I put my Mantis tiller in the shop one last time before I throw the damn
thing away. It never has worked very well; maybe a new carburator will
help, I dunno.
I'm thinking about getting a Honda FG100 tiller, but is it any better
than a Mantis? It's gotta start easier, but how well does it work once
you get it started? The one I looked at at Home Depot feels about 10
pounds heavier than the Mantis, which I think is a good thing. I was
tempted to buy one today.
Has anyone here used both a Mantis and a Honda FG100 and compared them?
Are there any other small tillers you can recommend that are just a
little bit larger than these two? Something about 35 or 40 pounds with
a 2 or 2.5 HP 4-cycle engine and a carrying handle would be about right...
I rented a Mantis several times and hated it, btw, and then realized it
would be a lot more economical to own one. I researched, and bought the
Honda. It is wonderful, starts on the first pull (unlike the Mantis) runs
on straight gas, digs deep, doesn't bounce out of the ground. I highly
recommend it! I use it several times a year. I even use it to start post
holes & dig holes for large plants/trees..
Never used a Mantis, but I have a FG100. Aside from the warning about
causing cancer or some such in California, it works well.
When I was shopping around, the only other 4-cycle tiller in the same
size range I came upon was a Sears Craftsman. I went with the Honda,
because for the same price, I got an aerator blade attachment (but I
think will go with core aeration in the future). Edging, digging, and
dethatching attachments are also available. (The edging attachment seems
kind of crazy to me, the regular tines seem to dig pretty well and the
dethatcher is priced out of my gourd.)
I don't know if the Sears model can use different attachments.
This was 1-2 years ago.
I'm not worried about that cuz I don't live in California.
I bought a FG100 Friday night and tried it out yesterday. It starts
easily and works like the Mantis is supposed to (but never did even when
it was new.) I use it without the drag-bar or the wheels, and I like
the extra weight -- it doesn't jump around as much as the Mantis, and it
will dig down without having to pull it backwards. It even does a
pretty good job of tilling under tough weeds. I haven't tried it in
sod, but I don't need it for that.
It might be a little heavy for Grandma to carry around by the top
handle, but that's why it has transport wheels (a nice touch, btw)
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