how do you handle this?

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by rbig, Sep 5, 2005.

  1. rbig

    rbig LawnSite Member
    Posts: 112

    I've been mowing big lawns (5-20acres) for some years, now. One of my practices has been to mow whatever's on the grass. I mow beer bottles, plastic bottles, beer cans, drink cans, fallen tree branches (up to maybe 2" diameter), etc. Doesn't seem to hurt anything.

    I swap out sharpened blades every few days anyway, so that's not an issue.

    When I mow a lot of downed branches, I get lots of loud bangs from the deck. I've always assumed this isn't really hurting anything, as long as things keep going good.

    Every so often, I hit a big branch or chunk of wood just right and it shuts the mower down cold. I have had these instances knock a belt off the deck. Now, obviously this isn't good for the machine.

    Yes, it would be nice if someone had gone over the area before I get there and picked up all the junk laying around. But, since that rarely happens, the answer is: mow what's there.

    Just curious if you guys do that, too, and if it's as harmless as I hope it is to our eqpt. I don't have any evidence to the contrary.
  2. lawnmaniac883

    lawnmaniac883 LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,613

    I will mow over SMALL things on occasion, I try to avoid beer bottles and the like because shards can fly almost anywhere. There is a product with a handle and two cup like things on the end that will allow you to pick up garbage and move it out of the way without shutting off the pto and stepping off of the mower.
  3. HighGrass

    HighGrass LawnSite Bronze Member
    from Z5 MA
    Posts: 1,237

    I don't really know how often you mow, but the idea of running over beer bottles (Glass) seems a little crazy to me. Just the idea of mowing it again and wondering if I'm gonna get a flat would bother me.

    As far as branchs, well, I've chewed a few myself. I don't really hit anything over 3/4 of inch though. And, you gotta be careful with those longs ones, they could get up underneath do all kinds of damage. De-rail belts, rip wiring, pinch of knick hoses...and the list oes on.

    Me, if I find I need to walk the lot that I'm mowing, it all becomes part of the bid.
  4. Jcs Lawn and Landscape

    Jcs Lawn and Landscape LawnSite Member
    Posts: 117

    i run over everything thats is small except for cans or glass because i dont want them hitting something and doing damage or damage to my equipment
  5. sheshovel

    sheshovel LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 5,112

    I would think this practice would eventualy lead to a bent shaft and badly dented and tweaked deck,and more........Mowers are not chipper/shredders,they are not made for that kind of running over things.I say your reducing the life time of your equipment and spreading glass everywhere that can hurt people and wildlife that walk upon or feed in those areas.
  6. Newbie07

    Newbie07 LawnSite Member
    Posts: 140

    I have a problem with customers always having dogtoys in the back yard. Not to mention the huge piles of crap everywhere. What should i do about that?
  7. topsites

    topsites LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 21,653

    I pick up SOME stuff like bottles and over the years I've learned to recognize on sight which branches should crunch readily and which ones will not, thus I'll throw the nasties out of the way as well. My mower never shuts down, the security switch is on over-ride, this is one of the reasons.
    That and I don't run over rocks, it chips too much steel and they can fly a long ways but no I also don't pick everything up, it just takes too long.
  8. topsites

    topsites LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 21,653

    I dunno, I had a customer whose backyard was fenced in with a SMALL gate which she installed AFTER I started servicing the yard... She thought I had a 21" or some weird chit and I specifically had told her she needed to make sure it was at least a 4-foot gate, so I got to weedeat the area.
    That was just the beginning, of course she had dogs and never poop-scooped (Ok I think she did once) and you have no idea what it's like to catch poop with the weed-eater string until it's happened to you and a few times at that.
    In the end, I dropped the account, there was more bs to it than that but today I would drop it on that bs alone, I am not their maid. A FEW toys and a pile (or 3 but no more) that's cool, I can handle that... But I've had yards with dozens of toys and I get tired of picking up after the dogs OR the kids and drop the account eventually, when I get pissed off enough, so to speak. At this stage in the race I have a couple borderline accounts that I will likely carry them through to end of season unless I get *really* pissed off about it, there's not that many grass cuts left anyway.
  9. Lawn Masters

    Lawn Masters LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 850

    I prefer to go through, and pick up anything that would possibly damage the mower, mainly cause I paid a few thou for it, so I want to AVOID damaging it in any way possible.
  10. Brianslawn

    Brianslawn LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,004

    i used to mow that yard too :p

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