So a while ago we ended up buying a used ride-on lawn mower from a guy that needed some work. It was a piece of cake to get it running again by finding it had a grounding problem. But there was an asthetic problem in the fact that the mower had no hoof on it. When it was new from the factory the mower had a cheap plastic hood, which the internet reveals is very easy to break off at the hinge. With that said and new plastic hoods priced upwards of $100; I decided I could do better. So I went a drew up some plans for my own hood that I would bend out of sheet metal. Then it was off to the metal shop and about $30 later I got a nice big piece of sheet metal which I then laid out my lines on.
I then took it into my machine shop where I could use a metal break and bender to cut and fold the long edges. I then had to trim all the small stuff with some snips. After that it was several hours spent with a hammer and dolly folding over the edges so they weren’t sharp. Then it was time to test fit it all and then plan what the grill would look like. After all that was cut out the grill was riveted to the rest of the hood. Then I welded up a hinge bracket for the hood out of some 1″ square tubing that was laying around.
After that it was then time to paint it and lay out the custom racing stripes. (As every riding mover needs racing stripes). I then later on cut out some number decals out of some vinyl and stuck them on. In all it was a lot cheaper (well maybe not in labor) but it will certainly hold up a lot longer and everyone who sees it comments on how cool it looks.