IIRC Flymo went for 2-strokes because one of the original selling
points was being able to mow steep banks with the machine suspended
on a rope (H&S, what H&S) where a splash-lubricated 4-stroke might
Tony Bryer SDA UK 'Software to build on' http://www.sda.co.uk
Yes little 2-strokes are less worried by inclines and big (diesel)
ones have forced lubrication.
I know one firm I worked for had a contract planting shrubs on a
motorway embankment, though I was not involved with it. They were
using a small, pedestrian controlled, wheeled auger to make the
shallow pits and crumble the soil. This had a B&S 4 stroke engine and
it did eventually seize because at the angle the oil wasn't being
distributed by the splash system.
I wouldn't say that with any certainty.
garden 4 strokes are not optimised for fuel efficiency at all.
In general 2-strokes are used because they are lighter - stuff that
doesn't have wheel on in effect.
As others have said, a Flymo uses quite a lot of its power just to
hover: a self-propelled mower might use well under half a horsepower to
turn a cutting cylinder, perhaps a little more for rotary cutters.
As a very, very rough guide, look at the rated power of the engine. For
every horsepower, it will use about a pint of petrol an hour when
working flat out, but it won't be anything like flat out in practice.
So a typical 3.5hp pushed mower might use, say, 1 pint /hour, and a
larger self-propelled one, with perhaps a 5hp engine, say 3 pints/hour.
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