Fastrak Briggs or Honda

Discussion in 'Hustler Turf Equip (Archived)' started by 4wmm, Apr 14, 2004.

  1. 4wmm

    4wmm LawnSite Member
    Posts: 11

    I'm looking at a Fastrak. Trying to stay around 4,000. My local dealer has a 17.5/44 with a Briggs for 3700 and a 18/44 Honda for 4200. 1) Is it worth the difference? 2) I understand there have been some problems with the Briggs and that Hustler is going to drop it. I understand the problem to be little more than a short inconvenience when cranking. Is that all?

    Any input appreciated, Will
  2. mowerconsultant

    mowerconsultant LawnSite Fanatic
    Male, from Syracuse, NY
    Posts: 9,761

    The reason the Briggs is offered is for a price point unit, it helps get the cost of the unit down, compared the the Honda.
    As far as problems, we see no more issues with the Briggs than we do with any of our other engines.
    As you can see for the same unit with the Honda you have a price of 500.00 more, with the Honda your getting very high quality v-twin commercial grade engine, with the Briggs you are getting a quality home owner grade single cylinder engine.
    We still have and produce the Briggs powered FasTrak.
    Who know's you may see some new FasTrak models and new engine options in the not so far away future........I will post here on LS when I have news.

  3. 4wmm

    4wmm LawnSite Member
    Posts: 11

    I heard today from a dealer that there is talk of different size decks. I can't remember if there was talk of different engines also. I'll be watching for details.

    In the meantime, unless there will be something new in the next month or so, I am faced with maybe having to decide between the Honda or the Briggs.

    Like the decision between the Fastrak and the Tank, I'll go compare each and continue to solict input.

    I hear people say more negative about Briggs but I'd like to hear some specifics if anyone has any. Thanks so much, Will
  4. wrightg4

    wrightg4 LawnSite Member
    Posts: 12

    I just traded a Sabre riding mower powered by a 15.5 hp Briggs OHV Intec engine in on a Honda-powered Fastrak. I can't speak from experience yet about the Honda, other than the reputation that it seems to have, but I can tell you of the problems I had with the Briggs and Stratton.

    My experience may not be typical, but during the six years I used the mower, I had to replace the head gasket twice and the alternator winding once. I've owned several small Briggs engines and they seem to last practically forever with very little maintenance, so I was quite disappointed with the reliability of the 15 horse motor.
  5. 4wmm

    4wmm LawnSite Member
    Posts: 11

    Thanks. That type of info is what I'm looking to hear. I want help justifying the price difference.

    I've heard a few folks say the same thing about the small Briggs vs the bigger stuff.

    Looks like I'm leaning more and more for the Honda.

    Anyone see a problem with Honda's taking more time to warm up and get going when it's cold. I heard that this week for the first time. Wondered if there was truth in it.
  6. J.Gordon

    J.Gordon LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 675

    I myself would opt for the Honda because of their track record. I would bet the Honda will consume less fuel than the Brigg’s, plus Honda is generally quite. I have a lot of friends that speak very highly of the Honda’s reliability, fuel consumption and noise, I know the Brigg’s that I have owned have been very good engines but they seem to like fuel.
  7. DN325Ci

    DN325Ci LawnSite Member
    Posts: 18

    This discussion of hard starting has not been my experience. I have a Fastrak 20/52 and it often starts cold with no choke. It is very smooth and quiet for it's size, especially vs. the 12HP Briggs single cylinder I/C engine on my lawn tractor. I find it fascinating that the 20HP Honda is smoother and quieter than the 12HP Briggs. All I can conclude is that Honda simply knows how to design and manufacture fine engines.

    If you search, I believe you can find some direct comparisons made last year by some folks who drove both the Briggs and Honda versions of Fastrak.

  8. 4wmm

    4wmm LawnSite Member
    Posts: 11

    I did a little searching. I read enough pro-Honda stuff to convince me that's the way to go. I do however hear a good bit of stuff from folks who seem reserved about the bigger Hondas and don't hear alot of specifics about why not to go with a Briggs. I'm going to the dealer this week to try to drive each. Hopefully he hasn't sold his Briggs and has gotten in the Honda. We shall see.

    Thanks for the continued input. I'm stuggling with this and with my Exmark Ct vs Cub Tank vs Hustler Fastrak decision. I need to decide on a particular Fastrak so I can then make the rest of the decision.
  9. DN325Ci

    DN325Ci LawnSite Member
    Posts: 18

    4wmm, I sent you a PM as well.


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