5 reasons to choose a Cylinder Mower over a Rotary Mower

19 Feb 2021 | Domestic Lawn Care, Industrial Lawn Care

Choosing a lawnmower is easy, isn’t it? Surely, I only need to keep my lawn neat? But, do you want to keep your grass cut short or do you want to give your lawn the desired finish that you see on fields and at stadiums. The perfectly manicured lawn can be in your back garden with just the correct choice of lawnmower. So why should you choose a cylinder lawnmower over a rotary lawnmower?

Let’s look at the key differences:

Cylinder Lawnmower:

A cylinder lawn mower has between 5 to 12 exposed blades at the front of the mower, rotating on a horizontal axis trapping & slicing the grass against a fixed bottom blade, in a scissor-like action.

Rotary Lawnmower:

A Rotary lawnmower has a cutting deck with rotating blades on a singular vertical pivot point. They cut your lawn with a fast – rotating chopping action, that in most cases tears and damages the grass leaves which prohibits new growth

Rotary machines may be the best option if you’re just looking to cut your lawn like everybody else, but if you want a beautifully presented lawn then you should choose a Cylinder Mower.

The quality of cut due to the slicing ‘scissor’ type action of the cylinder lawn mower, if maintained correctly, is superior to that of the ‘chopping’ or ‘smashing’ action of a rotary mower.


Here are the 5 reasons you should choose a cylinder lawnmower

man mowing a sports ground

1. Precision Cuts

A cylinder mower cuts using a set of sharp rotating blades. The rotating cylinder traps the blades of grass between its spinning blades & a stationary bottom blade. This action results in a precise, scissor-like cut on the grass, that is less damaging to the grass leaves. Which in turn translates to a quicker recovery, increases water retention and minimises the risk of disease.

2. Prevents Scalping

Lawn scalping refers to cutting your lawn grass quite low, so low that you expose the stems of your grass blades. Typically, scalping is done intentionally by setting the mower to its lowest height, but you can also accidentally scalp areas of the lawn.

The front & rear rollers of a cylinder mower run close to the point at which the grass is cut. This will allow for very low heights of cut without running the risk of accidentally scalping your lawn.

3. Minimal Compaction

Soil compaction is the primary cause of an unhealthy lawn. When soil is compacted, the particles of soil are pressed so tightly together that the soil isn’t porous enough to hold water, oxygen, or other nutrients that it needs to thrive. Without these necessities, your grass becomes weak, often browning easily and turning visibly thinner.

The motion of the cylinder mower helps reduce soil compaction for an overall healthier turf. Each unit has a heavy rear roller instead of wheels, evenly dispersing weight across the unit rather than concentrated under the wheels, creating a smoother, less thatchy surface.

4. Quality Stripes

All high-quality cylinder mowers have substantial front & rear rollers, creating a strong, clear stripe. This is due to the quality of the precision-cut given by a cylinder mower. The attractive light & dark stripes created by a cylinder mower are recognized as being longer-lasting & more crisply-defined than those created by other mowers fitted with a rear roller alone.

stripe cut lawn

5. Versatility

Various cylinder mowers come with the added benefit of versatility. With one unit, you can essentially have multiple machines simply by changing out the reel for a variety of speciality reels, including scarifier, verticutter, groomer or sweeper. By establishing a best practice where reels are rotated during lawn care, you can establish a better root base with less thatch that allows for greater water & nutrient penetration & a significantly healthier turf.


Protea Machines prides themselves in their range of cylinder lawnmowers.  If the health and appearance of your lawn are of utmost concern and you are after that professional look that sports fields & greens boast, check out our range of SI machines. We have a domestic range available in petrol engines or electric, in the following models: SI355(14”) , SI430(17”) , SI510(20”) , SI630(25”).

SI Domestic Petrol Cylinder Mower

Otherwise, if you want to maintain lawns that are much larger, as in estates, sports fields, parks etc then our HD range of machines are suggested. They are available in the following models: HD610 (24”) & the HD760 (30”) or HD914 (36”) which can convert to a ride-on with the addition of a trailer seat. And also offers the versatility of having the optional cartridges to transform your machine into a scarifier, verticutter, groomer or sweeper.

HD Scarifier & Verticutter cylinder mower

Now you have the perfect lawnmower that will prevent scalping. It is versatile offering precision cuts and quality stripes. But to create and maintain a manicured lawn comes with a few key principles of its own. Luckily we have you covered. It’s time to take your desired cylinder lawnmower and follow our 4 basic principles of lawncare {Link to this blog} to care for your lawn in the best way.


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