Disk Mower vs Flail Mower vs Sickle Bar Mower: Field Mowers Brush Cutters  -- Tractor Attachments Implements 3ph Discussion Forum and Review Disk Mower vs Flail Mower vs Sickle Bar Mower: Field Mowers Brush Cutters -- Tractor Attachments Implements 3ph Discussion Forum

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Discussion Boards > Active Subjects > Messages as Posted > Field Mowers Brush Cutters Forum

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 05-29-2007, 08:53 Post: 142558
Blueman



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 Disk Mower vs Flail Mower vs Sickle Bar Mower

OK, looking for opinions...cutting hayfields with a TC45D, brush hog is too slow, and probably will not bale any of this. Speed and low maintenance the main issues...






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 05-29-2007, 09:02 Post: 142559
Art White



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 Disk Mower vs Flail Mower vs Sickle Bar Mower

Disc mowers use a lot of horsepower and are quite expensive. Flail mowers are also expensive and require a lot of horsepower. Sickle bar mowers are the least expensive and the slowest.
To make hay in most areas a conditioner of some sorts is needed to have the hay dry quicker. This makes it most economical for a pull type mower conditioner that normally only requires about 35 pto horsepower to pull a nine foot machine.






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 05-29-2007, 10:33 Post: 142562
Blueman



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 Disk Mower vs Flail Mower vs Sickle Bar Mower

Art,
I appreciate the feedback. I know the sickle bar might work for me...not concerned about conditioning since we won't be baling...these are old hayfields, meadows, etc. that have a lot of weeds as well as grass...no need to brush hog...too slow. A neighbor is recommending a disk mower...I know they are pricey, but believe I can run a small one with my tractor...they are very quick...not sure about the maintenance, and know nothing about flail mowers..






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 05-29-2007, 12:19 Post: 142565
Murf



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 Disk Mower vs Flail Mower vs Sickle Bar Mower

Blueman, if it's of some help to your decision, it takes a certain amount of horsepower to complete a certain amount of work, while some methods are more efficient, there is no "magic wand" to change the principles of physics.

Having said that, when it comes to cutting tall grass and weeds, that "certain amount of work" requires 5hp per foot of cut or more (I.E. 5' of cut would take 25+hp).

The "or more" part of the equation determines how fast you go while performing that job. In your case 40'ish PTO horsepower means you will be able to cut at a far faster speed than say a 30hp tractor could.

The problem is, the ideal is about 7hp per foot of cut, more is unecessary and only serves as overkill, or power reserve which will mean a sudden heavier load, like cutting a sapling or thick spot of grass, won't drag the mower speed down as fast.

So, using the 7hp/foot of cut guidline, your tractor is only going to cut about 6' efficiently, it can however, cut up to 8', but not as well. Anything more than that and you will be moving forawrd so slowly in order to keep the power and blade speed up, that you will more than lose any gains you achieved by going to a wider cut mower.

There are exceptions of course, we routinely run a 10' bat wing mower on a 40hp tractor like yours, but that is grass that is cut weekly, so it is more like cutting your front lawn. Heavy grass would stall it out or burn up the PTO clutch in no time flat.

Hope this helps some.

Best of luck.






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 05-29-2007, 15:30 Post: 142567
Art White



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 Disk Mower vs Flail Mower vs Sickle Bar Mower

Not for nothing, when I was a few years younger I used to have to mow our pasture with a sickle mower to keep the grasses, thistle and what ever else grew in check. To mow with the sickle often was the toughest after the first or second time. What actually happened was the first windrow as catching on the cutter bar and clogging the machine.






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 05-29-2007, 20:14 Post: 142576
Chief



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 Disk Mower vs Flail Mower vs Sickle Bar Mower

Bush hogging may be slow but it chops up the material to a good degree which helps with its break down and being reabsorbed into the soil. The disk mower cuts it down in one long stem or stalk which tends to lay down in a particular direction or orientation which tends to block out sun light and kill the grass underneith in many cases. Buy a bigger bush hog or endure the longer cutting time.






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 05-31-2007, 22:24 Post: 142641
cutter



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 Disk Mower vs Flail Mower vs Sickle Bar Mower

I wish I could find a used sickle bar for the Kubota. I have the hog on the old Allis but when the stuff gets really out of control it would be nice not to have to drive through it before cutting it.






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 06-01-2007, 05:55 Post: 142643
hardwood

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 Disk Mower vs Flail Mower vs Sickle Bar Mower

I used to have a John Deere Model 265 disc mower on a 1070 Case tractor,(100 HP). I have no idea how much power the mower really needed but the 1070 was more than enough. I don't remember how long the cutter bar was but it is pretty heavy when hanging out to the side, so a big tractor was OK. I had been trying to mow some Govt. set aside acres that was anything from brome to sweet clover waist high, with an od sickle bar that was worn out. Before I lost all my relegion the JD salesman happended by and told me of the merrits of a disc mower. I had never saw one before, he brought it down. Slow, Fast, Down hay, Mow in the rain, it didin't matter it NEVER plugged, throw rocks, YES, look out. I don't know if this is your answer but it sure saved my relegion. Frank.






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 06-01-2007, 08:29 Post: 142644
yooperpete



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 Disk Mower vs Flail Mower vs Sickle Bar Mower

I have my dad's International 7' sickle bar mower with single rear wheel that is about mid 40's vintage. Can remember the days as a youngster mowing fields and ditches.

In the fields mowing wheat stuble and clover worked well with little clogging, since it was a coarse material. The secret was the top spring board pulling the last section away from the uncut field for the next path.

When mowing thin, fine grasses like along a ditch bank was at times troublesome and you needed to go to church the following Sunday for forgiveness of the words spoken.

Likewise the grasses along the woods edge were ok but the small saplings would raise H*** with the blades.

Cutter, you usually can find a number of these for sale on Ebay. Mine is meant to bolt up to the old style "U" shaped drawbar that was on 40's and 50's vintage tractors. It also can hook upto a Cat. 1 or 2 horizontal drawbar used on a 3 point hitch.

Red and Green models often list from $300.00 to $600.00 on on line auctions. Don't know if they get it or not. Other brands usually go for less. In the next few weeks, I'm going to try to sell mine locally starting at about $400.00. Someplace laying around the barn is also a "V" shaped grinding wheel used to resharpen the blades. The triangular blades are riveted on and can be replaced quite easily if you have a torch, anvil and ball peen hammer. When the blades are new you can get them with a serrated edge. I found these to work better in fine grasses.






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 06-01-2007, 09:03 Post: 142645
Murf



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 Disk Mower vs Flail Mower vs Sickle Bar Mower

Having had more than my share of hours cutting with a sickle bar mower I can't believe anyone in their right mind would even consider one these days.

IF I had bunch long thick stuff to cut I would just make up a reverse mount and a hanging gear box for the PTO to allow me to run the bush hog in front of the tractor.

There used to be a few companies that made them up here, mostly for front-mounting a snowblower to save your neck when cleaning a long farm driveway.

I think it would likely cost less than $500 to make up the front mount, and you would certainly end up[ with a better machine.

Best of luck.






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