Alas, the AC motor met a smoky death. Before I appreciated the need to use a properly-gauged extension cord, i.e., 12 gauge, I mowed the back forty using two 14 or 16 gauge cords and burned out the motor.
Wiser now, I'm on the prowl for another AC motor at "curbside" pricing. Anyone getting rid of an old washing machine?
I got the engine-less mower deck and handle for nothing, the motor was free after I helped move the washing machine out of a basement, and a handful of nuts and bolts, a bit of angle iron and wiring, brought it to life.
Lawnmower blades typically rotate at 1800 to 3600rpm, and this motor topped out at 1750rpm, a fairly common speed for its' intended application. Still, the mower worked well with the homemade blade I put on it. I made a blade because the motor shaft spun in the opposite direction from the shaft on the ICE, and while it was possible to reverse the motor, I'd read that doing so might sacrifice a few rpm, possibly even some torque(?).
The "deadman" or kill switch on the original mower became the on-off switch for the motor, hence the switch was used for much the same purpose as originally intended. One upgrade I'm researching would be a disc brake on the motor shaft to stop the blade more quickly, and devising some way to have it engage automatically should the kill-switch open. Maybe a relay connected into the switch circuit...
I'm also toying with connecting the motor shaft to a blade shaft via belt or chain-driven pulleys that are sized to increase the blade rpm, to see the effect on grass-cutting effectiveness. The motor does take a few seconds to spool up to speed. A crude strain relief on the handle keeps the cord up and away from the mower deck.
Fun, fun, fun, and quiet. No earplugs needed. And maintenance? Clean and sharpen the blade as needed. No spark plug to clean or change, no carb to clean or adjust, no fuel to drain or replace, no filters to replace. I'm using already-generated electricity. (Help! my carbon-feet are shrinking!) Mowing around trees becomes a mental game...where will the cord be if I...