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Project Builds (non Car) Here is an area where you can show / discuss other non car builds be they bikes, caravans, boats, BBQ's or whatever.

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Old 27-06-2022, 07:33 PM   #571
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Default Re: DFB's Greenthumb Project

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I'm sure some people will not use it all for firewood.
I have kept pieces to make some stools, my wife likes me to screw on coasters on some, decent size out door table tops etc, I'll rub them down and varnish or oil pieces.
She even didn't want to take the trunk to ground, its left standing around 3mtrs, she wants to make a feature. Well more like get me to work on her "vision"

dont varnish them, unless you want to strip it off and redo every couple of years.
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Old 29-06-2022, 09:10 PM   #572
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New Mower Day!!!!



I’m very lucky that I can write off my mower addiction as a business expense. The “reason” for this machine is to have a reliable light duty mower for the cooler months of the year. The un-official "reason"? I just wanted a mower with electric start. However, this was not a straightforward purchase.

As always, I am king of the spec’s, I have no problem cross checking multiple models in an attempt to make a well-informed purchase. When I go to buy, I know EXACTLY what I want and usually know more than the salesman. I looked at Masport, Bushranger and Victa’s offering for electric start lawn mowers.

Bushrangers offering is a smaller 18’’ cut with the 150cc Briggs engine. This chassis is the old Rover deck, one I have had before and did not like. It’s smaller cut reduces efficiency too.

https://bushrangerpe.com.au/browse-p...ey-start-mower



Masport offered both 140cc 18” and 150cc 19” steel chassis models. I have had a 19’’ Masport before and was less than impressed with the lack of durability. The 190cc 850-Series Briggs engine was transplanted to another mower in the end and the deck was basically scrap after less than a year. As such, I did not feel very confident about another Masport.

https://masport.com.au/outdoor-garde...rated-instart-
https://masport.com.au/outdoor-garde...combo-instart-





12-18 months ago, Victa offered several models with electric start, however they now only sell a 140cc 18’’ model. I could probably deal with the smaller cut, but not the small engine……. I like a big donk!

https://www.victa.com/au/en_au/produ...ter-mower.html



I’m a Victa boy to the core though, they just seem to have given me the best results over the years. This then led me to searching for those now discontinued models, in particular the Corvette 500 with the 150cc engine, and the Mustang 750iS with the larger 163cc engine.





My local dealer who I have purchased many, many machines from over the years could not get me one, nor was there any future models in the pipeline according to the Victa rep. I then started trawling the internet and found a dealer offering both for sale. Knowing these were discontinued lines, I emailed the seller asking if these were in stock and was told yes, both were in stock. Great! I placed my order for a Corvette 500 with In-Start and waited. And waited, and waited…………………

I ended up phoning the seller a week later asking what was the statis of my order, only to be told that the mower was on back order. To me, that sounded very strange, how can a product be on back order when it’s been discontinued? More to the point, I was told hours earlier that it was in stock! An email or phone call would have been helpful. I then changed my order to the Mustang 750iS and was told an updated invoice would be emailed to me so I could pay the balance and organise shipping. Again, I waited, and waited and waited. Five days after that, I phoned and asked what is going on with my order, only to be told that he forgot to send out the email, and that he would get right on it. Another day passed, where I finally received a phone call and an updated invoice. I paid the balance and the dam thing arrived today, 23 days after the order was placed.

I can’t understand how a business can set up a very comprehensive website for the sale of high dollar items and not have appropriate inventory systems or provide adequate communication to customers. Just not good enough. It's also against consumer law to represent a product for sale when it's not in stock or will never be in stock. I would name and shame, but I want to make sure my new mower is running correctly before that, so if you want to know what business sold me this machine, shoot me a PM.

So, the machine itself. Because this was an online sale, I needed to do the final assembly which included putting the catcher together, attaching the throttle lever and adding oil and fuel.













As mentioned, this is a 19’’ cut Victa Mustang 750 with In-Start. The Mustang name has generally referred to alloy chassis models and represents the upper end of the Victa line-up. This is the fifth one of these I have had, all with varying engines- 190cc B&S Quantum XTS 60, 161cc B&S DOV, 190cc B&S OHV 850-Series, 160cc Powertorque 2-Stroke and now this 163cc B&S 750iS.

This is the first new-generation OHV Briggs and Stratton engine I have owned. This series is different to the 190cc 850 OHV engines, think of those as “Big Blocks”, and different again to the 161cc DOV engines. These newer OHV models are made in 125cc, 140cc, 150cc and 163cc and replaced the ancient side-valve engines in 148cc, 158cc and 190cc capacities.



The key feature for me is the electric start, or what Briggs and Stratton refer to as In-Start. Electric start mowers of old had bulky batteries sitting at the back of the deck, adding weight and were an inconvenience to charge. Briggs and Stratton’s solution is pretty clever, integrating a standard looking lithium-ion battery into the starter housing on top of the engine. A full charge takes an hour and will offer a claimed 75 starts, a ten-minute charge offering 20 starts. Each mower fitted with one of these In-Start engines comes with one 10.8V 1.45Ah battery and a matching charger. Starting is as simple as flipping the cover and pushing the button.











While my initial choice was for the Corvette with it’s lighter steel chassis, this Mustang has a more powerful engine and more rugged alloy base without much compromise in weight. It also comes with a mulching blade disk and plug, not that I will be using it as such.

Now the question is, do I go ahead and polish and wax it?
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Old 29-06-2022, 09:41 PM   #573
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Now the question is, do I go ahead and polish and wax it?
We all know the answer.
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Old 29-06-2022, 09:45 PM   #574
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We all know the answer.
Collinte 845, P&S Bead Maker or perhaps some Carpro Reload?
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Old 29-06-2022, 09:50 PM   #575
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Default Re: DFB's Greenthumb Project

As it happens, it was new mower day for me too today...



My old 2 stroke victa needs a new carby. I keep pulling it apart and getting it going and 3 uses later it's unreliable again. Got sick of it. It died part way through mowing yesterday so I got the sads and went shopping.
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Old 29-06-2022, 10:00 PM   #576
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As it happens, it was new mower day for me too today...

image

My old 2 stroke victa needs a new carby. I keep pulling it apart and getting it going and 3 uses later it's unreliable again. Got sick of it. It died part way through mowing yesterday so I got the sads and went shopping.
Very nice, well chosen. Would love to hear your thoughts on the Makita when you can.

Victa 2-Strokes are cranky things, when they are running, nothing will stop them. But they can be very touchy to fueling and air leaks. They are worth a bit on the used market.
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Old 29-06-2022, 10:21 PM   #577
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Very nice, well chosen. Would love to hear your thoughts on the Makita when you can.

Victa 2-Strokes are cranky things, when they are running, nothing will stop them. But they can be very touchy to fueling and air leaks. They are worth a bit on the used market.
Yes, the victa was getting to me. Getting new bits would have been cheaper but I've never bought a new mower before. I'll get the victa running and sell it on gumtree. Should get $100 easy.

A new rubber seal and fuel chamber cover (whatever its called) could be all it needs.

As for the makita, my brother in bris has the same one (actually found out after I bought mine) and says it works fine for him but have to mow regularly. If grass gets long it may need mowing taller first then stepping down. I have more grass than him but he still has 2 bars left on battery after mowing. I'd guess his area to be around 2-300m2. Maybe more.
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Old 29-06-2022, 10:24 PM   #578
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Yes, the victa was getting to me. Getting new bits would have been cheaper but I've never bought a new mower before. I'll get the victa running and sell it on gumtree. Should get $100 easy.

A new rubber seal and fuel chamber cover (whatever its called) could be all it needs.

As for the makita, my brother in bris has the same one (actually found out after I bought mine) and says it works fine for him but have to mow regularly. If grass gets long it may need mowing taller first then stepping down. I have more grass than him but he still has 2 bars left on battery after mowing. I'd guess his area to be around 2-300m2. Maybe more.
There are people who know those Victa Powertorque's like the back of their hands and still have trouble getting them to run correctly.

I would get it running again and keep it as a backup for a while until you know the capabilities of your new Makita.
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Old 30-06-2022, 05:49 PM   #579
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So, nice day today so time to test the new toy. It has 2 modes. Full noise at 3300rpm and quiet (eco) mode at 2500 rpm. I went full noise. Haven't mowed for a bit and reviews were a bit patchy as to how it goes through wet grass, and manual says best to start high and step down gradually.
Not me, straight down to similar level as what I would normally do. Got to test it straight in the deep end. Actually, to be fair it was probably slightly longer than I would do with the victa normally but it is winter. The height gauge doesn't quite match up. 4 holes from the lowest setting on the Victa is about setting 2 on the makita. I mowed at setting 3.

Got a bit excited and was halfway in before getting a 'before' shot.



Handled like a boss. Pretty torquey and impressive. That winter weed clover stuff would have had the victa changing tone at least, but not this guy.



Still battery left. The left one was dropping to one light but jumped to 2 as I took the photo. Mowing regularly it would easily handle front and rear lawns I reckon (rear is about 200m2). My brother has the same and uses his on the quiet setting.

Battery life was my biggest concern and it passed with flying colours for my situation. Came with rapid charger so 30min break if I happen to run out of battery.



The next 3 pics are a bit of a negative. It runs a straight blade, which a lot do now, even with the petrol ones. Not sure if that is a factor but it doesn't push the clippings into the catcher that well. In its defence, the grass was wet. The victa catcher goes in a lot further, with the catcher having a lip that slots in to the mower housing. This one, the bottom of the catcher just rests against the outside. Not a massive deal but it is a negative nonetheless.






Another negative is you have to hold a lever in the whole time while you mow. Like a dead man switch. It's just a safety thing and you get used to it but if you were doing a large area you might want to think about rigging up something to hold it for you.

Now I have to let the grass dry so I can clean it back up. Overall I think it's great. It was expensive but worth it I think.
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Old 30-06-2022, 06:21 PM   #580
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Default Re: DFB's Greenthumb Project

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Another negative is you have to hold a lever in the whole time while you mow. Like a dead man switch. It's just a safety thing and you get used to it but if you were doing a large area you might want to think about rigging up something to hold it for you.

Now I have to let the grass dry so I can clean it back up. Overall I think it's great. It was expensive but worth it I think.
Same thing with my EGO. But as it's self propelled you have to hold (squeeze) the engine bar and push one of the green drive buttons (with your thumb) on the back of the handle.

It's fine when you get used to it.
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Old 30-06-2022, 07:10 PM   #581
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So, nice day today so time to test the new toy. It has 2 modes. Full noise at 3300rpm and quiet (eco) mode at 2500 rpm. I went full noise. Haven't mowed for a bit and reviews were a bit patchy as to how it goes through wet grass, and manual says best to start high and step down gradually.
Not me, straight down to similar level as what I would normally do. Got to test it straight in the deep end. Actually, to be fair it was probably slightly longer than I would do with the victa normally but it is winter. The height gauge doesn't quite match up. 4 holes from the lowest setting on the Victa is about setting 2 on the makita. I mowed at setting 3.

Got a bit excited and was halfway in before getting a 'before' shot.

image

Handled like a boss. Pretty torquey and impressive. That winter weed clover stuff would have had the victa changing tone at least, but not this guy.

image

Still battery left. The left one was dropping to one light but jumped to 2 as I took the photo. Mowing regularly it would easily handle front and rear lawns I reckon (rear is about 200m2). My brother has the same and uses his on the quiet setting.

Battery life was my biggest concern and it passed with flying colours for my situation. Came with rapid charger so 30min break if I happen to run out of battery.

image

The next 3 pics are a bit of a negative. It runs a straight blade, which a lot do now, even with the petrol ones. Not sure if that is a factor but it doesn't push the clippings into the catcher that well. In its defence, the grass was wet. The victa catcher goes in a lot further, with the catcher having a lip that slots in to the mower housing. This one, the bottom of the catcher just rests against the outside. Not a massive deal but it is a negative nonetheless.
image

image

image

Another negative is you have to hold a lever in the whole time while you mow. Like a dead man switch. It's just a safety thing and you get used to it but if you were doing a large area you might want to think about rigging up something to hold it for you.

Now I have to let the grass dry so I can clean it back up. Overall I think it's great. It was expensive but worth it I think.
Thanks for the info, nice review. The constant torque from electric mowers is something I have heard a few times now and the lack of stall certainly seems to be a big bonus of these motors.

As for the catching, wet clover will challenge even the most efficient catching mowers. The bar blade will not be helping in this regard. These are pretty common on American mowers that are mostly used for mulching and not catching. I think you will have better luck in dryer conditions and regular cuts.

In terms of the dead-man handle, I had one of those on my self-propelled Rover. A feature like that would not be a big deal on an electric machine that starts and stops with no effort. On a petrol engine mower, re-starting every time the catcher needs emptying got old real quick. A trip to the hardware store solved that issue pretty quickly with a cheap spring-loaded clamp...........







Thankfully, this is the only machine I have had an engine brake on. I probably wouldn't do this on your Makita though, it would just eat up more battery.
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Old 30-06-2022, 07:20 PM   #582
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Default Re: DFB's Greenthumb Project

I was thinking something like a bag drawstring with the quick release thingamajig...

At least the spring tension on the safety handle isn't real high but it is still a bit annoying to hold it in. Probably get used to it in time.

Not sure what size catcher is on my victa but the makita says it's 50L and only needed emptying once during the front mow. Seemed a good size.

Catcher on that bushranger in the last pic is massive.
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Old 30-06-2022, 07:57 PM   #583
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I was thinking something like a bag drawstring with the quick release thingamajig...

At least the spring tension on the safety handle isn't real high but it is still a bit annoying to hold it in. Probably get used to it in time.

Not sure what size catcher is on my victa but the makita says it's 50L and only needed emptying once during the front mow. Seemed a good size.

Catcher on that bushranger in the last pic is massive.
RANT TIME!!

I mentioned in my post yesterday about having the patience to sift through specs and data. Let just say I have a been very frequently using Victa's website for two decades now. For a long time now, their website has been absolutely terrible. I would love to speak the people responsible and give a few helpful suggestions.

https://www.victa.com/au/en_au/home.html

There is no consistency to each product listing, some will be missing specs that are quoted on other models. Quite often the picture will be outdated and/or represent the wrong engine. For example, there was a time where certain 2-Stoke engine models were pictured with a Briggs and Stratton. I have also found on a couple of occasions that there are hidden products, as in they are available to order but not actually listed on the website. My Mulchmaster with the big 190cc engine for example. They are also very selective in what specs they publish to make convenient comparisons almost impossible.

Where I'm leading to with this rant is Victa do not quote catcher volume. So while I would love to give you a figure to compare to your new mower, I can't because Victa don't want you to. END RANT!


I'm assuming you have this catcher -



Victa have used that catcher for a very long time now, decades in fact, and there is a reason for that. Firstly, yes this is a smaller than average catcher, however it is one the best designs on the market. Again, I keep coming back to Victa's for a few key reasons, the catcher efficiency is one of them.

As for the Bushranger's catcher, that company does actually publish a figure for that. At 70 litres, it is massive................and massively heavy when full.





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Old 30-06-2022, 08:57 PM   #584
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I'm assuming you have this catcher -
Nah, my victa is old. It's a 'bitsa' as well. Mustang chassis in blue but engine is from something else. Bought for $100 on gumtree. The one before that I still have in bits and it's a lime green colour.

So yeah, been dealing with old mowers for many years which is why I didn't bother with the repairs this time.
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Old 30-06-2022, 09:09 PM   #585
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Nah, my victa is old. It's a 'bitsa' as well. Mustang chassis in blue but engine is from something else. Bought for $100 on gumtree. The one before that I still have in bits and it's a lime green colour.

So yeah, been dealing with old mowers for many years which is why I didn't bother with the repairs this time.
You well deserved a new one then!
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Old 03-07-2022, 05:55 PM   #586
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A busy roster of work today, a new machine always makes me more enthusiastic about getting out and into it.

Of course, the first task of the day was absolutely vital....................







Last pic of it being clean...........



Nothing cuts a lawn like a brand new mower!





Very happy with it, much lighter than I was expecting to be honest. Some of that comes from using the 52kg Hulk that is the Bushranger. Engine doesn't rev hard enough for my liking, although it does have good torque. I will run the engine in, change the oil and then give it a little "tune up".
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Old 03-07-2022, 08:56 PM   #587
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Feeling nostalgic about mowers at the moment. At about age 11 or 12, I became obsessed with mowing lawns and therefore mowers in general. I have no idea why though. My recollection of this time was pushing my Grandfathers green Victa around his yard.

When I was allowed to mow the lawns for the first time, it was with a red 1980’s Morrison. This machine was bought second hand in the late 80’s when my parents bought their first home. It had the 148cc 3.5hp Briggs and Stratton engine. These engines would go on to be made until the mid 2010's, the 1980's ones did a lot of damage to the B&S brand reputation. They were temperamentally hard to start owing to no choke and no primer bulbs and had loose tolerances which necessitated thick SAE30 oil.



This mower sported a number of brummy fixes over the years. Dad had no interest in mowing the grass, let alone fixing the mower properly. At one stage, the muffler was held on with wire and the deck height adjuster rod welded back into place, fixing it at the one position for the rest of its life. I remember getting a huge fright when the dodgy muffler started to throw blue flames. I got a new muffler after that!

Then, one day the engine started to blow huge clouds of blue smoke. Rather than buy a new mower, dad decided we needed to rebuild the engine. No one would do that these days, the engine or the whole machine would be scrapped. Dad and I then stripped the engine down, cleaned it and then put it back together again with new piston rings and gaskets. Except after that, it would not start. Dad would then take the thing in to be fixed. The diagnosis was the diaphragm in the carb had perished and would not pump fuel. Once the carb was refurbished, the engine ran strong and smoke free.

I mention all of that because rebuilding that little engine taught me how engines worked and really fuelled my passion for all things internal combustion. I learnt about cleaning air filters, changing oil and checking the spark plug. I even removed the cylinder head to de-coke it a few years later.

The old Morrison would get occasional use until I left it to sit as a sentimental keepsake until a few years ago. Cleaning out the back shed, I needed the room and decided it was time to send it to the tip. Thinking back, that mower really painted a clear picture of how different I am to my father, as in I am very particular and detail focused and he being very casual and come-as-you-are.

Next – “My” first lawn mower.
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Old 03-07-2022, 10:38 PM   #588
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Default Re: DFB's Greenthumb Project

Chapter Two – Victa Corvette Series 400.



My wish of having a fully functioning lawn mower came true on my 14th birthday. I’m guessing a lawn mower is not what most 14 year old boys want for their birthday. I rode my bike all over town looking at what I wanted, the internet was not a thing in the household in those days. I decided I wanted a Victa, because that’s what my grandfather had, and I wanted the Briggs and Stratton Sprint 375 engine. Don’t ask me why I wanted that combination, I guess it made sense to my 14 year old brain at the time. I still have the brochures I collected at the time.

The Sprint 375 was a slightly more powerful version of the 148cc engine with 3.75hp vs 3.5hp. Back then, mower engines were quoted in hp which made way more sense than the stupid torque grades they have now. Being an entry level mower, this model only had the oval disk with two blades and it lacked a mid-level handle bar brace.



This mower would go on to launch my mowing business at age 15. Over the years, it has done a power of work, probably more than it was designed to do. The first casualty was a deck shroud, which was riveted back into place at a local shop, the throttle cable and lever were replaced at the same time. A few years ago, I replaced the axle bushes and clips. All that in addition to oil changes, plugs and air filters.





This machine was retired from regular use in 2005 after ramping up my business. I needed something with more power and a wider cut to improve my efficiency. I would however use it here and there as a backup or on smaller jobs.



The poor engine is pretty worn out though, blowing a light haze of oil. I sort of remember the day I wounded it. Last job of a very long day, tired and wanting to just do this job and go home. The grass at this property was longer than expected, tall and thick Kikuyu is a beast to bring under control. I only had the Corvette with me that day so just pushed on with it. I pushed a bit harder than the engine could be expected to handle considering its age, laboring it too much. It was never the same again.

I have kept this mower for sentimental reasons. It represents how driven I was at that age. No contractor would choose something so small and underpowered, but I made the most of what I had and let my work ethic and finished results speak for themselves. I use it every now and then, keeping the oil topped up to it and not expecting too much from it.



Next – Grandpa's Gift.
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Old 04-07-2022, 10:08 AM   #589
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Default Re: DFB's Greenthumb Project

hey prydey, purely on the looks department the makita's always get my eye when at Bunnings, very flashy they are.
Good your happy with it, hey tend to that clover invation please
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Old 04-07-2022, 11:14 AM   #590
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Default Re: DFB's Greenthumb Project

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hey tend to that clover invation please
Any recommendations on what to use? I don't have any gardening knowledge. I mow and pull a few weeds. My old man was a bit of a green thumb and I regret not showing more of an interest when younger.
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Old 04-07-2022, 11:26 AM   #591
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Clover is one of those legume plants, like beans and lucerne or alfalfa. It will draw nitrogen from the air and stores it in its roots. As the roots die back, the nitrogen is replenished into the soil but where there is sufficient nitrogen in your soil to keep your lawn healthy, the clover struggles to survive. In most cases when you see clover growing in your lawn it means that there isn’t enough nitrogen. Lawns love nitrogen, while clover hates it, so increasing the fertiliser on your lawn is a must.
Early spring I always spread Shirleys #17 on my lawns, healthy strong lawn keeps the weeds down.
The patchs now and then that I see clover or other weeds commence I get this kind of product - easy attach to the hose and spray where needed.
https://www.google.com/url?q=https:/...WRLMuJ-OwKhLJW
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Old 04-07-2022, 11:42 AM   #592
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Default Re: DFB's Greenthumb Project

Nice quick response, thanks. Very helpful.
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Old 04-07-2022, 11:52 AM   #593
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haha I should be working might I add
I'm sure DFB will add far more than I did and different products most likely.
Main thing is feed the lawns early spring, easy job, that will build strong lawn and reduce heaps of weeds trying to grow.
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Old 04-07-2022, 12:27 PM   #594
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I see clover as a pasture plant - food, not a weed. The bees love it.
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Old 04-07-2022, 04:52 PM   #595
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Clover is one of those legume plants, like beans and lucerne or alfalfa. It will draw nitrogen from the air and stores it in its roots. As the roots die back, the nitrogen is replenished into the soil but where there is sufficient nitrogen in your soil to keep your lawn healthy, the clover struggles to survive. In most cases when you see clover growing in your lawn it means that there isn’t enough nitrogen. Lawns love nitrogen, while clover hates it, so increasing the fertiliser on your lawn is a must.
Early spring I always spread Shirleys #17 on my lawns, healthy strong lawn keeps the weeds down.
The patchs now and then that I see clover or other weeds commence I get this kind of product - easy attach to the hose and spray where needed.
https://www.google.com/url?q=https:/...WRLMuJ-OwKhLJW
Very well explained. A couple of points I will add.

Clover is often also an indicator of too much moisture, something a bit hard to control during the cooler months.

As mentioned, feed the lawn in spring or once the days are consistently warmish. Don't bother feeding now as it won't offer much effect or benefit during winter.

Avoid "Weed-n-Feed" type products. These simply burn away broad leaf weeds (clover inc) and leave the root system behind, allowing the weed to recover and return. Good stratagy for selling more product, hey?

Using a broad-leaf weed killer will kill the whole plant. Which you use will be dependent on what type of lawn you have. For most situations Couch, Kikuyu and Fescue are treated differently to Buffalo. So, if you have a predominance of Buffalo, make sure to choose an appropriate product.

We sell Searls products, so that is what I know. For general lawn weed control, look at Bindi and Clover Killer or Lawnweeder.

https://www.searlesgardening.com.au/...or-lawns-500ml
https://www.searlesgardening.com.au/...n-weeder-200ml

For Buffalo, use Buffalo Master.

https://www.searlesgardening.com.au/...edkiller-200ml

Only trouble with that will be actually getting some. A lot of these have been on back-order for months now. Another Covid casualty.
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Old 04-07-2022, 06:22 PM   #596
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Very well explained. A couple of points I will add.

Clover is often also an indicator of too much moisture, something a bit hard to control during the cooler months.

As mentioned, feed the lawn in spring or once the days are consistently warmish. Don't bother feeding now as it won't offer much effect or benefit during winter.

Avoid "Weed-n-Feed" type products. These simply burn away broad leaf weeds (clover inc) and leave the root system behind, allowing the weed to recover and return. Good stratagy for selling more product, hey?

Using a broad-leaf weed killer will kill the whole plant. Which you use will be dependent on what type of lawn you have. For most situations Couch, Kikuyu and Fescue are treated differently to Buffalo. So, if you have a predominance of Buffalo, make sure to choose an appropriate product.

We sell Searls products, so that is what I know. For general lawn weed control, look at Bindi and Clover Killer or Lawnweeder.

https://www.searlesgardening.com.au/...or-lawns-500ml
https://www.searlesgardening.com.au/...n-weeder-200ml

For Buffalo, use Buffalo Master.

https://www.searlesgardening.com.au/...edkiller-200ml

Only trouble with that will be actually getting some. A lot of these have been on back-order for months now. Another Covid casualty.
Just adding to this post.

Applying these selective weed killers, I generally mix them up in a separate weed sprayer to avoid cross-contamination. Make sure the lawn is hydrated beforehand, but without water/moisture on the foliage. Then spot spray the areas that need to be treated. You may need to do a follow up spray in 7 days to ensure a good kill.
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Old 04-07-2022, 07:11 PM   #597
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Default Re: DFB's Greenthumb Project

Cheers DFB and agree Searls is a good product used it before.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
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Old 04-07-2022, 08:20 PM   #598
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Chapter Two – Supplemental.

These are a couple of pics of the Victa brochure from that era.







You can see this mower cost $420 back in the day. A similarly powered model today would be the $599 Corvette 200 or de-contented Classic Cut offered at Bunnings for $449. That $479 would not include assembly, oil and initial inspection and start up.

https://www.victa.com/au/en_au/produ...vette-200.html
https://www.bunnings.com.au/victa-18...mower_p0079521
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Old 04-07-2022, 08:45 PM   #599
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Chapter Three – Victa VC Mustang.





I can’t remember the exact year here, but it was the very early 2000’s, perhaps even 1999. When my grandfather decided to replace his well-used Victa, he replaced it with a Rover Quick Start, similar to the one below -





That mower was a shift for him, moving from a 2-Stroke to a 158cc 4-Stoke Briggs and Stratton, dubbed the Quattro 40 with 40 referring to 4hp. My grandfather would go on to give me his old mower, clearly he knew what it meant to me.





This mower, a 1970’s Victa VC Mustang fitted with the 160cc engine. Victa in those days made three different configurations of their 2-Stroke engine, the 125cc, the 160cc and the 170cc Twin cylinder. These engines are different to the engines made from the early 80’s onwards, featuring a full crank shaft compared to the mono-block half crank “Powertorque” motors. The older full-crank engines revved much, much harder than the later ones too.





The mower was very much a reflection of my grandparent’s era, working with what you had and fixing things along the way. The wheels were screwed back together, the catcher patched up a few times as well.





This is another sentimental keepsake. I used it occasionally after I got it but has sat largely un-used for a very long time now. It still ran strong, but I don’t trust it from a safety perspective. And every time I use or hear a Victa 2-Stroke, it reminds me of him.
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Old 04-07-2022, 10:45 PM   #600
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Chapter Four – Getting Serious.

In mid 2006, my business was growing and I took on a large group of high-end customers. In fact, they were one of the richest families in the country. In many ways, I was intimidated by them and pretty much continued to be up until I decided to move on at the end of 2020. As such, I made sure I did everything to perfection. Up until this point, I was using my trusty little red Victa, but I could see that I was going to need something better, something more powerful and something more professional.

Once again, I knew exactly what I wanted. The choice was another Victa, my focus lasered in on the new alloy decked Razor.



This was a range of mowers with a new design 19 inch alloy deck, one that is still made today with a few modifications. The Razor was unique in having a rather different handle design. The mounting points to the deck were familiar, however the handle angled in and rose up before looping out and around to for the upper handlebar. Uniquely, it had a molded plastic holder for a drink bottle. I absolutely loved that idea; on long hot day’s it was very handy to have some refreshment so easily accessible. I don’t think I have used a mower as ergonomic to maneuver as this Victa with that handle. Sadly, Victa phased it out a while ago, along with the nifty drink bottle holder.



The Razor could be had with three engines, the 6hp VSX 2-Stoke, the Honda GCV160 and the Briggs & Stratton Quantum XTS60. I went with the 190cc B&S, which like the 2-Stroke, had a snorkel air filter. I remember the first lawn I mowed with that machine and was immediately impressed with the big increase in grunt it had compared to my little red Victa.





I paid $650 for this mower after shopping around. A similar mower now would be around $1000.

Victa would later go on to make these in a blue and grey colour scheme -







I would run this mower for nearly 2.5 years. It did plenty of work, to the point I had to replace the rear wheels. I remember showing the guy at the mower shop the worn-out wheels, his response was that I had “done some miles”. It owed me nothing in the end, I traded it in on something newer after it started to get a touch smoky. This is a mower I wish I had kept; I know you can’t keep them all, but these machines were not made in the sort of numbers that their cheaper brothers were and I rarely see them for sale on the used market.

Next – Moving on up.
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