We bought a flail mower to help control vegetation along fence lines, paths, and around buildings. Knocking down weeds before they go to seed can help prevent the spread of some kinds of weeds. Keeping fence lines clear can help electric fencing work properly. There is also be a fire prevention benefit when grass is kept mowed alongside fences and roads.
(A flail mower consists of a horizontal shaft that rotates. Attached to that rotor are free-swinging blades called flails. Instead of slicing off the tips of vegetation, the flails break off the tips of grass and weeds. Flail mowers are more tolerant of hitting debris that other mowers.)
Director Nelson oriented two of our staff on the safe usage of this tool. It attaches to the tractor with a three-point hitch, and is powered by the tractor’s power take-off unit (the PTO). The three-point hitch has pinch points to be aware of, and working around a PTO is always potentially dangerous.
After adjusting the skid height to bring the flail blades closer to the ground (to achieve a shorter cut), Nelson tested the unit and found it cuts just fine.
The mower is a Caroni TM1300BSC with a cutting width slightly wider than the tractor width. It also features the ability to center the mower on the three-point hitch or mount it offset to one side. Big Red seems to run it just fine!