Life Altering Gear: The Cyclone Rake

[lightbox link=”” title=”Cyclone Rake with the Yard-Vac attachment” thumb=”” width=”180″ align=”left” frame=”true” icon=”image”] In the Midwest, wooded acreage provides gorgeous spring bloom, crucial summer shade, a colorful, crisp fall and incredibly picturesque winters. Densely deciduous with oak and hickory, the autumn, however, can be hell on the homeowner.

Responsibly torching leaves is legal here, but even when one is armed with only the bare necessities – a rake, leaf blower and a lighter – a simple 3-acre clean-up can take over a month. Leaves pile knee to waist deep thanks to gusty, north winds. When a breeze-free burn-day finally arrives, the sheer volume of downed foliage can be depressingly overwhelming.

“It’s a never ending process!” shouts a neighbor from beyond the plumes of gray smoke rising in his front yard. It being December, this is most likely the sixth or seventh full day he’s spent attacking the ocean of leaves…blowing them from around the house and off the driveway, raking piles, setting fires, and wasting hours monitoring the burn. It sucks.

For years, I was that neighbor; annually scorching black paths through the grass, garden hose and bucket nearby should the conflagration get out of control. By spring, where trails were torched, the grass would refuse to return; and summer brought arid dust, cracked dirt and erosion revealed rock. After performing the same dance for three consecutive Novembers, I discovered…The Cyclone Rake.

Fall clean-up that used to take two-months can now be tackled in nearly two days!

[one_half][lightbox link=”” title=”Before using the Cyclone Rake” thumb=”” width=”400″ align=”center” frame=”true” icon=”image”]

[one_half last][lightbox link=”” title=”After using the Cyclone Rake” thumb=”” width=”400″ align=”center” frame=”true” icon=”image”]



[lightbox link=”” title=”Takes a licking and keeps on mulching…” thumb=”” width=”250″ align=”right” frame=”true” icon=”image”] The Cyclone Rake is essentially a trailer you hook to your lawn tractor. Unlike bagging systems that depend on the horsepower of your mower blades to send leaves up a chute and into the bags, The Cyclone Rake has its own engine and indestructible impeller that completely mulch the downed foliage into tiny fragments and dust, collecting them in the enclosed trailer. When the trailer is full, drive it to a spot on your property now designated as the compost site. With the trailer’s dump feature, dropping off the mulched leaves is effortless. Once the trailer is empty, simply re-fire the mower and Cyclone Rake, and repeat…until you collect, mulch and pile every downed damn leaf on the property. Done.

I have owned The Cyclone Rake for a decade now. With routine maintenance – changing the oil, filters and the spark plug – this life-changing piece of gear is durably immortal. It has sucked up 12-pound rocks and survived with nary a sneeze. The case surrounding the impeller is cracked with age and abuse, but based on performance, the machine is completely unaware of injury. It is a product that transcends its value through ingenuity, durability and exceeding expectation.

In the Midwest, wooded acreage is no longer hell on the homeowner…at least, to those who invest in the Cyclone Rake. Sincerely, it is a life altering purchase. Just ask my neighbor!