mulching mower

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Old 06-15-20, 01:51 PM
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mulching mower

My lawn mower is a "2 in 1 combo mulch/discharge" as can be seen on the sticker in the attached photo. This model can be converted from a side discharge to a mulcher by installing/removing an optional mulcher plate to open/cover the side discharge opening. The mower can accept one of two different style blades; either the side discharge style or the mulcher style. I've always had it with the side discharge blade installed and the mulcher plate removed, and then I just usually rake up the cut grass after my mowing session because I don't really like the looks of cut grass laying on the freshly mowed yard. From what I understand, though, mulching finely cuts the grass so that the grass can be easily recycled and the nutrients are returned to the soil so the lawn will need less fertilizer. That's why I'm considering getting the mulching blade and attaching the mulcher plate. However I'm uncertain that the mulching blade should indeed finely cut the grass different than using the regular side discharge blade so that the cut grass really isn't that apparent/obvious in apprearance as with using the side discharge blade (without raking afterwards). Any comments appreciated.


 

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06-15-20, 05:30 PM
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Mulching blades create air currents which churn the grass around so that it gets chopped multipal times into smaller pieces.

Grass gets too long, or it's too wet and the churn doesn't happen and you just get big chunks of grass on the ground.

In growing seasons, like now, I have to cut my grass every 4-5 days with my mulching set up!
 
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Old 06-15-20, 02:33 PM
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The only thing to consider, with a mulching set up you have to cut the grass more often, you cant let the grass get too long or the benefit of mulching is lost!
 
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Old 06-15-20, 03:01 PM
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you cant let the grass get too long or the benefit of mulching is lost
Ok well I usually cut the grass during our regular spring/summer growing season about once every two weeks; that's when it starts looking little on the shaggy side. Not sure what would be considered too long, I suppose that might be subjective.

Why/how is the benefit of mulching lost if you did happen to let the grass get "too long"?
 
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Old 06-15-20, 05:30 PM
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Mulching blades create air currents which churn the grass around so that it gets chopped multipal times into smaller pieces.

Grass gets too long, or it's too wet and the churn doesn't happen and you just get big chunks of grass on the ground.

In growing seasons, like now, I have to cut my grass every 4-5 days with my mulching set up!
 
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Old 06-15-20, 05:44 PM
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Ok well I usually cut the grass during our regular spring/summer growing season about once every two weeks; that's when it starts looking little on the shaggy side.
In growing seasons, like now, I have to cut my grass every 4-5 days with my mulching set up!
The normal rate for my particular grass to during in our particular season under the circumstances (which could likely vary to some significant extent from yours), it seems every four or five days would be unnecessary overkill for my yard. Doesn't seem to get shaggy enough to look like it needs trimming down until a couple of weeks have passed.
 
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Old 06-15-20, 10:19 PM
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Yes, returning the clippings to the lawn is beneficial. There is such a thing as going too long between cuts but you'll figure out what that is.
 
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Old 06-22-20, 10:06 PM
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So I ordered up a mulching blade; I just received it. It is brand new, un-used, but I expected the edges would be sharp. They are not. Is that normal? The edges are tapered to a thin bevel but not sharp. Comments?
 
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Old 06-23-20, 05:28 AM
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Yes that is normal. A razor sharp edge is not necessary. Your blade wants to shear the grass as opposed to cutting it.

As others have mentioned, mulching only works if grass is not too long. If you let it grow too long then raise your blade and cut minimal amount. Then the next day lower the blade and cut it again. letting the grass grow too long does not save you any work. 2" is the ideal length.

During spring and early summer cutting grass twice a week is normal. During the dry season or drought maybe once every two weeks. And by the way, grass that turns brown is not dying nor should it be watered continuously. During drought it goes into a dormant mode.

It bugs me to see people wasting water during a dry spell to keep their lawns green. In fact it looks odd to see most lawns brown while a few are green and watered everyday.
 
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Old 06-23-20, 09:35 AM
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Thanks for that last helpful reply. Guess I won't bother sharpening it if it should be fine as it comes from the factory.

Yes that is normal. A razor sharp edge is not necessary. Your blade wants to shear the grass as opposed to cutting it.
Ok, well the factory edges on this new blade aren't much sharper than a butter knife and I hope that is acceptable/desirable.

I don't want to open a whole can of worms here as there seems to be a whole variance of opinion and schools of thought on how sharp to keep a mower blade, based on my "internet research" on the subject. I guess I can understand not wanting to get to "razor sharp" but man it just seems like the new blade with its factory edge is not really "sharp" at all, but it must be sharp enough at least for average grass/yard circumstances which is what I'd say I have.
 
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Old 06-24-20, 08:27 AM
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The reason for a sharp blade is to give each blade of grass a clean cut....as opposed to a torn, ragged cut..... which does not look all that good and is thought to promote lawn disease.
 
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Old 06-24-20, 08:39 AM
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Ive always done my own blades and hey are Ginsu level sharpness, maybe the new blades are not sharpened for safety/lawsuit mitigation!

Can not believe dull is better!
 
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Old 06-24-20, 08:56 AM
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The reason for a sharp blade is to give each blade of grass a clean cut....as opposed to a torn, ragged cut..
That's fairly easy to understand but I was questioning why my new blade did not come as sharp as I might have expected from the factory, but instead is only about "butter-knife" sharp. Apparently that is ok and normal according to response(s).
 
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Old 06-24-20, 08:59 AM
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Can not believe dull is better!
Me neither, frankly. Although I've read other info that does in fact say that butter-knife sharp is fine/good.
Like I mentioned, I didn't want to open a whole can of worms discussion but here's at this link is at least one instruction/recommendation that mower blades be "sharp but not too sharp": https://blog.lawneq.com/how-sharp-sh...ower-blade-be/
I just have a feeling that it would be better if I did sharpen my new blade to some extent as it really is only butter knife sharp and that just doesnt seem right.
 

Last edited by sgull; 06-24-20 at 09:17 AM.
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Old 06-24-20, 11:06 AM
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First, if the mower blade is too sharp, it will become dull far more quickly than with a less sharp blade. If a blade has a blunt edge sharper than 1/8 inch, it may also be susceptible to any pebbles or other such residue in the soilóbasically, you want your mower blade to at least be able to stand up to the rigors of actually mowing your lawn.
Well this is rocket science, if the blade is sharp it will become dull! Now who would have thought!

Pebles in the yard?

There is noting here that will change what I do!
 
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Old 06-24-20, 11:25 AM
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Pebles in the yard?
Yeah really, no pebbles or such in my yard that I'd worry about; maybe the new blade comes dull like it is because they don't want people to accidentally cut themselves on initial handling when they open the package and it would be expected that the user of the blade would do any sharpening necessary. I guess.
 
 

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