FJDynamics RM21 Commercial Robot Mower Review

Commercial robot mowers are improving all the time and now offer an incredible time and labor-saving proposition that many businesses, property managers, and landscapers are attracted to.

This new market is also attracting a lot of new companies, as well as existing commercial mower brands adapting their current models with automated technologies.

One of those companies offering a new commercial robot mower is FJDynamics. This company with global offices in several countries has now introduced its RM21.

The RM21 boasts some high-tech features with a robust chassis and overall build quality.

Below, we’ll review the RM21 and see how it stacks up against a few other similar commercial robot mowers.

Who Is FJDynamics?

FJDynamics is based in Singapore, but they have design offices in Hong Kong, Sweden, and the U.S.

FJDynamics was more known for its auto steering kits and accessories for tractors. These are a mix of auto steering components along with GPS and RTK base stations for navigation.

They work on a variety of farm tractors, commercial mowers, and excavators to provide automation and precision during use.

FJDynamics previously offered a small, residential robot mower. They also have one other commercial robot mower. The FJD Z24P is a zero-turn commercial mower with RTK navigation, VIDAR, and an optional manual remote control for operation.

Currently, most FJDynamics products must be ordered through their online store as their dealer network is still somewhat limited. This is something to consider when making a large investment in a commercial robot mower.

The FJDynamics R21 Mower

Commercial robot mowers mostly come in two varieties. One group is just a scaled-up residential robot mower. These share the same “turtle shape” as residential mowers, just with longer ranges and a few other features to help them in commercial environments.

The other group of commercial mowers is based on standard commercial mowers, such as standers and zero-turn models. However, they have been retrofitted or customized with autonomous technology like vision systems and satellite/RTK navigation.

The RM21 falls into this latter category. It’s based on a more traditional commercial mower chassis built out of rectangular steel tubing. There is very little plastic on this mower other than a few small covers over the sensors and other technology elements.

For something that you may be trailering from site to site, we appreciate this level of heavy-duty construction. 

Overall, the build quality was sturdy when it came to the main chassis and we had no reservations about this being a commercial-quality mower that can handle repeated use and transportation.

Setting Up The FJDynamics RM21

Our RM21 arrived in a custom wooden crate for shipping. Everything was packed inside and the mower arrived with no damage or any items that had come loose.

There is some slight assembly required on the mower, but you’ll only need simple hand tools. Overall, there were 10 components we had to install ourselves after opening the crate.

For example, the antenna array needed to be installed on the top of the mower. This was relatively easy and all of the specialty screws needed were included and labeled.

Once you install everything, you have to manually connect the various electronics. This is done with threaded-type connectors and it’s pretty clear where everything needed to go.

Overall, unboxing the crate and assembling the parts took about an hour and was an easy process. It was also a nice chance to inspect the mower upon arrival.

Once assembled, you power on the RM21 while still on top of the crate floor. Once powered on, you can connect the mower to a local Wi-Fi hotspot.

Our model had an additional touchscreen at the rear of the mower. Connecting the mower to the Wi-Fi mostly consisted of following the onscreen instructions.

Once connected to the Wi-Fi, you take control of the mower via the included remote control unit.

Using the front and rear panels of the shipping crate as a ramp, you drive the mower out of the crate and the assembly is complete.

We have to admit that when the crate first arrived, we weren’t sure how much assembly was going to be needed to get the RM21 operational. However, the process was straightforward and only took about an hour until we rolled the completed mower down from the crate.

The RM21 Charging Station

Something unique about the RM21 is the charging station. If you’ve seen residential robot mowers, you’ve seen the charging bases that the mower returns to.

The RM21 uses a similar system, although the charging base is all steel and extremely heavy-duty.

The charging station does require assembly, and due to its weight, you should build it where you plan on locating it.

One issue is the charging base has to be kept indoors, so you’ll need a shed or garage-like structure for the mower to return to.

The electronics of the charging base are covered, but they are not weatherproof or sealed from the elements.

It’s a unique charging setup for a commercial mower of this type and size. The battery is removable, but charging is handled via docking the mower with the charger base.

Overall, it worked well for us and the charging station does provide a stylish and functional storage area for the mower when not in use. The front ramp and side panels can be lifted to provide extra protection as well while in storage.

Just be aware that you will need an indoor structure that has enough space for the mower to get in and out.

FJDynamics RM21 Performance

The RM uses RTK and LiDAR for completely autonomous navigation around the turf area.

The RM21 is mostly designed for sports fields and large, open commercial properties. This means that RTK signals are not as much of an issue as they can be in tighter residential areas.

For example, a football or soccer field with its large open space will generally have a good RTK signal.

The LiDAR is used as a backup for both 3D mapping and obstacle detection. There are additional bumpers that can detect obstacles as well.

Due to the design and elevated antenna array, the RM21 has 360 degrees of vision, not just forward vision. This means it can even detect obstacles coming up from behind, such as pedestrians or workers who get too close during operation.

Our demo model got about 5 hours of run time on a single charge. For coverage, that’s enough charge to mow approximately 2 football fields. Charge time was about 5 hours to reach a full charge.

For setup, you will have to initially use the remote to teach the RM21 your overall property perimeter. From there, you can use the included app to create exclusion zones or changes in mowing patterns for different areas.

The remote control has an industrial feel and is sturdy. It’s easy to control and you can navigate the mower without having to be right next to it. For a typical area like a football field, you can stand in the middle and control the mower.

For tighter spots, you may want to walk near it so you get the perimeter just right.

The status of the mower is displayed on both the remote and the attached touchscreen on the mower. You are always aware of what is going on and what to do next when setting up the RM 21.

Cutting is done via a single large blade and the cutting height was fully adjustable from .8 inches to 5 inches, which should cover most commercial applications.

FJDynamics Final Review

Overall, the RM21 is a nice entry into the heavy-duty commercial robot mower marketplace. 

The build quality was high and the setup was surprisingly easy despite being somewhat worried when the crate first appeared at our shop.

We can’t speak to longevity or ongoing support as we only tested our unit for a short while, but we were impressed with this unit and it’s worth looking into. It could be competition for options like the Wright Autonomous Stander ZK if you don’t mind the charging station on the RM21.

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