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blkbutterflyy
05-04-2006, 10:45 AM
I am just starting out and need to buy equipment. I have been researching and have decided to go with some push mowers and i just want to know what are the best ones for a business something that is durable. I was going to buy a tractor but I think that is too much for this starting stage of my business maybe when I get more clients. What should I look for when I go out to purchase. I am in Missouri and I am only doing residential cutting (nothing too big). I was thinking of buying two mowers and a trimmer to get me started. What do you guys think.

mike lane lawn care
05-04-2006, 10:03 PM
ok, just starting out i would get a toro homeowner personal pace, or the commercial super recycler. or a honda mower. you should get self-propelled(rear wheel drive is best) with a bagger and mulching capabilities.

for a trimmer i love my echo. i just got quoted $199.99 for a sthil FS55R straight shaft trimmer,it looks very good.

you also should think about a leaf blower, backpack ones are good, but can be expensive, echo and sthil both make some very good handheld leafblowers.

other things are rakes, brooms, shovels, buckets, and spare mower parts and blades.

i am just starting to brach out of my neighborhood as of last year, see the equipment listed below?. they are very good and serve the purpose, in fact today, i was mowing a yard with the simplicity broadmoor and had several joggers stop to tell me how nice the stripes look on the lawn.

Jnamo
05-04-2006, 10:34 PM
Toro! Toro! Toro!
Get one from a lawn mower shop-not home cheapo. The decks are different and you will pay for it in the long run. Spend some cash and get a good mower (Toro).
Get a good blower, that eliminates a ton of time during clean up.

mike lane lawn care
05-04-2006, 11:04 PM
also i forgot to add, you can get a good used commercial walk behind for little money.

totallawncare912
05-04-2006, 11:53 PM
I bought a Troybilt 33in belt driven walkbehind with a 9hp briggs commercial engine on it for 315.00 cant beat that it was used but cranks on the first pull.
Yes you need a good trimmer either REDMAX, KAWASAKI OR SHINDAIWA, and a backpack blower you will thank yourself later trust me...

topsites
05-04-2006, 11:53 PM
Toro! Toro! Toro!
Get one from a lawn mower shop-not home cheapo. The decks are different and you will pay for it in the long run. Spend some cash and get a good mower (Toro).
Get a good blower, that eliminates a ton of time during clean up.

I'll second that motion: TORO ! TORO !! TORO !!!!

To be honest, I would highly recommend seeing if you can find an oldie but goodie Walk-behind commercial machine such as the 44" or the 52" float deck. As a beginner, I would advise staying away from the 48" fixed deck until you learn how to operate a WAM but you can find older ones in decent shape for around a thousand dollars.

Thing is, even an old commercial machine outperforms and outlasts the newest and latest and greatest homeowner models. And, it prepares you for the day you buy a new one, as you learn with the old one, you will know what to fix and how to fix the new one and also the new one will last you a lot longer since you already know what you are doing (I have never landed my 1-year old Toro in the ditch, but the older ones LOL!).

For the trimmer, ECHO !!! The Echo is not quite as powerful but it lasts a lot longer than everything else - If money is an issue, the echo's longevity will carry your business through thick and thin before it fails, you will turn a profit by the time the echo finally quits and you will cry when it does, it is that good.

The last echo I bought lasted 3 years and trimmed close to two thousand yards! Talk about a tool that ruled, thou I didn't cry, I do feel melancholic towards it and I haven't thrown it away and I still want to see about ordering a carb to see if that fixes it, lol it is one tough trimmer.

Jnamo
05-05-2006, 12:47 AM
Echo trimmers are a good investment. I don't understand what people are cutting that they say they need more power. I have a 230 and when I wind it up it cuts down thick heavy grass like its nothing. I really don't see the need for a smallblock on a line trimmer? Anyway just got my new Echo (replaced OLD one got used) and I love it! Only way to go.
Dont even think about using a curved shaft trimmer-straight all the way!

blkbutterflyy
05-05-2006, 07:11 AM
Thank you all so much. I really had no idea what to buy. Where do you all suggest I go. I was looking on line at prices for home depot, sears and lowes. I am trying to find some dealers or shops that specialize in this stuff so I can talk to someone that will be honest when I go buy. Any ideas

FrankMcG
05-05-2006, 07:19 AM
I'm very much a newbie also, but go to Exho's wesite www.exho-usa.com and click on the find a dealer link. Any place in my area that caries echo equipment is usually a good lawn adn tractor supply place. Good places to browse around and seeif you can find a knowledgable employee.

FM

CutInEdge Lawn Care
05-05-2006, 09:04 AM
I believe its called a phone book. Look under tractor dealer, or u could go online to any name brand such as John deere, Scag, Kubota, Exmark, Bunton, Dixie, and click the tab button for nearest dealer. Good Luck!!!

J&R Landscaping
05-05-2006, 12:01 PM
Get a Toro model # 20055 super recycler! It will bag or mulch and has the rear wheel drive self propel. Got the 5 year warranty but it will last you a long time! Ech, Redmax or Shindaiwa for hand helds! The redmax blowers and hedge cutters are the best IMO! I'm not that thrilled with the redmax trimmers. Echo's need a bit of time to warm up but once they do warm up, they run great! My shindaiwa T 20 trimmer ran good for many years but I need to put a carb on it to get it working again.

Evergreenpros
05-06-2006, 02:51 PM
You say "push mower" do you mean non-self propelled? It's okay to do a couple lawns a day without self-propelled but more than that is a killer.

If you're going to start a business, equipment is the last thing you need too worry about. You can get a set of equipment from homedepot (honda mower, echo handhelds) in 20 minutes.

1. Identify your market - who is going to buy your services?
2. Identify your target market - of your market, who are you going to target? small lawns, big lawns, mow only, mow/fert, annual contract, one time, pricing, service area, etc
3. What are you going to invest - how much money, time, etc.
4. Form your goals for the business after you determine 1-3.
5. Get an image, think of name, selling strategy, ad campaign/plan, etc
6. Put it together in a business plan

1-6 are all free, just a little time and thought/research

7. Get some logos, business forms, and ads together. You can get logo's made up and a complete set of graphics really cheap from places on the net like guru.com and others. Probably $200 or less. Nobody cares what mower you use on their property or the brand of your trimmer, they want the BENEFITS from using your service.
8. Start advertising/selling your services, see what you can line up with a good newspaper insert/flyer distribution.
9. Just put them off for a week if they want it today.
10. After you have lined up some customers, now you can buy equipment from your business plan.

Who knows, you spend 1k on a newspaper insert and line up 40 customers, it will change what equipment you will buy. So it makes no sense to buy equipment then fit your market to your equipment, it should be the other way around.