Summer Job - ATV Mowing Buying Tips
Summer means time for fun, but it also leads to one of the most despised jobs for all home and property owners: cutting grass. Just as with so many other tasks, luckily our year round four-wheeled buddies can help out and there are several mower options to cut your job down to size.
Unless you’re running a country club where reel mowers are the choice for a perfect cut, there are two main types of mowers you can pull behind your ATV. We’ll explain the benefits and uses of both.
FINISH MOWERS, as their name implies, are used for fine cutting jobs like you would want for the lawn around your house. Multiple blades, slightly lower blade speed, and more adjustments are used on finish mowers, and the decks can discharge clippings to the side or rear. As with all fine tools, however, they are best at precision work rather than carving a hole through the underbrush for your food plot.
If you’ve got serious grass to cut or brush to clear, a ROUGH CUT mower will likely be the best tool for the job. Most rough cut mowers work like a Brush Hog with two large blades rotating around a single axis. The kinetic energy from the two large blades either cuts everything in its path or beats it into submission. This is a scaled-down version of the type of mower road crews use to mow ditches or farmers use to clear brush. Rough cut mowers are suitable for tall grass and underbrush. They’ll cut everything down to size, but it might not be the neatest looking job afterwards.
Since no ATV or UTV has a live power-take-off shaft like a tractor, all ATV or UTV mowers are powered by a small engine mounted above the steel deck. A pulley on the engine output shaft usually drives a gearbox or a belt with another set of pulleys that gets the blades spinning. Most smaller mower engines are started with a recoil system while the larger engines feature electric start and often a recoil backup. Typical size is from 40 to 66 inches.
Mowers aren’t much different than any other accessory in that a well thought out design, excellent manufacturing, and a good company standing behind the product makes all the difference in the world. We always want you to be well informed before you buy, (just like we want to be) and with more models, better design, and more features, Kunz Engineering is the leader in pull behind mower technology and manufacturing.
Kunz Engineering is by far the leading manufacturer of mowers, and with 10 unique models, they offer more mowers than everybody else combined. We’ve compared the specs to every other mower and there is nothing else that even comes close. Their products are well designed, fully tested under real world conditions, and built to last through years of hard use. You will never find another mower deck built as well as a KUNZ deck. (We wish our Deere mower came with one!) Even their finish mower decks are built with thicker steel and super heavy duty reinforcement plates than competitors rough cut mowers. We were also extremely happy to find KUNZ uses large diameter spindles to resist any deflection or bending on heavy material or saplings, and they perform extended testing to insure the longest possible life from the best bearings available. They design their mowers to be in the field, not your shop.
Desk Sizes and Engine Choices
Both the AcrEase rough cut and finish cut mowers come with a variety of engine sizes based on deck and blade size, and customer options. Regardless of which size you choose, however, even the smallest mower deck – 40 inches – comes with an engine that is nearly as large as the competition’s largest engine. On the largest decks, engines up to 23 hp get the job done, and both commercial and residential engines are available. Kunz also gives all models, except the finish cut H40B, a 3 gallon fuel tank.
To get the blades spinning, Kunz uses a centrifugal clutch, an electric clutch, or a manual lever system. The manual clutch is the choice for most while the centrifugal clutch system engages as the engine rpm increases. Commercial users may prefer the electric clutch option, though.
Deck size plays an important role in engine size as does the number of blades and Kunz uses a triple blade system on all finish cut mowers other than the model H40B. On the rough cut mowers, Kunz uses a dual blade system with a blade tip speed of 19,000 rpm.
Kunz on the Deck
It’s the deck that is the platform for everything else and the Kunz AcrEase decks are the most solid built we have ever seen. The main deck is framed from 10 gauge steel, with 7 gauge side plates, ¼ inch stiffening ribs, and even a third layer of ¼ steel welded under the spindle mounts for added rigidity on the rough cut mowers. Since they are finishing tools, the finish cut decks don’t require a third layer of steel under the spindles, but they do get six anti-scalp wheels and a large end discharge opening.
Cutting height adjustment is super easy thanks to a crank system, and 4 wheels support all models for supreme stability regardless of the terrain. Kunz even makes a high flotation tire kit for cutting extremely wet or swampy areas, although any time we’ve had mower blades dip into water, it’s about killed the motor.
We were especially happy to see Kunz uses large diameter tubing for their frame and tongue system. The other really great idea they had was to use a clevis style hitch for rough cut models which prevents hitch bind when the ATV and mower are on different slope angles.
Kunz Eningeering Finish Cut Quick Specs
H60B 60” cut, 19.5hp Briggs & Stratton OHV, electric start, centrifugal clutch, residential grade
C60K 60” cut, 18hp Kohler OHV, electric start, centrifugal clutch, commercial grade
Pro60K 60” cut, 18hp Kohler OHV, electric start, electric clutch, professional grade
Pro60V 60” cut, 23hp Briggs & Stratton OHV, twin cylinder, elect. start, elect. clutch, professional grade
H40B 40” cut, 12.5hp Briggs & Stratton, recoil start, manual clutch, residential grade
Kunz Engineering Rough Cut Mower Quick Specs
MR55B 57” cut, 23hp Briggs & Stratton, Twin cylinder, electric start, manual clutch
MR55K 57” cut, 20hp Kohler Command Twin Cylinder, electric start, manual clutch
MR55KE 57” cut, 20hp Kohler Command Twin Cylinder, electric start, electric clutch
MR44B 44” cut, 19.5hp Briggs & Stratton Intek, electric start, manual clutch
MR44K 44” cut, 18hp Kohler Command, electric start, manual clutch
Take the Field
A pull behind mower is a tool you can use to get more out of your ATV, and it is significantly less expensive than a complete tractor or zero turn mower. Unless you own a landscape company nobody purchases a mower often, but when you do, there are a few basic things you need to look for.
1: Is it well built with a solid deck that has reinforcements in critical areas?
2: Are the wheels and support gear built for years of hard work? You don’t want to be welding it back together mid-season.
3: Does it have heavy duty, large diameter spindles designed for tough material?
4: Is the hitch sturdy and does it articulate to accommodate cutting on slopes?
5: Does it feature a reliable, name brand engine big enough for the job?
The KUNZ ArcEase mowers are well designed and well built, meet a high reliability standard, and with a little care could be the last mower you’ll ever buy. After all, we want to get the same thing out of mowing as you do: done.
Mower Safety Tips
BE SAFE. Wear protective gear & eyewear. Stay out of the rocks, logs, or anything that shouldn’t go under mower, and be aware of people and property that could be injured or damaged by flying debris.
DRIVE AT A MODERATE SPEED. This is about mowing, not riding, and nobody is going to give you a trophy for finishing first.
USE the MOWER AS DIRECTED. Don’t go overboard on what you are cutting. This is an ATV mower and not a tractor mounted brush hog.
STAY BACK FROM MOVING BLADES. This is obvious, but don’t stick anything under the deck you don’t want to lose. Keep others back as well.