Posted: 10/04/2013 at 18:52
A rotovator will not dig deeply and if the ground is hard or overgrown it will struggle. They are not as easy to use as theory may suggest. Have you tried one yourself. You can hire them by the day.
Another disadvantage is that if there are nasty perrenial weeds such as couch grass, horsetail, bindweed, ground elder to name but 4 ( there are lots more), the rotovator will chop them up with every small piece starting a new weed plant. You make things much worse. The best way to get rid of such weeds may be to hand dig and carefully remove every trace as you go.
In my experience, unless the soil is already in pretty good knick they are more trouble than they are worth. I am afraid there is no substitute for spade/fork/elbow grease. The main advantage might be where you have already hand dug the plot and then use the rotovator to break the clods down to a nice friable tilth.( sorry about the technical terms!!)
However having said that let's see if others have had better experience.
Good luck with your studies, don't hesitate to ask more questions.