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Collection, Preservation and Display of Old Lawn Mowers

Qualcast Model Z

Greetings to all as I am fresh to the Forums today.  The Qualcast Model Z I just purchased brings me in search of information.

I have thus far found no reference to Model Z online, other than two for sale whose owners know nothing about them.  Does anyone perchance have a date range for this model?

While this machine has obviously had a hard life, is there anything I should know about maintaining it?  I cleared the basic grunge enough to find the two oil caps at the wheels, and having cleaned out the dirt packed in, have given it a proper drink of oil which has helped immensely.

The handles have been encased in plastic tubing and foam grips.  Would there have been any type of grip on these originally, or were these simply the metal tubing of the handles?

Any information is welcome as I am new to old mower ownership; just purchased my first home with lawn in more than thirty years. (That also explains the sad state of my grass, which sat fallow for more than a year before we moved in, and then only just appeared recently, as we had more than two feet of snow on the ground here in the Rocky Mountains of Colorado just last month.)

I must say, some of the machines I have seen on this site are brilliant.




hillsider Wed, 26/06/2013

Hello and welcome to the Old Lawnmower Club, I guess you have a fairly short mowing season if you have only recently waved bye bye to snow! and folks here in the UK are complaining about a cold late spring. It is good that you have mastered the art of attaching photos as it confirms without doubt the make and model of your mower. I do not know if it was an export only model but personally I have no knowledge of the model Z and could not find it in the OLC Directory of Mowers, let us hope that there is a member out there who can throw some light on your question. Out of interest can you post if the side frames of the mower are of cast steel or pressed mild steel also what is the width of cut of the mower. Ray.

Clive1997 Wed, 26/06/2013


I too have not come across this model in the UK, but have seen an image of one the same as yours on a US site, so agree with the other comment that its possibly export>, 

You could try Jim Ricci at

he is the authority on sidewheel mowers in the USA, or should I say Reel Mowers





numps Thu, 27/06/2013

Yes, our season is fairly short -- usually May-October.

I would not be surprised to learn this was an export model, as the two others I saw advertised were also in the US.

The side frames are cast. The cutting plate (against which the blades slide --I do not know the proper term,) is conveniently stamped (or cast), "Z15 16 inch."

Cheers, Ray!



numps Fri, 28/06/2013


Thanks for the tip!  Jim does not know, but is looking into it for me.

Meanwhile, my wife is starting to worry about my new found interest in old mowers....



Keith Wootton Fri, 28/06/2013

This looks very much like the Qualcast B1 De Luxe which was sold in the UK during the 1960s and a bit later. If you click on the image a larger version will appear.



numps Fri, 28/06/2013


It does indeed look similar. It has a plate rather than a bar supporting the handle tubes (as always, I do not know the proper names for parts) whereas the Z's plate appears to be a homemade repair.  The B1 is "self lubricating" whereas the Z has oil cups.  These suggest to me that the Z is slightly older than the B1.  Much younger than I suspected though...or perhaps hoped....

I sense that I will be watching for older machines. I sense my wife getting nervous about this.


numps Sat, 29/06/2013

I found the manual for the B1 elsewhere on the site, and it has much very useful information on maintenance that should apply to mine as well.  There are quite a few differences in assembly, and the roller on the Z is hard rubber rather than wood.  The oil cups (or spigots, apparently) are the same, however.

I do not need a grass box, but it would be a wonderful find some day.