American Lawn Mower Company 1204-14 Review

14-Inch 4-Blade Push Reel Lawn Mower, Red


Final Score

4.3 / 5 from 13412 users

American Lawn Mower Company 1204-14 | Tools Official
American Lawn Mower Company 1204-14 | Tools Official
American Lawn Mower Company 1204-14 | Tools Official


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We spent 9 hours reading reviews from customers and experts. In summary, here's what users think:

6 reasons to buy

  • The American Lawn Mower Company 1204-14 doesn't require gas or electricity, eliminating the need to handle fuel, contend with fumes, or worry about electrical outlets. (44 reviews)

    • “Another huge plus is you save on gas here, because this requires no gas.”

    • “First of all, I love that this mower doesn't require gas or electricity. No fumes, pretty quiet.”

    • “Plus not needing gas or oil is a huge plus.”

    • “The greatest thing about this mower is that it isn't a gas guzzling, pollution spewing, noise making machine! There's no more gas or oil to purchase”

    • “No more buying gas, no more struggling to pull on the cord hard enough to turn the mower on, and no more complicated wire-pulling to turn it off.”

    • “No gas smell, no inconvenience.”

    • “Forget having to spend extra on gas, oil, or new battery packs. This mower is fueled solely by the mitochondria (the powerhouse of the cell).”

    • “It's nice not having to mess with gasoline or oil, or batteries or gods forbid an electric cord (which would just get run over and ruined).”

    • “I don't want to store gas or worry about a battery dying.”

    • “Uses no gas or electricity!”

  • Assembling the mower is easy, doesn't need any special tools, and can be done fast, usually in just a few minutes. (34 reviews)

    • “It’s super easy to put together, no crazy hand or wrist strength required”

    • “It was extremely easy to assemble.”

    • “Super easy to assemble, had it unboxed and put together in about 10 minutes.”

    • “It was super easy to assemble and it only took me a couple of minutes to adjust the height for which I wanted the grass to be cut at.”

    • “He put it together and the rest is history.”

    • “It arrived quickly after ordering and was easy to assemble.”

    • “Pretty easy to put together.”

    • “Assembly was super easy, it took me roughly 20 minutes or so to put together.”

  • This mower is quieter than those that run on gas, so you can use it anytime without bothering your neighbors. (25 reviews)

    • “Quiet. I can cut my grass anytime of the day now and don't have to worry about waking up my 1 year old when I cut in the evening.”

    • “The lack of noise is a major plus. Last year while mowing my two littles managed to wiggle out the side gate and I didn't hear them over the mower running.”

    • “The greatest thing about this mower is that it isn't a gas guzzling, pollution spewing, noise making machine!”

    • “It's not silent, but it's also not the deafening roar of a gas mower. If I had to describe the sound, I'd say it's a whooshing sound, and much much quieter than a gas mower.”

    • “This mower makes hardly any noise. It may squeak if you let it get rusty, but that's about it. I can now stealth-mow at 2 a.m.”

    • “The blades are quiet, so we could mow at 5 in the morning if need be and the neighbors wouldn't be disturbed.”

    • “The noise level is about as loud as our vacuum, too.”

    • “I can cut the grass at 5 a.m. quietly to avoid the hottest/most humid/most miserable part of the summer days;”

    • “Much quieter than a mower....don't mind doing it super early it won't wake the neighborhood.”

    • “This machine is whisper quiet”

  • Reviews mention that the blades are very sharp, providing a clean and efficient cut of the grass. (19 reviews)

    • “The blades are also sharper than my previous one”

    • “I was careful doing that because, as many people have pointed out, the blades are very sharp.”

    • “Cuts grass much cleaner than a rotary blade. My grass already looks healthier after one cut.”

    • “The cut is crisp, clean, and precise.”

    • “the blades are pre-sharpened, the reel turns easily and smoothly, and the mower cuts cleanly”

    • “cuts grass like a dream”

    • “It cuts like a dream.”

    • “The grass has a very clean scissor cut look”

    • “The blades are still sharp, and there is no rust that I can see.”

    • “it slides through grass like butter.”

  • The blades of the American Lawn Mower Company 1204-14 can be sharpened, enhancing its longevity and ensuring optimal performance. (9 reviews)

    • “you can sharpen these with sharpening compound by removing one wheel and cranking the mechanism backwards”

    • “As far as sharpening the blades go. Check with the nearest golf courses. They often use these and can do it.”

    • “I know I will have to sharpen the blades at some point”

    • “I get it sharpened once a year at a local hardware store, which is probably not a must but I take it in every spring anyway.”

    • “I would also take the advice the manual gives about inspecting the mower prior to using it and applying something like WD40 on the blades after each use to keep the blades sharp for the next mow.”

    • “I do feel I should mention that I have yet to sharpen the blades, though, and it's possible that a sharpening would help. Unsure.”

    • “I can't speak on the blades with sharpening because I didn't need to do that yet but I'll figure it out!”

    • “Also maybe sharpening the blades may help.”

    • “you need to sharpen the blades often if you have thick grass”

  • Some reviews mention that the mower seem to be better than the older models, with stronger back wheels for stability. (1 review)

    • “The new mower seems like they addressed that issue; the rear stabilizer wheel looks much tougher.”

2 reasons not to buy

  • The American Lawn Mower Company 1204-14 can experience sudden stops if sticks, leaves, or small objects jam its blades. When this occurs, it can be particularly frustrating as you will need to interrupt your lawn mowing to clear the obstruction from the blades. (35 reviews)

    • “About the only downside is that twigs and leaves and other small objects can get caught in the blades and will stop this. Full stop.”

    • “Some people complained about it jamming on sticks.”

    • “Do be very cautious about twigs and stones or rocks, though. You wouldn't want to muck up these blades, and if anything will do that, it would be those two things.”

    • “They will stop you dead in your tracks if they catch the blades just right.”

    • “it doesn't cut through twigs and branches very well. It will jam up if it catches a twig or branch, which can be annoying if there are lots of twigs or branches in your yard.”

    • “But it is not suitable when there are some tree leaves on the grass since leaves will clog the blade and stop it.”

    • “You’re definitely going to want to clear the yard of any sticks or debris, as they tend to stop the blade pretty easily.”

    • “Even a small twig, barely visible to the naked eye can jam this thing up”

    • “The only negative is stick, even small ones will stop it dead in its tracks.”

    • “A stick will make it stop so just know it doesn’t work if the area isn’t cleared.”

  • The mower struggles with grass over 3 inches tall, and it's suggested not to cut such lengths in one go. Overgrown lawns may require multiple passes or a different mower. (33 reviews)

    • “REALLY struggles cutting anything above 3 inches. Though you really shouldn't be taking that much off in a single cut anyway.”

    • “Wouldn't recommend it for cutting that all the time, but in spurts it works really well on taller grass. Just be patient and go at it in sections and it will handle the cut quite well.”

    • “Don’t let the grass grow too tall between mowings.”

    • “The real problem is that it doesn't seem to cut well at all. ... you have to go over each section several times to make it look tidy.”

    • “It takes multiple passes before you get a nice even-looking cut all around. ... It will not cut grass lying flat on the ground and also has trouble cutting grass higher than 6 inches (15 cm).”

    • “But even with patches of grass three feet tall the blades still cut a significant amount of that, and once we do get the mess tamed, I'm confident that we won't have any trouble keeping up with the lawn afterwards.”

    • “if your lawn has gotten long (it happens) or is the slightest bit damp, whether from humidity or sprinklers, it tends to skid over the grass instead of mowing it. So you'll have to go over those spots 2-3x each to get them short enough.”

    • “Keep in mind, if you let your lawn get too long, mowing it with this mower will be TORTURE. You must stay on top of things with this type of mower.”

    • “If you have a very overgrown lawn, well, borrow someone else’s heavy duty lawnmower the first time and then use this one often to keep it trimmed.”

Bottom Line

The American Lawn Mower Company 1204-14 is a hassle-free, push reel mower ideal for the hands-on worker. No gas or electricity needed, it's eco-friendly and simple to assemble without extra tools. It operates quietly, so you won't disturb the neighborhood while keeping your lawn tidy. With sharp blades that can be re-sharpened, it's built to last and outperform older models. However, watch out for jams from debris and be prepared to make a few passes on taller grass.


BrandAmerican Lawn Mower Company
Cutting Width (in)14 inch
Max Cutting Height1.75"
Min Cutting Height0.5"
Power SourceManual
CategoryReel Mowers
Weight19 lbs

Video Reviews

Special Features

  • Eco-Friendly Design: It's good for the planet because it doesn't pollute the air like gas mowers do.
  • Quiet Operation: You can mow your lawn without making a lot of noise, so you won't bother your neighbors.
  • Low Maintenance: You don't have to mess with it much. Just sharpen the blades once in a while, like every few years.
  • Precision Cutting with 4-Blade Reel: It cuts your grass nice and clean, like scissors, so your yard looks sharp and the grass stays healthy.
  • Adjustable Blade Heights: You can change how short it cuts the grass to get your lawn looking just how you like it.
  • Lightweight and Maneuverable: It's not heavy, so it's easy to push around, and the wheels help you turn without a hassle.
  • Compact and Efficient: It's just the right size for smaller yards and doesn't take up much space in your shed or garage.
  • Safe for Teens: It's easy enough for kids over 13 to use, so they can help out with the yard work.
  • Historically Trusted Brand: The company's been around since 1895, so they know their stuff about making lawn mowers that last.
  • User-Friendly: You don't have to worry about buying gas, changing spark plugs, or dealing with engine troubles. It's simple to get started and keep going.


  • Q:

    Is this made in the USA or China?

  • A:

    This mower is made in China.

  • Q:

    Does it cut grass with tall weeds (such as dandelions) or would it jam?

  • A:

    If the grass is too tall, you may need to rent a power mower the first time. After that it should be easy as long as you mow once a week.

  • Q:

    Is the T-handle durable?

  • A:

    The handle seems pretty strong, especially if you are not mowing through overly thick or high grass that it requires a lot of forward pressure from you.

  • Q:

    Will small rocks in the yard cause problems to this mower?

  • A:

    It will typically not cause any problems. If rocks get stuck in the blades, simply back up until the rocks get released and then go forward.

  • Q:

    How should I attach the e-rings to the handle?

  • A:

    Assemble the handle first then attach the e-rings to the mower.

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