Gas Powered Reel Mower – McLane 20-Inch 4.0 HP Honda Gas Powered Self-Propelled 7-Blade Front-Throw Reel Mower (with Grass Catcher) Review

Manufacturer: McLane

Cutting Width: 20 Inches

Manufacturer’s Warranty: 2 Years

List Price: $1280.95

Best Price: Click here for the best price.

Availability: Click here for availability.

If you have ever taken the time to browse our site, you already know that we are big fans of reel mowers.  You certainly don’t have to convince us that everyone with less than an acre of lawn should own one.

Before we get started, here is a quick video of the McLane Gas Powered Reel Mower. Be careful to note how great the grass looks on the left side of the screen when the mower gets turned around… it’s perfect putting green height.

 

Personally, since most reel mowers are people-powered (meaning most reel mowers do not use gas or electricity), I believe that reel mowers are the future of eco-friendly lawn care and a good start to being more environmentally accountable.

But, even if you are NOT a “tree hugger”, reel mowers have a benefit that not many people realize.  Reel mowers simply cut the grass better than rotary mowers.  Rotary mowers pull at the grass with suction while ripping and tearing at the grass over and over again, which leaves the grass damaged and susceptible to disease.

The Advantages of a Reel Mower

On the other hand reel mowers (by nature of their “interlocking blades” design) “snip” the grass like a pair of scissors.  This makes a nice clean cut without all of the suction, tearing and unnecessary damage to the lawn.  It’s healthier for the grass and simply looks better in general.

If you have ever played golf, you have already seen the beautiful results of a reel mower.  Most golf courses are maintained by large reel mower pulled by a large tractor.  Golf courses are usually judged on the beauty and health of the grass, therefore, using reel mowers is a no-brainer for maintaining those higher standards.

Also, real mowers cut the same blade of grass several times, turning it into tiny “spray” of confetti-like pieces.  These little pieces, if left in the lawn, decay much faster than the larger clipping from a traditional rotary blade.  This decaying plant-based organic matter releases nitrogen into the lawn and becomes natural fertilizer for the growing grass.

A side benefit, of course, is that leaving the small grass clippings in the lawn means that you do not have to dispose of the organic yard waste.  Half the U.S. (about 25 states) have passed laws banning the disposal of yard waste in public landfills.

Sometimes You Have to Use a Gas Powered Reel Mower

However, not everyone has a lawn suitable for a push powered reel mower.  Sometimes the lawn is just too big to mow without an engine (such as the previously used golf course example).  Or, the lawn could have steep inclines, making it difficult to walk up and impossible to mow.

There could also be health issues in which a person might not have the strength or stamina to push a non-powered reel mower, and they need something that not only has powered blades for cutting but also self-propelled.

The bottom line is that I am all for saving the environment, but not at all costs.  Sometimes it’s just not feasible to use a manual people-powered reel mower.  Sometimes you just have to use something with an engine.

Luckily, there is at least one option that combines the advantages of a reel mower with the ease and usability of a gas-powered rotary blade mower.  The McLane 20-Inch 4.0 HP Honda Gas Powered Self-Propelled 7-Blade Front-Throw Reel Mower is a reel mower that uses a 4 HP engine to do the dirty work.

The McLane 20-Inch 4.0 HP Honda Gas Powered Self-Propelled 7-Blade Front-Throw Reel Mower is the Best of Both Worlds

McLane 20-Inch 4.0 HP Honda Gas Powered Self-Propelled 7-Blade Front-Throw Reel Mower will be the envy of your lawn-conscious neighborhood.  In fact, ask any owner of a McLane Gas Powered Reel Mower and they will probably tell you that “It get’s borrowed a lot.”

The McLane company has been manufacturing lawn and garden equipment for over 60 years, and they have built an amazing reputation for producing well-built, durable and dependable machines that last decades.  I often consider the McLane brand the lesser-known John Deere.

Here is a breakdown of the features of the McLane 20-Inch 4.0 HP Honda Gas Powered Self-Propelled 7-Blade Front-Throw Reel Mower:

  • Reliable 4 Horsepower Honda Engine
  • Induction, Heat-Treated Reel
  • Completely Self-Propelled
  • Includes a High Density Polyethylene Grass Catcher
  • Touch-a-Matic Engine Clutch Control
  • Cutting Height Ranges From 0.25 Inch to 1.25 Inches with Single Lever Adjustment
  • Relatively Quite – Thanks to Low-Tone Muffler
  • All Steel Ball Bearings on All Wheels and Reels
  • Belt and Chain Drive
  • Easy Spin Recoil Starter
  • Operating Controls are Engineered for Ease of Operation
  • Exclusive Grass Diverter Fins

Constructed of solid steel and weighing in at 150 pounds, the McLane 20-Inch 4.0 HP Honda Gas Powered Self-Propelled 7-Blade Front-Throw Reel Mower not one of those “El Cheapo” lawn mowers.  The McLane is built to last.

“I have purchased this only 3 months ago and used it at least twice monthly and I am very happy with it. I love the golf course green type finish I get and so enjoyed it I was tempted to offer to mow some of the other neighborhood lawns…

Click Here to Read The Rest of This Consumer Review…

The McLane 20-Inch 4.0 HP Honda Gas Powered Self-Propelled 7-Blade Front-Throw Reel Mower uses a high-powered 4.0 Horse Power Honda engine.  If you know anything about engines, you already know that Honda is world renowned for reliability and superior fuel efficiency.  In fact, the reason why Honda engines are often used in marine engines is because they are more likely to keep working… even in harsh (and sometimes dirty or salty) aquatic conditions.

The McLane 20-Inch 4.0 HP Honda Gas Powered Self-Propelled 7-Blade Front-Throw Reel Mower is also self-propelled.  This means that it pulls itself along with very little effort from you.  Although she still prefers me to mow her lawn, my 90 year old grandmother could easily use this mower.

The McLane Gas Powered Reel Mower’s “High Angle Bed Knife” Design

One of the best things about the McLane Gas Powered Reel Mower is a feature that is usually not even advertised:  The Exclusive “High Angle Bed Knife” design.  The bed knife in most reel mowers lay a little more flat and simply “floats” over the grass, while the McLane Gas Powered Reel Mower has a sharper angle to their bed knife that gently lifts up the grass before cutting.  By setting up the grass in such a way, it ensures that every blade gets clipped.

“But I need a Grass Catcher!”

Yes, I know.  Some people refuse to use any mower without a grass catcher.

Maybe it’s allergies, or maybe it’s the idea of having to rake up clumpy piles of grass clippings.

The McLane 20-Inch 4.0 HP Honda Gas Powered Self-Propelled 7-Blade Front-Throw Reel Mower has you covered on both of those.

First of all, the McLane Gas Powered Reel Mower doesn’t use a rotary blade system, which means that it doesn’t suck up the grass and then launch it into the air.  Less grass in the air means that you breathe in less of it and therefore isn’t as bad for allergy sufferers.

Secondly, the clumpy piles of grass clippings (that you are probably expecting with any mower) are much less likely with a reel mower in general.  The nature of a reel mower is such that interlocking blades clip the grass multiple times, which creates a fine “spray” of clippings that go down into the grass.  The only time I have seen grass clumps is if I try to mow the lawn that is both wet and a little longer than usual… otherwise, no grass clumps.

But, for those who still are not convinced, the McLane 20-Inch 4.0 HP Honda Gas Powered Self-Propelled 7-Blade Front-Throw Reel Mower comes with a large, high-quality, lightweight grass catcher that attaches to the front of the unit (not to the engine).

Some say the grass catcher on the McLane Gas Powered Reel Mower is clunky and obtrusive, I did not get that at all.  When we test mowers, we typically just make a pretty wide berth around the obstacles and then come back around with a Black and Decker “Grass Hog” String Trimmer.  So, I guess we are already a little used to keeping our distance from fences, walls and hedges… as we get better results that way.

The McLane Gas Powered Reel Mower is Not Just For Putting Greens

Some people are under the impression that have to own your own personal golf putting green in order to necessitate a reel mower.  To me, that somehow implies that if you don’t have a putting green then you don’t really care about your lawn.  Doesn’t that just sound absurd?  You don’t have to own your own putting green to want a nice looking lawn, do you?

But, the McLane Gas Powered Reel Mower not for everyone.

Unfortunately, because of its higher-than-average price tag, the McLane Gas Powered Reel Mower is typically over the budget of most families.

However, if people added up how much money they have spent on lawn mowers (and lawn mower engine repairs) in the past 10 to 15 years, and then considered the quality of the McLane Gas Powered Reel Mower (which usually lasts at least 10 to 15 years with general maintenance), they would quickly see that the McLane 20-Inch 4.0 HP Honda Gas Powered Self-Propelled 7-Blade Front-Throw Reel Mower is an INVESTMENT and not an expense.

The McLane Gas Powered Reel Mower is only for those who care about their lawn and the way it looks.

“I purchased my McLane Reel mower several years ago at an estate sale. It had been used on a huge lawn of turf grass (Bermuda).  The yard had the appearance of a golf course. The mower is the envy of the neighborhood, as it’s self propelled wheels push through my St. Augustine grass with precision and ease.  The front mounted grass catcher (an option worth purchasing) seems bulky and in the way, but is not.  This is a professional machine in every sense of the word…

Click Here to Read The Rest of This Consumer Review…

Hi I'm Brad, I hope you enjoyed reading this. Please leave a comment in the box below to let me know what you thought, or use the buttons to share this on Facebook, Twitter or Google.
We have some great information coming up in the future so don't forget to subscribe to our site so we can let you know when it's live.



6 Responses to Gas Powered Reel Mower – McLane 20-Inch 4.0 HP Honda Gas Powered Self-Propelled 7-Blade Front-Throw Reel Mower (with Grass Catcher) Review

  1. Chuck Danby says:

    I own one of these, and I have to say that it’s the best option out there for guys (and gals) who have putting greens. I use it on the rest of my lawn with a higher setting. My only complaint is the price, but considering that I’ve had mine for close to 5 years now with absolutely zero problems, I’d say that the $1000+ price is more than justified. Just my $0.02 for you, pal.

  2. Jesse says:

    That’s hilarious. My dad actually owns this mower to maintain the putting greens at the little 9 hole golf course in his subdivision. I have never used it but I have seen it sitting in his garage when I go over.

    • Brad says:

      Jesse, the McLane 4.0 is like a dream. If you have your own putting green, it’s a no-brainer. You should try it out sometime… even though it will probably be more than a little bit louder than your Great States 815-18.

  3. Bryan says:

    Some folks say it is easily put out of alignment? Is this true?? Will it cut grass at a higher level?? Say 2″?

    • Brad says:

      Thanks for the question Bryan. We haven’t had any problems with alignment on our McLane gas mower. Runs like a champ. As far as height adjustment goes, there is less flexibility there. This mower only goes up to 1.25 inches. I hope this answers your question.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

*

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>