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Lawn mower poll 1) electric, 2) gas-powered or 3) Robomower?

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Which would you get (not taking cost into account)

Electric with mulching feature
1
11%
Gas-powered, self-propelled with mulching
4
44%
Robomower (mows for you while you do something else ;) )
4
44%
 
Total votes : 9

Lawn mower poll 1) electric, 2) gas-powered or 3) Robomower?

Postby VEFF on Tue Apr 19, 2005 12:06 pm

I have done some research and wanted to get a consensus
from people here as to which of the following three types they like
(and why if you have time to post the reasons):

1) Electric (example: [L=B&D electric mulching mower at Amazon ($209)]http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/tg/detail/-/B00005AKZI/ref=pd_ts_hi_5/002-1254437-5360868?v=glance&s=hi&n=468240[/L]

2) Electric robot mower [L=Robomower 500 electric robotic (you let it mow the lawn for you)]http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/tg/detail/-/B0000505DZ/qid=1113924001/sr=8-1/ref=sr_8_xs_ap_i1_xgl60/002-0575409-0835237?v=glance&s=hi&n=507846[/L]

3) Traditional lawn mower (self-propelled + mulching):

[L=Self-propelled mulching gas-powered lawn mower]http://www.lowes.com/lkn?action=productDetail&productId=183621-270-12AV566N711&pad=true[/L]

Thanks for any feedback and/or tips.

I am not looking for the cheapest deal, so if you make recommendations, please keep in mind that price will NOT the biggest factor in my choice.
I prefer to spend a little more and get something that works well and is convenient (easy to use, low maintenance, fast etc.)

Thanks!
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Postby dodecahedron on Tue Apr 19, 2005 12:21 pm

i wouldn't get an electric one because of safety issues - the power cord.
we had (when i was a teenager) an electric hedge-trimmer and it got the cord a few times.

as for a gas-powered one, that's what i'd go with. but maintenance ins't always pleasant. like when you have to clean and oil the air filter, or drain all the oil (oil replacement).
i dunno, i haven't used one in quite a few years..maybe newer ones are easier this way. or you just take then to a service station and a grease-monkey does all that for you :o
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Postby Ian on Tue Apr 19, 2005 1:17 pm

I guess it depends on how large your lawn is. Mine is fairly small and I don't think I'd want to use an electric or leave it up to a robot (someone would probably steal it anyway).
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Postby Spazmogen on Tue Apr 19, 2005 1:59 pm

Ian wrote:I guess it depends on how large your lawn is. Mine is fairly small and I don't think I'd want to use an electric or leave it up to a robot (someone would probably steal it anyway).


Ewe need a herd of Dolly Sheep then.

Their by-products are good for the lawn/garden too.
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Postby burninfool on Tue Apr 19, 2005 3:09 pm

I voted gas.
I've owned an electric and the cord was a hassle,they have cordless mowers now so they may be better for small lawns.
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Postby VEFF on Tue Apr 19, 2005 3:43 pm

Thanks guys!0

The total property is about 1/3 of an acre (100 x 125 feet), but the lawn area is considerably smaller due to an extra wide driveway (at least 2 1/2 car widths, a patio in the back, a stoned area on the side, a gazebo and a shed).
There isn't much pitch: the backyard is essentially level and the front has an upward pitch in one spot (intentionally landscaped that way) that isn't that bad.


I also thought about the robo mower being stolen (by mischevious kids if anything, since this is a very safe area and I am on a quiet side street.
Besides, I want the exercise and fresh air.

I think I'll limit my choice to two now:
Electric or gas-powered self-propelled.
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Postby VEFF on Wed Apr 20, 2005 11:55 am

I am leaning a bit towards the electric now, after reading the reviews at target.com and/or amazon.com.

Thanks for the feedback so far.
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Postby VEFF on Thu Apr 21, 2005 10:49 am

Thanks again everyone.

I picked up a Black and Decker MM575 electric mower ($199 + tax at HD) and a 100 foot 14 gauge 13 amp 1625 watt extension cord (required) for about $24 + tax last night; it even fit in my car's relatively small trunk.

They had the MM875 for only $30 more:
The 875 is similar, but:
1) comes with a bag - I will mulch so not a big advantage in my case
2) 19" (vs 18" for MM575) cutting width - no big deal
3) soft padded handle (small benefit)
4) looks a little more solid. It has a bigger "deck" which is more cosmetic, although it makes it "look" more solid. It has slightly more solid looking handles; the wheels are slightly wider; same diameter.
5) WEIGHS MORE (I lifted them both up a bit and the 875 felt MUCH heavier.
However, the B&D web site lists them (from memory) at 41 and 46 lbs respectively; not a big difference.
Another site lists them at 46 lbs (MM575) and 64 lbs (MM875) respectively.
That probably includes the box and accessories etc.
The 16 lbs difference between the two is a notable one, unlike the measly 5 lb difference cl;aimed by B&D themselves.

I would like to know the exact weight, since, on wheels, a small difference will be negligeable,
and then I might get the MM875.
A 5 lbs difference is nothing and that is what B&D's site says.
The difference certasinly felt MUCH heavier than 5 lbs, which makes the other site's weight differential seem more reasonable, but I would asume the manufacturer would be more reliable.
The MM575 does seem a bit easier to maneuver due to the handle being inserted at the bottom of mower at the back for easier leverage than the MM875's handle, which goes into the mower higher and further forward.

The electrics are NOT self-propelled, so weight is a consideration.


The cord is my only concern, but if I go in a methodical pattern, I think it should be fine - luckily my property is pretty rectangular with no major obstacles and I have outlets on the outside for the back of the house and in garage for the front of house.
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Postby LoneWolf on Thu Apr 21, 2005 12:44 pm

I always wanted to meet with someone who had one of the Robomowers and find out how they worked.

We've got a realtor now ourselves. Chances are that the house we would get would have a small lawn, so it'll either be a used gas-only, or if I could find a cordless electric, maybe that if I knew its batteries would last. If I could do without purchasing gas that'd be a real plus.

EDIT: After checking, Black and Decker's one cordless rechargeable electric mower is $449!!! :o Ain't happening any time soon, when I could get a reasonable gas-only mower for less than half of that, even a self-propelled one.
Last edited by LoneWolf on Fri Apr 22, 2005 11:07 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Postby VEFF on Thu Apr 21, 2005 6:35 pm

Going to try the MM575 (one I bought) out during lunch (working from home tomorrow. I will report my results here.

I assume Home Depot is good about returns, in case it doesn't work as advertised or expected?
I will keep the box and all accessroeis, of course, just in case.

The power is just under 1,500 watts (1,440 believe) and 12 AMPs,
so it is no slouch.


Thanks for all the feedback.

This one is light enough (41 lbs) that I can evenpush it with one hand and use the other to keep the cord at bay.
I will simply go outwards from the house, which should keep the cord of out of my way and out of harm's (lawn mower's path) way.
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Postby VEFF on Fri Apr 22, 2005 3:59 pm

Update (now that I actually tried it).

Assembly:
I put it together earlier today.
Assembly was pretty straight forward.
One of the two small tabs that you use to help you insert the small plastic plugs into the holes where the legs go into the mower snapped off the plug. The plug itself still fits snugly, so this is no big deal.
I may ask B&D to send me a new one though.

Use
After assembling it, I was mowing in a matter of 1 minute!!!
I adjusted the height (very simply with one lever) to one of the 6 positions.
The handle that turns the power on and off requires very little effort to hold in the 'on' position.
I am glad I got the lightest one of the three electric models I was considering.

95% of the timel, the cord was far less of an issue than I imagined,
especially once I got used to it.
All I did was start trom the outlet outward in parallel zig zag lines.
I didn't even need to hold the cord (one reviewer had said he held the cord in one hand and pushed the mower [light enough] with the other.

I am very happy with my purchase and am glad I did it:

Pros:
- No gas to buy, store and fill it up with
- No fumes
- No oil
- No spark plugs
etc.
- No maintenance (other than blade sharpening - once a year?)
- Affordable price
- Quieter than regular gas mowers
- Easy to clean off (mentioned in one of the reviews)
- Plug and go

Cons:
- Cord, but once you get used to it, there are even times when I forgot it was there
- Not self-propelled; however it is light enough that it didn't bother me; besides, I am looking at this as a way to get some exercise (and fresh air).
- Wheels could probably be just a bit bigger.

As long as it holds up, I will be keeping this.
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Postby TheWizard on Sat Apr 23, 2005 3:39 am

LoneWolf wrote:I always wanted to meet with someone who had one of the Robomowers and find out how they worked.


I never used one, but it's probably the same type of technology used in the Roomba Robotic Vacuum.
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Postby aviationwiz on Sat Apr 23, 2005 11:52 pm

Robomower for being lazy, :)
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