how to sharpen reel mower blades image

How to Sharpen Reel Lawnmower Blades – 2 Effective Methods

If you live in a house with a beautiful wide yard, keeping a reel mower is not a choice but a need. Every person wants to keep their lawn clean and beautiful. Reel lawn mowers help you to provide a nicer look to your lawn. They are becoming popular because of their easy usage.

If you are new to them, you must have some questions regarding their functioning and maintenance. In general, reel mowers are cheaper and do not require much effort. But you need to look after their maintenance to keep them in good working condition. This is because the main element in the reel mowers is their blades. Thus, they are required to be kept accordingly. Let’s see a brief on lawnmower’s working before knowing how to sharpen reel mower blades.

How Does a Reel Lawn Mower Work?

Reel lawn mowers are a great option to help you clean your lawn. It comes with a set of revolving curved blades to cut the grass. These blades spin along with the wheels when pushed forward. And when you push forward the mower, its blades graze the ground and meet the grass. This whole process allows the cutting of the unwanted portion of the grass.

Few reel lawn mowers have a collection bin for the unwanted grass. But if your mower does not have one, you should collect the unwanted grass after mowing. And keep it aside to avoid any grunginess.

NOTE: When mowing, be mindful of safety. Make sure that your children do not use this tool in your absence. Always push the tool forward, not backward, and wear proper shoes to avoid any untoward event. Don’t use the reel mower when the grass is wet. It will increase the chances of slipping.

Will Dull Blades Affect My Reel Mower?

Dull blades are explicitly not good for your reel mower and the lawn. When you use the mower with dull blades, it becomes difficult to push it along. Dull blades do not cut the grass but are more likely to push over the grass.

Dull blades will eventually affect your lawn, making them look yellow and brown. Rusty blades can make your lawn look rough and ragged. It can also cause lawn discolouration and even dispose of bacteria and disease. Therefore, it is recommended to sharpen the reel mowers blades at least two to four times a year. Also, before mowing the lawn, make sure to remove stones, sticks, or any hard material from the lawn. This will ensure that your mower blades do not catch any damage while mowing.

How to Sharpen Reel Mower Blades?

The reel mower’s blades are designed to last longer. However, their sharpness might fade with time. Mainly, these two methods are most in use to sharpen the mower’s blades. Go through these methods and learn how to make the blade sharp and effective.

Method 1: How to Sharpen a Reel Mower with a File?

Using a mile file is a great idea for sharpening as it acts as an ideal reel lawn mower blade sharpener. You can easily get the mile file from the nearby store. Below are some easy steps you can follow to sharpen the blade.

Sharpening Reel Mower Blades with File Image
  1. The first step involves choking the blades from spinning. For this, put the reel mower on a large surface, so you have enough space to continue with the process. Make sure to choke the blades to turn on accidentally properly.
  2. Before filing, clean the blades with a brush or sandpaper to remove any dirt or grass.
  3. Now, carefully scrap the file between the blades. This will make the dull metal shed and make the blade sharp.
  4. Repeat this step four to six times. Once you have scraped the file on the front blades, you will need to rotate the cylinder to have the other blade on the front.
  5. Choke the next blades and file them at least six times.
  6. Once you have properly filed all the blades, apply some lubricating oil to the blades.

And now you have successfully sharpened the blades using a mile file. Using this lawn mower blade sharpening tool was a bit easy and effective.

Method 2: Sharpening a Reel Mower Blades using Sharpening Compound

Some kinds of sharpening kits are available that contain a sharpening compound to help sharpen the blades. To sharpen the blades using this compound, you need to follow simple steps.

Sharpening Reel Mower Blades using Sharpening Compound Image
  1. First, you need to apply the compound on the blades using a brush. You can wear gloves to cover your hands.
  2. Then, rotate the handle if you are done with applying the compound in the first set of blades.
  3. After rotating the handle, you should now apply the compound to the next blades.

Now, you have applied the sharpening compound for reel mower well to make your blades sharpen again. This process needs some extra time than the mile file one.

How to Adjust Reel Mower Blades?

Continuous use of any tool requires proper maintenance. With time, the mower or the blades might get rusted and rough. In addition, improper and unbalanced blades can affect the efficiency of the mower blades. If you think your blades are getting dull even if you sharpen them a while ago. Then, do check if they are properly set or need some adjustment.

Unfixed blades can make your work difficult as they will not hash the grass properly. In addition, they will be more likely to leave behind the excess grass. However, if your reel mower blades are unfixed, it’s quite simple to have them adjusted.

As a very first step, you need to put your mower on a table and resist or choke its blade from moving. Then, spin the reel to know the exact level of imbalance. Now, when spinning the reel and hear an unpleasant or scraping sound. You will need to have a tool with you to adjust the blades. For instance, you can use a bed knife tool for fixing the blades.

If the blades are loose and moving too easily, you must adjust them to be close to the cutting bar. And now, if you feel that the blades are in a place where you wanted them to be. You can now tighten the screw on the side of the reel using a screwdriver.

Notably, if you need to bring the blades close to the cutting bar, you will need to tighten the screw. And if you need the blades to move away, you must loosen the screws.


Can you sharpen reel mower with sandpaper?

It is not possible to completely sharpen the reel mower using sandpaper. You can just remove the dust or debris from reel lawnmower using a sandpaper but not sharpening.

How sharp should a lawn mower blade be?

The blades of lawn mower should be sharp enough to cut the leaves or grass, not our hands. They don’t need to be as sharp as razor’s blade. If the blades are more sharp, they need more maintenance.

Final Verdict

A reel mower is a great tool to help you with your garden duty. It is not that complicated to use the mower once you have already operated it. However, despite being a useful tool, it can also be harmful. The blades of the mower are very sharp. Therefore, you need to be attentive while using a reel mower. If you are using it for the first time, ask the manufacturer or the shopkeeper to show you the demo. Be very careful when changing or sharpening the blades about their maintenance. A small negligence can cause a big injury to your fingers. Also, keep your children away from this tool.

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