I decided to get a reel mower. You know, the silent ones where horizontally spinning blades cut the grass as you push it. They’ve changed a lot since the old days. No more lead-weight models. Compared to gas-powered mowers, these are:
- quieter – the animals don’t leave when I mow, and I can do it at any hour
- safer – you can mow barefoot, and it doesn’t fill the air with whatever dust is on the ground
- easier – sharpen one a year – no fuel, filter, plug to mess with, and no start-up time – sharpening is 10min w. a $30 kit (the blades self-sharpen by coating them with a sharpening compound & turning the axle backwards with a handle)
- more just – it doesn’t use gas, doesn’t pollute, so there’s no contributing to the resource wars
- less work – no sweeping – it doesn’t coat cars, porches, or me with dust
- greener lawn & cleaner cut – no brown tips on the grass from fuel coating (and gas mowers rip grass, not cut it like a scissors)
- lighter – hang it on a wall (it only weighs 25lbs)
- cleaner – good exercise but without the grimy sweat – no shower needed afterwards
- cooler – it flusters the neighbors
Update 7/17/2007: Still using it. It’s doing quite well, as long as I keep up with it. If I let it grow tall, I have to change the height and mow it three times. I usually go over twice anyway, if I have time, for the cleanest cut. I’d rather walk quickly and mow twice than walk slowly and mow once. The grass is thicker and greener than when I used a gas mower – and healthier. I really want one [designed] for bent grasses like Bermuda, though.
Update 5/1/2010: I got busy and really couldn’t keep up with it, and I didn’t like using a gas mower. So I decided to buy the new type of [electric mower]. The reel mower was cool, but I need the time more than anything. I’d call this experiment a draw. The reel mower did what I wanted, and was what I expected but, for my lifestyle, the electric mower makes more sense.