School me on used reel mowers.

Discussion in 'Homeowner Assistance Forum' started by T56 Impala, Jul 15, 2009.

  1. T56 Impala

    T56 Impala LawnSite Member
    Posts: 51

    As the title states, if I am looking for a used one. What do I look for? I see there are many different blade configurations. Different brands. Different engine makers. Many differing HP ratings.

    Other than the obvious "Does the engine run" question, what should I ask a seller? As a home owner, what width should I look for? (My max is 38" due to egress restrictions to the back yard.) Bagger? What else?

    Also, what is a general price range for YOUR suggested unit on the used market?

    THANKS!
     
  2. wrager

    wrager LawnSite Member
    from ATL
    Posts: 164

    I'll sell you my Tru-Cut. I'm in Acworth. It is 20" wide. Has a Honda engine and runs great. I just can't use it on my slopes. I paid $650 for it last year. It's a few years old and believe it's a H-20 but with a 4 HP engine.

    http://www.trucutmower.com/front_throw_reel_mowers.php

    These are far superior to the McLane's that Home Depot sells. A new Tru-Cut (20") are roughly $1200. The 25 and 27" get real pricey.
     
    Last edited: Jul 15, 2009
  3. ashelton

    ashelton LawnSite Member
    from florida
    Posts: 150

    You want to probably stick with a 20". The more HP the better, honda makes a good 2 cycle engine. Usually you will find them in 7 or 10 blade configurations, I have found that the 10 blades cut a little cleaner, but they cost more to have the blades sharpened.
     
  4. T56 Impala

    T56 Impala LawnSite Member
    Posts: 51

    What is considered high horse power for a reel mower? The ones I have seen on CL seem to be in the 3 to 4 hp range. Is this high or low?
     
  5. cgaengineer

    cgaengineer LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 15,782

    3-5 HP for a 20" is good. I will consider selling my H-20 with a 3hp Briggs and Stratton if you are interested. Reel mowers dont need a ton of power like a rotary mower since its slicing grass, it takes a lot more power to whack grass blades. As always you will never complain of too much power. That said the 3hp Briggs and Stratton is plenty powerful to get the job done.

    I have another P-20 with a Commercial Honda, but I wont sell it. Next season I will be purchasing a C-27.
     
  6. cgaengineer

    cgaengineer LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 15,782

    why can you use the TruCut on the slopes?
     
  7. wrager

    wrager LawnSite Member
    from ATL
    Posts: 164

    Do you mean why can't I use it on my slopes?

    They are fairly steep (30+ degrees) and it is very difficult to keep the speed consistent and the front wheels planted on the ground going up the hill. Going down the hill I have to restrain it, no mateer how little I engage the drive wheels. Going along the side of a hill, the down side of the path gets cut shorter. Maybe once I level the bumps and install a front roller it will be better/easier. This machine is just very heavy to be effective on my terrain. Others, on different forums have noted the same.
     
  8. cgaengineer

    cgaengineer LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 15,782

    The roller will help a bit by adding weight to the front, but what the machine really needs is to be a bit longer and heavier. If you are cutting up the hill it is best to lift up on the handles slightly...it takes some getting used to but after you try it you will see what I mean. I have steep slopes in my rear lawn and they are difficult to cut as well.
     
  9. mnglocker

    mnglocker LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 758

    I have a question, how do you sharpen a reel mower? I keep finding used golf course fairway mowers for cheap and they look like fun.
     
  10. cgaengineer

    cgaengineer LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 15,782

    Well you have to take them to a place that sharpens them You can back lap them at home, but grinding requires special tools. You cant always back lap so grinding is necessary.

    They back lap here for $55 and grind for $85, either one is usually a once per season thing on a home owner reel.
     

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