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Mowing steep hills

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by Mark, Mar 17, 2000.

  1. Mark

    Mark LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 723

    I just went and bid a job that pays well,but have never mowed anything so steep, 40 degree angles.Im plan to use a walk-behind 52 It is around 2 acers. Could use some advice on this job.I think if i stay sideways i won't tip over. I told the man ill try it and see what happens.<p>----------<br>Mark's Mowing Service<br>
  2. Lazer

    Lazer LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,446

    Mark, our WB mowers will hold hills that we have difficulty walking across. So, I think your #1 concern would be your own footing, not the mowers. I would look into getting some of those tree-climbers spikes for your shoes.<p>As far as the actual mowing patterns, I hope you aren't expected to make stripes or cross-cut. You mow across the hill and the following week move over 12-20&quot; so your wheels are always on a different track.<p>Good luck when it's wet!
  3. geogunn

    geogunn LawnSite Gold Member
    from TN
    Messages: 3,009

    lazer knows what he's talking about. no way you are gonna tip a 52&quot; walk behind over. unless maybe it's sliding sideways and the down hill tire sticks in a rut on the way down.<p>why don't you give this one a courtesy cut (I hate working for free so I'd suggest some other arangement) and see how it goes?<p>it seemed for a while that all of my cuts were &quot;steep as a horses face&quot;. good luck.<p>GEO
  4. Evan528

    Evan528 LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,143

    i have several lawns that have have about 45degree angle hills. because i am so spoiled with big machinery i insist on leaving the lawnboy in the truck when at all possible. i ussually cut those hills with my 36inch gravely wich is not the best on hills. in the summer when the grass starts to dry out aand ruts start to form i ussually weedwacking the hills for the rest of the year. (faster than lawnboying it) though i am not a scag lover i have used them and they seem to do better on hills than any other walkbehind i have usewd.
  5. Charles

    Charles Moderator, Friend, Angel
    Messages: 11,810

    I cut this type inclines with my big kubota belly mower. Took me awhile and many hebejebes to get use to. I just go side to side
  6. southside

    southside LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 790

    The big walk behinds look pretty stable.<br>I think your biggest worry will be falling<br>arse over head down the hill. I call those<br>sites &quot;Elvis jobs&quot; because if you screw up<br>you'll end up playing cards with Elvis. :)<br>Good luck.
  7. Lazer

    Lazer LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,446

    I don't mean to nit-pick, but 40 degree slope is extremely steep, 45- that's pushing it.<p>For reference: A sand dune has a maximum steepness of 34 degrees, at which point the sand &quot;flows&quot; down.<br>
  8. osc

    osc LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 502

    Do not try to mow this slope with a belt driven machine. Hydro is the only way to go on steep slopes. When making turns always keep your weight below the machine. We use 61&quot; wb's on some very steep slopes. Check out the bottom of the slope and get an idea of how you are going to control a slide in the event you lose control. If there is water or a road or some dangerous obstacle to crash into then you may want to turn the job down. If the bottom of the slope levels out into more lawn then the only thing you will probably tear up is the turf on the slope. Finally, is the slope smooth or is it rough with a lot of crevices and knobs? Smoother is much better. Expect to lose control of your machine every once in a while.<p>P.S. The oil pick-up inside your engine has no baffle to catch oil when it is slung against the side of the engine, so you may burn up your motor.
  9. gene gls

    gene gls LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,214

    Do you guys measure the slope to determin the pitch or just eye ball it?
  10. Hardy Enterprises

    Hardy Enterprises LawnSite Member
    Messages: 116

    Sounds like there eyeballing to me. My house has an 8/12 roof pitch which calculates out to be 33 degrees. It is about all you can do stand up with out slipping and shingles have more friction than grass.<p>Jay

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