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Mike Blevins
11-16-2006, 09:40 PM
Anyone ever use the commercial Lawboy push mowers? pros? Cons?

fiveoboy01
11-16-2006, 09:46 PM
I have one, it's like 3 or 4 years old, with the 6.5HP 2-stroke engine. It's been used a LOT, and in my opinion it's a great mower.

Mike Blevins
11-16-2006, 09:50 PM
is the briggs engine they put on the Lawnboy a 2 stroke?

fiveoboy01
11-16-2006, 09:52 PM
I know the 2-stroke is not a briggs.

I want to say it's a suzuki. But I think I'm wrong.

S man
11-16-2006, 10:12 PM
I know the 2-stroke is not a briggs.

I want to say it's a suzuki. But I think I'm wrong.

You're both wrong. The briggs is a 4 cycle engine that shouldn't be on a commcial lawn-boy deck. It's not the same mower anymore.

Roger
11-17-2006, 06:45 AM
I have had LB commercial hand mowers for many years. We mow about 1,200 lawns per season, and the hand mower often runs 30-35 hours per week. The machines are good and bad. Let me explain, from my experiences.

Good:
1. Lightweight, only about 80#, rather than 100+ for many others. On difficult terrain and for us older people, this is important.
2. Great quality of cut. It is better than my older Snapper and better than my Toro Proline 21".
3. Great bagging function, but speaking only about side bagger (rear bagger, not so -- discharge chute too restrictive); will bag any quantity, and will work pretty well in very wet conditions.
4. Older style 2 cycle engines were bullet-proof; ran for many, many hours. The newer Dura-Force engines are not nearly as reliable. But, this is a moot point now because LB no longer makes them available.
5. Side bags, albeit a bit smaller than other bags, are flexible (e.g. can carry 2 or 3 extra empty ones to a back yard, can carry one, or drag two, full ones while coming from the backyard. We use four bags and they will all easily store away in a small box on the trailer.

Bad
1. Design flaws in the equipment design. For example, the ground drive cable is subject to breaking at the Z-joint at the handle after only 4-500 lawns. Several replacements, and on two different mowers, demonstrate that is a poor design (P.S. After the last break, I made a repair with a discarded shoelace, and it has lasted for a couple of years (est 2000 lawns). The flexible lace takes the pointed stress point away.
2. Poor drive wheel design with regard to longevity. Much like the cable, this is a known behavior. A set of wheels only lasts about 1,000 lawns.
3. Rear height adjustment levers are weak and subject to failure. Again, something that will fail in a season, or so. I have made a welding modification to new ones to improve longevity, but even so, they will still fail after a season or two.
4. Dura-Force engine not consistent. It is flaky in performance -- runs like a champ most of the time, but will cause difficulties at other times, without warning or reason.
5. Side bags don't last very long -- zippers are subject to failure. However, with care they will last for a couple of seasons. We use four bags at a time.
6. In general, the quality of construction is marginal for a commercial machine. I also have a Toro Proline, 5.5hp Sizuki. The differences are noticable, such as cables, height adjustment levers, wheels, handles, etc. But, the Toro is much heavier too.

There is much else to say, but will hold it at this point.

I regretting the change to the B&S, 4 cycle engine. However, my last machine will require some rebuilding this off-season (running gear, bushsings in transmission, etc). And, I'm wondering if I should park it for a backup and buy a new LB with the B&S. Despite many LCOs having LBs on their trailers in this area, I don't see anybody with the new model having the B&S.

There has been some feedback on this board, saying the experiences with the B&S are favorable. Maybe more comments will come in this thread; I would like to hear more. My Toro sits most of the time -- even taking out my 9 year old LB as a second machine, rather than the top-of-the-line Toro. I think I am inclined to buy another LB with the B&S, rather than put the Toro back into full-time service.

LALawnboy
12-16-2006, 07:36 PM
You're both wrong. The briggs is a 4 cycle engine that shouldn't be on a commcial lawn-boy deck. It's not the same mower anymore.

i know i'm a little late in entering this post, but scott, i don't think you know what you're talking about with the briggs. why shouldn't it be on the lawnboy? i've got a new commercial lawnboy (bought it this past spring) and it's got the briggs and it hasn't given me one bit of trouble yet. all i've ever used for 21s is lawnboy and in my opinion, the 4 cycle briggs outperforms the tried and true duraforce 2 cycle. the engine just seems to run more consistently.

mikes landscaping
12-16-2006, 08:56 PM
All we run are lawnboy's for 21". We have a 21" 6.5hp duraforce engine with a side bag, and its a two stroke. Its over 5 years old. It is the best push mower we have ever owned. The new ones thought are not as commercioal grade with the new enviormentally freindly 4 stroke engines.

bulldigitydog
12-16-2006, 10:25 PM
Briggs has worked out excellent but Lawn boy has something new in a commercial mower this year. A commercial grade GSV honda 190 with oversized ball bearings on the crankshaft and a cast iron sleeved cylinder,two stage air cleaner and a cast aluminum valve cover. I seen it and its awesome. Will be available in January...But this will be on the new platinum deck not staggered so you can take you pick....

Roger
12-16-2006, 10:50 PM
bulldigitdog ... welcome. Is there any information about this new platinum deck? Where did you see it, and is it in open display at this time? Anything else you can share here?

joed
12-17-2006, 08:56 PM
Will this new platinum deck be open on the side to allow for side discharging like the current unit does. I bought a commercial lawnboy with the briggs last spring and it has worked out well. A honda gsv would be better, however. Can't wait to see it.

BobcatBoy06
12-17-2006, 09:29 PM
If you are buying the commercial lawn boy with the 6.5 two stroke you won't have any problems with the motor what so ever, they do have some drive issues we have gone through many sets of back tires the gears just won't seem to hold up, also the cables can be an issue. We have run toro and lawn boy commercials for about 7-8 years now and they are still running to this day. They are a good mower, I'd personally have to take the toro over the lawn boy but we have guys that stand by the lawn boy.

Roger
12-18-2006, 06:38 AM
If you are buying the commercial lawn boy with the 6.5 two stroke you won't have any problems with the motor what so ever, ...

My experiences are to the contrary. The 6.5hp DuraForce experiences are less favorable than the former 2 stroke LB engines.

My less-than-favorable experiences with the DuraForce is what is prompting me to be interested in the B&S solution. I know it sounds strange, but my frustration has forced me to look elsewhere.

I too have a Toro ProLine 21" with a 5.5hp Sizuki. It sits in the garage as a secondary mower, when the LB is loaded every day. We even have taken out the 8 year old LB with "F" engine, rather than the Toro, when we need a second hand mower.

S man
12-19-2006, 10:55 PM
i know i'm a little late in entering this post, but scott, i don't think you know what you're talking about with the briggs. why shouldn't it be on the lawnboy? i've got a new commercial lawnboy (bought it this past spring) and it's got the briggs and it hasn't given me one bit of trouble yet. all i've ever used for 21s is lawnboy and in my opinion, the 4 cycle briggs outperforms the tried and true duraforce 2 cycle. the engine just seems to run more consistently.


Must have been drunk or something.

I do like briggs and the I/c is a great engine. I have a regular quantum on my snapper and it is running fine except for the smoke but I think that it is my problem and not the mower. The next 21" I'm getting will either be a lb or ariens. But won't need one for awhile. I already have four.

GotGreen
12-20-2006, 12:31 AM
Briggs has worked out excellent but Lawn boy has something new in a commercial mower this year. A commercial grade GSV honda 190 with oversized ball bearings on the crankshaft and a cast iron sleeved cylinder,two stage air cleaner and a cast aluminum valve cover. I seen it and its awesome. Will be available in January...But this will be on the new platinum deck not staggered so you can take you pick....

The LB with staggered wheel (commercial LB) is only available with the B&S I/C, the Honda GSV is for a residential mower on the same line as the GCV, personally I'll prefer a B&S I/C over a Honda GSV as the I/C is a commercial engine, now if they did offered the GXV along with the I/C and I was to get a new mower right now I will be scratching my head...

Roger
12-20-2006, 06:23 AM
I was at a dealer yesterday to pick up a part for something else. On my way out, I saw his inventory of LawnBoy mowers along the wall. So, I turned and said, "... I hear that LB is coming out with a platnium mower next season,...."

He confirmed the fact and pulled out a brochure for the machine. He has seen the new machine and was impressed. He was only given one brochure as a dealer, so had none to give to me. But, the situation is not quite so clear. Let me explain.

The new mower is patterned after the consumer line that was introduced last season. It is a non-staggered wheel design, using rubber-over-plastic wheels. The deck will be aluminum (not pressed steel like the consumer models). The bagger is behind the machine, between the handles, with a lift-off bag, nylon mesh over steel rod frame. A plug can be put into the discharge opening (latches over the same point as the bag hangs). Having the plug in place makes the mulching mode. Also, with the plug in place, and a side opening changed (plate removed, replaced with a deflector shield), it works as a side discharge mower. The drive system is the "personal pace" system. There is no 3 speed gear box. The transaxle has a limited-slip feature, with the differential requirements handled by a mechanism in the rear drive wheels. The blade being used on these models now is exactly the same blade that LB has used for years and years on the staggered wheel models.

Now, the engine story goes like this. The model to be introduced at the beginning of the year, will have the Honda GSV, the mod-line of Honda engines (no oil pump). I think this engine might already be available for the consumer line. By mid-season (June or July), the topline Honda engine (most likely the GXV) will be available. It will have oil pump. I'm unsure about filter.

The B&S solution for the staggered wheel design will no longer be available. The dealer confirmed that very few of these mowers were sold last year.

From a long distance perspective, it sounds like LB (Toro in reality) really got caught with their finger outside the trigger. The staggered wheel design with the B&S engine was a one-year stop-gap measure to keep something on the market, after their 2 cycle engines were eliminated. Now, they have progressed to getting an aluminum deck design to the market, but are having to start that commerical line with a Honda engine being used in the last consumer models. And, then later they will get their design together well enough for putting the best engine on their aluminim deck mowers.

I hope my explanation is clear. I would expect that the turf and equipment shows in early 2007 will have the first aluminum deck model on the floor.

My question to the dealer was about bagging capability. The present staggered wheel design, with a side bagger, is the best hand mower bagger I have seen. He assured me that the present consumer model, with the bagger out the back worked very well this past season. To be sure, the flow of clippings is very direct, right out the opening in the rear, into a very large opening in the bag. And, the bag looks to be very easy to dump. I have not talked with any consumer who has one. If anybody has any feedback from a consumer use in 2006, please share that experience here.

gibsonsg311
12-20-2006, 04:54 PM
I bought a used 87' Commercial Lawnboy 3 years ago and rebuilt the engine. The motor is invicible, gets a great cut. I have seen the new ones with the briggs they have almost the same deck design as the 87'. Its a great mower still runs strong after 20 years of use. I would recommend one.

bulldigitydog
12-29-2006, 09:13 AM
It will be available in dealerships in late january.

The commercial unit will be Push only for now till the self propelled in the new Platinum deck comes late spring-Mid summer. the units are being built now but will ship in a few weeks to dealers. The consumer units have 5 year warranty on Consumer platinums and the commercial will have a one year warranty. Not much to break on the push model. It has steel wheels and the height of cut system is real beefy because the eyelets are cast into the deck. Lawnboy will still have the Staggered wheel in a push and a Self proplelled. The staggered will be unchanged from 2006. They have had no problems with the briggs thus far.
Just a bit of info on the 2-stroke. Lawn boy could have continued to make the 2-Stoke up until 2010. It would of cost them 10 million dollars for the tooling and other to do so. They would have done it but the EPA may or may not in 2010 change the requirments for emmisions. That was the problem. If the EPA told them that nothing would change then Lawnboy would of done it but not knowing would be a huge gamble, Here you spent 10 million and you only made 5 million back by 2010 and the EPA changes then you have to do it all over again.

Roger
12-29-2006, 05:50 PM
Bulldigitydog ... Clearly, you have more information that I was given and posted here a few days ago.

I did see a picture of the Platnium push, and the steel wheels look just like the Toro Proline models.

If I understand your note, the mid-line Honda, "C" model, will be put on these push mowers. But, the self-propelled models available later will have the "X" Honda engine. Is that right? I'm only interested in the SP model -- too many hills, too old, to deal with the push models! What I was told, the "balloon" type plastic wheels, with rubber cover (just like on present consumer models) will be used on the SP models, not the steel wheels being used on the push models.

And, the B&S staggered wheel design will continue to be sold, right?. This means LB will have two different offerings for commercial use. Unusual ...?

Maybe the staggered wheel design with the B&S engine is a better solution than I first thought. The local dealers sold nothing of these last season, zilch, nada,... Frankly, I am not sure what the local commercial folks bought last season. I saw most trailers with the 2 cycle (Dura-Force) LB on board.

bulldigitydog
12-29-2006, 07:02 PM
The steel wheels on the new Platinum commercial Lawnboy are exactly the same as the Toro. So if you have a Toro or a lawn boy you could stock the same wheels or interchange them if you wanted. I believe they even share the same part # better for the dealer and the end user. The dealer can stock the same wheel for both lines.

The Honda GSV engine will be on the push commercial Platinum and it should be on the self propelled Platinum model as well. This is the first I have heard that the GX may be on the Platinum. So it could be. I ask around and get you an answer on that for sure.

Steel wheels will be used on the commercial SP model as well.

The Staggered wheel commercial SP and Push will continue in the line up!

Do you want a 2 cycle....Some dealers have a few left. They are hidden in storage being saved for the commercial users only. They want $100 over retail since they are in such demand. It seems fair since you can't find them anywhere.

As far as quality of cut. In my opinion It's hard to beat the design of the staggered wheel. Why? Well the design of the discharge is superior flow, also with the staggered wheel design if you hit a rut two wheels do not dip in the hole at once so you get a more even cut with the staggered.

Do you know the difference between the Honda GX versus the GSV... I'm not sure..They both have a cast Iron sleeve....What else...Anybody know...?

ED'S LAWNCARE
12-29-2006, 11:37 PM
I don't know about the LB, but I have a Tru-Cut 21" witha 2 cycle robin engine. Mulches good, thankfully it's self propelled the darn thing is heavy.

S man
12-30-2006, 12:35 AM
I don't know about the LB, but I have a Tru-Cut 21" witha 2 cycle robin engine. Mulches good, thankfully it's self propelled the darn thing is heavy.

I've seen tru cuts on a website. But not their website, it seems trucut just has a distributor website only. How bog is the company and who actually makes it?

http://www.trupower.com/index.htm

Roger
12-30-2006, 07:37 AM
Here are the links to the Honda engines. I don't see anything about a "S" engine. The link just above these two has the whole list of Honda's small engines. The "X" shows a cast iron sleeve, the "C" does not. However, nothing is said in the descriptions about lubrication. It is my understanding the "X" has pressure lube, the "C" does not.

http://www.honda-engines.com/engines/gxv160.htm

http://www.honda-engines.com/engines/gcv160.htm

joed
12-30-2006, 11:58 AM
Honda's three engine styles are:

GXV: full commercial grade engine but the 163 cc 5.5 hp GXV engine does not have full pressure lube. I would guess that this is the one that Lawn Boy might be putting on their units.

GCV: residential. Good engine but not designed for everyday use.

GSV: introduce last summer. A step up from the GCV but not at the level of the GXV. I believe it has a cast iron sleeve. This likely the one that will go on the commercial lawnboy in 07. Can't see them putting the GXV unit. That would likely make the unit a competitor to the 21" exmark/toro proline. Since toro owns lawnboy, I don't think that would happen but I could be wrong.

Very excited to see this new unit. Only draw back is the staggered wheel design allows for outstanding side discharge in lush turf. Don't know if the platinum deck can do the same but we'll see. The briggs i/c engine on the commercial has been surprisingly very good. I bought one in April of 06 and I've been very pleased with it.

Roger
01-16-2007, 02:29 PM
LawnBoy has just put up some information on their web page about the Platiunum:

http://www.lawnboy.com/productinfo/mowers/platinum/index.html

The engines noted here are the Tecumseh and the Honda GCV. These are sp, one with electric start, one with BBC. Maybe the Honda GSV (GXV?)engine will not be available until mid-season. There is no mention at this time.