I've been looking for a slightly wider flail mower for grass cutting for quite some time - the current one that I use (A Buchner) is a 5 foot cut and was was originally 'front mounted' on a Buchner four wheel drive 'bank mower'. I converted it to mount on a tractor 'three point linkage' years back. It works very well and will gobble up almost anything you drive it over, but as it was originally intended to go on the front of a vehicle, the flail spins the wrong way and throws all the cuttings over your back as you use it
Now new ones are an astronomical price, apart from some very cheap imports made from old bean cans and good for perhaps two seasons
So I've been keeping an eye on them on eBay. Well used but working examples have been fetching £1K5 and are usually miles away making transport expensive and difficult.
This one popped up only 50 miles away as 'spares or repairs', which as you probably are aware is more my sort of thing
Close examination of pictures and interogation of the seller revealed a very well made (and UK made) 'Turner Turbomower' that in recent years has been driven into the ground.
Stoutly constructed from 10 mm plate these things are in essence extremely simple. A PTO shaft from the tractor, spinning at 540 rpm drives a 90 degree gear box, that in turn, via belts, drives the flail shaft. On the shaft are the individual flail elements that swing on pivots to do the actual cutting. At the rear is a 6" diameter roller that runs on the ground setting the cutting height.
To the front are sturdy steel flaps that hang down on pivots to stop anything being thrown forwards, and a rubber skirt to the rear for the same purpose.
As declared by the seller the bearings are shot, both on the roller and the flail shaft. In addition the pto shaft is wonky, the roller has a big dent in it, and the steel flaps and their support bar are bent all over the place.
In all a bit of a basket case, but so long as the 90 degree gear box has survived all eminently re-buildable and mainly needing time rather than money. Talking of which, against stiff competition from 13 other bidders it was mine for £371 - a price I was very happy to pay.
So I set off early Saturday morning to collect it with the big 17 foot Ifor Williams trailer - journey was going spiffingly until some poor chap rolled his lorry a little in front of me and I ended up going down totally unexplored local narrow lanes through villages where the Normans were still pillaging, eventually emerging onto wider roads 2 hours later
Never mind - she's now home, and will sit on the trailer until a bit of floor space is cleared up in the workshop - this will probably be a winter project so don't expect updates very soon.
First pictures from the eBay advert: