Electric CAN be great, depending on how long the extension cord would be.
Next time you're in the store or online, check the wire gauge and length it
can be used with. The lower the GA number, the longer the Feet in length the
cord can be. Most stock cords seem to be only 18 Ga and I've seen them as
large as 12 Ga, but nothing larger. 12 GA might get you the distance; you'll
have to check and see. I don't think you need to pay a LOT of attention to
starting currents with mowers; it's running current that matters. The motors
seem to live OK with an extended spin-up time, but extended run times with
insufficient current/voltage might burn out the motors quicker. Working on
my back yard fence, I once used an electric stapler that charged a capacitor
for the "shooting" power. At 100' it could still work but the punches were
weak, and at 150' it couldn't charge the cap to the OK to Fire limit or
however they do it. Out came the emergency genset! Even the 100' cord made
the thing too weak to set the set the 9/16" staples completely.
Other posts have good info, too.
At the farm, a string trimmer with a shoulder strap and 30" handlebars
was an easy way to mow creek banks. The strap was adjusted so the head
would float level at the desired height. Then the handlebars were
adjusted for best control. I could cut a 5' swath, so it was fairly quick.
For neater cutting almost like a mower, I could use a disk head with 3
pivoting nylon blades about 5" long.
But is level good for a steep hill? And say it's put at the angle for
the hill, when one turns to either side, it won't be at the right
angle anymore. Still, it might still work if he doesn't do much
turning. I hate to be a pain, but I can't seem to help it.
Adjusting the harness so the head will be level at the desired height is
best for mowing on level ground or slopes. I wouldn't try to mow a
creek bank walking up or down. That would mean reaching below foot
level on my way down or bringing the head up near face level on my way up.
I'd walk along the slope and use the handlebars to tip the trimmer
sideways parallel to the slope. With the handlebars I would also swing
the trimmer to clear a wide swath.
If instead of mowing at a certain level I were trying to cut weeds at
ground level, I'd shorten the strap so that the head of the trimmer was
at a toe-down attitude.
On Sat, 12 Jun 2010 01:01:44 -0400, J Burns wrote:
This wikipedia picture implies the hover mower actual coverage is not much
different than a weed whacker. Certainly the plastic blades are vastly
smaller than the deck in area.
With line, my trimmer can cut a 17" circle, almost as big as my mower.
I sweep side to side, so one walking pass is equal to three mower
passes. My lawn is half an acre. At some times of the year, weed stems
can pop up several inches almost overnight. In a case like that, with
little grass to mulch, it can be quicker and easier to mow with my
trimmer than with my mower.
Neighbors have a steep bank between the walk and the curb. I mow it
when they're away. I mow along the slope so I'm not above or below the
mower. Whether I push or pull, the mower is cocked because it slides
sideways downhill. It would be easy to damage their mower. I wouldn't
use my own more for that.
If nobody's looking, I use my trimmer, instead. It's easier, it's
safer, there's no risk of mechanical damage, and the result looks about
like mowing with a dull blade. The strap and wide handlebars give me
I have the same problem. I end up "crabbing" my way across the slope. (You
know, aiming the mower "up slope" but having it track across the slope.)
My wife's relatives have a property on the water. There is a very steep
slope in the transition between the lawn and the rifraft which keeps erosion
They mow this section using two people. One operates the lawnmower and the
other holds a line attacked to the mower. The "line tender" puts enough
tention to counter the effects of gravity putting it down the slope. It
I never watched long enough to see how they "turned around."
Talk about ER bait. Assuming you can even find one anywhere, using one
of those puppies is definitely a hard skill to master. Even assuming you
don't gash yourself, if your back is in less than great shape, you will
hurt at the end of the day.
It depends on the length of the slope. I have a short banking and
bought a cheap electric corded mower. I put a rope around the handle
(length depends on banking length), stand at the top, and simply drag
the mower up and down.
Walk up and down a steep slope enough, and you'll see the only "safe" way
to mow a slope is sideways. If you try mowing DOWN the hill, you could
slip (especially if the grass is damp) and end up with your foot under the
mower. If you push the mower UP the slope, you could slip and have the
mower roll back down onto your foot, hand, or whatever.
Of course, even mowing sideways has limits. The gravity feed carbs on many
mowers will not supply fuel properly when tilted, or the mower could flip
sideways if the slope is too steep.
The best way to "mow" a slope is with a weed eater (string line trimmer),
or get some goats to do it for you.
Better yet, if you're going to live here a while, cover the slope in plants
or other groundcover that don't need mowing, or terrace the slope to
provide level areas you can mow (and use).
Here's a picture of a guy mowing with a string trimmer.
The slant of the man shows that the photo has been rotated and in fact
he is mowing a steep slope.
The wide handlebars give him control to do a fairly neat mowing job.
The harness lets him stand upright with the weight of the brush cutter
balanced at hip level. That way, he could cut for hours without much
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