Advice please - Self-propelled walk-behind petrol-driven mowers

Hello all
At present I use a 2-stroke push-it-yourself mower which after nearly 20 years is slowly getting too weak. I am considering a new 4-stroke self-propelled walk-behind machine but have no experience using one. I mow about 2000 m2 of varied smooth / rough.
On such machines can one vary the blade speed (as I can on my old 2-stroke) or is this fixed at one pitch ? I prefer to mow at lower revs rather than whining away at full throttle. This makes mowing less noisy.
Can one push and pull a self-propelled mower back and forth in and out of corners, under hedges etc. ?
Best regards and thanks in advance from Ray
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On 7/2/2010 6:55 AM, Raymond RUSSELL wrote:

Don't assume mower would be noisier at high speed. I have a new, self propelled Honda with mulching blade. It is quieter and gives off far less fumes than 2 cycle Lawnboy it replaced.
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Frank;892862 Wrote:

The higher the rev, the more efficient your machine will cut and collect.... it needs the vacuum created by the RPM of the blade to raise the grass in to a possition for it to be cut by the blade otherwise it will just flatten taller grass rather than cut it.
The market is currently about 50/50 in terms of mowers which have a "Throttle Control" and machine's which are "pre-set" at there normal fast run possition. All of these engine are "Governed" so they will rev harder when hitting heavier / thicker grass's no matter which throttle position you chose.
As for power drive, Yes! You can pull machine backwards and forwards as usual but you have the added advantange of self drive if you choose to pull the lever and use it. Think of it like a clutch on a car, when you release the drive lever the mower will freewheel just like putting the clutch pedal down on a car.
Hope this helps
'Lawnmower World - The home of Quality garden machinery' (http://www.jungle-busters.co.uk )
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wrote:

Agree with the advice you've already been given. For most uses, I recommend using a mulching type mower, which cuts up the grass as much as possible so the clippings just disappear. For that, you need full power. My current Craftsman is of the type that does not let you adjust the engine speed.
In terms of cutting, the best mower I have had was a Honda Harmony. It's the mulching type that can also be converted to rear bagger or side discharge. It uses a two blade design, one over the other, and it did an excellent job of mulching and leaving the grass with a very even look. The downsides are they are expensive and the tranny failed on mine after about 7 years of use. Given that the tranny was $140 just for the part, I elected to replace it with a Sears mower that I bought on Ebay. The Sears costs 1/2 as much, has more power, but doesn't cut quite as nice.
One other design difference. Some self-propelled have fixed speeds that you select via a lever, which is what the Honda had. Others, like the Sears have continuously variable speed via a belt slippling system. You adjust the speed on these by how much you squeeze the handle bar. The advantage besides the speed is the components that can fail are just pulleys and springs, not an actually tranny.
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