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Reel Push Mowers Are Making a Comeback

Updated on October 19, 2012
USA Clipper Reel Mower
USA Clipper Reel Mower
Silver Pro Reel Mower
Silver Pro Reel Mower
Gang Mowers for horse pull but also ATV and tractor pull
Gang Mowers for horse pull but also ATV and tractor pull

Have you ever wondered how people mowed grass before the invention of the powered lawn mower?

It was not up until the 1930s that a combustion engine was developed and adapted to go on to be used as a lawn mower.

In the Mid 1800s the pushed reel mower was the only choice if you wanted to have a manicured lawn.

Prior to that period lawns were not something people saw as important, and those that did had large estates and used hired help to hand cut the lawns with hand held cutters.

The push reel mowers have faded in and out of popularity over the years, regaining some popularity in the 1990s as people wanted to become greener and move away from gas powered engines.

Those that tired to go electric found out that mowing over the cord a few times or having to plug it in around the house wasn't very particle.

Battery powered mowers just didn't have the power to get the job done and have since faded out of the marker.

Most might recognize a reel mowers as those tumbling blades used on golf courses. Those are usually hooked together in series and then pulled with a tractor to cover large areas to give that golf course professionally manicured look.

The single reel push mower uses just one of these tumbling drums. The power is drawn from gears mounted into the wheels.

They are popular to those who want to reduce their carbon footprint, or for those who have small yards, indoor courtyards, or for others who don’t have a garage and or outdoor shed to keep a regular lawn mower, with the gas and oil to use it.

A reel mower can be stored in a closet or hung up on a wall under a carport or other protected structure.

Like many things the reel mower was copied and reproduced by cheaper imported models. As those copy cats emerged so did the quality and the ease of use. Imported models are still available through special order at many mower shops and stores.

None will likely perform like the original reel mowers made in the late 1800s and early 1900s except for the ones being made and used in the sustainable living Amish communities.

Sure the imported models will be cheaper but for the long term ones built using heat treated cutting blades, heavy duty bearings and blades will be the ones that keep on going well after the others are sent to the scrap pile.

The USA Clipper is the Cadillac of reel mowers it is all USA manufactured using high quality steel and heat treated cutters. Priced at $550 you also pay for the extra quality, but probably only once in a lifetime compared to a gasoline powered push mower.

The Silver Pro Reel mower starts at $189 for an 18” model, and an additional $20 for the 21” wide model. This mower has many of the same features as the USA Clipper including being made in the USA, but some of the parts are imported.

These two mowers are not widely distributed outside of the Amish communities, and are hard to find on the internet. Cottage Craft Works .com is one of only two sources that carries them for an online purchase. You can also purchase and optional grass catcher to go with them.

Both mowers have $20 flat rate shipping to anywhere in the Continental USA.

Just for kicks and grins, you can also purchase a horse drawn gang wheel mower set as well from Cottage Craft Works, but for those not into horses on a golf course they do sell a three gang reel mower set to be pulled by an ATV or small tractor.


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    • crissytsu profile image

      crissytsu 5 years ago from Texas

      My mom gave me one a while back...but it was really squeaky and embarrassing to use. LOL

    • Farmer Rachel profile image

      Rachel Koski 5 years ago from Pennsylvania, now farming in Minnesota

      Awesome hub :) I love reel mowers. That one pictured that can be hitched to a pony/horse is so cool, I want one!