Lawn mower mods - possible to convert a regular mower into a mulching mower?

Discussion in 'Off Topic' started by Jeff7, Aug 30, 2004.

  1. Jeff7

    Jeff7 Lifer

    Joined:
    Jan 4, 2001
    Messages:
    41,589
    Likes Received:
    6
    I notice that the main difference with push mowers (mulching vs regular) is that the mulching mowers lack an exit chute for the clippings, thus confining them for further slicing and mauling.

    My riding mower has a chute out the back, which leaves big clumps of clippings all over the lawn. I don't want to use a bag or sweeper, not only since there's no means to attach one, but also because the lawn then would lose the nutrients from the decaying clippings, and require fertilizer. So I'm pondering converting the mower. What I envision:
    Welding a sheet of metal to the gap in the mowing deck, where the clippings would normally exit. This should contain the clippings and allow them to be more finely chopped.
    Is this a horribly bad idea that will surely result in the destruction of the neighborhood? Or might it actually work?
     
  2. SilentRavens

    SilentRavens Senior member

    Joined:
    Aug 20, 2003
    Messages:
    666
    Likes Received:
    0
    Are you using mulching blades in the mower?
     
  3. Sundog

    Sundog Lifer

    Joined:
    Nov 20, 2000
    Messages:
    12,342
    Likes Received:
    0
    You can get a different blade and also if you are getting clumps on the ground you are waiting until the grass is too high or the grass is very wet.
     
  4. Beau

    Beau Lifer

    Joined:
    Jun 25, 2001
    Messages:
    17,731
    Likes Received:
    0
    If it's a riding mower, it probably has ample power to push through it, just find something like this to replace your blades with.
     
  5. Jeff7

    Jeff7 Lifer

    Joined:
    Jan 4, 2001
    Messages:
    41,589
    Likes Received:
    6
    I don't feel like mowing every 4 days. :)
    Our lawn too is more weeds than grass, so it grows quickly. And the fact that we've been getting a lot of rain here doesn't help. But this has been a problem other years as well.

    So the mulching blades - I don't know much about them; should they do an adequate job of slicing everything before it's ejected out the back?
     
  6. Eli

    Eli Super Moderator<br>Elite Member
    Super Moderator

    Joined:
    Oct 9, 1999
    Messages:
    50,432
    Likes Received:
    2
    That's all that you need to do is replace the blade. It is the blade that does it.

    It is still going to eject the grass if there is an exit schute, though. It will just be smaller particles.
     
  7. bleeb

    bleeb Lifer

    Joined:
    Feb 3, 2000
    Messages:
    10,868
    Likes Received:
    0
    Dude, just cut the grass more often and that will be effective enough.
     
  8. fredtam

    fredtam Banned

    Joined:
    Jun 6, 2003
    Messages:
    5,694
    Likes Received:
    0
    My mower is set up for both. If you use the mulching blades you should cover the chute. I wouldn't weld it. I'd just make a bolt on cover.
     
  9. PTCvette

    PTCvette Banned

    Joined:
    Sep 26, 2002
    Messages:
    870
    Likes Received:
    0
    I don't know about yours, but my mower is set up to do both... It has a flap on the side, and the chute in the back. If you wanna bag, the flap on the side is spring loaded, so it just bags normally. When you want to mulch there's a big plastic thing that jams the chute in back, and a bit that holds the flap open on the side. I haven't ever tried mulching, so I can only assume that it works ok. Seems like you could just jam up the chute in back with something and then have at it with some mulching blades :)

    Jeff
     
  10. Jeff7

    Jeff7 Lifer

    Joined:
    Jan 4, 2001
    Messages:
    41,589
    Likes Received:
    6
    I'm afraid I'm not one of those people who mows obsessively. I try to mow a bit before the grass begins to grow enough to form conscious thought, or at least close to that. It usually is mowed on 2 week intervals, sometimes a bit sooner. It's a fairly big, uneven yard, with trees growing around it. Mowing is usually an unpleasant 3-4 hour job. I'm just hoping to make it a little less unpleasant. :)
    And I want an excuse to try welding something. :D

    I'll look for mulching blades though; if they don't work, I might need to get myself a propane torch.


    Or the bolt-on solution would also be an idea. Much easier to do too.
     
  11. Ornery

    Ornery Lifer

    Joined:
    Oct 9, 1999
    Messages:
    20,020
    Likes Received:
    14
  12. PTCvette

    PTCvette Banned

    Joined:
    Sep 26, 2002
    Messages:
    870
    Likes Received:
    0
    LMAO @ Ornery... Those are awesome!
     
  13. silverpig

    silverpig Lifer

    Joined:
    Jul 29, 2001
    Messages:
    27,710
    Likes Received:
    0
    Fertilizer will help get rid of the weeds anyways.
     
  14. silverpig

    silverpig Lifer

    Joined:
    Jul 29, 2001
    Messages:
    27,710
    Likes Received:
    0
    Oh, and you can just double cut everything to knock all of the clippings down. And don't do it when it's wet.