The History of Lawn Mowers |
Honors Thesis |
Amber Shukitia and Erik Kortum |
A brief history of the lawn mower and the different innovations that developed over the years will be researched and discussed. This discussion will include the functionality of the different styles over the ages, especially the abilities of the powerful mowers of today. The research will then be utilized in the design of our commercial riding mower deck lift system for capstone, along with discovering other advancements that may be taken into consideration for future designs. |
TABLE OF CONTENTS
List of Figures 3
List of Tables 3
Developments through the ...view middle of the document...
Budding was an engineer from England who first discovered the idea of a mower from a cylindrical machine used for cutting in a mill. The mower that he developed was composed of a large roller which provided power to the cutting cylinder using gears. The cutting cylinder contained several blades connected in series around the cylinder. His innovation opened the door for numerous advancements in lawn cutting.
DEVELOPMENTS THROUGH THE YEARS
After Budding invented the first lawn mower, he created a partnership with John Ferrabee, a fellow English engineer. They obtained a patent in 1830 and were able to manufacture and sell the product. Along with the manufacturing of his own product, he licensed other companies, allowing them to produce the mower as well. Other companies were finally able to produce their own mowers in the 1850s when the patent was terminated. The first innovation in the lawn mower was created by Thomas Green in 1959. He produced the first chain driven mower, which was called the Silens Messor, meaning silent cutter. Since Green used chains to transmit power from the roller rather than gears, it allowed the mower to function in a more quiet manner.
Amariah Hills was the first American to obtain a patent for a mower design in 1868. During this time, horse drawn lawn mowers were most popular, although this posed a risk for the horses tearing up the 5
grass. Finally in 1870, Elwood McGuire designed a push mower that was much lighter with less mechanical movement. This design allowed the operator to easily push the mower rather than exerting as much energy as the older push mower designs required.
Although a lighter push mower had been designed, mowing grass proved to be an inconvenient and long task. Therefore, a non-man powered mower was desired. Resorting back to horse drawn mowers was not an option in order to keep a pristine lawn and resulted in the next big innovation of motorized mowers. In the 1890s, steam powered engines were commonly used, but the time it took to fire it up became even more of an issue which created the desire for an engine that utilizes a different source of energy. In 1902, Ransomes, Sims, and Jefferies introduced the first internal combustion gasoline powered engine. The United States was finally able to manufacture gasoline powered mowers in 1919 thanks to Colonel Edwin George. Although these engine powered mowers were available, they were rarely used in households due to the economic problems of the time.
In the 1920s and 1930s the electric powered mower, along with rotary cutting, were created but did not become popular until considerably later. Throughout the 1940s the only innovations were developing smaller, lighter weight designs along with more powerful engines. In the 1960s, the designs were now being produced in plastic materials to further reduce the weight and cost.
CURRENT MOWER DESIGNS AND ACCESSORIES
Current lawn mowing includes a multitude of applications and each of these...