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Thread: Robot lawnmower

  1. #1
    Craftsman Chewitt13's Avatar
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    Robot lawnmower

    10 days and why didn’t I do this years ago


  2. #2
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    More info please! Looking gooood

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  3. #3
    Craftsman Chewitt13's Avatar
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    A bit of a technology gamble following how great our robot hoover is, took about 3hrs to fit 300m of boundary wire but it pretty cool, cuts 8hrs per day(4hrs actual cutting) and garden has never looked so good

  4. #4
    Master Skier's Avatar
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    Two years and not regretting it for a minute.



    And this is what it looked like on the day the first robotic mower (Husqvarna 430X) was installed. The lawn had just been scarified which was a hell of a job - a day and a half to remove all the debris.

    Last edited by Skier; 15th June 2019 at 23:19.

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by Chewitt13 View Post
    A bit of a technology gamble following how great our robot hoover is, took about 3hrs to fit 300m of boundary wire but it pretty cool, cuts 8hrs per day(4hrs actual cutting) and garden has never looked so good
    Nice, very nice. Is that one Flymo?

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  6. #6
    I am not joking when I say that our Automower has transformed my free time in the growing season. It was an uncontrollable mess of moss and now?.. I sit on the bench with a coffee watching my wee Husqvarna 105 do its thing. Simply amazing.

    My last, painful, rotary cut v's today, a year in.



    I had so much moss, I could only cut at max height with the self driven mower. This is how much moss I had AFTER cutting:


    In complete contrast, this is the back lawn today:


    My front lawn... ruined with the mower and moss. I tried with chemicals etc and it was a losing battle. This was my last cut a year ago:


    Today?.. the front lawn looks quite wonderful in my opinion!!


    Mower in question is a Husqvarna 105, the entry model capable of 600m2. I have separate lawns, unjoined, so fitted docking stations in both gardens. I simply lift the mower between them mid week.

  7. #7
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    SOLD!! That's an hour I can save most weekends. Although if it heats up like last year, the grass was all dried up so no mowing required

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  8. #8
    Master
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    For the bargain hunters the flymo 1200r is a rebadged husqvarna!

  9. #9
    Quote Originally Posted by cyrusir View Post
    For the bargain hunters the flymo 1200r is a rebadged husqvarna!
    There are many shared parts... But I've noticed some differences. The flymo has a plastic blade disc where the husqvarnas is metal. They are also rated differently for the m2 capability; 400m2 vs 600m2 I think.

    I have a spare husqvarna 105 that I bought for a bit of a project. It went for a swim in a river when new! It's been interesting to be able to open it up and see how it all works.

    The flymo looks identical as you say though. The blade carrier is the only thing I've spotted so far as being different.

    I would love to see inside a 1200r to see why it's half the price.
    Last edited by JohnnyE; 15th June 2019 at 14:28.

  10. #10
    Posting from my phone so this may not embed. Here is a look inside my spare Husqvarna 105 for those interested. More like a laptop in there than a mower! Despite looking clean... its dead. Main board got wet and is fried. Replacements are NOT cheap and need coded in by a dealer only. I'll be breaking it up for spares but it was worth it to get a spare docking station, 2 batteries and a mains transformer.

    Last edited by JohnnyE; 15th June 2019 at 14:25.

  11. #11
    Craftsman Chewitt13's Avatar
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    How long do you have it cutting per day?

  12. #12
    Quote Originally Posted by Chewitt13 View Post
    How long do you have it cutting per day?
    Right now, with the grass growing fast, 8 hour days. As said above though, that's roughly one hour cutting, one hour charging, resulting in 4 hours cutting per day. Bear in mind though, once the lawn is in shape, the mower has a VERY easy time of it. It simply shaves off a tiny amount daily.

    I also fitted a TP Link smart plug in the garage to the power supply. It means that if I know the weather is going to be REALLY bad, I can use my phone to kill the power to the dock before the working day. The mower will then stay put until the mains power comes back on. It will cut ok in the rain, but if its a really bad day, I'll keep it docked.
    Last edited by JohnnyE; 15th June 2019 at 14:45.

  13. #13
    Quote Originally Posted by JohnnyE View Post
    Posting from my phone so this may not embed. Here is a look inside my spare Husqvarna 105 for those interested. More like a laptop in there than a mower! Despite looking clean... its dead. Main board got wet and is fried. Replacements are NOT cheap and need coded in by a dealer only. I'll be breaking it up for spares but it was worth it to get a spare docking station, 2 batteries and a mains transformer.

    The husqvarna has a plastic cutting disc too, it has a separate metal skid plate over the top that is free to spin, that's what the metal bit is

  14. #14
    The one thing that puzzles me is the 400m2 vs 600m2 rating. Could just be a number change... A marketing thing. I can't see much else being different.

  15. #15
    Master
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    I’d love to have something like this but where I live it would be knicked in a day if I wasn’t sitting watching it, which sort of defeats the object really.

  16. #16
    Journeyman recaptured's Avatar
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    How does it handle avoiding dog poo ?


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  17. #17
    Quote Originally Posted by recaptured View Post
    How does it handle avoiding dog poo ?


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    It doesn't. I go pick any up before I send mine out, along with bones, toys and the occasional kids shoe. I also check the wife hasn't left anything low hanging on the washing line after a nasty incident with a duvet

  18. #18
    Master blackal's Avatar
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    Talking to a friend about his (Huskvarna) just yesterday, and he is a REAL convert. As above - he said it sorted out the moss within a year, presumably due to all the cuttings going back into the grass.

    Think he was around £2k for his. He even gets an alert on his phone if it is “in trouble”. Which includes it being interfered with.

  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by JohnnyE View Post
    Right now, with the grass growing fast, 8 hour days. As said above though, that's roughly one hour cutting, one hour charging, resulting in 4 hours cutting per day. Bear in mind though, once the lawn is in shape, the mower has a VERY easy time of it. It simply shaves off a tiny amount daily.

    I also fitted a TP Link smart plug in the garage to the power supply. It means that if I know the weather is going to be REALLY bad, I can use my phone to kill the power to the dock before the working day. The mower will then stay put until the mains power comes back on. It will cut ok in the rain, but if its a really bad day, I'll keep it docked.
    We went glamping near Leeds last yr and the site owner had a Huskvarna cutting 24 hours / day. It cut for a while, docked and charged then set off. He liked the robotic mowing as it cuts a tiny amount each time. In the past with his sit up on, he would cut the grass once a week. The cuttings would then go into all the pods causing a secondary job of sweeping them out.
    The fine cut the mower gives him, removes this plus in his words it frees up 3 hrs a week.

    Still can’t get over going for a pee at 3 am and seeing the bot complete with small headlight buzzing around the site.

  20. #20
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    Husqvarna is really the only choice for a robot. Their technology is further ahead, and they don't have to follow the boundary home.

    Just be careful as they don't suit every lawn, and they quote square meters covered based on 24 hour operation. So if you have 1000m2 of lawn you need the 1600m2 machine ie the 315x, not the 1000m2 one. Otherwise it will be overworked, the grass will get away from it and your battery will be fried in 2-3 years (£150).

    We've tried other makes but the fitters are always running back and forward with silly issues, we just stick with the Husqvarna now. Which is funny as they've totally been left behind on lawn tractors, obviously putting their time and effort into robotics.

  21. #21
    Given I am shortly about to move to a house with a 3/4 acre plot this has got me doing research hard...

    Though oft may mean I no longer have an excuse for a ride on toy...

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  22. #22
    Master
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    Quote Originally Posted by JohnnyE View Post
    The one thing that puzzles me is the 400m2 vs 600m2 rating. Could just be a number change... A marketing thing. I can't see much else being different.
    Either a firmware restriction or different battery capacity can’t be anything else but afaik they are identical !

    marketing at its best

  23. #23
    Quote Originally Posted by cyrusir View Post
    Either a firmware restriction or different battery capacity can’t be anything else but afaik they are identical !

    marketing at its best
    My 105 refuses to work more than 10 hours (I think!). I had it set to work 24/7 at the start of the season but it sat in the dock. Checked it.. to be told, "working day completed" or something like that.

    Definitely a software restriction... And of course, "dealer only" to gain access to the software to do any diagnostics.

  24. #24
    Master Skier's Avatar
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    If you go up the Husqvarna range you get full control and if you get an 'X' model i.e. a model that ends in an X e.g. 430X, you get the Automower Connect Module. If you then download the app, you can control almost everything from your phone and receive alerts if there's an issue. One of my mowers today warned me of a cutting disc imbalance which was due to an accumulation of wet grass clippings on the blades. I took the opportunity to change all 3 blades.
    Last edited by Skier; 15th June 2019 at 19:13.

  25. #25
    Craftsman Chewitt13's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Skier View Post
    If you go up the Husqvarna range you get full control and if you get an 'X' model i.e. a model that ends in an X e.g. 430X, you get the Automower Connect Module. If you then download the app, you can control almost everything from your phone and receive alerts if there's an issue. One of my mowers today warned me of a cutting disc imbalance which was due to an accumulation of wet grass clippings on the blades. I took the opportunity to change all 3 blades.
    How many do you have?

  26. #26
    Master blackal's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by JohnnyE View Post
    My 105 refuses to work more than 10 hours (I think!). I had it set to work 24/7 at the start of the season but it sat in the dock. Checked it.. to be told, "working day completed" or something like that.

    Definitely a software restriction... And of course, "dealer only" to gain access to the software to do any diagnostics.

    Might be a union-member or made in Liverpool?

  27. #27
    Master Skier's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Chewitt13 View Post
    How many do you have?
    I have two: a 430X (owned for 2 years) and a 315X (owned for 1 year). It was cheaper and easier to buy a second mower than to put in drop kerbs on either side of the driveway, landscape the lawns and cut a channel in the drive to bury wires. I did consider two docking stations and lifting the mower as required either side of the drive (as JohnnyE has done) but as I travel quite a bit it wasn't really practical for me.

    They are the greatest tools for freeing up time I have come across in years; 3hrs a week in my case and because they cut every day (if you want them to) the lawns look superb.

  28. #28
    Quote Originally Posted by Skier View Post
    I have two: a 430X (owned for 2 years) and a 315X (owned for 1 year). It was cheaper and easier to buy a second mower than to put in drop kerbs on either side of the driveway, landscape the lawns and cut a channel in the drive to bury wires. I did consider two docking stations and lifting the mower as required either side of the drive (as JohnnyE has done) but as I travel quite a bit it wasn't really practical for me.

    They are the greatest tools for freeing up time I have come across in years; 3hrs a week in my case and because they cut every day (if you want them to) the lawns look superb.
    They are great, surprised they're not more popular in the UK, big on the continent and gaining in popularity. Been made in the UK since 2006 and it took until 2017 to hit 1million made, now just 2 years later, about to hit 2mill

  29. #29
    Master Skier's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Brighty View Post
    They are great, surprised they're not more popular in the UK, big on the continent and gaining in popularity. Been made in the UK since 2006 and it took until 2017 to hit 1million made, now just 2 years later, about to hit 2mill
    My local dealership is struggling to keep up with demand and is considering taking on someone solely to undertake installations, fault-find, service in the Winter months etc.

    I was sceptical that they could perform as advertised reliably, hence I bought just one initially. I needn't have worried, they are simply amazing.

  30. #30
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    I take it you still have to edge the lawns manually?

    Also how much does the installation cost? I have three separate lawns areas with complex boundaries.

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  31. #31
    Never noticed them until I travelled in Sweden. Everywhere there.


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  32. #32
    Master Skier's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Integrale View Post
    I take it you still have to edge the lawns manually?

    Also how much does the installation cost? I have three separate lawns areas with complex boundaries.

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    It depends on the lawn edges. if they are at the same level as the adjacent path, drive etc. then you can place the boundary wire at the very edge to allow the mower to cut up to and beyond the lawn edge. In my case I have kerbs dropping from the lawns to the drive and so have to leave a margin that I cut manually - it takes minutes few. I also have two ponds and I allowed double the recommended distance from the edge of them to the boundary wire so I trim the lawn edges there manually too. One of my lawn areas is complex being very long and narrow in a large area with trees lining the drive. You simply lay the boundary wire to keep it simple and accept that you'll have to manually cut the edges. This picture shows the more complex lawn area to the right and this is from half way down the driveway.

    Oh, and the installation of the first mower was around £250. The second I did myself.


  33. #33
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    Thanks Skier.

    Helpful. 250 seems a bargain for all the faf of installation.

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  34. #34
    I installed mine myself. It took a load more pegs than was supplied but they're not expensive. The cable disappears after a few weeks under the mulch. It was good to be able to have the cable above ground so I could fine tune the areas that had been fitted a bit too close to kerb edges.

    On the flip side... As my deep moss disappeared, the cable needed adjusting as it sat proud on the grass that was now close cut. I had about half a dozen chopped cable sections and soon got handy at doing repairs! A buried cable (via paid installation) wouldnt have had this problem.

  35. #35
    I found installing mine a doddle, hardest bit is getting power out to the charger station. As said the wire migrates into the lawn and dissapears, I had a few spots where it popped up, but a few more pegs soon sorted it. Pro tip, at every corner, leave a little loop of spare wire, gives you some slack to pull through if you ever get a break in the wire and need to add a joiner.

  36. #36
    Master Skier's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Integrale View Post
    Thanks Skier.

    Helpful. 250 seems a bargain for all the faf of installation.

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    I agree. My solution to many issues: throw money at the problem!

  37. #37
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    Quote Originally Posted by Skier View Post
    It depends on the lawn edges. if they are at the same level as the adjacent path, drive etc. then you can place the boundary wire at the very edge to allow the mower to cut up to and beyond the lawn edge. In my case I have kerbs dropping from the lawns to the drive and so have to leave a margin that I cut manually - it takes minutes few. I also have two ponds and I allowed double the recommended distance from the edge of them to the boundary wire so I trim the lawn edges there manually too. One of my lawn areas is complex being very long and narrow in a large area with trees lining the drive. You simply lay the boundary wire to keep it simple and accept that you'll have to manually cut the edges. This picture shows the more complex lawn area to the right and this is from half way down the driveway.

    Oh, and the installation of the first mower was around £250. The second I did myself.

    Is this just your driveway?

  38. #38
    Quote Originally Posted by jaytip View Post
    Is this just your driveway?
    I was thinking the same- stunning

  39. #39
    Journeyman recaptured's Avatar
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    Always wanted a robot mower but I can see my kids tripping over the perimeter wire.


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  40. #40
    Quote Originally Posted by recaptured View Post
    Always wanted a robot mower but I can see my kids tripping over the perimeter wire.


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    The wire is either buried underground via professional installation, or pinned down DIY. Within a month, it's gone. The clippings form a new substrate over the top of it. Absolutely no chance of a trip hazard.

  41. #41
    Master
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    I did look at these last year and would love one but I have 4 separate non linked pieces of grass. One of them is over an acre and one of the others about half an acre. Just could make it work in the end, gutted......


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  42. #42
    Master Skier's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jaytip View Post
    Is this just your driveway?
    It is and as you may be able to make out I was part way through jet washing moss from the driveway - another hell of a job! Here's a shot from just in front of the house:



    And looking back at the house (note that this was taken just prior to the purchase of the second robotic mower and you can see the brown areas of grass from cutting just once a week:


  43. #43
    Grand Master Raffe's Avatar
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    ^^ Very nice.
    Who not knows how to hit the male on the hat should not hit at all.

  44. #44
    Journeyman recaptured's Avatar
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    Cool, if the perimeter wires are pinned down and no chance of a trip hazard then I might have to get one.


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  45. #45
    Does anyone have experience with Gardena mowers?

    My lawn area is just over 300 square meters so he Husqavarna 105 or garden 500 would be more than adequate.

    They’re both the same price but the garden has smart phone control which I would prefer - easier to programme etc.


    Just wanted to know how it compares against the Husqavarna?

  46. #46
    Quote Originally Posted by recaptured View Post
    Cool, if the perimeter wires are pinned down and no chance of a trip hazard then I might have to get one.


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    You can also use an edging tool and bury the wire down and a few inches.

  47. #47
    Quote Originally Posted by zanderpants View Post
    I did look at these last year and would love one but I have 4 separate non linked pieces of grass. One of them is over an acre and one of the others about half an acre. Just could make it work in the end, gutted......


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    They can travel between zones if you have a connecting path. Only needs about 2ft. Husqvarna UK on Instagram have some customer videos of mowers going between zones.

  48. #48
    Master
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    Quote Originally Posted by JohnnyE View Post
    They can travel between zones if you have a connecting path. Only needs about 2ft. Husqvarna UK on Instagram have some customer videos of mowers going between zones.
    They are connected by a gravel driveway. Might have a look and see if that would work.


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  49. #49
    Journeyman recaptured's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by eagletower View Post
    You can also use an edging tool and bury the wire down and a few inches.
    Top tip thanks


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  50. #50
    Quote Originally Posted by recaptured View Post
    Top tip thanks


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    A stubby hand saw works a treat too! A repairs I did, I cut a 1ft line and tramp the repair in.

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