I’ve not seen much written about this little box of tricks and, in the end, after much deliberation, I plumped up the courage and bought one.
Out of the box the first impression is of a decent enough, homespun kinda product. It looks like it might have been assembled from items gathered in a quick dash around Maplins but I can live with that. I wasn’t expecting an Apple-esque fit and finish. Mind, I wasn’t expecting quite the rough edge to the metal plate I was to discover.
Turns out the paper is for making your own tufts. D’oh!
The instructions are pretty simple and, although I’m a big coward with a healthy respect for electrickery, I elected not to wear rubber gloves when holding the model’s base because I just couldn’t face the thought of my kids finding me like that, should the device actually electrocute me and stop my ticker.
So I dived in.
I carefully extracted some of the sample grass from one of the plastic bags and pulled at it a bit, to tease it out, thinking this would help after it had been compressed in the packaging for so long, and spread it out on the top of the Pro Grass.
Then I spread out a wee stream of some of the white glue provided on a base I’d prepared earlier, made doubly sure I’d got the crocodile clip in contact with said goo and, with slight trepidation, threw the switch on the box of tricks.
Whoa! Wasn’t expecting that! I got a little fountain of grass kicked up from the plate and all over everywhere before I could even think about sticking the wired up base into it. I knew I was in for a learning curve with this thing but this was definitely a surprise. I made a note to myself to make damn sure I put paper down next time as my geyser of 4mm summer sedge was going to be tricky to recover.
For my second attempt, I put a little less grass on the device and I hovered the base close, ready to intercept the spout. But this time it was nowhere near as dramatic and the little kid in me marvelled at the stream of little strands launching up and on to the MDF.
And the end result wasn’t half bad, I thought. Not bad at all. Practice is the thing and as I wrapped up the session it was clear that the last bases were significantly better than the first. Hopefully, that’ll be the consistent trend.
I really like the fact that with this doo-hickey I can get away from that tuft explosion look, where bases appear to have been strewn with bouquets of grass, all shooting out at forty-five degrees.
Cleaning up after the wee fountain at the beginning was another lesson – put some paper down next time – and painful, too. The top plate of the device has bloomin’ sharp edges to it. Don’t just flick yer little pinkies over the surface to get the last dregs of grass off! You’ll cut yourself. Like I did. Meh.
So, a bloody end but, overall, I think, a bloody good little accessory.