Getting the Secret Out: The Bush-Whacker Brand
With 135 million acres of farmland spread across Texas and Louisiana, there’s no shortage of demand for Bush-Whacker’s heavy-duty, high-quality rotary cutters. Covering this territory, otherwise known as Bush-Whacker Zone 2, is Territory Manager Billy Scott.

Prior to joining Bush-Whacker, Billy was a business owner with 20 years of experience in farm equipment sales. When COVID-19 hit, Billy pivoted his career path and decided to join the Bush-Whacker team!

Now having been with Bush-Whacker for a year and a half, Billy has become keenly aware of Bush-Whacker’s quality, especially since he had no previous experience with them.

“People are latching on to the quality of Bush-Whacker compared to the competition. You can visually see the grade of the product we offer is far superior. We’re a premium line competing with the best out there,just not at a premium price.”

Bush-Whacker’s pricing and quality is still not widely known, says Billy, but he’s starting to notice that this well-kept secret is getting out!

“Weekly I get phone calls from end users; farmers, ranchers, etc., that have heard about the brand and are looking for the closest place they can go to find the product.”

Aside from the premium quality and durability the Bush-Whacker brand has to offer, Billy notes that after having worked in the corporate world for the last 20 years, the family aspect of Bush-Whacker is also driving people in his direction.

“I’m not in the shredder business, I’m in the people business, and our whole objective is to get the product out the door and keep the customer happy.”

Focusing on the people and not the product is something Billy sees in all aspects of Bush-Whacker. Coming from corporate America where he says everything can get jumbled up in endless emails, Bush-Whacker is a refreshing family-oriented business.

“I really enjoy working here. The Bush-Whacker team is a really tight-knit group of folks…it’s really like a family. Here you aren’t just an employee number–you’re a part of a team.”

Short Line, Long Distance

We pride ourselves on being a “short line” manufacturer, meaning we don’t produce millions of implements and attachments like most of our competition. We just do rotary cutters and the pieces needed to keep them working. This was quite refreshing for our Eastern Sales Rep, Don Clements, who came from selling all kinds of farm equipment.

“My career started in car sales but selling farm equipment is so much more rewarding.”

Joining the company in January four years ago, Don already had success selling Bush-Whacker products under his belt. After selling farm equipment for a few years, he recognized the reliable quality behind the Bush-Whacker brand. As a short line manufacturer, Bush-Whacker could be seen as an objection, but for Don it was a clear advantage. When an opening for a territory sales manager came up on our team, he knew it was time to hop aboard the (very heavy-duty) hype train.

“It’s rewarding to me to have happy customers, and it’s easy to do when you’re selling a product that’s so easy to sell, from a family-owned company with a great product.”

By his account, it was clear in the farm machinery industry that a short-line like Bush-Whacker can focus on an exceptional product and do it well. Our rotary cutters had been sold to the DOT nationwide for three generations. By the time Don came onboard, we’d expanded from our little home state of Arkansas all the way to the East Coast.

“As I get further out, I’m building a brand name where most people have not heard of Bush-Whacker.”

Having been in farm equipment sales for 20 years, Don knows what it takes to sell. “You have to be more knowledgeable about the application,” Don explains. “It’s a tool, not a point from A to Z. It’s exciting to help people get the job done better or faster, and Bush-Whacker does that.” This experience, backed by the faith of Bush-Whacker, allows Don to continue to build the brand. “The opportunity that has been given to me and my family is something I really do appreciate. I’m blessed that they have the faith in me to build the territory the way it needs to be built.” And just as Don appreciates the opportunities given to him, we appreciate the work he does to build the Bush-Whacker name.

Whether you’re a seasoned hand with a rotary cutter or just buying your first 6-foot brush hog, a little prep goes a long way before you hit the pastures. Here in Arkansas, where Bush-Whackers are manufactured, our mowing season starts after May, typically in the humid Southern heat of June/July. That means we have 2-3 months before our DOT mowers and weekend farmers pull their beasts out of hibernation and give them a once-over.

2022, like its predecessor year, brings new challenges and ways of thinking. This is a good time to start prepping for needed parts and start your maintenance a bit early to avoid supply chain issues. With that in mind we’ve prepared this handy checklist for the early bird mowers and farmers.

Grease the Machine

Metal machinery needs a good greasing frequently to prevent excess friction, protecting your investment in the long-run from frequent part replacements. In the case of the Bush-Whacker, you can check your product manual on proper greasing techniques.

Stump Jumper Check

While tightening things up is a tip that works for almost everything on your cutter, especially check your stump jumper to make sure it’s tight on the machine.

Service Your Clutches

Just like any other piece of machinery or vehicle, preventative maintenance is the key to protecting your investment. Service your clutches before you hook up the cutter. Check for rust or locking and plan your maintenance accordingly.

Gearbox Top Off

Check the grease level in your gearbox. This is the heart of the cutter, and it needs proper lubrication to run without damaging the cutter. We use 00-grade grease; be sure to check your manual if you need to know the capacity of the gearbox.

Drive Shafts

At this point your rotary cutter is nice and greased, wiped off, and ready to start testing. Be sure to check your drive shafts to ensure they telescope freely. Note any concerns and deal with them early on.

As with anything mechanical, note any concerns and deal with them in a timely manner. We recommend paying very careful attention and prepping for the unexpected. Don’t wait until it’s broken in the middle of a pasture to order a set of blades! Order them early from your local Bush-Whacker dealer. Keep your farm supply dealers in mind if you have any questions, and remember to support your local businesses!

There are more names for a rotary cutter than there are names for soda in the US, and it has a lot to do with who pioneered the equipment in various parts of the States. Growing up in the South, a lot of our folks knew these tractor attachments as “bush hogs”, not as a brand, but as a process, an adverb and verb for how the machine can be used. The heavy-duty rotary cutter was a bush/brush hog, shredder, or mower, different than your standard cutter. This is because it mowed heavy brush, not just grass and weeds. The brand Bush Hog started in Alabama, and the surrounding states adopted the vernacular and called rotary cutters “bush hogs.” In Texas, Rhino pioneered the same product, and now the majority of the state calls them shredders and brush hogs.

While these brands were selling to the end-users in the 70’s and 80’s, Bush-Whacker had pioneered the extreme-duty rotary cutter for commercial uses, selling almost exclusively to the DOT for highway mowing. The Bush-Whackers of the 80’s were behemoths, double-decked steel tire-eaters. These cutters had to mow the side of the road and everything hiding in the grass, like wood debris, metal scrap, tire scraps, and anything else that can fall off the back of a truck or the underside of a car. We had to have an exceedingly sturdy cutter to keep the DOT visiting, and as a result we stepped into the consumer world in the early 2000’s with one of the most durable products on the market.

With a growing sales team and a fresh insight into the tractors and mowing needs of the future, Bush-Whacker’s CEO began partnering with commercial tractor dealers, stocking them with our extreme-duty cutters, and sending his team across the nation to get feedback on his cutters. Enter the heavy-duty mower, or medium-duty cutters. As our mowers migrated from the side of the road to the 100-acre farm, the extreme-duty double deckers weren’t as cost effective. The heavy-duty cutters featured a single-deck, smaller gear box, and ran from 5 to 20 feet. They were also a very attractive price point for the end user.

In 2015, research and word of mouth shed light that our cutters were still too durable, too long, too heavy for the modern tractors running at 30 HP. Our cutters fit, but they were too heavy and took too much power to lift. As a result, we redesigned the whole line that same year. Farmlands went from 200-acre cow pastures to 5-10-acre tracts with light-weight tractors. The redesigned Bush-Whacker cutters fit on 25-30HP tractors, and we still have the most durable5-6ft cutters on the market.

In the 2020’s our product is an extreme version of a rotary cutter, longer-lasting and at a better value than our competition. We still handcraft every rotary cutter, our parts are inexpensive, our equipment is more durable, and our turnaround time for parts is the fastest in the nation (because they’re American-made). More than that, from a service standpoint, we’re the best. We’re homegrown, courteous, and hands-on. So, whether you’re looking for a heavy-duty rotary cutter, or the cheapest bush hog for your tractor, we have made a product with you in mind.

A History of Rotary Cutters