tiller comparison honda vs bcs outside at angle

Tiller Comparison: Honda vs BCS

Now that we did extensive reviews of both a Honda and BCS tiller, we wanted to do a side-by-side comparison of some of the most important elements. In no particular order, here they are:

honda vs bcs tiller review: tillers facing each other

CONTROLS:

Honda has the simplest and best controls hands down. They are rugged, confident and allow the user to quickly select what he or she wants. How Honda invented the control selector was genius. There were no difficulties whatsoever in getting a particular gear to go in its place. 

The BCS was a little more complicated. In referring to the previous Honda review, Honda had approximately one-third of the amount of steps in order to start tilling. To be fair towards BCS, the controls were easy to learn after a while and were kind of fun once you got the hang of them.

One huge negative for the BCS, though, was the little metal device that held the clutch in place while you adjusted one of the many controls. Of all the neat capabilities of the BCS brand, couldn’t their design engineers come up with a better system for holding the clutch? Hopefully, that small piece of metal never fails or you could be in trouble.  

Winner: Honda

honda vs bcs tiller review: front view of tillers side by side

DURABILITY:

Both Honda and BCS are very durable products. As mentioned in the previous Honda review, the Honda FRC 800 is used by several stores as a rental. This gives them a lot of credibility. 

In all the rental places I checked, I could only find BCS at one location. 

However, when it came to actual tilling, the Honda’s wheels, tines and engine didn’t seem to work in unison. Rather than travel smoothly, the wheels seemed to stutter and inch along rather than run at a consistent rate.  

In looking at the shafts that supported the wheels, one can observe a huge difference between the two brands. The shafts on the BCS looked like a mini farm tractor which it kind of was considering the plethora of attachments you can run from it. The Honda, conversely, had thinner shafts that didn’t look very strong. 

The metal cover over the tines seemed to be a big difference between the two tillers as well. The cover of the Honda seemed to flex more during tilling whereas the BCS cover better absorbed the rocks and dirt that were constantly bombarding it. 

Winner: BCS

 honda vs bcs side by side outside

TILLING CAPABILITY:

Both tilled very well and were able to work the soil. In the end, the BCS was able to do it with a little less effort. Now to be fair, the BCS model reviewed would be considered in a slightly higher class than the FRC 800. 

In the previous review, we were looking at a BCS 732 which now has a stronger Honda GX340 engine whereas the FRC 800 has a GX240. If one were doing a true apples to apples comparison, you would probably go with the BCS 722 versus the Honda FRC 800 because both have the same engine. 

Where Honda suffered in tilling was its tendency to lunge and jump far more intensely than it ought to. For the novice user, you’ll want to be aware of this for your personal safety.  

The BCS model reviewed lunged and jumped too but it was far more tame and manageable for me. Overall, the BCS was very solid in the tilling department. 

Winner: BCS

honda vs bcs tiller review: back view of tillers side by side

VALUE:

Both BCS and Honda are expensive. You could buy a $600 Husqvarna tiller but you would be wise to read the reviews first and see if it’s worth it. The saying, “You get what you pay for” is so true especially when it comes to something powered by a small engine. 

While the BCS can get very expensive, you also get a lot for your money considering the many attachments you can run with it. 

The Honda is far cheaper than a BCS 732 or even the smaller 722. On a BCS model 722, you’ll still end up paying roughly $700 more over the FRC 800 if you buy the same width tiller attachment (which BCS sells seperately).

Both brands bring a lot of value to the user in their own way and both have pluses and minuses in this catgory. For that reason, both would be considered winners.

Winner: Tie

honda vs bcs tiller: tillers facing off at an angle

ADDITIONAL FUNCTIONALITY:

The BCS can power several attachments like a tiller, mower, wood chipper, snow thrower, sweeper, etc.  

The Honda can only till which lessens the functionality. Now, if you only plan to till, this is a non-issue. However, for those who want one machine to run a variety of attachments, then BCS would be a good choice. 

Winner: BCS

honda vs bcs tiller review: close-up of tillers facing each other

LONGEVITY:

The bulk of BCS tillers are powered by Honda engines and, of course, the FRC 800 was powered by one, too. Honda engines are known for their reliability, efficiency and longevity. As someone who owns a few Honda engines, I can tell you they are truly, truly exceptional. 

When choosing any small engine product, you always want to pay attention to the engine because that is where you’re most likely going to incur costly repairs.

Besides engines, both brands had well-made components that seemed like they would function for many years. Although the BCS was more robust, it doesn’t mean the FRC 800 is going to fall apart any time soon. 

One should understand that buying a BCS could incur issues in getting repairs if BCS were ever to go out of business. BCS is a more obscure company in the United States and any potential buyer should  understand that getting service on a BCS might not be as easy.

Honda, on the other hand, is likely never going out of business. Because of this, repairing the Honda is going to be easier considering their extensive dealer network. 

Winner: Tie

For now, that’s it for tiller reviews. There was some considerable time and money invested in these reviews but they were worth it to share this knowledge about one of the most valuable pieces of equipment you can own on the homestead.

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