The manual reel mowers are lightweight lawn mowing machines which are commonly used to mow small to medium sized yards or gardens. They usually weigh between 17-35 pounds and very easy to use. Sometimes they are known as cylinder mowers because of their cylindrical shape that has its blades mounted between the wheels with a handle which protrudes from the centre. The blades of the manual reel mower rotate when the wheels turn. They stop when the wheels stop rotating. Its simple mechanism makes it easy and enjoyable to use. They are also known as hand mowers, people powered mowers among others.
Why use them
Most people prefer manual reel mowers to gas or electric mowers for the simple reason that they are mechanically simple and easier to use. They are inexpensive in terms of maintenance and usage. They are not motorized and therefore need no gasoline or batteries.
They also do not need any mechanical expertise as most motorized mowers do. They do not produce any emissions making them environment friendly. As compared to other mowers they are relatively easy to push owing to their weight and also under the right circumstances. If the yard is regularly mowed and has more grass than weeds then that makes the mowing experience good. They are also quiet and silent as the do not create noise as other motorized mowers. They therefore create little or no disturbances in the neighborhood. However manual reel mowers are not just fun but also have disadvantages which create problems at times.
Disadvantages of using a manual reel mower
The manual reel mower is not a heavy machine and therefore unsuitable to clear large chunks of lawns. It is suitable for small to medium sized yards but it can be very tiring and time-consuming for larger sized ones. The most suitable size for the manual reel mower should be under a half an acre. It takes about a considerable amount of time to use a mower. They therefore don’t fit any situation when you find a very difficult terrain and the wrong type of plants which are difficult to mow and would rather be cleared by alternative means. It is usually frustrating when you encounter undulating terrain and crevices. It can be intense work as the blades will usually duplicate the terrain. Also to consider are other hindrances like debris in your yard which clog and jam the blades of the manual reel mower making its operation difficult.
Rocks and twigs and also certain types of grasses are a big obstacle to the manual reel mower. Grasses such as Bermuda, Saint Augustine, Zoysia grass and the Japanese lawn grass are very fibrous and thick a pose a real challenge to the mower as it clears the lawns. For such kind of grasses other tools like shears or line trimmers should be better suited for the job. Sand also creates problems to the manual reel mower. But this problem is actually not common because most yards are sand-free but for desert conditions.