The drum flail mower is a twist on the traditional rotary mower: instead of long singular blades, it sports multiple lightweight blades on shafts. In some situations the flail mower provides a better tendered lawn than a rotary mower, thanks to its multiple-blade design providing a cleaner cut. Another reason for its popularity is its ability to be used in extreme areas where there is heavy foliage as the blades are tough and aren't easily damaged.

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Bulky in size, they can be placed on either the front or are towable on the back of a tractor. One of the core differences between the flail and rotary mowers, other than the blades, is the spinning direction. The flail mower spins vertically in an upper-cut direction. This way of spinning allows the blades on the flails to shred most obstacles in the way, meaning that it can go through areas that rotary mowers simply can't. In areas with harsh brush and debris like small fallen trees, a heavy flail mower has no problem.

The flail mower has a huge cut capacity as it can eject material over the entire width of the cutting unit. Instead of dropping mulch in clumps, the mulch rains out evenly from the flail mower. This means less lawn maintenance is required and is a bonus for those on farms as the evenly spread mulch brings nutrients back to the ground, making for healthier soil.

Compared to the rotary mower, which has a simple design and is easy to maintain, the flail has more parts to it. But this added complexity allows for more options, thanks to the variety of flail tips that are suitable for all kinds of applications. Some of these include heavy hammer flails, which are larger and have a longer life, ideal for cutting through tougher materials like small fallen trees and rocks. Another is a formed blade that requires less power as it moves less air, and is best suited for when you want higher quality finishes over areas with less debris.

Overall, a flail mower may be the best option if you're looking for a mower you can attach to your tractor and where you're mowing different terrains. Although it can require more maintenance than the regular rotary mower, generally you can expect a more pristine finish with a flail mower.