Petrol Lawnmowers - new vs old

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Krome10

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Hi folks

I need to get a lawnmower. I've got two "lawns" and a whole load of paths to cut. None of it is particularly flat, and it's not really a lawn as such - more just an area of grass! So no need for it to look like Wembley, no need for stripes, etc Up until not I've been doing it with a strimmer. And I might continue to use the strimmer on the paths. But for the two "lawn" areas it takes ages with a strimmer.

What are people's thoughts on old vs new? There are a few old Honda Izys about, and some old Mountfields and Kawasakis and similar. All around the £150-£200 mark. Not knowing much about such things, I'm not sure if I am better off with one of those or getting a brand new budget machine in the same price bracket.

Any thoughts from those more in the know?

Cheers
 

Tris

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Something with a Honda engine, alloy or good steel deck and single point height adjustment and you won't go far wrong. If it's self propelled all the better. I've got a 21inch mountfield, 25 years old, wasn't new when I got it, steel deck gets waxoyled every so often and it still does a great job
 

Spectric

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Just buy a new one but make sure it has a Honda engine and be careful about running it on E10 fuel. For your task a rotary would be ideal as you are not looking for the bowling green looks and leave patches of wilderness because wildlife will love you for it.
 

Krome10

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Thanks for the replies. We've got a little under 3 acres in all. We don't cut it all by any means. In fact, there's the two "lawn" areas I mentioned, and then rest is all left with paths cut through so we can tour the garden. Would a battery powered machine be man enough for that amount and type of use. It can be quite wild in places!

@Spectric - says, lots of it is left to do it's own thing. In time we hope to restore areas to meadow land....

Cheers
 

Argus

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Sideways to the discussion.....

Older petrol lawnmowers, in many cases, featured a rear roller that ran the full width at the back of the machine instead of a wheel at each corner which seems to be the norm with the current offering.

This is essential where there is a combination of a curved lawn and a cut edging edging next to a flower bed, say - it allows the back of the mower to ride over the edging as the machine turns instead of the rear wheel diving into the drop and carving a lump out of the edge.
 

Bod

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Whatever you buy, new or 2nd hand, with petrol, you must allow the engine to run-out of fuel, before putting it away, everytime.
E10 petrol the now cheaper fuel, will not keep. It loses the "spirit" compounds leaving a hard varnish like substance blocking the jets, and gumming up the carburettor.
Hard or won't start, tip out all old fuel, go get pump fresh petrol.

Bod
 

Argus

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It loses the "spirit" compounds leaving a hard varnish like substance blocking the jets, and gumming up the carburettor.
Hard or won't start, tip out all old fuel, go get pump fresh petrol.

Bod

Interesting.

What's the typical or anticipated 'shelf-life' of unused E10 fuel sitting in a tank before it deteriorates?
 

imageel

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Dunno about actual longevity but certainly over winter it blocked the idle jet on my baby Honda Izzy and cost me £170 at the local rip-off merchants to put the carb in an ultrasonic cleaner overnight to fix. I now use any of the commonly available fuel additives and have not had an issue since
 

Jameshow

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If you use premium fuel you should be ok. Otherwise use aspen fuel expensive but not a problem for lawnmowers chainsaws etc....
 

Spectric

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The Ethanol in E10 is hygroscopic, with fuel systems that vent to atmosphere like horticultural machinery where they use carburettors it is a bigger problem because the fuel absorbs moisture and that corrodes metal. With fuel injection and modern cars it is a problem but the tank does not vent to atmosphere and the fuel system is essentially sealed but it can be a problem. If the car is used regularly then the fuel is being used and replaced so not just sitting in the tank like say a lawnmower, E10 destroyed the carb on my Mantis rotovator!
 

Richard_C

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If buying second hand, and it has a steel deck, check carefully. I've had 2 mowers 'die' over 3 decades, and in both cases it was the deck that was beyond economic repair. Everything else is fixable.
 

Marcusthehat

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I have run a chainsaw this 25 years, plus a strimmer and 2 stroke blower, and a lawnmower for about 10.
I buy pump petrol by the 20 litre, and mix 5 litres at a time, which could last 6 months, I have never had any issues with either the chainsaw nor the lawnmowers, nor anything else.
mth.
 

morqthana

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I only have a suburban-semi sized garden, and so only a suburban-semi garden sized mower, but they do make a range of sizes - I'm very happy with my John Deere with a B&S engine.

Guess I'll find out next spring about E10.

Interesting lifespan issue, though - in the first lockdown I didn't fill my car for over 6 months.
 
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