I run stock JD mulching blades on my X500/48" (with mulch kit installed). I am very satisfied with the way they work. I sometimes let my grass get 5-6 inches tall and then cut to 3". No clumps of grass, no windrows, no visible clippings.
The first time I needed new blades, I went with Gator Blades. That's all I use on my 2520 and my 316! When I bought my 2520, the dealer threw in a set of JD mulching blades. I took them out of the box, looked at them and put them back in the box. Nothing against them, I just like my Gators better!:good2:
I don't sharpen either. I just buy new every two years. They really aren't that expensive considering what parts cost!
Personally, I have never understood the obsession with Gator blades. I have tries them on 2 different machines before and, both times, I was completely underwhelmed. For me, they were louder and produced more vibration than the oem blades with zero improvement in cut quality.
rottendiesel that is not the norm for Gator blades. It's the exact opposite with almost 100% of the users. I've ran them on both my 316 with 50" deck and my 2520 with the 62" deck for the last 10 years! They have been nothing but awesome for me.
They aren't louder and I've never experienced any vibration of any kind.