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Joined: Jan 2020
Posts: 171
Likes: 5
N1KK0 Offline OP
Apprentice level 2
Hi All,

My 72yr old mother until recently had her lawn done by a contractor at $90 a pop. Upon finding this out I told her I'd do for her and as it's a ~300m2 yard sourced her a cheapish Ozito 2 x 18v mower for me to use doing it for her and her to do when she feels up to it. My car is too small & my mowers too large to bring over to do.

I did for first time yesterday and though incredibly wary not to hit anything upon checking the single bar blade afterwards I found it really dinged up & rolled over presumably from hitting these tree nut type things that were on her lawn & I'd never given a thought to being a concern to a mower blade. I know there were no stones or concrete hit, so that small bits of twig etc did this is underwhelming.

I've brought the blade home with me to get the knocks out etc - but I'm wondering is there a way i can bring the shockingly soft steel they've used to make this blade a tad more serviceable?

It's clearly completely untreated mild steel - just powder coated - and with far too acute a grind on it for a mower blade!

Quick thoughts are:

- just make do until a total reseting of the grind angle is needed and put a more obtuse grind angle on it so there's more metal behind the blade edge

- get a blowtorch & used sump oil, heat the outer blade edge to red hot then quench in the case oil, which should harden the edge (in theory if heated to hit temps). But I think being it's crap steel, the carbon content is so low this would make negligible difference & just run the risk of making brittle & break off risk.

- long term one can mod the bar blade removing part of the ends, replacing with a couple of equal length traditional swingback blades, screwing in place (have plenty of spare blades from mowers I've sold that could be used for this).

- waiting till blade wears down and building up areas removed with welding (adding more bulk) - but dunno if this would be brittle & soft too if just using GP type rods?

FWIW the part number is EH3405486. So perhaps a replacement part thats actually hardened could be found or one close enough that could be modded?

Really bodgy that the makers send this type of crap out, when hardening the steel would cost them just a few cents more per unit - but I presume they do it cynically as they know the blades will become unusable within a short period and most owners will simply be forced to buy another at their marked up prices.

Also absolutely pathetic near flat fluting on this blade, no wonder it struggles to discharge clippings - I just put a piece of dowel under the flap (kept up just a tad) and mowed bagless, worked much better.

FWIW this is the mower kit itself - good fit for her yard, physical abilities etc - but crappy blade!
https://www.bunnings.com.au/ozito-p...opic-lawn-mower-kit-pxlmtk-4182_p0207446

Last edited by N1KK0; 08/11/23 08:38 AM.
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N1KK0 Offline OP
Apprentice level 2
Hmmm ok through searching - trying to harden or welding onto the blades seems too risky - if you're an expert maybe viable but as I'd be winging it - just too much risk of cracking during use and shooting off a chunk. So I will rule those out.

That really only leaves finding a superior usable blade (perhaps having to cut back so it fits) hassle here is Ozito have a tricky centre hole system thats likely proprietry - so likely no go.

Or chopping the ends off the bar blade, drilling through to replace the length with swingback blades. Which oddly is likely the 'safest' option but perhaps one I'd be best off doing when this existing blade is completely borked and unable to be sharpened again.

So till then I suspect I'll just have to try and avoid even small twigs on her lawn and resharpen at a more obtuse angle when the wear allows it.

Joined: Feb 2006
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SENIOR TECHNICIAN
Buy an Ozito mower, you reap what you sow. Known for being pieces of junk.
Cut your losses, and spend on a second hand petrol mower or buy a much more expensive battery mower like say Ryobi or Go if it must be electronic.


Ahh, if only victa had kept producing the thumblatch catcher series, they would be in better shape today!
Joined: Jan 2020
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N1KK0 Offline OP
Apprentice level 2
Quote
Buy an Ozito mower, you reap what you sow. Known for being pieces of junk.
I'm going to disagree on this - it was bought to fit the purpose, a 72yr old lady mowing a lawn, which given she's moving soon will likely be 100m2 or so. Petrol was a complete non-starter and EGO far too expensive.

It's about getting something fit for the user and purpose and budget.

Many nitwits bemoan Ozito's mowers but largely thats going to be as folks generally are nitwits when picking a mower for a job and handling that mower e.g letting the grass get above the ankles and then when it chokes the 18v Ozito complaining that it's gutless.

Nearly all their stuff is Einhell, that has a good reputation as a value 'mid' tier brand. So we can agree to disagree if needed. :-)

Joined: Jan 2016
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SENIOR TECHNICIAN
Hi N1KK0,
Fit a pair of swingback blades, no big deal I have done it before on bladebars. Sounds like you might not have too much trouble drilling the barblade but the ones I have drilled I used a masonry drill bit that I had sharpened as a normal steel drill using a diamond wheel on a grinder. Workes fine, I was skeptical at first

1 member likes this: N1KK0
Joined: Jul 2018
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SENIOR TECHNICIAN
Norm, I was in bunnings today and looked at these - no way would i do swingbacks. They blade is wafer fin - I could just about bend it 90 deg by hand if I wanted to. The bolts would just shear the blade off

I'm looking at it from the perspective if those tree nuts are stuffing the blade up so quickly, how long before the plastic deck going to end up completely obliterated.

I know ego is too expensive at over $1k, but could you push budget to $650?

https://masport.com.au/outdoor-gard...ch-battery-mowers/200-st-2-n1-58v-0-75kw

I've had a good look into these and used one - they have the same deck as the 16in petrol mowers and proper swing blades and actually cuts and catches like a petrol mower

1 member likes this: N1KK0
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N1KK0 Offline OP
Apprentice level 2
Quote
I was in bunnings today and looked at these - no way would i do swingbacks. They blade is wafer fin - I could just about bend it 90 deg by hand if I wanted to. The bolts would just shear the blade off
Tyler, not sure which one you saw instore - they've got a bunch of different ones that look confusingly similar. having just checked the blade itself is exactly 2mm thick - while untreated you must be a strong sucker if you can bend it in half by hand. If the holes weren't set stupidly close to the end of the bar I dunno if they'd really have the ability to shear off as 2mm of steel would take some ripping through?

Quote
I'm looking at it from the perspective if those tree nuts are stuffing the blade up so quickly, how long before the plastic deck going to end up completely obliterated.
I think I'm going to have to rake any of those off before mowing - my mother is in a rental home at present, as coming out of a divorce - looking to buy - so it's not a long term issue. Her next yard will certainly be smaller than this one - hence while it's not the 'ideal' mower for this property I know it works fine and will be fine for her next smaller yard.

Quote
I know ego is too expensive at over $1k, but could you push budget to $650?
Good idea but she has this mower and spending more $$$ isn't an option - alas divorces are expensive, especially in your 70's. So no thats ok I will just make do with this as is likely only for a few more months.

Joined: Jan 2016
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SENIOR TECHNICIAN
Hi Tyler,
The last Ozito I looked at was from a neighbour who had used it once and wanted to know if I wanted it. I took it and cut it up and put it in the bin so I did not take much notice of the blade, but as always there is more than one way to skin a cat so I guess N1KK0 will work something out.

1 member likes this: N1KK0
Joined: Feb 2006
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SENIOR TECHNICIAN
Getting rid of those tree stones is a good start.
My neighbour got rid of his Ozito mower soon after buying one.
He uses an 18" Victa with Briggs 375 I sold to him cheap. I realise your mum can't do this.
I have an Ozito cordless drill and hand pruner. The drill is very good and the hand pruner works okay on thin branches up to 1cm thick. Got it on clearance for $36 down from $79. Found the drill on hard rubbish next door without a battery. I use the batteries from my Aldi impact driver!


Ahh, if only victa had kept producing the thumblatch catcher series, they would be in better shape today!
1 member likes this: N1KK0
Joined: Jul 2018
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SENIOR TECHNICIAN
I think it was the right one i was looking at. It was $340 and had a little edge to edge cutting thing behind the front wheels. In the long run, the mower is probably a good fit for her.

I was able to deflect the tip of the blade a good 15mm without much effort at all and I am not that strong (especially with a stuffed left shoulder). If I really wanted to I think I could have bent it pretty decently.

The way I am thinking about it is if you drill a 10mm hole for a blade bolt it is going to weaken it.

The original blade has a side profile of 2mm high and 50mm wide. Hence profile is 100mm^2.

If you drill a 10mm hole in that blade, you are effectively reducing the cross section down to 80mm^2 at its worst point. If your then hanging a heavier blade off of a point that has 20% less metal, I don't know how it would go. The stress raiser effect just seems too high for me.

If it was a regular mower bar blade that is thicker, I wouldnt give it a second thought, but this worries me.

1 member likes this: N1KK0
Joined: Jan 2020
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N1KK0 Offline OP
Apprentice level 2
Tyler, on the basis of risk vs reward, I agree - she's in a property with larger yard now only temporarily, so longer term the next yard will be smaller and ideally no tree nuts etc.

I'll just sharpen at a more obtuse angle when the wear on the very acute OEM angle (which as mentioned was FAR too sharp, near cutting hand levels!) recedes a tad so I'm not just grinding metal away for no good reason.

Joined: Jan 2016
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SENIOR TECHNICIAN
Something I would look at is fitting a Victa Sprinter blade to it. I'm guessing the Ozito has that star setup on the end of the crank. You can leave that blade on and as long as you can get a washer to centre the Sprinter blade to the centre bolt on the Ozito and to prevent the bar from spinning free put 2 nuts and bolts through the locating pin holes on the Sprinter bar. Not sure what the Ozito bar diameter is but easy the cut the sprinter to suit the Ozito diameter with a grinder. As I said plenty of ways to skin a cat

Joined: Jan 2020
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N1KK0 Offline OP
Apprentice level 2
Hi Norm,

Nice thinking but this model has a different 3 hole setup on the middle of it's bar blades, I know the style you're talking about thats seen on the older and lower end Ozito's - they have a centre style thats unique to this mower, don't even think any others in their range has it - hence IMHO it's rather cynical by design as they have made it so unique you have to be a metal fabricator to get anything else to work.

I'll just be extra careful and make do till she moves to a smaller yard - boring but easiest. :-)

Joined: Feb 2006
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SENIOR TECHNICIAN
Maybe try thick line trimmer string.


Ahh, if only victa had kept producing the thumblatch catcher series, they would be in better shape today!
Joined: Jan 2016
Posts: 7,466
Likes: 143
SENIOR TECHNICIAN
Good idea MF, but as usual trying to clamp the string is always an issue

Joined: Feb 2006
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SENIOR TECHNICIAN
And does it spin fast enough for the line to cut well?


Ahh, if only victa had kept producing the thumblatch catcher series, they would be in better shape today!
Joined: Jul 2014
Posts: 126
Likes: 9
Apprentice level 2
Mower blades are consumables, I'd just keep sharpening when needed. If you take off 1 mm each time there's enough steel on a 50 mm wide blade to do a couple of dozen sharpenings, then buy a new blade.

Joined: Jan 2016
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SENIOR TECHNICIAN
MM
sharpening this blade is not the issue it is the quality of the steel that is the problem

Joined: Feb 2006
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SENIOR TECHNICIAN
But NormK it's still quality steel, just bad quality.


Ahh, if only victa had kept producing the thumblatch catcher series, they would be in better shape today!
Joined: Jan 2016
Posts: 7,466
Likes: 143
SENIOR TECHNICIAN
Hi MF,
bit like the quality of this 14.5 Briggs head I have sitting beside me. The really sad thing about this is some clown was paid to design it

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