Roland Lawrence has acquired a grasscutter made by Richard Hornsby & Sons of Grantham in the 1800s and is keen to restore it to its original condition.
He got in touch with Grantham Matters as we featured the restoration of a similar machine by John Llewellyn and thought he could help.
Roland said: “He came up with some interesting and useful information.
“I do think his Hornsby looks like an identical model to mine – both of them have “No 10”, on the main casting near the name “Hornsby Grantham England”.
“So far as I am aware mine is pretty complete apart fom the original seat, and the jockey wheels his has at each end of the cutter bar. I imagine I may be able to track down something that would serve the purpose.
“I have the cutter bar (which I removed about 25 years ago for safety reasons when I also applied the red Hammerite paint to the cutter arm, but never progressed further).
“Everything amazingly still moves and turns on mine, and the only thing broken so far as I can see, apart from the rotten draw bar, is the bottom rivet on one of the long handles/levers.
” John’s grass cutter looks so good that I believe he has inspired me to try to get on with my paint-job “restoration”, but I don’t plan to strip it all down, just replace the draw bar, refit the cutter bar and repair the broken rivet, plus mend up the rather wormy grass board, and replace the mssing part of the cutter arm safety chain. Then paint it up.
“I am very tempted to follow John’s paint colour scheme in general, with red, cream and black Hammerite paint, particularly as the only bit of original paint I have found is a little bit of red in a hidden corner, and am I just imagining white/cream on one wheel?
“I know it is quite fashionable to leave old machinery in its rusty state, but I personally prefer a painted look, and I think it may help preserve it for the next 100 year sor more.
“Let’s hope I am not distracted completely on to other tasks, as hopefully we move out of lockdown!”