Rotary Brushcutter versus Flail Brushcutter

So Many Different BrushCutters to Choose from . . .

Many people think that all brushcutters are alike. Not so! Among the many different kinds brush cutters (or brush mowers) there are walk behind, string type and ride on brushcutters. Even among walk behind brush cutters there are different kinds, like rotary brush mowers and flail brush mowers. How are rotary and flail walk behind brushcutters different from each other and when would you want to use one instead of the other? Read below to find out!

What are the main differences between a rotary brush cutter and a flail brush cutter?

Rotary brushcutters resemble beefed-up walked behind lawnmowers, using a single blade that is rectangular in shape and is sharpened at the edges. This blade is fixed to a spindle and rotates parallel to the ground. Rotary brushcutters often do a great job of quickly cutting weeds and tall grass.

Samurai Walk Behind Brush Cutter - Brush Mower 4

A rotary brushcutter, like Orec’s Samurai, has a single blade that cuts brush by spinning horizontally


Flail mowers on the other hand use rows of flail blades attached to a single blade drum. This drum often rotates, swinging the blades vertically so that they pick up the brush, tear it, chew it up, and then discharge the mulched material. It may help to think of the flail drum like a roller going over a piece of dough, only attached to the roller are little blades that dig into the dough and tear it into tiny shreds. Obviously this wouldn’t be much of a dough roller, but it can be a great concept for a brushcutter.



The knives of a flail brushcutter rotate vertically to chop up brush.


When should I use a flail mower and when should I use a rotary brush mower?

Flail brushcutters are excellent for chopping up and mulching brush. This mulching returns the nutrients to the soil and means that you won’t have to brush mow the area as often. What’s more, the rotation of the flail mower knives work to pull in brush, making it easier than a rotary mower to cut vines such as blackberries and ivy, since you do not have to get the deck on top of the vines in order to cut them. So, if you are mowing an area that is overrun with thick brush or vines that you want to get rid of, consider using the flail mower. Just remember that it takes a little more time for all those flail blades to catch and pulverize the brush.



Flail Brushcutters chop up and mulch brush.


If you are looking to cut an area of tall grass quickly, you may consider using a rotary brushcutter. Overall, rotary mowers may be a little faster than flail mowers for cutting areas of tall grass. Rotary mowers are also lighter than flail mowers and easier to transport. If you have a yard or small field that has standing tall grass and weeds, and you want to cut that grass quickly, a rotary brushcutter is a terrific option.



Rotary Brushcutters knock down tall grass in no time.


What walk behind brush cutter options does Orec America offer?

Whether you want to use the rotary brushcutter or the walk behind flail mower, we would highly recommend the Orec SH72 Samurai Walk Behind Brush Cutter (Rotary) or the Orec AHRC662 Cyclone Flail Mower. The Samurai is a great choice compared to other brush mowers, as it has a wider cutting width (27.5”) to get the job done faster. It also has a differential lock that will help you get through bumpy ground and will keep you stable while side slope mowing. Finally, with its front wheel, it is easier to maneuver around obstacles and it gives you the ability to raise and lower the cutting depth.

The Cyclone Flail mower is unique as there are very few other walk behind flail mowers in the United States. The cyclone features a tracked and a wheel option. The tracked option features a brake steering clutch so that you do not have to put any effort into turning the machine. The tracks also provide greater traction and stability on slopes. You won’t have to worry about repairing a flat either. The wheeled option gives you the same great cut along with the option to freewheel the machine. The 7” lugged tires are sturdy and you can foam fill them without worrying about damaging the machine.

Orec’s Brand of Walk Behind Rotary and Flail Brushcutters are the best option for you to work smarter, not harder. To find out where to purchase or rent an Orec Brushcutter, call or email us anytime!


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