Farm Tech Supplies sells several types of flail mower, but how do they work and what should they be used for? These are the questions we will be answering here.

WVF Winton verge flail underneath blades

How does it work?

A flail mower has multiple ‘flails’ or blades attached to a long shaft in a spiral configuration. The majority of flail mowers available from Farm Tech Supplies use the T-shaped hammer blades, but Y-shaped blades are also a possibility. These can be seen on the Winton Hedge Cutter. The blades are quick and simple to replace with a spanner to undo the nut and bolt if worn or broken. The shaft is usually powered by the tractor through the PTO drive, although some flail mowers, such as the FTS ATV Flail Mower, run under their own power. The hedge cutters are a bit more complicated as these are run from a PTO drive to a hydraulic tank which creates hydraulic drive to the controls and in turn the flail cutting head and arm. Using the power source, the shaft rotates, spinning the blades in a flail-motion.

As the blades pass over the ground, they shred the plants underneath. Compact tractor flail mowers can have 20-30 blades on average. This means the opportunity to mulch up cuttings compared to a traditional rotary 2 blade topper or 3 blade finishing mower. The material remains gets scooped up and remains within the mower body for a longer time, during which it is further shredded. These finer clippings are then evenly distributed across the ground along the full width of the mower. This means that the clippings are more likely to degrade and not left in piles which could suffocate the growth underneath.

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What should they be used for?

Flail mowers are best suited to overgrown areas, brambles, weeds, vines and brush, such as uncultivated fields or the verges of fields. A flail can also achieve a neat level cut on short grass when used regularly, making it most versatile on estates. As previously mentioned, the design of the flail mower means that the clippings are mulched and evenly laid out which returns these nutrients to the soil. The linear cut also reduces the chance of being hit by thrown debris, such as stones or woody material.

There are several different types of flail mower available from Farm Tech Supplies. We have two ranges of standard Flail Mowers, as well as two ranges of Compact Flail Mowers, which are ideal for the most sub-compact low horse power tractors and the smallest of spaces. For those who don’t have a tractor at all, there is the ATV Flail Mower. With hard-to-reach areas, the Side-Shift Flail Mower is ideal. The Winton range is the hydraulic option, so the mower can be offset without leaving the tractor’s seat. We also stock two ranges of Agrint manual side-shift flail mowers. These are the A-MTP, which has a lighter build for sub-compact tractors with a lower horse power, and the LIBEC which is similar to the Winton range, but without the need for hydraulics on the tractor.

The most versatile of the flail mowers at Farm Tech Supplies is the Winton Verge Flail Mower. This is because its vertical angle can be adjusted using the hydraulics of the tractor. The cutting head can be tilted downwards to 45° to maintain ditches, or upwards up to 90° to cut verges and even small hedges. For larger hedges, there is the Winton Hedge Cutter, which, though not technically a mower, uses flail technology to trim hedges quickly and efficiently.