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A couple weeks ago I received a Honda 5.5hp vertical shaft engine in a trade, and I don't have anything to do with it. So, I've been trying to find a use for it. One of my possible ideas was a walk behind trimmer/brush cutter. I think this would come in handy often around here.

I have a couple old push mowers laying around, which I would have no trouble using for parts.

I'm thinking of using a couple of old bike tires for wheels, and part of one of my push mowers for the blade guards. I will use an old dick spindle to power the trimmer head. I will put a pulley on the engine and run a belt drive.

For the trimmer head I want to try and mount an edger blade that fits, and bolt pieces of 3/16" cable to it. I would also consider a disk of sorts if I can find one.

The engine came off a pressure washer so it's a self contained unit, so its bolt and go for that.

How does this sound? I'm open to suggestions, the weeds around here can get 1/2" thick easily and my string trimmer doesn't cut it anymore.
 

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Thinking about doing something similar but I may use a Meg-Mo blade. I built one out of an old ******** mower, cut the front open and made a hinged blade kind of like a small bush hog. My Dad had one of those DR walk behind trimers and the string is a pain in the butt. Only cool thing about it was what they call a beaver blade, that would cut down a 3" tree.
 

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Shaft on that motor must be pretty short, could you even put a pulley on it. You can buy a replacement head for the DR trimmer mowers around $80.00 and it used different size trimmer line, and even the bottom of that trimmer head can be removed to install one of there beaver blades that can cut up to a 3" sapling down, has chain saw chain wrapped around it. I have a old Troy built trimmer and also a DR trimmer like your thinking of making. I like the DR better, lighter and better balance, that the key to one of these walk behind trimmer, plus the whole trimmer and swing sideways to the right and cuts at beveled angle, nice under fences. I`ve ever used it to mulch up whole leaves in a garden, then rotor tilled them under.

http://www.drpower.com/trimmer-mower-223641-headassembly.aspx
 

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For the trimmer head I want to try and mount an edger blade that fits, and bolt pieces of 3/16" cable to it. I would also consider a disk of sorts if I can find one...
Keep safety in mind. There are huge centrifugal forces at play and a failure could easily end in death. If you redneck something together and someone gets hurt, you could be paying the rest of your life.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Thinking about doing something similar but I may use a Meg-Mo blade. I built one out of an old ******** mower, cut the front open and made a hinged blade kind of like a small bush hog. My Dad had one of those DR walk behind trimers and the string is a pain in the butt. Only cool thing about it was what they call a beaver blade, that would cut down a 3" tree.
I think a blade would be a little too heavy duty for my use, and the weeds that grow around here often grow on or around rock piles so a blade would be ruined in short order. That is why I want to run pieces of cable, I wouldn't have to change it often and rocks wouldn't hurt it.

Shaft on that motor must be pretty short, could you even put a pulley on it. You can buy a replacement head for the DR trimmer mowers around $80.00 and it used different size trimmer line, and even the bottom of that trimmer head can be removed to install one of there beaver blades that can cut up to a 3" sapling down, has chain saw chain wrapped around it. I have a old Troy built trimmer and also a DR trimmer like your thinking of making. I like the DR better, lighter and better balance, that the key to one of these walk behind trimmer, plus the whole trimmer and swing sideways to the right and cuts at beveled angle, nice under fences. I`ve ever used it to mulch up whole leaves in a garden, then rotor tilled them under.


http://www.drpower.com/trimmer-mower-223641-headassembly.aspx

The shaft is a little short, but I can get a pulley on it without much trouble. 80.00 is too much, I'm looking to get this built for as little as possible. The major thing I don't have is the blade spindle, but I can get one from my local scrapyard for 5.00.

Keep safety in mind. There are huge centrifugal forces at play and a failure could easily end in death. If you redneck something together and someone gets hurt, you could be paying the rest of your life.
This is the only part I am having trouble creating, I know if I just cut a lawnmower blade it will be nearly impossible to keep it balanced, and if I bought an edger blade I would have to drill holes in it to attach the cables, and they would have to be precisely in the same location on each side. I also want to slow the drive down somewhat, to give me a little more leeway in my fabrication, something like a 3:1 ratio.

So, the problems I need input on are making the cutting wheel, and how to attach my wheels. The wheels will probably be front tires from a bicycle.

What I am thinking for the frame, is two 18" or so pieces of angle iron, about 12" apart in the back, narrowing down to about 8" in the front. I will weld on two plates, one in the front (maybe 8" by 8", for mounting the spindle) and another on the back to mount the engine on. Then I will mount the wheels to the rear of the frame, mount one of my push mower handles to the rear of the frame, and cut a hole in the front plate and mount the spindle. I will also have to work out some kind of spacer to mount the engine higher off the rear plate, and to line up the pulleys.
 

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A long time ago I tried using metal cable even had the ends silver soldered, didn't work hitting anything with the cable just makes it come apart, them all you got is cable that looks like it had a bad hair day and is worthless cutting anything. Trimmer line comes in different sizes right up to 170 mil and this stuff only wears out. it doesn't come apart like your cable will. Why not just drill holes in a pulley run your trimmer line through them and see how it works, don`t wear shorts when testing it. With it running right off the motor you may be able to use longer trimmer line the motor will have more power and toque then a small string trimmer even at slower RPM`s.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
A long time ago I tried using metal cable even had the ends silver soldered, didn't work hitting anything with the cable just makes it come apart, them all you got is cable that looks like it had a bad hair day and is worthless cutting anything. Trimmer line comes in different sizes right up to 170 mil and this stuff only wears out. it doesn't come apart like your cable will. Why not just drill holes in a pulley run your trimmer line through them and see how it works, don`t wear shorts when testing it. With it running right off the motor you may be able to use longer trimmer line the motor will have more power and toque then a small string trimmer even at slower RPM`s.
I never thought of that, saved me a lot of trouble there. :fing32:

The only issue with the string is it is going to be a pain to change it out when it gets worn. It's also going to be difficult to attach. I have an old trimmer head laying around but it's only .95 line, and I don't think it would last long.
 
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