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#354111 - 09/05/11 12:44 PM Lawnmower?
Ken.C Offline
shareholder in the making

Registered: 05/03/03
Posts: 17741
Loc: NoVA
Hey guys,

I'm looking for a good lawnmower under $500. I've got a backyard and a front yard to mow now. What's the general opinion on electric vs gas? Any specific recommendations?

Thanks!
_________________________
I didn't do it, no one saw me, you can't prove anything.

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#354113 - 09/05/11 01:33 PM Re: Lawnmower? [Re: Ken.C]
MarkSJohnson Offline
shareholder in the making

Registered: 09/27/04
Posts: 10832
Loc: Central NH
CR recommended Toros when I bought a new one last year. I absolutely love it.

I was considering teasing you in another thread that now you'll need a lawnmower....
_________________________
::::::: No disrespect to Axiom, but my favorite woofer is my yellow lab :::::::

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#354115 - 09/05/11 01:35 PM Re: Lawnmower? [Re: MarkSJohnson]
Ken.C Offline
shareholder in the making

Registered: 05/03/03
Posts: 17741
Loc: NoVA
Just bought a Craftsman. Hope I didn't make a horrible mistake, but there we are.
_________________________
I didn't do it, no one saw me, you can't prove anything.

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#354118 - 09/05/11 02:20 PM Re: Lawnmower? [Re: Ken.C]
terzaghi Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 04/04/07
Posts: 4842
Loc: Tulsa, Oklahoma
I'm thinking about getting a push reel mower for my next house. They are supposed to give a better cut, plus they are quite, no exhaust, etc. I have no idea if I will like it or not. Currently I use a cheap gas mower (yard machine) that I bought used and it gets the job done.
_________________________
-David

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#354119 - 09/05/11 02:21 PM Re: Lawnmower? [Re: terzaghi]
MarkSJohnson Offline
shareholder in the making

Registered: 09/27/04
Posts: 10832
Loc: Central NH
Oh, Jeeeez, not a Craftsman?

Wow. That's all I can say.


Wow.
_________________________
::::::: No disrespect to Axiom, but my favorite woofer is my yellow lab :::::::

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#354122 - 09/05/11 06:38 PM Re: Lawnmower? [Re: MarkSJohnson]
tomtuttle Offline
axiomite

Registered: 06/20/03
Posts: 8268
Loc: Tacoma
Well, he waited almost an HOUR for advice, Mark. I mean, really, we failed him, don't you think?
_________________________
bibere usque ad hilaritatem

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#354125 - 09/05/11 08:14 PM Re: Lawnmower? [Re: tomtuttle]
SirQuack Offline
shareholder in the making

Registered: 01/29/04
Posts: 13318
Loc: Iowa
YOu can buy a nice power a lot less than $500, but then again I get a Deere discount.
_________________________
M80s-VP180-QS8s-EP600-2xEP350 Denon3808 Outlaw7700
M22-OWM22-VP100-Denon2805
Audio Nirvana

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#354128 - 09/05/11 08:42 PM Re: Lawnmower? [Re: SirQuack]
nickbuol Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 09/16/04
Posts: 4415
Loc: Marion, IA
We have a 16 year old Lawnboy that has done us well. With fall knocking on our door, this should be a good time to buy one I would think. It is definitely a BAD time to be thinking about buying something like a snowblower (yup. We are going to FINALLY get one this year.)
_________________________
http://ht.buol.us
M60s, VP180, VP150, QS8s, SVS 20-39PCi, HTPC, JVC RS45, Onkyo TX-NR709, Shakers

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#354131 - 09/05/11 09:38 PM Re: Lawnmower? [Re: nickbuol]
Wid Offline
axiomite

Registered: 06/22/03
Posts: 6720
Loc: The Peoples Republic of Il.

I bought one a couple years back, a Toro. It was a bit more than $500 but it was worth it imo. Haven't had a bit of trouble with it.

Before this I had a ....................Craftsman. Had trouble with it from after about the first season.
_________________________
Rick


"A fear of weapons is a sign of retarded sexual and emotional maturity." Sigmund Freud


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#354132 - 09/05/11 10:43 PM Re: Lawnmower? [Re: Wid]
CatBrat Offline
axiomite

Registered: 08/05/09
Posts: 5801
Loc: Some random location
I will never buy anything from Sears again. I've had a lot of duds. One of them was a Craftsman lawnmower. Perhaps they've improved them. I bought the most expensive push, self start, front wheel drive one they had back in 2000. It lasted 3 years before the metal broke that held the big rear wheels in place. Then they couldn't fix it. The parts mfg didn't supply those particular parts anymore.

I then bought a Snapper for about half the price. I've been happy with it ever since.

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#354138 - 09/06/11 12:17 AM Re: Lawnmower? [Re: CatBrat]
pmbuko Offline
shareholder in the making

Registered: 04/02/03
Posts: 16259
Loc: Leesburg, Virginia
I got rid of the lawn in the back yard and my front lawn is so small I can cut it in 5 minutes using a reel mower. smile
_________________________
"I wish I had documented more…" said nobody on their death bed, ever.

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#354142 - 09/06/11 02:05 AM Re: Lawnmower? [Re: pmbuko]
St_PatGuy Offline
axiomite

Registered: 03/07/05
Posts: 7395
Loc: Glendale, Arizona
When I was younger I was convinced the only reason my dad had me was so that I could take over the lawn mowing duties for him.

I hated doing yard work.

I guess it worked out for the best, me moving to Arizona. No one out here has a lawn. Just gotta plug in an air blower and move the dust off the rocks.
_________________________
***********
"Nothin' up my sleeve. . ." --Bullwinkle J. Moose

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#354145 - 09/06/11 08:25 AM Re: Lawnmower? [Re: St_PatGuy]
BobKay Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 03/23/10
Posts: 3115
Loc: Massachusetts Badlands
Cutting the lawn?

Cop neighbor: Hey! I'm out here mowing and doing yard work. Why don't you?

Me: 'Cause that's what boyfriends are for. You should get one.

Cop: I don't think Jan would like that.

Me: I don't get it. Wives can be so weird about that stuff.

Cop: I know, I'll talk to her.
_________________________
I never wanted to run in an election, but I always thought it'd be cool to die in office.

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#354146 - 09/06/11 08:46 AM Re: Lawnmower? [Re: BobKay]
MarkSJohnson Offline
shareholder in the making

Registered: 09/27/04
Posts: 10832
Loc: Central NH
Bob: grin

Ken: Just so you know, I was only teasing about the Craftsman mower. After the rest of the posts, I didn't want mine to also be a "negative" in your mind.

PM me your email address!
_________________________
::::::: No disrespect to Axiom, but my favorite woofer is my yellow lab :::::::

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#354148 - 09/06/11 08:56 AM Re: Lawnmower? [Re: MarkSJohnson]
Ken.C Offline
shareholder in the making

Registered: 05/03/03
Posts: 17741
Loc: NoVA
Our new across the street neighbor apparently mowed our lawn for us yesterday morning. Very cool. The day before they came over, introduced themselves, and gave us some rice krispy treats.
_________________________
I didn't do it, no one saw me, you can't prove anything.

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#354149 - 09/06/11 10:33 AM Re: Lawnmower? [Re: Ken.C]
medic8r Offline
axiomite

Registered: 02/05/06
Posts: 6380
Loc: Fredericksburg, Virginia
And Ken gets to experience the famous Southern hospitality. Cool.
_________________________
"The Universe is the game of the self, which plays hide and seek forever and ever" - Alan Watts

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#354150 - 09/06/11 10:44 AM Re: Lawnmower? [Re: medic8r]
MarkSJohnson Offline
shareholder in the making

Registered: 09/27/04
Posts: 10832
Loc: Central NH
Your neighbors sound nice. Start hitting them up to watch the kids for the weekends. smile
_________________________
::::::: No disrespect to Axiom, but my favorite woofer is my yellow lab :::::::

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#354152 - 09/06/11 11:57 AM Re: Lawnmower? [Re: medic8r]
BobKay Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 03/23/10
Posts: 3115
Loc: Massachusetts Badlands
Originally Posted By: medic8r
And Ken gets to experience the famous Southern hospitality. Cool.


And free white-trash snacks, too!
_________________________
I never wanted to run in an election, but I always thought it'd be cool to die in office.

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#354155 - 09/06/11 12:37 PM Re: Lawnmower? [Re: BobKay]
bridgman Offline
axiomite

Registered: 08/25/04
Posts: 5279
Loc: Bowmanville, Ontario, Canada
For what it's worth, my parents (initially) and I (these days) have been using the same Craftsman power mower for about 20 years now. You change the oil and scrape the crud off every so often and it just keeps working.

Before that I was given the task of returning a light-duty electric Craftsman mower to the local Sears. Motor had fried. I found out later that the "power boost" handle had been taped down for 4-5 years, so I'm surprised it took as long as it did to burn out.

I suspect there are a wide range of Craftsman mowers, with different engine vendors and different manufacturers. Some of them seem to be really good, but I imagine that they also have some "lots of features, not much price" versions which aren't as solid. I was taught to always buy "basic and heavy" wink


Edited by bridgman (09/06/11 12:44 PM)

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#354156 - 09/06/11 12:45 PM Re: Lawnmower? [Re: bridgman]
Ken.C Offline
shareholder in the making

Registered: 05/03/03
Posts: 17741
Loc: NoVA
Snerk. I'll remember not to do that. It's got a Briggs and Stratton engine, so I guess that's pretty good.
_________________________
I didn't do it, no one saw me, you can't prove anything.

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#354157 - 09/06/11 12:55 PM Re: Lawnmower? [Re: Ken.C]
terzaghi Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 04/04/07
Posts: 4842
Loc: Tulsa, Oklahoma
My yard machine has a Briggs and Stratton engine and I have had no problems with it over the last 3 years that I have owned it.
_________________________
-David

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#354169 - 09/06/11 09:33 PM Re: Lawnmower? [Re: MarkSJohnson]
pmbuko Offline
shareholder in the making

Registered: 04/02/03
Posts: 16259
Loc: Leesburg, Virginia
Originally Posted By: MarkSJohnson
Your neighbors sound nice. Start hitting them up to watch the kids for the weekends. smile


That job's been taken, though we'll have some sort of enforced reciprocity, I'm sure. smile
_________________________
"I wish I had documented more…" said nobody on their death bed, ever.

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#354170 - 09/06/11 09:38 PM Re: Lawnmower? [Re: pmbuko]
Ken.C Offline
shareholder in the making

Registered: 05/03/03
Posts: 17741
Loc: NoVA
Oh yes....
_________________________
I didn't do it, no one saw me, you can't prove anything.

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#354171 - 09/06/11 09:42 PM Re: Lawnmower? [Re: Ken.C]
JohnK Offline
shareholder in the making

Registered: 05/11/02
Posts: 10363
Ken, I suppose that I don't have to ask "Why Virginia?". As to the mowers, in the May issue CR rated the Honda and Toro models at the top, but some of the Craftsman models(you didn't mention which you got)were close behind in performance. Their 5 year reliability data put the Craftsman just a statistically insignificant 2% behind(16% vs 14% needed repairs).
_________________________
-----------------------------------

Enjoy the music, not the equipment.



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#354172 - 09/06/11 09:43 PM Re: Lawnmower? [Re: medic8r]
Ken.C Offline
shareholder in the making

Registered: 05/03/03
Posts: 17741
Loc: NoVA
Originally Posted By: medic8r
And Ken gets to experience the famous Southern hospitality. Cool.


Both my wife and I were thinking the same thing: "I wonder what they want..."

Southern hospitality meets California paranoia!
_________________________
I didn't do it, no one saw me, you can't prove anything.

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#354177 - 09/06/11 10:52 PM Re: Lawnmower? [Re: nickbuol]
BobKay Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 03/23/10
Posts: 3115
Loc: Massachusetts Badlands
Originally Posted By: nickbuol
We have a 16 year old Lawnboy that has done us well.


How'd that get by me this afternoon? I AM losing it.
_________________________
I never wanted to run in an election, but I always thought it'd be cool to die in office.

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#354180 - 09/07/11 07:59 AM Re: Lawnmower? [Re: BobKay]
medic8r Offline
axiomite

Registered: 02/05/06
Posts: 6380
Loc: Fredericksburg, Virginia
You have to have had it to be losing it.

Bazinga.
_________________________
"The Universe is the game of the self, which plays hide and seek forever and ever" - Alan Watts

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#354187 - 09/07/11 10:21 AM Re: Lawnmower? [Re: medic8r]
BobKay Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 03/23/10
Posts: 3115
Loc: Massachusetts Badlands
Originally Posted By: medic8r
You have to have had it to be losing it.

Bazinga.

You're refering to your hair, right?

Zap!
_________________________
I never wanted to run in an election, but I always thought it'd be cool to die in office.

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#354205 - 09/07/11 05:11 PM Re: Lawnmower? [Re: BobKay]
Adrian Offline
axiomite

Registered: 12/27/08
Posts: 6600
Loc: It's all about the location.
My Craftsman is still running well(Briggs motor) after a dozen yrs or so. The belt is slipping bad on the drive wheels though.
_________________________
Half of communication is listening. You can't listen with your mouth.

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#354391 - 09/09/11 01:29 PM Re: Lawnmower? [Re: Adrian]
BlueJays1 Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 09/19/08
Posts: 4070
Loc: Porch,enjoying Bombay Sapphire
I have quite a collection of grass cutting machines push and riding. They even have names.

George is a Massey Ferguson 35 diesel. Production was from the late 50's. Still runs. It is an antique.

Eva is a John Deere 212. Production from the late 70's. Kohler cast iron engine, superb build quality. They don't make mowers like this anymore. Still runs.

Eva 2 is a Toro ZTR (zero turn radius). Production from 2010. Super efficient cutting, cuts down on trimming and the quality of cut makes my property look like a baseball field. The most fun mower to drive. Second year with it, no problems at all.

Grunt is a 2 cycle Lawn-Boy push mower. Year of production unknown as it was picked off the side of the road that someone had for garbage pickup. The pinnacle of push mowers and my absolute favorite of the bunch. I use this to plow through feet tall grass that the riding mowers can't get to. Wet, dry it doesn't care. Goes through grass and tall weeds like butter and never clogs.

Marcy is a 2 cycle Lawn-Boy with bag attachment. I don't use it that much honestly because you have to use the bag. Good for lawn directly around the house. Production was from the 80's.

Randy is a Murray $70 - $120 dollar push mower jobs. A "beater mower" used for cutting ditches. One lasted 2 years, the other is going on 5.
_________________________
I’m armed and I’m drinking. You don’t want to listen to advice from me, amigo.

-Max Payne

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#354402 - 09/09/11 02:41 PM Re: Lawnmower? [Re: BlueJays1]
MarkSJohnson Offline
shareholder in the making

Registered: 09/27/04
Posts: 10832
Loc: Central NH
Grunt?

Randy?

Any mowers named Mark?
_________________________
::::::: No disrespect to Axiom, but my favorite woofer is my yellow lab :::::::

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#354416 - 09/09/11 07:02 PM Re: Lawnmower? [Re: MarkSJohnson]
SBrown Offline
aficionado

Registered: 11/16/10
Posts: 812
Loc: Victoria,BC
Sounds like you have a heck of a lawn to cut,nice!

I have a Black&Decker lawn mower that cuts my whole lawn with one charge(big lawn)which is very good I thought. It has been about 3 years since I bought it, I like it.
_________________________
Beauty is in the eye of the beer holder.

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#354417 - 09/09/11 07:43 PM Re: Lawnmower? [Re: SBrown]
BlueJays1 Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 09/19/08
Posts: 4070
Loc: Porch,enjoying Bombay Sapphire
Its a nice property, about 7 acres. Not huge but not small. Only about 3 acres is cut 1-2 times per week during the summer months including trimming. 2 acres of fields is cut about 3 -5 times and the rest is left for nature to run wild. With the Toro ZTR it only takes a few hours for the bulk of cutting. There is an abundance of trees planted throughout the entire property that is native to the Carolinian forest.
_________________________
I’m armed and I’m drinking. You don’t want to listen to advice from me, amigo.

-Max Payne

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#354483 - 09/10/11 09:46 PM Re: Lawnmower? [Re: BlueJays1]
michael_d Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 07/23/04
Posts: 3875
Loc: Up yonder


Honda. Extremely dependable. $500 might be a push though.
_________________________


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#354487 - 09/10/11 11:50 PM Re: Lawnmower? [Re: michael_d]
Ken.C Offline
shareholder in the making

Registered: 05/03/03
Posts: 17741
Loc: NoVA
Well, I might find out how well the mower works tomorrow. Or how well I know how to mow a lawn (not at all).
_________________________
I didn't do it, no one saw me, you can't prove anything.

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#354489 - 09/11/11 07:16 AM Re: Lawnmower? [Re: Ken.C]
terzaghi Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 04/04/07
Posts: 4842
Loc: Tulsa, Oklahoma
Ha! Let us know how it goes.
_________________________
-David

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#354490 - 09/11/11 09:59 AM Re: Lawnmower? [Re: terzaghi]
BlueJays1 Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 09/19/08
Posts: 4070
Loc: Porch,enjoying Bombay Sapphire
If you are not using a mower with a bag attachment, the proper way to cut is to have the grass clippings blow to the cut side and not the uncut side.
_________________________
I’m armed and I’m drinking. You don’t want to listen to advice from me, amigo.

-Max Payne

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#354491 - 09/11/11 10:08 AM Re: Lawnmower? [Re: BlueJays1]
cb919 Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 02/17/09
Posts: 1041
Loc: Ottawa, Canada
Or mulching where it does not blow out the side or back but chopped finer and is 'pushed' back down. It is tough to go through heavy or wet grass when mulching depending on how strong your mower is.

My personal favourite as I don't have to deal with grass clippings - more time to enjoy my Axioms! wink


Edited by cb919 (09/11/11 10:09 AM)
_________________________
Dan
In/On Wall 500 w M2 Center Channel

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#354573 - 09/12/11 12:27 PM Re: Lawnmower? [Re: cb919]
Murph Offline
axiomite

Registered: 10/05/06
Posts: 6738
Loc: PEI, Canada
Not a push mower but I thought that I'd chime in and say that my 97 Troy Built lawn tractor just refuses to die. It spent all it's winters outdoors from 97 to 2006 before I had a garage and most of those without even a cover because they kept ripping during blizzards. The cowl is gone thanks to my wife's need for speed but it is still starting first turn of the key (choke turnover doesn't count) and I've only replaced minor parts, belts muffler etc. The drive belt adjustment is seized up and requires the odd nudge from a fine tuning instrument (hammer) but otherwise it just keeps rolling.

Nice when you get something that actually lasts. It seems rare these days.
_________________________
With great power comes Awesome irresponsibility.

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#354575 - 09/12/11 12:30 PM Re: Lawnmower? [Re: Murph]
Ken.C Offline
shareholder in the making

Registered: 05/03/03
Posts: 17741
Loc: NoVA
Well, I haven't had a chance to read the manual and figure out what additional items I need to buy yet (oil, gas, stabilizer, gas can, what have you), but my neighbor came over and mowed the front and back yards yesterday.
_________________________
I didn't do it, no one saw me, you can't prove anything.

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#354576 - 09/12/11 12:35 PM Re: Lawnmower? [Re: Ken.C]
MarkSJohnson Offline
shareholder in the making

Registered: 09/27/04
Posts: 10832
Loc: Central NH
That neighbor is a keeper!
_________________________
::::::: No disrespect to Axiom, but my favorite woofer is my yellow lab :::::::

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#354578 - 09/12/11 12:36 PM Re: Lawnmower? [Re: Ken.C]
BobKay Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 03/23/10
Posts: 3115
Loc: Massachusetts Badlands

Let's recap, shall we?

On 9/5, your neighbors gave you rice krispy treats.
On 9/6 they mowed your lawn.
On 9/11 they mowed your lawn again.

I don't think it really matters what brand of mower you bought, does it? Why don't you just give them the manual? Hell! Just give'em your GD new lawnmower!
_________________________
I never wanted to run in an election, but I always thought it'd be cool to die in office.

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#354580 - 09/12/11 12:39 PM Re: Lawnmower? [Re: BobKay]
Murph Offline
axiomite

Registered: 10/05/06
Posts: 6738
Loc: PEI, Canada
Or...................
was mowing your lawn just part of the devious plan where they hid a murdered body in your back yard? Perhaps the Krispy Treats had a sedative that knocked you out during the digging phase?
Or....................
should I just put down that Boris Karloff compendium that I picked up at a yard sale?
_________________________
With great power comes Awesome irresponsibility.

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#354590 - 09/12/11 12:48 PM Re: Lawnmower? [Re: Ken.C]
pmbuko Offline
shareholder in the making

Registered: 04/02/03
Posts: 16259
Loc: Leesburg, Virginia
How are you going to repay his kindness? You don't even make beer!
_________________________
"I wish I had documented more…" said nobody on their death bed, ever.

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#354635 - 09/12/11 09:28 PM Re: Lawnmower? [Re: pmbuko]
St_PatGuy Offline
axiomite

Registered: 03/07/05
Posts: 7395
Loc: Glendale, Arizona
Well, Ken can show him his hat collection? Maybe even let him try on a few?

"Here, this one should keep you nice and shaded next time you come over and mow. Too bad you aren't a neighbor to my friend Peter. He makes his own beer. I bet he'd let you look at a bottle if you mowed his lawn."
_________________________
***********
"Nothin' up my sleeve. . ." --Bullwinkle J. Moose

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#354711 - 09/13/11 07:17 PM Re: Lawnmower? [Re: St_PatGuy]
jakewash Offline
shareholder in the making

Registered: 12/26/03
Posts: 10398
Loc: Calgary, Alberta
Late to the lawn party but I'll add I own a Craftsman mower with the Honda motor and have had no problems for 7 years now.
_________________________
Jason
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My HT

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