Different Mower Types: What is a Sickle Mower, and is it for You?

"Eicher Mähbalken" by Norbert Schnitzler - Own work. Licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0 via Wikimedia Commons - https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Eicher_M%C3%A4hbalken.jpg#mediaviewer/File:Eicher_M%C3%A4hbalken.jpg

“Eicher Mähbalken” by Norbert Schnitzler – Own work. Licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0 via Wikimedia Commons – https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Eicher_M%C3%A4hbalken.jpg#mediaviewer/File:Eicher_M%C3%A4hbalken.jpg

In the past, we have discussed two primary types of mowers – rotary mowers have always been the favored type, while reel mowers have also been looked at. There are a number of different mower types out there though, and while they might not be as common, you may find that these types of mowers are worth a look for you and your property.

The Sickle Mower

A sickle mower operates much like a set of hair clippers. On the bottom is a set of finger bars that stay stationary throughout usage. These finger plates help to gather the grass and brush. On the top of the attachment are a set of teeth that oscillate back and forth. As these attachments cross over the finger plates, they cut the growth.

Advantages of a Sickle Mower

There are some inherent features to the sickle mower that make it great for usage in a number of situations.

  • A sickle mower will produce very little in the way of flying debris. Most cut material and other debris will fall flat behind the sickle, reducing the chance of debris hitting the user or a bystander. This makes the sickle mower great for use in spaces where flying debris must be kept to a minimum.
  • Thanks to having no deck or cover, the sickle mower can attack brush that is extremely high.
  • Sickle mowers can be angled up to the vertical axis, allowing the mower to tackle hills easily, as well as to even operate as a hedge trimmer.
  • Sickle mowers do not require high amounts of power for operation, making them useful even with smaller, low-output subcompact tractors.
  • Sickle mowers will provide a cleaner cut than many other types of mowers.

Disadvantages of a Sickle Mower

As with any type of mower, there will be some disadvantages inherent to the style of mower.

  • The width of the cutting area of a sickle mower is set in stone, and will not allow the user much in the way of wiggle room. In a sickle mower that is an attachment to a tractor, this can be hard when you need to mow within tight confines – you may even need to use push mowers.
  • Storage of the sickle mower attachment can be difficult due to it being wide and thin, although it can often be flipped up vertically if it is kept attached to a tractor.
  • Sickle mowers will not be able to cut too close to the ground, meaning the grass and growth may be left longer than desired.
  • Sickle mower attachments can be quite expensive, prohibitively so for some homeowners.

Sickle mowers have found popularity with highway maintenance crews, thanks to being able to cut at an angle and keep debris from flying into the roadways and interfering with drivers. They are also great for property owners who have to deal with high growth on a regular basis. So is a sickle bar mower for you?

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About AndrewT

Written by Andrew T for LawnEq - The specialists for Lawn Mower Parts and Small Engine Parts. We offer genuine premium OEM parts for Land Pride, Toro and many more dependable brands.

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