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Old 06-16-2016, 12:36 PM
 
3,276 posts, read 1,955,592 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TrapperL View Post
MTD makes various brands of mowers including the Craftsman Series from Sears. They also make Cub Cadet, Yard man, Yard Machine, and Bolens. Bolens would be their idea of a commercial mower. LOTS of stamped parts in their equipment. They do not make their own engines and most will have a Briggs and Stratton engine. The B&G engines at one time were the best out there. Then the bean counters struck. I wouldn't have a B&G engine on anything including their Industrial Series. Far too many plastic parts that break like the plastic intake manifolds on most of them. Ariens makes commercial equipment. They bought out Gravely years back. Talk about a grass and weed eating machine, run a Gravely Model L around some 5 ft tall weeds and be impressed. But they don't make the Model L anymore. It was owned by Studebaker, the car maker. Most of the mowers from the 1940's are still running strong. My dads 1961 Model L still starts first pull but it's not for a normal residential yard. It's far too heavy duty unless you are cutting acreage and need something more than just a mower. Check out the Ariens line. One will last longer than you'll probably want it.
Gravely Model L


FWIW, our church has a Yard Machine 42" 10HP riding mower gifted to it. It's been nothing but a headache with non stop break downs. It's a real flimsy design. The Briggs engine isn't much better. We cut just over 4 acres with it and when it's down, the Honda does it, all 21" at a time. The Honda HR214 is hard to beat. The new ones, not so much.
Thank you for all that information! The whole engine thing has me scratching my head. When I brought my Toro in for warranty service last year, the first thing they did was check what kind of engine it was (it was a Toro engine). Since they are not a B&S dealer, they told me they cannot work on a Toro machine with a B&S engine, at least for warranty work. What?
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Old 07-05-2016, 06:12 PM
 
659 posts, read 981,166 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LoriNJ View Post
Thank you for all that information! The whole engine thing has me scratching my head. When I brought my Toro in for warranty service last year, the first thing they did was check what kind of engine it was (it was a Toro engine). Since they are not a B&S dealer, they told me they cannot work on a Toro machine with a B&S engine, at least for warranty work. What?
I have heard others mention that too. That sounds crazy.

So I ended up going with the Cub Cadet.

https://youtu.be/c0ASZYwCIIM
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Old 07-05-2016, 06:22 PM
 
Location: Sugarmill Woods , FL
6,235 posts, read 5,407,080 times
Reputation: 13591
I had one of the first Honda self propelled lawn mowers, best money I ever spent. I used it trouble free, replaced spark plug, blades and tires, and ran it for 20 years. Always started one pull!
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Old 07-06-2016, 09:43 AM
 
Location: Austin
452 posts, read 261,663 times
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i have a Sears Craftsman with a Honda engine that's lasted probably 10 years and is still going great. Usually starts on the first pull. It mulches so well that I don't fertilize my St. Augustine yard anymore. And it looks nearly as good as my neighbor who pours on the fertilizer each spring and fall.
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Old 07-06-2016, 10:33 AM
 
9,858 posts, read 13,955,066 times
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Sorry you have to share same pain I have - Toro mower. Same problem. No gut, hard to start, stalls easily. Won't restart on hot engine.
POC otherwise. Not even sure why I won't sell it, likely laziness.
Anyway. I had 2 self propelled mowers and buddy has one. Out of 3 we both agree self propelled is waste of money. They don't really do much, esp on wet grass, don't want to turn, hard to pull back. I even have - that Toro - electric start one, that never really worked.
I'd rather suggest a LARGE wheels push mower from decent brand. That puts all T companies out of consideration. Cubs are considered not much better either. Cub is cheap. You get what you pay for. I also wouldn't buy anything sold in Walmart. I'd actually go and write down all of the brands they sell just NOT to buy them anywhere else. Ryobi, whatever else.
Husqvarna has very good reputation. You can go for straight Honda but those are pricy.
But either way, I do not recommend a self propelled. I feel it's a gimmick.
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Old 07-07-2016, 12:15 PM
 
5,469 posts, read 6,144,899 times
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I just gave away my Toro "Personal Pace" self propelled mower. I got about 15 years out of it, and aside from the things which wear out....tires/wheels, gears, carburetor, and cables it provided good service. I really hated the mower, however, as in order to make it "go" you had to "push" and then the self propelled feature would kick in. The harder you "pushed", the faster it went--but it killed my lower back.


I replaced the Toro with a 21" self propelled Honda. It has a slightly larger motor (I got the 190 CC model) which I hope will provide years of good service. So far it seems to be well built and I am very pleased with the purchase, and much to my pleasure, to make it "go" you squeeze a lever with your hands...the harder you squeeze, the faster it "pulls" you along. No more back pain!


BTW, stay away from purchasing a mower at Big Box stores. They are made by major names...Husqvarna, John Deere, Toro, Honda, etc.....but made to a price point which means "cheaper". They do not have the quality built into the same names built and sold under their own brand by a direct dealer.


You can expect to spend between four a six hundred bucks for a good mower. Wait for specials, end of season, or other coupon discounts. Sure, you can get a mower at Wal-Mart for $199 (probably less), but it won't be self propelled and it won't last 15 or 20 years. And when it breaks, Wal-Mart won't have a clue as to how to repair it--and your local repair shop will just shake their head (as in, exactly where do you expect me to get parts for this thing?).
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Old 07-07-2016, 10:14 PM
 
3,276 posts, read 1,955,592 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ted Bear View Post
I just gave away my Toro "Personal Pace" self propelled mower. I got about 15 years out of it, and aside from the things which wear out....tires/wheels, gears, carburetor, and cables it provided good service. I really hated the mower, however, as in order to make it "go" you had to "push" and then the self propelled feature would kick in. The harder you "pushed", the faster it went--but it killed my lower back.


I replaced the Toro with a 21" self propelled Honda. It has a slightly larger motor (I got the 190 CC model) which I hope will provide years of good service. So far it seems to be well built and I am very pleased with the purchase, and much to my pleasure, to make it "go" you squeeze a lever with your hands...the harder you squeeze, the faster it "pulls" you along. No more back pain!


BTW, stay away from purchasing a mower at Big Box stores. They are made by major names...Husqvarna, John Deere, Toro, Honda, etc.....but made to a price point which means "cheaper". They do not have the quality built into the same names built and sold under their own brand by a direct dealer.


You can expect to spend between four a six hundred bucks for a good mower. Wait for specials, end of season, or other coupon discounts. Sure, you can get a mower at Wal-Mart for $199 (probably less), but it won't be self propelled and it won't last 15 or 20 years. And when it breaks, Wal-Mart won't have a clue as to how to repair it--and your local repair shop will just shake their head (as in, exactly where do you expect me to get parts for this thing?).
Thanks to you and everyone else for all the advice. Pathetically, my Toro cost me darn near 500 bucks. My poor husband cringes every time I say I am going outside to start it. He waits for me to stomp back in the house, yelling about that POS that I am going to toss in the trash. He usually winds up going out to help me start it, but sometimes even that doesn't work.

The weird thing is that Sears mower I bought for about $200 starts every dang time. If only it were sturdy enough to mow my backyard, but it isn't. It does do fine on my front yard, though.
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Old 07-08-2016, 12:13 PM
 
1,046 posts, read 1,817,060 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LIcenter View Post
I have a Honda Model # HRR216K9VKA that doesn't give me a lick of trouble.

Honda 21 in. 3-in-1 Variable Speed Self-Propelled Gas Mower with Auto Choke-HRR216K9VKA - The Home Depot

I also have a four stroke Lawnboy that sits outside all year for the past ten years, and still starts on the first or second pull.
+2 i bought this same mower last year after going through two crappy toro's. So far i love the Honda. its rear wheel drive which helps going up hills plus the double blades help to chop the grass up more, better mulching and more fits in the bag. plus you don't need to prime or choke the engine to start it. just pull the cord and go.

My only complaint is the width of the deck and the fact that the deck does not stick out past the wheels. makes it tricky to mow along edged garden beds without missing grass or having the wheel fall in the edging causing the grass to get scalped.
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Old 08-11-2016, 09:05 PM
 
7 posts, read 7,276 times
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Husqvarna makes some good ones with Honda engines. There's a lawn mower comparison here with Husqvarna and other models if that helps.
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Old 09-04-2016, 01:53 PM
 
Location: NW NJ & SE Oahu
4,339 posts, read 5,162,326 times
Reputation: 3867
Quote:
Originally Posted by LIcenter View Post

I also have a four stroke Lawnboy that sits outside all year for the past ten years, and still starts on the first or second pull.
Friends of mine recently needed to replace their Lawnboy and were astonished to realize they had bought it around 1964.

They were an off-shoot of Evinrude, interestingly enough.
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