OK, but Mulch/Bag control needs redesigning
Bought in April 2018 after much research. It performs very well in actually cutting grass (Buffalo and Kikuyu) and has lots of good features .... However, 2 things detract from it -
1) When the bag is over half full, the front of the mower tends to lift from the grass. You need to apply positive up-force to the handle to keep it on an even keel.
2) The Mulch/Bag control (aka clip director) does not go to full 100% bag nor full 100% Mulch but just wanders around in between with a LOT of slack in the control. I took it back to the dealer 6 months ago and they reckon they are all like that. !!!!!!!!!!!!.
Purchased in April 2018 at Hills District Farm Equipment for $1,199.00.
Relative ease of operation
Anyone contemplating this model should do some comparison research. Top of the line HRX21 - - - - with electric start, self propelled, bag or mulch clippings and clutch driven blades are an impressive array of features but with a couple of reservations. Labelled as assembled in the USA, that`s the closest you get to an import guarantee, given the various Honda videos and online adverts praising the neXite polymer base and claims of a limited lifetime warranty on all HRX units, don`t be misled by the promo`s, Honda Australia gives 2yr on all par...ts of the mower including the base. We chose this mower as the one offering the nearest to our requirements. Even though Honda has a reputation for reliable rope pull starting attained over time the electric start was viewed as essential for purely personal physical restriction reasons. In addition all other brand electric start walk behind/push mowers considered had the restriction of requiring the start battery to be removed for external charging, the Honda seems to be the only small engine with on board charging capability, plus uses a regular standard SLA battery readily accessible and easily sourced at end of life. The self propelled function is a clear winner, although we would have preferred front wheel drive the rear wheel propulsion is satisfactory, to be able to set speed was a considered requirement as not many others offer this. The bag/mulch director is the one disappointment on this mower, we find the mechanism is easily clogged, wet or dry and adjustment becomes almost impossible until the sliding section is cleaned. Mind you the owner manual clearly mentions this as a possibility. The clutch driven blades are the ultimate in safety, This is a very heavy mower powered by a large and somewhat thirsty engine, required of course to propel the machine on its solid base and drive the blades, considerable effort is needed to elevate the mower to clean underneath or tilt to drain engine oil, promotional material claims the base being non metallic won`t rust, that`s true but attention to cleaning blades clutch assembly and bag/mulch slider is still required for premium operation. Generally a satisfactory performer as it is quite a new experience compared to `bare bones` mowers. Leigh T.
Very nice machine! I do various of runs throughout my yard and it makes my lawn look mint everytime! I like the latch to dismount the excess grass and the capacity is also quite big which was what I was after. The motor inside has plenty of power and hasn't broken down within the time I have bought it (about 9 months ago). I recommend this mower to anyone who is after great performance at a reasonably good price with that reliability that many mowers do not offer!
Not happy Jan
Ok for the record I have 3 mowers and was a Honda fan so I decided to upgrade to the self propelled HRX 21. I have lawn all year round thanks to living in the tropics, so at times my lawn gets think. I mow regaruly weekly or more. But even mowing at a high cut and a very low travel speed the mower struggles to bag the clippings. I have probably the greenest lawn in the street and my lawn is usually the envy of most lawn nerds, I now have to half cut the lawn then cross mow to get the finish I was use to and taking a lot longer. I’m not a big fa...n of the small bag shute and obviously the new blade setup is not suited to think buffalo grass. Leaving clumps of clippings over my nice lawn wouldn’t be doing Honda any good advertising. I think this mower is more suited to the American market, maybe their grass jumps into the catcher.
I'm Lovin' It
This mower is great, no issues, plenty of power in the 190cc engine and starts 1st or 2nd pull. I've had this mower about 18 months, used for 250m2 flat lawn weekly, sometimes twice a week and the cut is great. I'd never go a non-self propelled mower after this. The variable speed settings makes it easy to get the right speed and the ability to have the engine and self propelled on while the blade is not spinning is exactly what i needed to get up my steep driveway. The composite deck is not a problem, i was slightly concerned at the start. My only concern is the fixed blade, if it hits anything I've read it destroys the engine/mower, if that happens the cost of replacing will hurt.
Gose well. Have only one esu. It seems to lock weels sometimes.
Mowes well. Starts just about first go only the weel locking is a real pain. When on a hill or sloppy ground
It gives you grief. But over all a good mower for the price. You just have too love Honda. It just keeps going. And serving. Well the air filtering system will its so clean. Too good. Cheers
Really nice mower
Just purchased one of these to replace a Proscape self propelled mower. Don't be put off by the composite base as opposed to steel or aluminium bases. The base on this is tough and stands up to punishment. The choice of 7 speeds makes mowing so much easier and the fact that it can also be pulled backwards while cutting (my old mower could not) makes things so much easier when getting into tight spaces. It starts instantaneously which my wife loves. It almost makes mowing the lawn fun.
A few refinements required.
Three improvements would make it great.
Individual wheel adjustments. Why? Front are easy to adjust but the rear are an absolute wrestling nightmare! A lot of skinned knuckles right there!
When the bag starts to get full, the rear end becomes too heavy. You have to put pressure on the handlebars to keep the front wheels on the ground.
The mulch/catcher adjustment jams with build up. Have to physically stop the mower, clean out and adjust. Can't do on the run unless you give the lever a good kick.
Im a mowing contractor and have been using Hondas for many years now. The 216 was very good but when the front wheel axle grommets wear you start getting an uneven cut.
I was very cautious about buying a plastic mower but when I saw Honda was providing excellent warranty conditions I was finally persuaded.
The individual wheel height adjustment gives much better stable even cut, I'm always impressed when I look back at the lawn I just cut. With careful adjustment to the mulcher control you can seriously reduce the amount of clippings withou...
21" of of cutting power
I have owned a lot of mowers in my time and as a lawn contractor by trade, I cannot go past the honda series. the 21" makes quick work of even the toughest lawns and doesn't skip a beat. I have tweaked the revs up to 3500 for a little more grunt to cut through the thick stuff as at factory it is set in the low 3000's which slows productivity. Overall these models are hard to beat and not many competitors come close
Very happy with this purchase. Feels solid. Love the fact that you don’t have to mix oil with petro. Powerfull enough and you will appreciate the large catch baskets. It’s quite heavy as it is however it’s feels like is not very well balance a specially when full of wet gras, it has tendency to easily go out of balance meaning front up.
- HRX217HYU (Recoil Start)
- Verified purchase
I was looking for the best wide cut lawn mower and was told by sales at Redcliffe Lawn Mowers that the GVC-190 was the big bad boy all the pro's use.
Since I was only mowing my clean LAWN that I hold so much pride in I went with the Honda self drive GVC-190 at a cost of over $1000.00.
Not happy with the service life of blades as they are soft (Not Heat Treated)
OK to manoeuvre and unlike some others is easier to push when required with drive diss engaged.
Easy to use but this is where the good stuff ends and my disappointment starts,
Easy to handle
I live on almost an acre block and it is a massive chore to mow the yard. I find this mower light weight and easy to start as the old one I would have to get my partner to start. Starts first go. I still hate mowing yet I enjoy using the new mower so not as much as a chore to have to mow the yard now. I love my partner for purchasing this. We sometimes argue over who gets to use it. He he.
I bought my hrx217 last August, It's my first honda for my business. Runs great and very light considering it's size. The only problem I have is I operate on the coast and the blades don't last long because of the sand. I asked the local dealer and they told me you can't get a conversion kit to use swing back blades.... so I made my own have been using it for about 2 weeks. The mower is even better now
This is a good mower for suburban lawns.
My problem arises because I ventured out from the lawn. This mower is designed for US conditions: rich soil, high rainfall, tall grass not so many rocks. Australia is not so kind. I've hit a rock and bent the crank shaft. Honda will not replace the engine in Australia, so this $1500 investment is now useless.Poor after sales service from Honda in this country.
Best mower I have ever had. It's an amazing machine. Starts first time every time and it's fairly easy to manuvore. The engine is huge with plenty of grunt. I would highly recommend this machine to anyone from weekend mower to contractor. The gearbox on these things are also fantastic.
I picked this mower up used (but only a year old) a few days ago and got to use it on one of my jobs yesterday. I must say Honda has definitely lived up to my expectations, and in many ways exceeded them! This mower is a dream come true compared to my old 19" Morrison and 16" Rockwell push mowers. The Honda is light, massive, powerful and fast (at times I was jogging to keep up with it!). The transmission is fantastic and I love the blade brake system. I have not played around with the Versamow function much yet but it looks great. Starting the...mower is very easy and I don't need to choke it which is great. One thing I really liked was the HUGE 88L catcher. I can mow so much more now without having to empty the catcher. This and the self-propelled function have cut my mowing time in half! Overall I am very impressed with this mower and I really look forward to using it again next weekend! :D
A quality mower, but not for everyone
I purchased a top-of-the-range Honda HRX217HYU a few months back, so I've now had time to give it a fair working out on my large lawn. I decided to replace my EGO Electric mower which was simply too underpowered for the job, and which lacked the battery capacity to cut such a large lawn area, around 1000m2.
I'm happy to say that the Honda is an overall excellent mower. It does a great job of getting through my tall grass, even when it's been damp throughout the Tassie winter. The mower starts pretty well, though not always on the first pull.... Once you get used to the speed control it works well and gives you a good range of speeds to choose from depending on how fast you want to walk. While the Honda is louder than my previous electric mower it's not overly noisy and I must admit to liking the distinctive "Honda" engine sound. The bag is quite large and so takes a lot of clippings before needing to be emptied, and the whole mower has a nice solid feel about it. The quality of the cut is excellent, though the weight of this mower leaves deepish tracks when the ground is damp. There are a few downsides however and these should be considered before you decide to buy. This machine is heavy and large and so despite it being self propelled, it's not the easiest machine to manoeuvre around tight spots. I dislike that one has to adjust the height of each wheel rather than a single height adjuster. I've also found the wheels slip on a mild slope if the grass is damp (about 20 degree slope), requiring the operator to push against the slip. I bought the self propelled model because I felt it would make the job easier, especially as I get older, but I'm not totally convinced it does. The weight of this mower, at least for me, partially offsets the benefit of the self propelled engine. Maybe it would have been just as easy (and cheaper) to buy one of the lighter non-self propelled Honda mowers. I feel this mower is best suited to large lawns, with minimal slope. Either way I'm happy I have a Honda because I feel they are the best quality mower on the market at present.
Top of the line
I own two of these for a lawn maintenance business. The nexite body definitely lives up to it's reputation. The cutting width makes quick work of even larger size jobs, and the inbuilt mulcher makes it easy to change on the spot. The variable speed control works a treat, as does the blade brake. If you want a top-quality mower, this is it! The ones I have are currently 1 year old and have cut hundreds of lawns. No mechanical issues as yet, just general maintenance. Beautiful machine.
The best is worth it
For anyone looking for a self propelled mower you simply won't find better than this. It is so flexible In regard to speed, cutting modes (rear discharge, bag or mulch, or combinations of these) with plenty of power. This enables the user to find a mowing mode that suits exactly the type of lawn, terrain and physical ability of the operator. These modes can be easily changed on the go as conditions change. A truly magnificent, safe machine with legendary Honda reliability. It may cost a little more than some others, but it is worth it.
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Questions & Answers
There are three self propelled versions, one has what looks like you use your thumbs to drive, another has a rotary knob selector in the middle and the last is a rod with a yellow button on it, which is the best to use?
The mower I purchased is the one with the yellow button on the lever. ( HRX217) That button is pushed in to engage the blade while the motor is running. The mower with the drive levers is the HRR216 and comes in 2 versions. One with a Blade brake and the other with an Engine brake. I am not familiar with a mower with a knob selector, unless you refer to the mulch selector lever (which has a green knob on the end of it) which is feature of the HRX 217 model. If it is a black knob, then that is the fuel tank cap on the HRU196 and 216 models. The latter are designed for the commercial market. Which is best? I guess that is a personal thing. None of these mowers are light, which is why I chose a self propelled version. As my wife will use it from time to time, I also went for the electric start as she is just not strong enough to pull start a mower engine.
Can you get gripper wheel treads, ie rubber and not the plastic ones provided. have been looking at reviews and have looked at this model at Honda dealer in Ballina, NSW and am keen to purchase. Only issue is I have a large lawn with sloppy sections
I would like to know the difference between the two honda motors, 160 and the 190 please?
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