Necessity? Bah. Laziness is the true mother of invention. Just ask Luis Medina, 36, an electrical engineer in Tarpon Springs, Florida, where the steamy summer days are ideal for growing grass, horrible for cutting it. Forced by his stringent neighborhood association to mow every week, Medina made a machine to ease his sweaty task: the Evatech RCLM2004S remote control lawnmower. â€Now I can kick back and relax in the shade,†Medina says. â€And laugh at the people who have to push their lawnmower.â€

Base Price: $2,200

Curb Weight: 115 lb.

Peak Power (gas engine): 6.5 hp

Top Speed: 8 mph

Fuel Economy: 4 acres/gallon

Remote Range: 2,000 feet

Units produced: 8


The Key to Leisure

The remote’s joystick controls speed and direction. Two AM channels let you switch frequencies should one be occupied by a neighbor’s 1/10-scale monster truck.

Division of Labor

Separating power sources for the blade and wheels means no transmission. âa‚¬12V, 280 amp battery starts the engine when signaled by the remote. It drives the wheels till the alternator gets up to speed. âa‚¬ 6.5 hp Briggs & Stratton engine turns the cutting blade and runs the alternator. The alternator powers the electric motors (which drive the wheels) and, of course, charges the battery.

One Smart Chopper

The brain comprises an AM receiver, microprocessors and a gyroscope. Three 20MHz microprocessors translate analog signals from the remote into digital values for speed and direction to control the rear wheels. The gyroscope senses if the mower runs off course and signals the microprocessors to redirect the wheels accordingly.

by Charles Maraia