How Does A Lawn Mower Work Exactly

Some decades ago, people used their animals such as donkeys and sheep to trim lawns in their compounds. Today, they are using powerful robots, tractors and hovercrafts to keep them neat and tidy throughout the year. All the machines used in mowing lawns have one thing in common; they all feature a rotating blade that is powered by a motor.

So, who invented the lawn mower

The first lawn mowers featured cylindrical blades that derived their power from the individual pushing them. Edwin Bunning, a British engineer, later invented the first ever lawn mower in 1830, but the first lawn mower to feature a combustion engine came into existence in the year 1902. An electric version was developed in the year 1926.

History of lawn mowers timeline after the world wars

After the Second World War, people witnessed another form of lawn mower. That was as a result of suburban housing development and the large lots associated with them. For the new lawns, push mowers would not cut them. And as small engines became stronger, new versions of lawn mowers that could easily cut larger and longer grass swaths became popular. Unlike the reel mower, which cuts grass like scissors shred papers, rotary mowers spin horizontal blades around to cut grass.

The blade is located within a casing known as the deck (which prevents grass and any other object from flying when struck). Generally, the deck hinges on four wheels with the motor sitting on its top. Manufacturers attach a bag on the deck to collect all the cut grass.

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Basic versions of rotary mowers feature a handlebar attached to them. The operator has to stand behind the handlebar and push it to move the mower forward. The self-propelled lawn mowers boast a transmission that turns the wheels using the motor’s power. Actually, not everyone enjoys moving behind a lawn mower and some individuals have large lawns that require something powerful and with larger cutting area. For such people, the riding lawn mower might be the answer to their needs. Moreover, for people in need of something more unique, hovercraft lawn mowers, which ride on air curtains might be a good alternative.

How does a lawn mower work

All lawn mowers require the same things to function – a rotating blade, a motor, a means of taking it around the field and a way of getting rid of grass chippings.

How do rotary lawn mowers work

Regardless of how complicated or large, each rotary lawn mower requires a motor to spin the blade fast enough to cut grass blades cleanly. Most rotary mowers feature a combustion engine, which runs on either four or two strokes to provide power. Two-cycle motors burn gasoline and feature separate lubrication system. Nevertheless, rotary lawn mowers that use electric motor powered by a power cord, solar power or a rechargeable battery are also common.

Attached to the mower’s motor is a throttle mostly mounted on the handlebar – the throttle keeps fuel flowing to the motor. To eliminate injury chances, the throttle shuts off when the throttle is released. On some rotary mowers, the throttle allows adjustments to the motor’s speed.

The purpose of the motor on a rotary lawn mower is to turn a vertical axle that is attached to the large blade – a piece of steel suspended horizontally slightly above the ground. The blade generally spins at 3,000 revolutions each minute and cuts grass whenever it gets into contact with it. Blades are either curved or straight, but it is the blade’s tip that does the cutting.

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Some rotary mowers are designed to cut grass for mulching purposes. Such lawn mowers feature a deck designed to contain glass clippings until the mulching blade shreds them. Whether the clippings are mulched or not, they have to pass through the deck and get into a rear- or side-mounted bag that collects them or the lawn mower returns them to the ground.

For the self-propelled lawn mowers, the motor turns the drive shaft usually connected to a chain or belt. That connects to the gearbox s attached to a spinning axle that moves the lawn mower’s wheels.

How does a riding lawn mower work

For large lawns, garden tractors are a heavy-duty version of riding lawn mowers that pull attachments behind them to disc or plow a garden and to cut grass. Equipped with 18-24 horsepower engine, garden tractors can cost you over $9000, but the most popular varieties cost between $2,500 and $4,500. Lawns exceeding 5 acres require full-size farm tractors to tow the mowing apparatus behind them.

Zero radius mowers are another version of riding lawn mowers. They are popular for professional and landscaping lawn care. The mowers feature four-wheel steering to move around trees and any other obstacle accurately. Driving a riding mower is similar to driving any motor vehicle. The operator has to guide the mower while sitting on the deck. Some boast pedals to allow braking and acceleration control and steering wheel facilitate turning. Other versions rely on levers to control the steering and throttle.

The engine powers the blade and the wheels at the same time, just like the walk-behind self-propelled lawn mowers. However, instead of being connected directly by an axle, the blades on most versions of riding lawn mowers are powered by a belt that the manufacturer connects to the engine. And as an addition to the other controls, the rider lowers or raises the blade and increase the speed or lowers it.

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Before you buy a riding lawn mower, you have to think hard about the purpose it will serve. Mostly, the price of walk-behind rotary mowers is below $500 and the basic riding mowers starts at around $1,000.

The safety and maintenance of lawn mowers

Each year, around 75,000 individuals in the United States suffer injuries when mowing lawns. Around 10,000 of the victims are children and a large percentage of the injuries result from flying debris and rocks that hit unprotected faces and legs. Around 22% of the injuries happens to fingers, arms and hands result from interacting with a blade that has not stopped spinning.

Some of the most serious injuries are associated with riding mowers that combine horsepower, size and weight into potentially dangerous packages. Ensure that your children are not near a running lawn mower – whether it is a riding or a walk-behind lawn mower. Secondly, do not allow individuals below the age of 16 to operate riding lawn mowers. Also, do not allow them to ride as passengers. Always take care by lawn mower repair very often too.

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Futurescope’s co-author and an aspiring entrepreneur who keeps a close eye on open source, tech giants, and new trends.

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