Lawnmower recommendations, please

My 8 year old Craftsman mower is about dead - I'm ready to buy something new. I mow a quarter acre of Florida St. Augustine grass every Saturday - this time of year I chop down 1 to 2 inches a week. I need a self propelled machine that mulches really well, is easy to maneuver, and will last a few years. I'm willing to pay a little more fore a top notch mower. I'm only 55 - not old enough for a rider.
Any recommendations?
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Greetings,
You can now convert your old mower into a solar powered one by following these easy steps:
http://www.arttec.net/Solar_Mower/index.htm
I don't know what to think of this? I was hoping someone here could decide for me. I guess more options is always a good thing as I don't have to choose them.
William
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On Sat, 23 Jul 2005 20:23:17 +0000, JustDave wrote:

Toro "Personal Pacer".
--
If you\'re not on the edge, you\'re taking up too much space.
Linux Registered User #327951
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John Deere. I've had a few other brands, but the JD is the best. Still starts onthe first pull after 6 or 7 years. Came with a bag but I got the mulcher kit up front.
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One recommendation. Just don't buy a Husquenara (however it's spelled). I bought the $479.00 last year and it is almost unuseable. The automatic choke constantly sticks shut from dust stirred up from mowing, requiring irritating disassembly. Most of the screws and bolts have vibrated loose. The drive mechanism has bound up and required replacing the belt. ETC. ETC. It's hard to start.

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JustDave wrote:

I got one with Honda engine, really pleased. It has classic choke, not very noisy, cuts pretty well. Another nice feature is that blade can be disengaged while engine is running.
I would not go for high bag, pain in the a** to empty.
After 2 Brits&Strupons and both of them went bad after few years. One lost compression(not head gasket), other needed shortblock change.
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propelled
After more than 30 years of buying only Sears Mowers, I finally realized that they were just not reliable enough nor did they perform too well. This spring I purchased the Toro Model 20041 Recycler. Forget about having to pull a cord to start (this has a built in battery for electric start). Forget about having to engage the front wheels for a single self propelled speed (this mower uses rear wheel drive and almost automatically adjusts the drive speed necessary for almost any slope). It mulches beautifully, leaving very little grass piles that my Sears Mowers always left. I'm 72 years old with 1/4 acre of property and have no problem sailing through the lawn. My son used to complain when I asked him to mow the lawn but, with my new mower, he practically volunteers. I highly recommend this Mower.
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Thanks for all the replies. I'm shopping for a Toro now.
JustDave

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