2023 - Volume #47, Issue #3, Page #28[ Sample Stories From This Issue | List of All Stories In This Issue | Print this story | Read this issue]
Add-On Mower Saves Time
“It hooks on in seconds and swings into place,” says Frisk. “I pin the brackets, slip the belt on, and I’m ready to go.”
To make his add-on mower, Frisk mounted a salvaged mower head spindle to the dome side of an old car wheel. He cut an old mower blade down to 12 in. to fit and cut an exit chute in the side of the wheel.
“I went to a tire shop and said I needed an old beater wheel, even if it had a bend in it,” says Frisk. “They were happy to get rid of it. I cut it down to the dome side and filled in the spokes with flat bar steel, spot welding it in place.”
The retired heavy equipment mechanic is no stranger to machining and metal fabrication when finding low-cost alternatives. He previously modified a Craftsman riding lawn mower deck to serve as a belly mower for his Cub.
“Cub belly mowers are hard to find in my area and expensive when you do find them,” says Frisk. “The Craftsman worked fine with the Cub’s belly drive belt system. All I had to do was to add some mounting tabs to the mower deck to match the Cub.”
Mounting the add-on required significantly more work. His first step was to weld a 4-in. long, 1-in. pipe in a vertical position to the belly mower deck. It would serve as the main support. Once he figured out how he wanted the add-on to pivot into place for a continuous 60-in. cut, he cut a triangle-shaped support arm out of 3/16-in. thick flat steel. He welded a 3/4-in. rod to the point of the triangle and welded a portion of one edge of the triangle to the add-on mower deck.
“I had to design the support arm so that when I dropped the rod into the pipe, the cutting blade matched the height of the belly mower blades,” explains Frisk. “The support arm also had to be long enough for the add-on to pivot sufficiently for the cuts to overlap.”
At the point he wanted the two mowers to meet, Frisk welded flat steel bar to each with a gusset to reinforce the bar on the add-on. When the wheel/mower is swung into place, 5/8-in. holes drilled through the flat bars overlap, and he slips a clevis pin into place.
To drive the add-on, Frisk mounted a pulley to the spindle and a matching pulley to the drive pulley on the belly mower. Frisk cut the center out of the latter pulley before spot-welding it to the drive pulley.
“I needed to be able to reach the original pulley bolt head,” says Frisk. “I also added an idler pulley with a bungee cord for tension to the Craftsman deck.”
Frisk mounted the drive pulley for the add-on to the drive spindle for the Husqvarna’s left side blade. He decided he didn’t need an idler pulley on the belt.
“The mower head on the Husqvarna droops ever so slightly, eliminating the need for a tensioner,” says Frisk.
“It takes 6 1/2 hrs. for one person with a 48-in. mower to do the job,” says Frisk. “With 60-in. mowing swaths with our Kubota and Cub and the help of a friend with another Cub, it goes fast.”
Contact: FARM SHOW Followup, Michael Frisk, 7602 65th Dr., Marysville, Wash. 98270 (ph 425-459-4086).
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