Lawn mower blades

I think you would waste a lot of blade material by milling. The problem that I have is that the tips of the blades wear away faster than the rest of
the cutting surface. So one straight cut won't do it. I have 2 old Cub Cadets with 3 blades each to sharpen. I simply use an old 6" bench grinder. That way, I can sharpen the worn tip by following the worn edge by eye. BTW, if I am feeling particularly cheap, I heat the tip and forge material from the back side of the tip toward the front to give me an extra year or two of use--- just like they used to do to "sharpen" a plow share.
Pete Stanaitis ----------------
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

That's why the acceptable profile may include an angle from inside to tip.
Yes, you remove more metal by milling than by "selective" grinding, but there are advantages.
One: once it's jigged up the first time, it takes only two or three minutes to mill the ends, and the blades are usually spot-on for balance after. Two: A "hollow grind" was suggested here... that's wrong on a mower blade. When so done, the edge wears faster, and the "shoulder" at the back of the hollow erodes quickly if there's any sand in your mowing field. Three: It's what Oregon recommends for optimum cutting with their blades.
I get roughly 30 acres per sharpening -- that's five mowings of the area I mow weekly. A blade lasts through about 10-15 sharpenings.
So, I get more than a whole year's worth of mowing from one set of blades, and a new set of three is about $40. For me, at least, it's worth it to get that "golf course" look in the front of my property.
I have three "working" sets used in rotation, so I don't have to stop for sharpening, if I decide they need it. It only takes five minutes to change a set of blades on the Scagg 61" deck. Except for dropping the blade bolts out of the spindle bores, it's all done from the top of the deck, with no removals or loosening of any other components.
LLoyd
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
On May 11, 10:28am, "Lloyd E. Sponenburgh" <lloydspinsidemindspring.com> wrote:> So, I get more than a whole year's worth of mowing from one set of

Aside from the golf course look, what benefit do you derive from your lawn? In my mind, the grass in front of my house is nothing more than a weed. It serves no purpose whatsoever. If it was up to me, we'd be growing edible vegetables instead (our vegetable garden is in the back yard).
My office is in my house. There are days when I can't leave the windows open because of the more-or-less continuous noise and smell from the landscapers. 5 guys with leaf blowers and giant riding mowers to deal with a 50'x100' lot (with a house on it) is pretty excessive, but that's the norm around here. I mow my lawn in about 5 minutes, using a hand trimmer to get around the trees (another two minutes) and I'm done.
People ask why there are more birds and butterflies in my yard than in theirs. They don't seem to understand the evils of monoculture (see Irish potato famine) and chemical herbicides and pesticides. One neighbor (across the street) just planted tomatoes in front of her house. Very nice, but they are in a garden bed that her landscaper poisons every week. Sheesh. She's also a couple of weeks early putting in the tomatoes - the nights still get pretty cool here, but she'll learn.
Here are some thoughts about the tremendous waste of resources and money that go into a putting green front yard: http://www.primalseeds.org/lawns.htm
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
On May 11, 10:28 am, "Lloyd E. Sponenburgh" <lloydspinsidemindspring.com> wrote:> So, I get more than a whole year's worth of mowing from one set of

Aside from the golf course look, what benefit do you derive from your lawn? In my mind, the grass in front of my house is nothing more than a weed. It serves no purpose whatsoever. If it was up to me, we'd be growing edible vegetables instead (our vegetable garden is in the back yard).
My office is in my house. There are days when I can't leave the windows open because of the more-or-less continuous noise and smell from the landscapers. 5 guys with leaf blowers and giant riding mowers to deal with a 50'x100' lot (with a house on it) is pretty excessive, but that's the norm around here. I mow my lawn in about 5 minutes, using a hand trimmer to get around the trees (another two minutes) and I'm done.
People ask why there are more birds and butterflies in my yard than in theirs. They don't seem to understand the evils of monoculture (see Irish potato famine) and chemical herbicides and pesticides. One neighbor (across the street) just planted tomatoes in front of her house. Very nice, but they are in a garden bed that her landscaper poisons every week. Sheesh. She's also a couple of weeks early putting in the tomatoes - the nights still get pretty cool here, but she'll learn.
Here are some thoughts about the tremendous waste of resources and money that go into a putting green front yard: http://www.primalseeds.org/lawns.htm
====================================================I'm with you. My lawn goes au naturale. And dandelion leaves really perk up the stuffing for roast 'possum, too. I've included a recipe in my _Suburban Wildlife Cookbook_.
--
Ed Huntress



Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

No pesticides, no herbicides, and I only fertilize very lightly once a year when the guy with the big spreader comes to do my back pastures. I dolomite the "yard" once every three years, and leave the rest to nature, except the mowing.
You can choose to live in a "meadow"(to put a rat-infested weed-patch in "new-age" speak), and I won't condemn you for it. So why rale against my keeping my front yard nice?
LLoyd
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
"Lloyd E. Sponenburgh" <lloydspinsidemindspring.com> wrote in message

Actually, you're quoting Rangerssuck. I'm libertarian about lawns.
--
Ed Huntress



Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
On May 11, 2:13pm, "Lloyd E. Sponenburgh" <lloydspinsidemindspring.com> wrote:

Rat infested? Not around here. There's a balance between the rodent and feral cat populations. We could use some bigger cats, though. Last year a rabbit (I think) devoured my basil crop. Left nothing but bare stems.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

Don't knock it -- basil-fed rabbit is delicious.
--
Ed Huntress



Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

Well, let's see... when the kids want to play a game of pickup football or softball, we have a full-sized field with grass short enough to run effectively on. When I want to fly my sailplanes, I have a place to land gracefully without dinging up the leading edges. When I want to fly my old Telemaster, I have a perfect runway for both takeoffs and landings. When I want to practice my short irons, I have a nice lobbing range. If we just want to get out the easy chairs and sit out by the pond for a while with a cold one, we don't have to wade through ankle-deep "weeds".
My vegetable garden is in back. My play yard is in front. Never the twain shall meet.
LLoyd
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
On May 11, 2:09pm, "Lloyd E. Sponenburgh" <lloydspinsidemindspring.com> wrote:

Fair enough, especially the sailplanes and Telemaster. My yard is nowhere near big enough for that sort of play, but we do have a paved- runway model field about five miles away. As for wading through the "weeds," it's easy enough to mulch (or mow) paths through a meadow.
To each, I guess, his own.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
On 5/11/2011 12:33 PM, rangerssuck wrote:

Some people have HOAs that say how the lawn must be maintained.
My [small] yard is crabgrass though. I think I sharpened the blade up a bit in 2009. I use Roundup on the difficult edges so trimming with a weedeater is not necessary. The weedeater is a 2-stroke, but it's not the emmisions I care so much about--it's that since fuel left in the weeder will always foul the carb, it has to be drained after every use for it to start properly next time. Too much craptane in modern fuels anymore.
I like to call lawn care "recreational farming". Suburban people spend money on little machines and irrigation and chemicals to plant, raise and harvest a tiny crop--that they don't really do anything with. But they have fun with the challenge, and it keeps them in the suburbs where they belong.
Eventually I plan to move to the US desert southwest, and my lawn is going to be rocks and dirt. I'm just fine with that, quite frankly. Among the highest form of comedies is people who move to a desert and then spend money trying to grow a green lawn.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

Recreational farming is, I guess, fine. My vegetables would likely fall into that category as well - I don't really grow enough to make a significant dent in my food budget and the economics probably don't work out well, but I don't keep track of that money. However, if one is going to go to all the trouble of maintaining a lawn, why not put that effort into something that's useful? Lloyd flies model planes off his lawn, and that is (to me) the best reason to have any sort of lawn (I have to drive 5 miles to the local model airfield). But as far as something nice to look at? If I had property that large, I'd probably till the whole thing and scatter mixed wildflower seeds and let it run wild. Easy enough to mulch a few paths out to sitting areas to avoid having to wade through the brush.
There are places in th US southwest that now have unbearably high pollen counts because of morons who moved there and brought their lawns and trees and flowers. The real (tragic) comedy is that many of these people moved there for the LOW pollen count.
Just to muddy the topic a little more, this just came in my email: http://www.rdmag.com/News/2011/05/Materials-Automotive-Russian-dandelions-could-be-new-source-for-rubber /
The Russian dandelion, Taraxacum kok-saghyz (TKS), is being domesticated at Ohio State Universitys Ohio Agricultural Research and Development Centers (OARDC) Wooster campus and produces high-quality natural rubber in its fleshy taproot. Its performance mirrors the natural rubber produced from Hevea brasiliensis (the Brazilian rubber tree). According to its developers, natural rubber provides performance characteristics not available from synthetic, petroleum- derived rubber for trucking, construction, and aviation tires.
Natural rubber produced from Hevea is the only commodity volume source for tires and rubber industrial products in the world. Current shortage of supply has driven a six-fold price increase since 2002. Tests of TKS rubber produced in Wooster have found the material to be of comparable quality to Hevea rubber. An important additional product of TKS cultivation is ethanol.
The project was announced by Ford on Tuesday, and company engineers are testing the substance to determine its durability. Initially, the research will focus on the substances potential use as a strengthener for impact plastics.
Managing weed problems is essential to developing TKS as a commercially viable domestic source of natural rubber in the U.S., said Bill Ravlin, associate director of OARDC.
Ford could potentially use the substance as a plastics modifier, to help improve the impact strength of plastics. The material might then be used in places such as cupholders, floor mats and interior trim. Ford has previously used sustainable materials in its vehicles including soy foam seat cushions, wheat straw-filled plastic for interior trim and recycled cotton from blue jeans as sound-dampening material
A collaboration including the Ohio State University, the University of Akron, Oregon State University, Cooper Tire and Bridgestone Americas received a $3 million Third Frontier Wright Projects Program grant through the Ohio Department of Development to develop a new industry based on this renewable, domestic source of natural rubber. Most of the funding was targeted to building a pilot-scale processing facility on OARDCs Wooster campus that will generate 20 metric tons of rubber per year for industrial testing.
Its strange to see weeds being grown in perfectly manicured rows in a greenhouse, but these dandelions could be the next sustainable material in our vehicles, said Harris.
Before the dandelion-derived rubber can be put to use, Ford researchers will assess the initial quality of the material to evaluate how it will perform in a variety of plastics that are used in vehicles and to ensure it meets durability standards.
Besides the dandelion, the team also is looking into the use of guayule (a southwestern U.S. shrub) as a natural rubber, which is provided by OARDC and can also be grown domestically.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
rangerssuck wrote:

olive and mulberry trees are the worst in this area, and were banned from being sold for quite a few years now. a lot of people pay a bunch every year to have existing trees sprayed so they don't produce pollen.
regards, charlie phx, az
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
DougC wrote:

that's the way mine is. 0 maintenance. i just use pre-emergent or roundup on the gravel driveway.

they sometimes just use green painted rocks. if you squint your eyes real hard, you can pretend it grass.
in a couple of extreme cases, i've seen green painted concrete for the entire front lawn.
regards, charlie phx, az
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

Propane weed burning torch works well, is way more fun and doesn't poison the area. Roundup is not the great panacea that it was advertised to be. http://www.nytimes.com/2010/05/04/business/energy-environment/04weed.html roundup resistant weeds are going to increase farming costs, and you & I will be feeling that at the market.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
wrote:

Our POA has a restriction on the amount you can irrigate. Xeriscape encouraged. We're in the middle of a drought right now, which isn't that uncommon in central Texas. I like grasses which will go dormant in drought, like buffalo. Not a lawn you'd want to lay down and roll on, that's for sure.
Pete Keillor
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
Pete Keillor wrote:

We did our back yard in Buffalo grass and it is great. When it gets around to raining it greens up and when] it's dry its brown. Have to mow a few time a year when it's dry and maybe every 3 weeks or so when it's wet. :-) Front yard is some desert plants and some concrete product called "Tuff Turf" 18 x 24 inch blocks 4" tck with a hole pattern and filled with sand. Yep the "desert south-west" is great. !! :-) ...lew...
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
wrote:

I've heard the fix is to use pure gasoline, none of the alcohol crap. But I've never had a problem year to year with gasoline or gas/oil mix for 2-strokes. They only go bad after several years for me. Maybe I hold my mouth right.

<g>
A client wants me to rent a turf cuter for her yard next week and I'm going to bring it to my house afterward and take the front yard turf out. It'll all be perennials and bark some day soon! I abhor grass. I'm allergic to it and it takes time and money and sweat to maintain. I bought a copy of _The Wild Lawn Handbook_ last year and will start on mine this year.
-- Woe be to him that reads but one book. -- George Herbert
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
Wayne formulated the question :

I haven't pulled the lawnmower out yet. So I haven't given it a shot yet.
Wayne D.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

Polytechforum.com is a website by engineers for engineers. It is not affiliated with any of manufacturers or vendors discussed here. All logos and trade names are the property of their respective owners.