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Collection, Preservation and Display of Old Lawn Mowers

Whippet into shape.

Me and my son went to my mower garage this morning, his job was to choose a mower that was next to be "tinkered" with, the choice got narrowed down to two, a 1920s automaton minor, and a Webb Whippet.

The whippet came home, I haven't had chance to photo, but I have a few questions. From previous threads on here, Clive has given his knowledge on years manufactured and although helpful I would like to know what mk mine is to get the correct transfer, Funnily enough this one was purchased from Clive at the AGM in 2018, 

Apart from the strange pressed steel handles with turned edges and an extended thrower plate, no other distinction can be made via Google images.. 

Transfer is non existant. I will add images tomorrow morning to aide visually. Any help will be gratefully received. 

RansomesRob Sun, 20/10/2019

Hi Lee. Not sure if the attached photos of my Series 2 Whippet will help you identify your model. I had it from a local auction a while ago and apart from a service and a sharpen have left it untouched. The rubber handle grips have the Webb name stamped on them. The cutting adjusting nuts are located in front of the rear roller on mine. Hope this might help? Cheers. Rob.... ps Great job on the Suffolk mower!!





Lee Smallwood Mon, 21/10/2019

Apart from the handles it looks the same

The adjusters for the cut are slotted headed bolts through the side plates into the end of the bottom blade, the screw head of the bolt (chain side,pictured) is completely worn, would have thought these should be bolts as to the use they would be getting. 

Thank you for comment on the Suffolk, I seriously don't know what I'm doing, but I have fun trying and the results are better than what I expect so happy days.

RansomesRob Mon, 21/10/2019

Hi Lee. Regarding the handles. The handles style on my Whippet appear in a Webb brochure dated 1952 and the same style again in another Webb brochure dated 1961 - if it helps!! 

Lee Smallwood Mon, 21/10/2019

Yes there are lots with that style handle, I've been perusing the Webb (haha) for images with the hope of seeing the flat bars, no hope as yet, maybe the handles I've got are off of something different. The transfers on the thrower plate are going to be hard to source, thanks for the images, they will come in handy I'm sure. Already have in fact as I've adjusted bottom blade so mower works.

Clive1997 Mon, 21/10/2019

Hi Lee

I hope I didn't sell you a 'pup' !!!  (that's supposed to be a joke)

Seriously though, I always thought it was an odd one & assumed early especially as the handles on yours are quite substantial, Webb did over engineer some of their early mowers in particular the De-luxe Patent. There doesn't appear to be any other models with similar handles to the Whippet.

 We know the early 1930's Whippet had straight handles, with the tubular style certainly being around in the early 1950's. 

The Mk2 was introduced in 1949 & continued to 1957 when the Series 3 took over, I can only assume yours may be perhaps an early version of the Mark 2, assuming the change from the straight to the later style came at the end on Mk1.

Certainly we need to keep a look out for any others with the odd type handles.


Lee Smallwood Tue, 22/10/2019

I agree, it's probably an early mk 2. I've got my eyes peeled for similar handles, and with no other models being similar width and fixing points, they are probably made for that machine. It's certainly not a pup, it has odd bolts in blaces but all these will be replaced at some point.


Looking forward to the strip down, I find it fascinating the engineering genius in different ratchet systems for the rear roller. Nearly every mower I have got down to the depths of the machine, I've held parts in my hand and the though of the people responsible for designing, machining and troubleshooting the little bits and pieces that make these machines work so well. Amazing.

Hope your well. Speak soon. Lee

RansomesRob Wed, 23/10/2019

Hi Lee.

Sending you an e-mail with some stuff that might be of use. Cheers. Rob 

Lee Smallwood Tue, 26/05/2020

It's been a while, about 7 months (whilst I built faye a new outbuilding and shed the workshop has been storage) but everything is painted ready for the rebuild, I've gone a bit cheap with the paint as I used rattle cans from my local retail store but it's done a  proper job, tee hee.

I'm awaiting some back lapping paste before I attach the chain and I'm sourcing some transfers for it, the blades and bottom blade are in excellent nick, on my previous comments I mention the difference in designs and manufacturing of parts, and I couldn't help when cleaning and painting the cutting cylinder, how pretty the blade carriers are, I haven't noticed this on any other mower I've assembled but it's not to say they're any different, just hit me a little.


Assembly starts tomorrow as the paint is a little tacky still, glad to be messing around with mowers again now the gardens finished. I've got my garage back woop woop. 

Lee Smallwood Thu, 28/05/2020

pretty much complete, eagle eyed viewers will spot the odd handle bolt, hopefully changing that today, the lapping paste arrived so will be experimenting with that, not the easiest mower to adjust blade contact,  its not a quick 1 8th of a turn with a flat head driver, loosen 2 screws, undo 2 bolts,  turn inner bolts to required contact, tighten outer bolts tighten screws and repeat or redo if you mess up, maybe not the mower to loose my back lapping virginity to.

Titch has a huge list of transfers I need, for various projects complete and upcoming, so fingers crossed they won't be far away,  although I quite like the stealthy naked look I don't like things unfinished. 



RansomesRob Thu, 28/05/2020

Looks good Lee. You have certainly Whipped it into shape! Titch has done me decals in the past, well pleased with them  Cheers. Rob

Lee Smallwood Thu, 28/05/2020

So now I've lost my back lap cherry. And like the other cherry lost many moons ago, I want to do it again and again and again. Messy but fun, and although my technique still needs a little improvement,(I'm talking about back lapping) im amazed how well that grinding paste works. 50 odd quid seems expensive but that tub will probably do over 50 cylinders. That's a bloody bargain. Obviously if the cylinder is buggered it ain't going to solve that, but to keep a cylinder sharp, worth every penny.  The Whippet is too light for me,  it seems to want to skip over the grass rather than roll over it, I much prefer the Suffolk Swift as a 10 inch roller mower. More manly. Faye likes it though, happy wife, happy life, hopefully, So what's next. Got the bug again to spend some time getting oily, I will probably do another push mower before I start on anything with a motor.

Flexa, silens messor, panther, sm junior, qualcast model E, anglia 14 inch,  I'll have a game of mower bingo to decide. Thanks for your help and photos, enjoyed doing this one. 



Lee Smallwood Fri, 05/06/2020

So the quest to find another whippet with the straight bar handle like mine came through, an advert on marketplace tonight, from redditch ( next to the old Smallwood Hospital) I doubt the blue paint scheme and bmx style grips are original but I know the handles are. Chuffed to see another one. 

Clive1997 Fri, 05/06/2020

Excellent Lee, so its not a one off, just TWO! I have looked since I acquired it & this is only the second one I have seen.