachment for the Sport bagger fits perfectly on the Zeon. What does not look applicable is the frame, because the rear end of the mower is different on the ZEON, so I did not even try ordering that. The kit from Hustler is pretty expensive.
Dan

That is great news thank you! I had been going through the online parts catalogs and that deck looked similar so I was hoping but I didn't look at the attachments directly to compare part numbers. I've now placed an order for the parts from my local dealer who refuses to do anything Zeon related so I went through online. They were a little cheaper and I can inspect the equipment at the store before bringing it home which is my only reason to deal with them.
I actually have a craftsman 3 bag system sitting around and I've looked at it a bit but I'm not sure if I could hook it up well enough and it always filled up so fast. I'm thinking about using a little 4 wheel lightweight garden trailer which moves around easily and connecting the output hose from the zeon into one of these TerraKing Leaf Bags http://amzn.com/B009D3EYGQ sitting in the trailer. They are meant to be dragged on the ground but I thought it might be easier on the mower to pull something with wheels and the trailer is pretty small so I can't overfill it too much. If I put the Roll Over bars back on maybe I could hook it up onto those so it wasn't dragging so much I'll have to do some testing.
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Re: Hustler Zeon battery connections and other questions

Postby dtimmel » Mon Sep 29, 2014 8:33 pm

I'll soon send some initial pictures of the Craftsman 3-bin hardside bagger installed. Got it done enough to trial run, and works better than the rig did on the lawn tractor. Get the high-lift blade for the right side. Shoots the stuff all the way over and fills the far bin first.

There were some design issues, I'll document ASAP. (I am supposed to be working from home just now . . . ). For one, the bagger is slightly wider than the mower. But personally, I'd much rather deal with that than pull a trailer, because with the latter you don't have a zero turn anymore. With an open expanse of grass that might not be an issue, but I have lawn running up and down and around through gardens, and even pulling an aerator is a pain with all the backing and turning around. Also, the Zeon weights are available, but both expensive and inadequate for the bigger Craftsman bagger. Today at the dump i picked up some nice square gym machine weights from the metal pile . . . I'll figure out how to afix them next weekend. ebay has lots of choices too, but it's all shipping.

For now, get the deck tube and bracket, and the flex tube. The flex tube makes the transition via some simple surgery on both the hustler deck tube and the Craftsman upper tube. I built the frame with home center square tube, C and L channel, and bolts, using hand tools. A more sophisticated approach with at least a drill press would be better, and ability to weld or bend the material could be more elegant.

More soon.

Dan
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Re: Hustler Zeon battery connections and other questions

Postby dtimmel » Tue Sep 30, 2014 5:41 pm

Craftsman 3-bin bagger fitted to a Zeon.

Almost finished --- needs paint and affix front weights.

Zeon - Sears bagger conversion-1.jpg
Zeon - Sears bagger conversion-1.jpg (259.28 KiB) Viewed 1386 times


Works very well. Materials are the old bagger from a deceased lawn tractor; deck chute, flex tube, and hi-lift bade from Hustler; and stock metal tubing, channel, and bolts from Home Depot.

Zeon - Sears bagger conversion-4.jpg
Zeon - Sears bagger conversion-4.jpg (129.44 KiB) Viewed 1386 times


Mounting lower would be better for fitting the tubes, but it works fine this way.

Complete explanation, parts #s, and photos in attached Word doc. I may redo part of the frame with 3" channel I just found a source for, but this is what I have done so far.

Dan
Attachments
Zeon Bagger.docx
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Last edited by dtimmel on Thu Oct 02, 2014 1:19 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Hustler Zeon battery connections and other questions

Postby Jeff Antonucci » Wed Oct 01, 2014 4:05 pm

Very nice !
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Re: Hustler Zeon battery connections and other questions

Postby Evblazer » Wed Oct 01, 2014 4:58 pm

That looks very nice and those are great pictures showing all the connections. I have the hustler parts on order and they should be in friday. I think with the pictures you sent I may be able to work something out for mounting my old bagger. I'll probably keep the big bag I got for the trailer in reserve in case I get behind in picking up leaves.
You might be able to just upload the file as an attachment to this post or even make a new thread just for the bagger pictures and documentation and upload it there. I'd think it would be useful to any zeon folks wanting a bagger.
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Re: Hustler Zeon battery connections and other questions

Postby dtimmel » Thu Oct 02, 2014 4:38 pm

Evblazer,
I uploaded a document with details to the previous post, as you suggested.
And once I get the last bits finished, will post it to a new thread.

Today I am picking up a 24" length of 2.5" suare tube to replace the c-channel crossbar, which should allow me to lower the whole thing significantly.
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