Get the Right Tool With the Features You Want


This year I made a decision to buy a new lawn mower. The previous one I had been using was purchased new about 15 years ago. Just like any new thing any technical oriented type of person buys, you have your own, personal critique of the things you like and don’t like about the current tool that affects your buying choices for the new one.

My old lawn mower was a front wheeled, self-propelled one that was either engaged all the time or off depending on the position of a locking lever you would push. To release it, you had to let go of the safety bar that kills the engine which then killed the engine. Not the best of designs. Also, the front wheels being propelled and not the back ones meant that the wheels with the least amount of weight bearing down on them had to pull the weight of the mower around. This was especially noticeable when the grass catcher bag was full. With this arrangement you end up with wheels digging into the grass/dirt and not really pulling the mower well. A side effect of that over the years; the drive wheels also wear down to a point where there’s no tread and in fact, holes where the nice tread used to be. The old mower did have a bagging attachment but the springs that hold the door down when in mulch mode wore out, so the wind created by the blade would blow grass clippings out all over the operator. A bucket and bungee cord fixed that issue.

Lastly and probably most importantly, the old mower was hard to start. It took the strength of a grown man to get the motor spinning fast enough that the spark would actually ignite the gas and the thing would run. To be quite honest, it never was really all that easy to start and keep running. But that’s one of those things you don’t figure out until you get the thing home and un-packed out of the box. I know, there’s the return policy from the store you buy it from, but that’s never as easy as advertised either. So, I messed around with it and tweaked here and there for 15 years.

This spring, I did my research on-line as well as in the store, comparing all the models available. I must say that there’s no shortage of features and accessories that the lawn mower design guys have cooked up. You can get electric start, self-propelled, 2 wheel drive, all-wheel drive, mulch, bag, side discharge, one blade, two blades, blade stop, electric, gas. You name it. You could get anything from an old-fashioned “reel” mower all the way up to a unit priced more than $1,000.00 USD for a residential quality, walk-behind mower.

I ended up deciding on the features and accessories that were important to me and selecting a middle of the road model that did have the all-wheel drive feature that would kick in and out depending on the position of the handle that the operator pushes on to get it to move. So, it matches the pace of the operator which is very cool and the wheels don’t spin all the time so you don’t tear up your turf or wear down the drive wheels. The unit started on the first pull each time and runs strong even through the thick, spring-time grass we have at the moment. I’ve used it twice now and am very happy I opted for a few of the features that I thought would really take away a lot of the pain in dealing with the “tool” to get the results I wanted with my “application” – cutting my grass.

At the end of this story, what does my lawn mower buying experience have to do with EXAIR and compressed air products?  The point is this, when you are looking at a Vortex Tube, an Air Knife or perhaps a Line Vac, remember, that we provide all of these items with all the possible accessories that one might need in an application to make for easy and convenient installation. Perhaps it is as simple as installing a suitable filter/separator that we recommend which keeps the air clean and dry or a regulator to give you finite control over blowing force from a Super Air Knife. Maybe you would even opt to install an Electronic Flow Controller in line with your Super Air Nozzle array so that it only operates when a target to be blown off is actually present.

EXAIR products are great at helping our customers manage their compressed air based applications. The accessories are also an invaluable set of tools to make the installation and use of our products a real pleasure. Back that up with our 30 day guarantee and a great group of Application Engineers to answer all your questions about the product and you begin to understand the kind of company that EXAIR strives to be.

Neal Raker, International Sales Manager


Lawnmower image courtesy of jeffcovey.  Creative commons license.

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