RE: [mowbot] my temporary automated mower

Doug Smith (dsmith nospam at
Thu, 24 Jun 1999 06:55:37 -0500

>About the most clever use of this idea that I've seen is from a fellow
>that has to keep a grass runway mowed for his light plane. He ran a
>cable down the center of the runway. Attached to the cable was a gear
>box. When a crank on the gear box is turned the gear box slowly walks
>its way down the long cable. This fellow then used a setup like yours,
>with a long cable attached at one end to the gear box crank, and
>attached at the other to a 21" wide self propelled gas mower. He starts
>the mower and it mows circles about 40 feet wide, each one a bit further
>down the runway until the whole runway is mowed. Next time he reverses
>the direction of the mower and mows the other way up the runway. This
>was written up in a publication called "Farm Show" about 4 years ago.

Thanks for telling me about that. I just might have to modify my system
slightly using a similar idea. :)

I'd love to see that article. Do you have any idea where I could find an
issue that old? If you have contact info for the pub I could call and see
if they have reprints for a fee.

I remember seeing an article about tethered mowers when I was a kid. I
think it was in the early to mid 1970's and was probably in Popular
Mechanics. I would love to see that again and see if what I came up with is
anything like what they did. I've done some searching but so far I haven't
been able to find out what issue it appeared in.

Doug Smith * dsmith nospam at