How to Adjust and Use a Rotary Cutter
No matter what type of land you have to take care of, there is often ground that's covered in brush, or weeds, or grass that’s a lot taller and rougher than it should be. Or maybe you have a lot of pasture, but the grass has gotten out of control and grown too thick and too tall. A tractor mounted rotary cutter is the implement you need for controlling that overgrowth and keeping your pasture and edges clean and managed the way they should be.
A tractor mounted rotary cutter is different than a grooming mower. A rotary cutter is designed to cut rough plant material, from thick pasture grass to tree saplings with trunks up to 1-inch (2.5 cm) thick. It offers an adjustable cutting height from 1½ to 9 inches (4 – 23 cm). The material that is cut is left on the ground behind the cutter, and because it was pretty tall and rough to start with, remains thick and rough-looking on the ground.
On the other hand, a grooming mower is used to finish mow a lawn or sports field sort of area where you need a smooth, fine cut and perhaps even mulching capability. A grooming mower won't get the job done in a pasture, and a rotary cutter won’t give your lawn the smooth-looking cut you want.
In this video we've matched a Frontier RC2048 Rotary Cutter (US CA) with a John Deere 1025R (US CA) Compact Utility Tractor.
Frontier Rotary Cutters (US CA) are Category 1 compatible iMatch compatible or Category 2 Quick Coupler compatible. They offer working widths from 4 to 7 feet (1.22 – 2.13 m) and are designed to fit utility tractors with PTO ranging from 18 – 90 horsepower (13.4 – 67.1 kW). Determine what size cutter is right for you based on the PTO horsepower of your tractor and the width between the outside edges of the rear tires. Ideally, the working width of the cutter should be at least as wide as the distance between the outside edges of those tires so your tractor isn’t driving over material that the cutter isn’t reaching.
Always make sure the cutting blades are sharp and balanced. Blades can be removed and sharpened, but this is a specialized task and should be done by your local dealer. If blades become chipped and worn, they should be replaced. Refer to your operator’s manual for details on proper blade care and replacement.
Know the land you're cutting. Mowing over a tree stump or large rock, or letting a tractor wheel drive into a hole are just a couple ways you could damage the cutter, the tractor, or injure yourself.
If you're cutting very tall, thick vegetation, take the time to check your tractor's radiator screen now and then, making sure it's not clogged, to help prevent engine overheating.
And remember, always read the Operator’s Manual before operating any piece of equipment and follow all operating and safety instructions.
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