Choosing the Right Mower

A mower is an agricultural machine that cuts grass or other plants that grow on the ground. Mounted or trailed mowers are more common for larger agricultural projects as they manage to cut fodder (legumes or grass, wet or dry) in large quantities. In this guide, we’ll discuss the various key points to consider when choosing the right mower for your farm.

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  • How to choose the right mower

    Choosing the right mower depends largely on its use in your farming project, which will help you determine the size and assembly type of machine you’ll need. In order to best identify the mower which will suit the needs of your project, you’ll need to consider these main points: mounting systems, technology and whether or not to use a conditioner. Here are the main points we’ll cover in this guide:


    • Mounting systems
    • Technology (drum, disc or sickle bar?)
    • Conditioners
  • What are the different mounting systems?

    Mowers come in different mounting systems. They can be mounted, trailed and self-propelled. Here are the important features of each:


    • Mounted: They offer good maneuverability when working at the end of a plot. On the contrary, the weight of mounted machines is a factor that must be taken into consideration. A specific type of mounted mower is front-mounted. For this type, it is first necessary to have a tractor with a front PTO. Given its frontal position, it provides a good view of the work being done. Unlike other mowers, it allows you to both mow and load.
    • Trailed: The mower can be hitched to the tractor centrally or laterally. Note that the latter is the one that allows you to work on the right or on the left of the tractor. 
    • Self-propelled: This type of machine is mainly used for very large farms. It is often composed of 3 elements, which allow the user to reach maximum working widths and yield of up to 15 ha/h.
    Mounted mower - ENOSTORM 300 - Enorossi

    Mounted mower – ENOSTORM 300 – Enorossi



    Self-propelled mower FCS 320 - De Pietri srl

    Self-propelled mower FCS 320 – De Pietri srl

  • What type of technology to choose

    There are three main types of technology to consider when choosing the right mower for your agricultural project: drum, disc and a mower with a sickle bar.


    • Drum mowers: This cutting system is more commonly used for for front-mounted mowers. They are equipped with 2 or 4 suspended drums (and driven from the top) which contain to 2 to 6 blades. Its use allows the formation of one or more narrow and compact windrows at the rear of the mower. This means that the tractor will not roll over the crop. However, it is a heavy machine and requires significant engine power from the tractor. 
    • Disc mowers: It is a lightweight machine suitable for a low-power tractor. It is made up of 4 to 10 cutting discs (round, oval or triangular depending on the manufacturers) driven from below. However, it is a less robust system and requires higher maintenance and repair costs. 
    • Sickle bar mowers: The cutting height can be set for this type of mower using clamps. For most modern machines, the height of the cut is controlled by cylinders which provide hydraulic lifting. This type of machine thus allows a greater cutting height and better preserves the stems of the cut grass.
    Drum mower - F-SARRACENIA 320 - RIBERI

    Drum mower – F-SARRACENIA 320 – RIBERI

    Disc mower - Celmak Agriculture Machinery

    Disc mower – Celmak Agriculture Machinery

    Sickle bar mower - BB-Umwelttechnik

    Sickle bar mower – BB-Umwelttechnik

  • What is a conditioner and should I use one?

    A conditioner helps break down the waxy coating on crop stems, thus speeding up the drying process. By crimping the stems, the conditioner mower allows more air to circulate around the crop, which can speed up the drying process and result in better quality hay. Technically, it helps reduce the drying time on the ground by 25 to 30% with a reduction of one to two tedder passes

    Using a mower-conditioner can be particularly beneficial in humid climates or when the weather is wet and damp, as it can help to prevent the crop from molding or rotting before it dries.
    Nevertheless, a conditioner is a heavy device and increases the weight of the mower. If you are growing a crop that doesn’t require drying or you operate in a dry climate, a mower-conditioner may not be necessary.

  • What are the types of conditioners?

    There are two types of conditioners: flail and roller. Flail conditioners are made up of rigid or flexible teeth, generally made of steel or polyethylene. They are preferred for large volumes of fodder and when it is particularly ligneous. The intensity of the work, for its part, is regulated by the speed of the rotor. Roller conditioners have the shape of an endless screw. By interlocking, the rollers cause an effect of bursting and cracking of the stems. Adjustment is carried out by varying the space between the two rollers. A broad-leafed and fragile plant such as alfalfa, and more generally any legume, will react better to the work of a roller conditioner.


    • Flail conditioner: Preferred for large volumes of fodder, particularly when it’s ligneous. 
    • Roller conditioner: Best used for broad-leafed and fragile plants such as alfalfa and any legume.
    Flail mower - WFM series - Wessex International

    Flail mower – WFM series – Wessex International

    Roller conditionner mower - SILVERCUT 300 F RRC - SIP STROJNA INDUSTRIJA d.d.

    Roller conditionner mower – SILVERCUT 300 F RRC – SIP STROJNA INDUSTRIJA d.d.


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