I am not known for my lawn mowing prowess.
In fact, since The Finger Incident (it’s a long tale … but basically I stuck my hand into a lawnmower. While it was running. Consequently I consider myself lucky to have just one finger that’s a bit shorter now…), there is by common agreement a family injuction preventing me from going within 5 feet of the thing.
But the evil old finger-munching lawnmower was very old, and over the course of the spring it coughed and spluttered its dying breaths. I didn’t try very hard to resurrect it.
The trouble is, when your lawnmower is dead, your grass tends to get a bit out of hand. And while Blue thoroughly enjoyed the new meadow that we sprouted in our back garden, it was soon in desperate need of a haircut.
So when Homebase sent us a Qualcast Key Start Self Propelled Petrol Rotary Lawn Mower, we may have cheered (except Blue. She was a bit miffed).
Let me start by saying I’m not normally one who’ll get excited by garden machinery.
But this mower? I Love.
It’s big, bold, easy and just… good.
It does exactly what it needs to do, in a brisk efficient, no-nonsense manner.
Firstly, the whole key start thing. I didn’t get it.
But look – it really is. It starts just like a car. No more yanking on the cord-pull, no more choking the engine. Just turn… and go. Brilliance.
Want to raise up the wheels for a longer cut? Drop them to get that bowling-green finish (with four kids and a dog, that one’s just in my dreams…)? No problem. There’s a great big easy-to-move handle and a simple five-notch system to always get the cut height you want.
It’s a big mower – worried about the weight? Don’t be. This baby pushes itself. Seriously – the 161cc motor is so good that Mr LittleStuff assures me it’s more a case of holding it back than pushing it on – you need a tight grip to keep control on the bends. You can see it in action if you click here – we GoPro-ed it. Oh yes we did.
And the cut itself? Well, you can see for yourself above. That’s a pretty good level cut in my book – this is the spot Blue’s lying in at the top of the page.
Assembly’s easy too – the box looks big and intimidating, but the instructions are good, and we went from looking like this to ready-to-cut in under 20 minutes.
Here’s the technical lowdown:
- Features: Briggs and Stratton 775IS engine for instant starting at the turn of a key featuring Lithium Ion technology, powerdrive motor ensures a reliable cut, even in long grass or wet grass. 7 positions central height adjustment, mulching and side discharge and fold down handle for compact storage.
- Power: 161cc.
- Weight: 38kg.
- Cutting width: 53cm.
- Cutting height: 2.5 – 7.5cm.
- Collection capacity: 70L.
- Self-propelled: Yes.
The Qualcast Key Start Self Propelled Petrol Rotary Lawn Mower is available from Homebase for a penny under £500, and we guarantee you’ll love it.