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Collection, Preservation and Display of Old Lawn Mowers

Ransomes, Sims & Jefferies 14" Moon verification

I have bought an new addition to my collection, unfortunately I cannot collect until lock down is lifted, in the meantime I have tried to identify (using the sale pictures) whether it was given a name just like the Ransomes feline models - The Lion, Cub, Leo & Lioness.

I found a similar looking model called the Moon, it has a plaque where mine does not and so I need a members knowledge or opinion as to whether I own a Ransomes Moon or something else.

The first three pictures are not my purchased lawnmower, the four that follow is the purchased mower.


Update 12/03/2021

I have finally completed the work on this Ransomes Mk3 Moon after taking receipt of the new wooden rollers from Michael Floddy who crafted a custom set for me. - Please scroll down to see additional pictures.

I also wish to thank Clive Gravett who took time out to research records in the hope of giving some clarity to this models identity since it bares a resemblance to the 1950's Ransomes Ripper with a questionable wooden handle in place of the metal variety, Clive now believes the lawnmower to be a variant of the original Ransomes Moon. 

On a personal note, I have also looked into this model, the stamp numbers on the cylinder blades 33/34, I am told is the year of manufacture, there is also the body shape of the side frame, it differs from the 50's Ripper, the wooden handle it self is consistent for the period it is much more thicker timber, suited for this heavy 14" push mower, also pre-drilled but unused hole for fixing a cast iron moon plaque is present, this suggests the original owner did not warrant a need or want the added expense but had it came with the Moon Plaque, I would be reading someone else thread.






I did not question my self whether to restore this lawnmower or not "It is original only once" does not apply given the condition it was found, these lawnmowers are often robust, demonising a new paint covering in fear of losing originality is a choice, these were work horses for the common garden including sports grounds and council estates, each were maintained to a fashion to ensure the life of the machine and that included for some owners a lick of paint, what is important to me is that I have given this lawnmower a future far from any scrap yard or becoming a hanging basket attraction.   

I am pleased with the end result, Its pretty heavy and not suited for my patch of green but I will put it to use at my mother in laws whose lawn is much more durable and incredibly long.  

Clive1997 Sat, 14/11/2020


Yes an interesting purchase, I had been in touch with the seller as it seemed rather unusual and whilst he offered it to me, I am trying to reduce numbers! (in fact 20 mowers going on ebay tomorrow) The part numbers he gave me are the same as the Ransomes Ripper, with the 1922/23 patent relating to the springs between the bow irons & main body of the mower, seen on Rippers & the Leo.

I had doubts that the ripper was sold with a wooden handle & assumed that as the handle in place had spring fixings on the bow irons, it may well have been a Leo handle?

That said the Moon, Malaya & Kikuyu were all I think export variations of a Ripper style mower, I know that the Malaya & Moon certainly had wooden handles, although the images I have show them as being more heavy duty as used on the Ransomes Kutruf & a similar design to those on Pennsylvania's.

Some of my notes indicate that the Moon & Kikuyu were first manufactured in 1935 with the Mk1 to Mk5 going through to 1956 in 14,16 & 18in , then Mk 6 1963 -1964 14in only. (Ripper from 1946-1963 Mk1 & 1963-1974 Mk 2  both only in 14in).

Do you have images of the full Moon handle including 'T' bar?

Can you check the wooden handle on the mower you have purchased to see if there are any badge holes, the Leo would have 2 screw holes possibly slightly offset, the Moon & Malaya badge would have one screw hole & I believe  a hole for a lug, similar to the Anglo Paris badge. Taking a closer look at the ebay pictures there does appear to be one clean hole very near the bottom of the wooden handle, although looks to be too low for the lug as can be seen in your Moon image above?

Hope that helps, but there are some perhaps more knowledgable Ransomes experts who may wish to add a comment.


hdtrust Sun, 15/11/2020


One Ransomes expert coming right up!

As the Hall & Duck Trust owns the kardex system for Ransomes,we just might have the correct answer!

The Moon was made for export and was introduced the same year as the Kutruf which is 1927 .The early Moons had an oiler (grease gun)  fixed towards the top of the handle.

Areas where the Moon was exported too South America,The Africas,Australia and India.

To put this in prospective with the world trade at that time,all European countries were in a slump after the effects of the Great War,here at home there was a railway strike in 1924 followed by the general strike in 1926 which paralysed the country for weeks


The Archivist


John.Sutherland Tue, 17/11/2020

Your insight is very much appreciated and it has me intrigued also, had it not the wooden T Bar handle, it would be clear cut and identified straight away. It does appear to have most of the hall marks of a Ripper now that I have been able to compare different pictures and as you said, the T.Bar handle a later replacement whether is was a preferred choice or someone somewhere down the line had bought this mower without a handle and wrongly guessed the model type and gave it a donor from a Leo.  

I will of course share in much more detail,  pictures of the mower dismantled for clarity as and when i can take ownership, it needs a good clean. 

John.Sutherland Tue, 17/11/2020

Your knowledge is also appreciated which is better than none at all, I am glad I do not own a China Shop.

Thanks again

hdtrust Fri, 12/03/2021

Looks like at least a totally original Mothers Day present!

I have to question the dating numbers on the cutting cylinder,as you probably don't know the full history of the mower,then how do you know that the cylinder has not been swapped from another machine,this often happened particularly when municipal owned.

Kind regards


John.Sutherland Sun, 14/03/2021

Hi Andrew, you raise a good point and the seller was more than happy to share with me his knowledge, I have no reason to doubt the information he provided which includes who owned it and the authenticity of this lawnmowers original working parts.

Who knows, in the not so distant future, I may find a manual or a catalogue covering this model, until then I will take a well earned break. 

All my best,