How to Operate a Mantis tiller and rotovator

How to Operate a Mantis tiller and rotovator


Mantis garden tiller and rotavators are lightweight and extremely manoeuvrable tiller and rotavators, with an effectiveness in turning and tilling soil that is comparable to larger tiller and rotavators. Mantis tiller and rotavators require assembly when they arrive at your home, which only takes a minimal amount of time. Due to its diminutive size, this type of tiller and rotavators is often useful between rows to control weeds without disturbing any roots.

Difficulty: Easy


Things You’ll Need

  1. Mantis tiller and rotovator
  2. Pre-mixed petrol

Operation of a Mantis tiller and rotavators

1)Check the tiller and rotavators to make sure that it has mixed petrol.

2)Turn the on/off toggle switch to the “On” position. Pull the choke all the way out so that it will open the choke to allow maximum starting capability.

Depress the primer bulb six to eight times until you see the fuel flowing through the clear fuel line. This adds additional petrol to the carburettor that is mandatory for cold starts.

3)Pull the starter cord three to four times until the engine fires, then push the choke button all the way inward.

Pull the starter cord again to start the tiller and rotavators again. Let the engine run for three or four minutes.

4)Depress the throttle lever to walk the tiller and rotavators to your garden spot. Releasing the throttle lever will stop the forward motion of the tines and stop the tiller and rotavators from moving. Set the depth indicator and depress the throttle lever to till the soil.

5)Turning the on/off toggle switch to “Off” will stop the engine and tines from moving at any time.

Tips & Warnings

The oil to petrol ratio is 50:1 of petrol to two-cycle oil. It is easiest to mix the oil and petrol in a petrol can to have correct ratios and then fill the tiller and rotavators petrol tank from the can.

Warm starts will initiate without use of the choke, but only pull the starting cord about two times. Warm starts are for when the tiller and rotavators is in use and has been off for short periods of time. The engine has not cooled entirely.

Best results are obtained from the Mantis tiller and rotavators if the depth indicator is set at the most shallow or highest setting on the first pass in the garden. Then lower the depth indicator to till garden soil deeper with each pass until the soil is light and fluffy.

A tiller and rotavators can also be useful to add nutrients and fertiliser to the soil and mix them thoroughly before planting the seeds or plants. This method ensures spreading the additions evenly for uniform plant growth and health.

Always wear shoes when operating a tiller and rotavators so that mishaps do not hurt your feet or toes.

If your Mantis tiller and rotavators does not stop when the on/off toggle switch is turned to the “Off” position, pull the choke out as far as it will go and the tiller and rotavators will stop. A Mantis tiller and rotavators engine will not run with the choke pulled out.

Garden tiller engine tune up


Small engine tune-ups are very good for the performance of the machine. tillers are no exception. Tillers are available with 2-cycle or 4-cycle engines, and mantis assembles tune-up kits for both engine styles. The easiest way to find these tune-up kits is through the online store. The kits include everything you need to complete a full tune-up on your tiller. A project like this will not take you very long to complete as tune-ups take little time. Soon you will have a tiller that is running well and ready to break more ground.

Difficulty: Moderately Easy


Things You’ll Need

  • New air filter
  • Combination wrench
  • Gapping tool
  • New spark plug
  • Transmission grease
  • Gear box petrolket
  • Tine pins
  • Fresh fuel
  • Fuel stabiliser
  • 2-cycle engine oil (for 2-cycle engines)

1)Remove the air filter cover by unscrewing the wing nut that secures the air filter cover to the engine. Pull the cover away from the engine and remove the air filter pad. Put a new air filter in its place after looking over the air filter cover and removing dirt, debris and other foreign material from the cover. Slide the cover back into place, and replace the wing nut.

2)Disconnect the spark plug. Unscrew the spark plug with a combination wrench, and pull the old spark plug away from the engine. Check the gap between the electrodes on the new spark plug with a gapping tool, and insert the new spark plug into the engine. Hand screw it into the engine until it is hand tight. Fully tighten the new spark plug with the combination wrench.

3)Remove the tines from the gear box. Open the gear box by removing the gear box cover. Remove the old gear box petrolket. Top the grease level in the gear box off with a tube of transmission grease. Place a new gear box petrolket in the place of the old petrolket, and reinstall the gear box cover. When reinstalling the tines, replace the old tine pins with a new set of tine pins.

4)Mix a fresh gallon of petrol with fuel stabiliser. Add 2-cycle oil for 2-cycle engines. Swirl the petrol can to mix the stabilizer and oil into the fuel well. Fill the fuel tank with the fresh fuel mixture.

Tips & Warnings on Tillers

As an option, the tune-up may include replacing the tine assembly. A whole new tine assembly will make a huge difference in the performance of the tiller. The easiest way to tell if the tine assembly needs to be replaced is to look at the condition of the current set of tines. If most of the tine tips are rounded off and blunted, it is time to replace them. If the tips are bent over but in otherwise good condition, straighten the tips with a pair of pliers.

Thinking about buying a tiller or rotovator

Mantis Tiller

Once you have decided to buy a garden tiller, you then have to decide which is the right one for you. And there are many to choose from.

But you will be spoiled for choice once you take a look at the range from Mantis Tillers. They are so confident in their range of garden tillers they are prepared to give a one year money back guarantee, plus a 5 year warranty on all of them. That alone speaks volumes for the quality of this range of tillers.

But which is the right Mantis tiller for you?

Mantis offers both a 2-cycle and 4-cycle garden tiller along with a 3-speed electric tiller. So no matter what sort of garden you have there will be a Mantis tiller to suit your needs.

The 2-cycle Mantis tillers are the original models, and are the only version that will operate all the attachments. It is also the lightest of all the other models weighing in at only 20 pounds. Being a 2-cycle engine it operates on a petrol and oil mix and is the noisiest of their range.

Tillers come with a Honda engine

The 4-cycle tiller weighs in at 24 pounds and uses a confidence boosting Honda engine. This 4-cycle engine is becoming more and more popular in certain states due to noise and emission regulations. Being a 4-cycle engine there is no need to mix the petrol and oil together.

The electric Mantis tiller is the quietest of all the models. This in itself will be a big bonus for a lot of gardeners as early morning and late evening use will be no problem with this model. Although electric, this machine is packed with power to complete even the toughest of jobs.

All the above Mantis tillers will till to a width of 9 inches. For those who need a much wider till width Mantis has recently introduced a new machine to fulfil this role.

The Mantis XP tiller is a 4-cycle tiller that can till to a width of 16 inches. Utilizing a 35cc Honda GX35 commercial-grade engine it offers the power and width to tackle a much larger garden job, but weighting in at only 34 pounds is lightweight enough to handled easily by anyone. Combining the larger width with the 4-cycle engine will surely make this tiller very popular in time to come.

The tines on all the above tillers spin at up to 240 rpm and are guaranteed for life against breakage.

So, no matter what sort of garden you may have, there is a Mantis tiller that can handle the job and at an affordable price too.

Nowadays there is no need to put your back out with a shovel when you can easily use a Mantis tiller to finish the job.

I hope you have enjoyed this article and that it has been of some help for you when it comes to choosing which Mantis tiller to buy.