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Group mowing with lefty and righty mowers

Group mowing with lefty and righty mowers

Ah group mowing — such a relaxing way to spend a spring morning with friends.  But how can right handed and left handed mowers mow together? 

Check out the illustration above, from The Scythe Book, page 61. As it shows, right handed mowers mow from right to left, so their windrow falls to their left. Mowers start on the left side of a field, mowing clockwise around the field, so their windrow does not fall on uncut material. Mowers stagger their lines: Mower #2's windrow falls in the path cut by Mower #1.

Left handed mowers mow from left to right, so their windrow will fall to their right. If a left handed mower were to mow behind a right handed mower, their windrow would fall on top of the next swath of grass to be cut — not ideal.

So, left handed mowers have to mow on the opposite side of the field — or in the opposite direction — than right handed mowers in order to keep their windrow from obstructing mowing. Left handed mowers mow counterclockwise.

In a group mowing situation, left handed mowers can band together and cut their own section of the field. Or, working on the same field as right handed mowers, lefty mowers can mow in the opposite direction of righty mowers, starting back-to-back or on opposite sides of the field. At some point mowers will have to cross. Another option: right handed mowers cut up one side of the field and walk back to the beginning point on the mowed grass to start over; lefties do the same from the other side, walking in the same direction. Ultimately, you'll find a pattern that works for your group.

Start your fastest mowers at the head of the line.

Illustration from The Scythe Book used with permission from the publisher, Alan Hood.

Published on Mar 3, 2015 by Emily
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