Further Possible Mower Handle Adjustments and Reducing Length

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  • Updated 4 years ago
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  • (Edited)
After thoroughly going over and comparing against gas mowers I think there are a couple aspects in addition to some already mentioned (brushless, self-propelled) that could improve this mower significantly.

It looks like the design language is more akin to a racecar where it is long and swept back. Unfortunately with the handle this makes it trickier to maneuver in smaller places and leads to much more trimmer work than regular gas mower.  Because the handle has to be extended to pretty much full length for it to start, it prevents it from being nimble in tight corners.  In addition, it doesn't go high enough, another hole in the adjuster on either side would do wonders.

The front wheels and deck extend further forward from the shaft compared to more traditional mowers which when cutting towards an object and stopping (say a wall) the blade doesn't get close enough.  There looks to be enough room to bring the wheels closer back towards the cutting area and shortening the whole deck.  To counteract this however, there needs to be more forward weight balance which is lacks down-force on the front wheels compared to other mowers. I think it would be easiest to just move the battery pack forward a couple inches.

I think both of these points would make it a much more appealing product.
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Prae

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Posted 5 years ago

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Jennifer VandeWater, Community Manager

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Official Response
Thanks for all of the feedback.  We will be sure to keep that in mind for future designs.  We appreciate it!
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eric

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I've read comments at the HD site that seems to suggest that some customers are able to operate the mower with the handle in the lower position. I thought an EGO rep may have also suggested the same there as well. My mower will power off if I lower the handle. For me, a lower handle position is preferred.
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Jennifer VandeWater, Community Manager

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Eric, we think we're getting lost in the terminology.  There's a difference between lowered handle and extended handle.  The mower won't operate without the handles fully extended and the handle locking clamps locked down.  However, there are two heights you can adjust the handles to.  There's a higher and lower setting.  The quick-adjust lever is on the left side of the mower, above the rear wheel, behind the deck adjustment handle. Does this help?  We included a picture below that shows the quick-adjust lever we are referring to.

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eric

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You are correct, it is a terminology mixup. I'm referring to extending(or not) the handle. I (would)prefer to not extend it.
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Stan T

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Jennifer,

this feedback helped me. I had some trouble understanding handle adjustments. Just got my mower from HD last night..

Thanks!

Stan
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SCDC, Champion

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Maybe they are mistaken and actually talking about the height of the handle verses the pull out length.  I cannot run mine unless it is fully extended either.  Would be interesting to find out.
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Jennifer VandeWater, Community Manager

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All EGO Power+ mowers in the market cannot be operated without the handles fully extended.  That was part of the design.  We have heard some feedback asking for what you've mentioned (shorter handles, without being fully extended) and we're looking into that for a possible change in the future.
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Susan J.

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um.., then why have a shorter extension available???


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Blue Angel, Champion

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Susan, having the handles extended all the way is a safety feature. I assume it's there to ensure no one could operate the mower while having their feet too close to the blade.

The request is for a handle that has more than one position where the handle can lock into place and the mower can operate. This would effectively shorten the handle as well as lowering it, making it easier to manoever in tight spaces as well as offering a lower position for shorter people.
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David

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I bought an EGO mower last week, and it's great - save for the handle being too long - making it less comfortable / ergonomic (for me) to use and more difficult to maneuver around tight spaces. I"m sure having that handle at that long extended length is probably a safety feature; but it's the only thing about the mower that I don't like. I'm sure several owners have found a way to operate the mower with the handle in the lowest position. Has anyone here modified their mower for it to operate without extending the handle?
(Edited)
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Blue Angel, Champion

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David, while I'm sure it's possible, I doubt the Ego staff would condone a modification to one of the safety systems on the mower.

As you can see from the above conversation, the request is a popular one and I'm sure they will take it into consideration if/when a new mower design is released.
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Gary

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Yes, I agree.  Modification of a safety feature is a bad idea.
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David

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Thanks for the quick reply, though waiting for a new model to come out really isn't a solution for my brand new, 1-week old mower. IMHO, the length of the handle is ridiculous and also causes a weak joint at the clamp (when the handle is fully extended). That's probably why they needed to design a new clamp and send out the replacement to customers. As far as safety is concerned, I suppose the remote possibility exists that a customer could fold up the mower to store it with the battery in place where the key and handle switch could inadvertently get tripped and start the motor. I"m sure that's why they make customers extend the handle before using it. For me (and I'm sure 99% of other owners), I just remove the battery and place it in the charger before storing the mower.

Google is our friend. I'll keep searching for a way to do the modification on my own. For me, (being 5'9") the non-extended handle length is ergonomically perfect, and would allow me to zip around tight spaces with ease.
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David Cline

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My mower has to be one of the first ones that were produced, and I've used it for a year and a half, constantly lifting the front wheels to pivot around turns, without having had a single issue at the joint (or anywhere) on the handle.

I think there was possibly a production issue at one point with some of the clips not staying closed, but I haven't heard of any handles bending or breaking.

At 6'5" I think the Ego handle is the most comfortable to hold of any mower (or stroller, utility cart, push toy, etc) that I've ever used. Is the lower angle not low enough or something? My wife is 5'3" and said it was comfortable for her to push. I really don't understand the desire for a shorter handle length.

From a safety perspective, perhaps a future version could require being slid completely in prior to folding to a storage position, disabling power only when fully in rather than enabling power only when fully out.
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David

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The handle hasn't bent or otherwise broken, but after a week of ownership; it's clear that the extended position of the handle is much less rigid then it is when retracted. After the second use, I've had the handle clips release and the handle slide forward - which shuts off the motor. Not a great design there. I do understand that EGO has been good about sending out replacement clips to their customers.

Pivoting around turns isn't the problem - it's the length of the handle that gets in the way in tight spaces. Sure, i can adjust the angle of the handle lower but that just makes it that makes the overall length even longer and harder to manage in those spaces (for me).

I'm not trying to upset current owners, or dissuade anyone from buying this mower. It really is a good overall package but with a minor design issue (in my opinion) that makes this mower fall a little short of expectations. The EGO mower replaces my "Old Reliable" 1990 Lawn Boy 2-stroke mower. My first impression is that the EGO mower is a little cheaply made for our disposable society but again; I haven't bought a lawn mower in 25 years. All lawnmowers these days probably have a measure of price-point engineering and planned obsolescence built into them.
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SCDC, Champion

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Wow, you said Lawn Boy.  I remember when those were the 1 pull, cream of the crop mower.  I loved mine!  Even they aren't like they use to be.  Thanks for reminding me of how old I am.

I do think that in order to meet consumer price points, everything is becoming disposable, and I don't like that.  It feel strongly that the EGO equipment that I've invested in, has 5 to 10 years in it.  My John Deere riding mower was the only mower to last 10 years for me.  My Honda 800.00 gas mower lasted 3 years.  I think the climate and environment play into it. Summers here are very hot, very dry.  Makes for some dusty/messy mowing.  With a gas mower, the intake eats up that dirty air and the dust gets into every joint.  So of course it won't last as long without a lot of maintenance. 

The EGO still has some kinks in the armor, but over all it has a good shell and motor.  If the rest hold up, it will have turned out to be the best move I've made.  God I love the quiet!

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SCDC, Champion

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Mr. Kline,

Mine was manufactured in 2013 (on the sticker).  I only had to replace the clamps.  It's been rock solid.

Though I am all for a better blade!

One odd thing though.  I got 53 minutes of run time yesterday.  What in the heck?  I usually get about 40.  I've also been on vacation a week.  So the grass was thicker and more tall.  It should have run shorter.  It was also close to 100 degrees!

I use the quick charger and don't do anything special with my batteries but store in my house which stays at 72 degrees.

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David Cline

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Interesting you say that about the run time. Last time I mowed I didn't have time to make narrower passes and slow down over the thick patches like I normally do to reduce the number of overload warnings and possible shut-offs. The orange light would flash for a second and then turn green again, the run time seemed a few minutes longer than usual, and it didn't shut off once.

Perhaps there is a sweet spot for resistance that actually performs better than zero load?
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David

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@SCDC

Exactly. Other than LED light bulbs, is there a product you can buy at HD that is designed to last 25 years? Durable Goods aren't very "durable" anymore, and manufacturers are counting on the consumer mindset that we're OK with replacing, or upgrading to the shiny new model every few years. The "solution" to the handle issue is to simply wait until version 2.0 of the mower arrives. Perhaps I'm just old school, but that isn't acceptable to me. Lawn mowers have officially become disposable technology - like iPhones & gaming consoles.

My first thought when I unboxed the mower was "this thing will never last 25 years", which was confirmed by the flimsy handle clamp that failed on the mower's second use. I then realized EGO has a 5-year warranty on the mower, so I have a better understanding of the amount of lifespan engineered into the product. This isn't a slant against this particular manufacturer, only the affirmation that Durable Goods have become an oxymoron.
(Edited)
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Ken, Champion

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Meanwhile, all the conventional gas mowers I looked at before buying the EGO only had two-year warranties.
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SCDC, Champion

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I really like your thinking and mentality about the "disposable society".  Gotta have the new iPhone every year, who knows how many millions of iPhone 4's are in the landfill, when they are perfectly good. 

Have you shopped washing machines lately?  Not 1 single brand has a reliable set of reviews past 5 years.  All of these new top and front loaders are fizzling out at 3 to 5 years.  Maytag use to mean something.  Now it's a whirlpool.  I'm giving LG a try, my bet is it'll flood the house in 4 years.  :(. 

I think the only thing that's reliable is my 2001 Buick park avenue.  What a tank!  15 years and runs quieter, better ride, its a moving couch.  Gets better mileage than my new Kia Sportage. 

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David Cline

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Ironically, our poorly rated refurbished GE W&D are still going strong after 7 years.

I think it's mostly the highly touted "quality" brands that realize they can't maintain market share unless they lower their prices to compete with the cheaper products from their competitors. But that means cutting profit margin or cost, and they have bloated overhead costs to cover. So direct costs like R&D and materials get slashed to avoid making the harder cuts.

In my opinion, any company trying to break into a market or establish a new product is always going to offer better value and quality for your buck. They have more to prove and don't have all the corporate bloat to pay for. Hence why I'd bet on a $500 mower from Ego over one from Honda any day!
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Blue Angel, Champion

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I do have to agree with David that a shorter setting on the handle would come in handy.

I have a spot in my backyard where a narrow strip of grass borders my deck and I need to make a 45° right turn. The handle length makes that turn impossible without first raising the handle which is impractical.

An extra length setting with the handle half extended would be perfect in my opinion and would also accommodate shorter folk who would prefer a lower handle height.
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SCDC, Champion

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I'll chime in to say that the handle needs more settings. 
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Blue Angel, Champion

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Reading my post again, I should have added that the strip of grass in question is between my deck and fence, and the handle hits the fence when attempting to make the turn.
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David

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@SCDC

Way off topic here...but I made a "revelation" two years ago that the last year's model phone was good enough when making the decision to buy nearly everything.

Last year, I dropped my Samsung Note 2 on a client's floor and shattered it. I'd probably still be using it if not for the cost to replace the glass. The choice at the time was $400 for the new Samsung Note 4, or getting the "old" Samsung Note 3 for free (with 2-year subscription renewal). Apple & Samsung are marketing geniuses. They have successfully brainwashed their lemmings to line up in front of stores to buy the new shiny rectangle the minute it gets released. Such a fine line between "need" and "want" these days.
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Blue Angel, Champion

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"...I dropped my Samsung Note 2 on a client's floor and shattered it..."

I have to ask, given the size of the Note, was it the phone or the floor that shattered?!?

Can you tell I have an iPhone? :-)

BTW, must have iP6s, or whatever they call it... must have it... must have it... as I foam at the mouth mindlessly surfing for Apple rumors. Hey, that's what I've been trained to do, just following orders, probably given to me subliminally through contact with my iPhone.

"Maybe it'll come in yellow!"

Mind
Blown
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David

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Apple fans used to laugh at the size of my phone until HQ "Invented" the revolutionary IP6+. It's now become cool to walk around with a big phone. In 1990, I used to think that my Motorola 8000M was a cool phone. Was it a cell phone, or a device you'd use to call in an airstrike?

No offense intended. Apple makes great devices. My point is that last year's device isn't necessarily as obsolete as Apple (or Samsung) would like everyone to believe.
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Blue Angel, Champion

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Haha, no offense taken! My buddy has a Note (2 I think) and we're always bugging each other.

My dad used to rock a Motorola 8000, he was in real-estate in the late 80's - early 90's:



More disposable conspiracy theory; he claimed that phone worked better than the newer digital phones and kept it alive until the service providers no longer supported them! Might have been something to do with the mega power output frying brain cells too, but hey, it was a cool phone!!!
(Edited)
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Jennifer VandeWater, Community Manager

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We love reading these discussions.  Sometimes everyone goes off on a tangent but it's easily brought back with the retro phone picture!  :)  We still don't have a handle redesign but we are watching this thread and continuing to relay your feedback to our design team.
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SCDC, Champion

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Just give it an iHandle and everyone will be happy regardless of length.  :)   Thanks Jennifer.
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Gastro Enteritis

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You know, hypothetically (or as in my case, actually) - if your clips are working correctly there is no real need for the little safety pins that go through the fully extended and fully retracted position holes (they are just there as an extra safety feature in case the brakes slip) so if the kill switch actuator cam is removed from the plastic T joint on the right hand side of the mower (which is very easily and reversibly done) then you can have "infinite" adjustability with a working mower.  Granted this will allow you to start the mower with the handle at its very shortest so the operator needs to be conscious of the dangers, but it does allow for a more convenient working length and the ability to access awkward areas in the garden.

Also of course, the key and dead man lever are still required to start the motor, so still relatively safe
 
If you are one of the lucky ones who have needed replacement clips then you can modify your old ones only, thus giving you the ability to revert the mower to stock standard should the need arise.

Just saying...