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If You Had to Buy an Old Mower Today...

Discussion in 'Mechanic and Repair' started by OldLawnMowerMan81, Apr 23, 2010.


Would You Buy a Classic Lawnmower for the Sake of Reliability?

Poll closed Jul 22, 2010.
  1. Yes

  2. No

  3. Undecided

    0 vote(s)
  1. OldLawnMowerMan81

    OldLawnMowerMan81 LawnSite Member
    Messages: 66


    Not sure if this is the exact forum to post this subject to, but, I would like to ask you all this: if you had to buy an oldie lawn mower today for the sake of reliability, what would your choices be?

    I already have a 1984 Toro 20672 21" BBC/3-speed Pow-R Drive mower (Tecumseh TNT100 engine), but next up on my list of oldie lawnmowers:
    1. Anything from 1969-1982 with a Briggs & Stratton 929x8, 935x8 or 1109x8 engine (preferably those mowers by Toro, Snapper, Jacobsen and Sensation)
    2. Another Toro BBC/3-speed Pow-R Drive mower, but with a Suzuki-built Toro GTS120 2-cycle engine.
    3. Anything Honda from 1979-1989 that utilizes the Roto-Stop BBC and is self-propelled, such as an HR21SXA, HR214SXA, HR21-5SXA, HR215SXA, HR216SXA, HRA21SXA, HRA214SXA, HRA215SXA or HRA216SXA. The HR21, HRA21 and HR21-5 use side-valve GV engines (HR21-5 uses the GV200) while the others use OHV GXV engines (HR/HRA214 use the GXV120, for example).

  2. Cleve

    Cleve LawnSite Senior Member
    Male, from Rockmart, GA
    Messages: 404

    Lawnboy. I have two lawnboy 21" 2-cycles made in the late 70s. Got to be the best trim mower ever made. Light enough to pick up with one hand. No govt. safety crap. Will cut through just about anything. And both run like they were bought yesterday. I also have two Honda HRX-215s with hydrostatic transmissions. Great mowers but just heavy.
  3. DT Lawn Care

    DT Lawn Care LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 850

    You can't beat the old Toro 3-speed BBCs. We have 3 with 4-stroke Suzukis, great mowers, great fuel economy. We have several with the newer Briggs engine as well, the Suzuki models seem like tighter units.

    We also have an old front-wheel drive model Toro from the 70's with a Tecumseh, bought it at a yard sale for $3, cleaned carb and it starts first pull. I use it on a steep hill at a commercial account, I just leave it there. Great mower, especially for the age.

    Fact: Most older 21" consumer models are AS or MORE dependable than commercial 21"s today.
  4. topsites

    topsites LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 21,653

    Not that old :p

    But I would gladly own another 1997-1998 Toro model 30197,
    those 48" 15hp fixed decks have got to be among the best
    work horses around.

    They just don't make them like that anymore.

    Like yourself all I see them doing is sticking on $5 chinese GARBAGE that they spout off as an improvement,
    each of these raises the price of the machine by about $500 and in the end?
    It's still a LAWN mower, why they can't keep it that way.

    Spare me the stupid belt brakes that wear out in the first 200 hours,
    and every other ill-conceived POS that someone upstairs thought
    would be such a great *(&^ invention...

    Yeah, especially the ones where if you let go of the handle bar because you need to grab a
    branch out of your face it doesn't cut off on you!

    Folks today don't understand that a light push mower is the best thing around,
    all everyone today believes is that self-propelled somehow means less work.

    But you said it, they're dang heavy.
    They eat more fuel, they still don't mow as fast as I can push a unit except these I CAN'T push for long,
    and once we get into the safety features I'm already thinking of hurling and I mean HURLING that POS
    in the direction of a dumpster.
    Last edited: Apr 23, 2010

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