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Old 05-25-10, 06:03 PM   #1
Snicklefritz
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Electric lawn mowers?

I'm posting this for my sister who is looking at the Black and Decker cordless electric lawn mowers. Has anyone on Foo had experience with these? I think my sister is looking at either model # 1836 or 1936.

Any advice you can give would be appreciated.
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Old 05-25-10, 07:25 PM   #2
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Don't drive over the cord.

Oh, wait, it's cordless. Nevermind. I have a corded electric one and I like it a lot. Always starts, don't have to fiddle around with the choke or get gas everywhere. Quiet, too. I worked as a groundskeeper for a couple of years and the only lawn mower I'd get is an electric one or one of the industrial-grade gas ones that we used. Now that's a workout.

Last edited by coffeecake; 05-25-10 at 07:28 PM. Reason: RTFpost, you ninny
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Old 05-25-10, 07:40 PM   #3
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We had one a very long time ago and it was not the best of tools (don't remember the brand name).
I'm sure they are better now (lithium batteries had not been invented yet).
Don't over look reel mowers. They work quite well too.
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Old 05-25-10, 07:44 PM   #4
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Don't over look reel mowers. They work quite well too.
+1

They work reel well and are very quite.



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Old 05-25-10, 07:53 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by Snicklefritz View Post
I'm posting this for my sister who is looking at the Black and Decker cordless electric lawn mowers. Has anyone on Foo had experience with these? I think my sister is looking at either model # 1836 or 1936.

Any advice you can give would be appreciated.
They are actually a decent tool for smaller lots.
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Old 05-25-10, 08:12 PM   #6
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I've used corded, cordless, and reel mowers. I prefer corded to cordless because you always have full power and never have to charge. I still love my reel mower and use it often. Electrics are better if you have to cut when the grass is wet.
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Old 05-25-10, 08:41 PM   #7
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Reel mowers are great, if you get the quality ones. Don't get a cheap one, unless you enjoy being frustrated.
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Old 05-25-10, 10:10 PM   #8
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I've used corded, cordless, and reel mowers. I prefer corded to cordless because you always have full power and never have to charge. I still love my reel mower and use it often. Electrics are better if you have to cut when the grass is wet.
Did you notice a difference between how easy or difficult the various mowers were to push around? My sister has been using a gas mower that she borrowed from someone and she said it was really easy to push around when it was off, but difficult to push when it was on. Are the electric ones any different in that regard?
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Old 05-26-10, 05:53 AM   #9
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Originally Posted by Snicklefritz View Post
Did you notice a difference between how easy or difficult the various mowers were to push around? My sister has been using a gas mower that she borrowed from someone and she said it was really easy to push around when it was off, but difficult to push when it was on. Are the electric ones any different in that regard?
My guess is that your sister is experiencing what she is because grass and other stuff can catch on the blade if you push when it's off. As far as moving mowers that are off, reel mowers are by far the easiest because they are the lightest and you can flip them around backwards so you're not turning the blades so the wheels roll freely.

When the mowers are running, plug in electric is easier to push than cordless because they are significantly lighter (since they lack rather substantial sealed lead acid batteries). The mowers are otherwise identical. Especially a plug in electric will be easier to push around than a gas mower because they are lighter.

Reel mowers are easy to move when you're cutting grass so long as you don't go too slow or let the grass get too tall.
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Old 05-26-10, 05:58 AM   #10
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If its for a small lot, just get a 20" or 22" reel mower from Lowe's or Home Depot. They are not hard to use, in fact, mine is very easy to push. They actually cut the blades of grass rather then tear them, which is better for your lawn. A dull blade on a rotary mower will tear the grass, and in order to keep it sharp you have to sharpen it every 3 or 4 uses. Also, the reel mower requires no gas, batteries, or electric cords.
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Old 05-26-10, 07:58 AM   #11
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They are actually a decent tool for smaller lots.
But in that case you may as well get one of these:

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Old 05-26-10, 09:51 AM   #12
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Also, the reel mower requires no gas, batteries, or electric cords.
They also take a fraction of the storage space and my experience is that they distribute grass clippings more evenly than mowers with engines.
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Old 05-26-10, 10:07 AM   #13
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would a bike-mounted reel mower be too much of a niche market? Use a chain on the non-drive side (don't some tandems do this?) to spin up the blade (swap gears for efficient cutting at your desired cadence) and the normal drive side chain to move the whole contraption. Incorporating a friction clutch somewhere might be useful.

--edit-
here you go:
http://www.bikeradar.com/gallery/art...news%2Farticle

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Old 05-26-10, 07:56 PM   #14
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Back when I did lawn mowing in high school I started with an electric line trimmer and a gasoline mower. At some point I joined up with a friend who added a corded electric mower. Later additions were a gasoline line trimmer, gas leaf blower, and another gas mower. The gas line trimmer was 1000x better than the electric one. It had no cord, had better weight balance (compensated for the weight increase), a throttle, and it spun way faster. Mind you it was louder, but that's why I had earmuffs. After a couple months of using it on and off we permanently gave up on the plug in mower. Sure it was quieter, but even with a freshly sharpened blade it never did a good job of cutting the grass when dry, and flat out didn't cut when the grass was wet. Mind you, that mower was old when I was using it circa 2002.
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Old 05-27-10, 02:22 PM   #15
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I've used a reel mower for decades and through a process of I guess natural selection and blade dulling I've now got the world's toughest grass. I borrowed a neighbor's mower and I *love* it: http://www.neutonpower.com/

Relatively lightweight, plenty of power and battery life, and pretty darn quiet too.

Anyway I'm thinking hard about buying into a share of the neighbor's neuton.

I thought the Neuton had a nicad battery unlike the B&Ds' lead acid but now I'm not sure.

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Old 05-27-10, 06:53 PM   #16
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I have a 6 year old cheap scott reel mower. Never been sharpened.

It balances out my cycling workouts -- my abs/back/arms/shoulders/patience all get a workout!

Neighbor lady down the street has a Neuton. Looks awesome.
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Old 05-28-10, 08:25 AM   #17
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I've used a reel mower for decades and through a process of I guess natural selection and blade dulling I've now got the world's toughest grass. I borrowed a neighbor's mower and I *love* it: http://www.neutonpower.com/

Relatively lightweight, plenty of power and battery life, and pretty darn quiet too.


Anyway I'm thinking hard about buying into a share of the neighbor's neuton.

I thought the Neuton had a nicad battery unlike the B&Ds' lead acid but now I'm not sure.
Probably not a bad idea. If the price on their web page is correct, it's an awfully expensive mower.
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Old 06-18-10, 08:28 AM   #18
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Thanks to everyone who replied to this thread. My sister ended up getting a corded electric mower which she hadn't considered much before this. She has been very happy with it and has since said she actually enjoys mowing the lawn now!
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Old 06-18-10, 09:40 AM   #19
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Originally Posted by coffeecake View Post
Reel mowers are great, if you get the quality ones. Don't get a cheap one, unless you enjoy being frustrated.
+1

They may be better now, but cordless always seemed kind of weak. I liked them even less than the corded. (which I did not like)

woops, didn't read it to the end
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Old 06-18-10, 12:53 PM   #20
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I sell lawnmowers. I don't recommend battery mowers. Here's why.

They're just as heavy as a gas mower (or heavier), so no gains in mobility.
They're just as heavy as a gas mower (or heavier), AND you can't get a self-propelled model.

The batteries are not going to last ten years. Maybe four. Less if you have cold winters. Car batteries go to crap if you leave them die over the winter, and the same thing will happen to your mower battery. The batteries cost over $100 to replace, assuming you can even GET the battery anymore. So you're not spending $400 on a mower, it's $500 or $600.

How quickly the battery runs down depends on the mower, how sharp the blade is, etc. One thing to be sure of is you can't just run them down to nothing. That blade will start spinning more and more slowly as you lose power. I believe most models take 5 or so hours to charge.

If you INSIST on buying a battery mower, get a Neuton. The batteries are easily removable, not hidden under a screw down shroud. You can charge them in the mower or out. There is a trimmer attachment available apparently, but I've never seen the trimmer bit in person.

Keep the blade sharp. Always. This is more critical than with a gas mower, because a dull blade will chew through your battery power more quickly.

Otherwise, go corded if you can. If you do that, don't get a thin (16 gauge or under) cord and run 200 feet of it. You'll kill the motor if not start an electrical fire.
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Old 06-20-10, 05:55 AM   #21
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Man, I saw electric hover mowers in Norway, amazing! Didn't check the price. Probably really high.



http://www.lawnmowersuk.org/flymo/fl...-mower-review/
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Old 06-20-10, 11:34 AM   #22
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Two things. First, I take care of a friends yard with his corded 'Black and Decker' and don't care for it. I call it a one handed mower because I always have one hand keeping the cord out of the way. Aggravating.

Second, I would consider one of these............

http://www2.fiskars.com/Products/Yar...en/Reel-Mowers

They are not cheap...and I haven't used one......but the reviews I have read are very positive.

Good luck.
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Old 06-20-10, 07:46 PM   #23
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I find the whole practice of tending to something you can't eat or use for any practical purposes to be rather ridiculous... a rototiller and some seed would be a better investment.

Since I rent I am stuck with the lawn but won't fertilize it, water it, or use pesticides as the only good thing growing out there is the dandelions... which are edible.
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Old 06-20-10, 09:29 PM   #24
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Ditto. If I didn't rent this place, the lawns would be long gone. Succulent garden for the win.

But if I had to take care of the yards here, I'd be all over a reel mower and a rake. To hell with the stupid noise pollution of friggin' lawnmowers and (especially) leaf blowers early in the morning. Ugh.
Here having or not having a yard depends on whether or not the yard is paved. If it ain't paved something is gonna grow there.
There is no such thing as hardscape landscaping down here.
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Old 06-20-10, 09:33 PM   #25
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Gas here, too much land to take care of to consider electric.
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