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View Full Version : Which of these ZTR's is the best deal?


tkcrabby
07-19-2006, 08:20 AM
Dixon Ram 50, 25hp B&S $4170 + tax
Dixon Ram 50 MAG, 20 Kohler $4450 + tax

The only differences between the "Ram" and the "Ram Mag" that I can see is that the "Ram Mag" has the 20hp Kohler instead of the 25hp Briggs on the "Ram". Also the "Ram" has the "Hydro-gear IZT" while the "Ram Mag" has the "Hydro-gear Charged IZT"

Do Dixon's have "wheel motors" like a Scag and some of the other ZTR's.

These are the only two machines that I've been able to find in my area that are in my price range $3,000 - $4,500 that I'd want,,,,,,,,,, as they both have welded decks and NOT stamped decks.

I'm more than willing to pay the higher of the two prices BUT I don't want to buy the "Ram Mag" IF it's not actually better than the "Ram"

sefh
07-19-2006, 09:09 AM
I'm actually looking at these two. I'm looking at the Dixon with the Kohler motor instead of B/S. I also would like some feedback on these mowers to see if they are worth the money.

dfischer
07-19-2006, 09:31 AM
Don't know the dixons. Thought they were cousins to the gravely, and I'd heard they had spindle problems. Which brings me to...

Fab's decks aren't better then stamped. Thats a OWT that is so commonly repeated it's become a 'truth". But, stamped flows air, and grass better. They both mulch and discharge better.

This all came from three things:

1) Real thick commercial decks being welded up by companies that didn't have the money to buy hi-pressure stamping machines.

2) Cheap stamped decks being built by some vendors.

3) Commercial operators running into stuff all the time and bending up their decks.

So, a home owner is probably better off with a stamped deck.

I'd be more worried about pumps, decks spindles, and overall design quality then I would stamped vs. fab.

tkcrabby
07-19-2006, 10:09 AM
Thanks,
I didn't realize that stamped was better,, my feeling that welded was better cae from seeing so many stamped decks that where badly bent OR rusting through over time OR both.
My neighbor has a Dixon Ram , 50" cut , 25 hp Briggs, 2005 model and he loves it so far,,,, of course theres been no problems of any type yet. I've mowed my 1.5 acre twice with his and it seems to be very solid. I can get Dixon, Scag, Ferris, snapper, and Troy Built here locally,,,,,,,,, I've read that the Troy Built is junk. The Scag & Ferris are out of my price range, and the Snapper is right at the price of the cheaper of the two Dixon's. I really wanted to end up with about a 50" deck as well.
IF the "Ram Mag" has better "wheel motors" or better anything else I'd gladly pay the little extra cash for it BUT as I said before, I don't want to pay any more IF it's not any better than the "Ram"
I understand that the Kohler 20 hp is better than the Briggs 25 hp as far as lasting longer BUT is it under powering the mower by using 20 hp instead of 25 hp?

Thanks for any help you guys can be on this!

dfischer
07-19-2006, 10:24 AM
I do think stamped is better for airflow, and if you're even sorta respectfull of the machine even a small gauge stamped it fine. My old 265 deere had a stamped deck, as 16 years old, and was nearly flawless. Of course I'd repainted it, but...

Cleary rust and dents will affect any deck.

Power wise, 20 hp should be ok for 50". I use 60" on 25 hp and it's OK. A tiny low for heavy mulching at full speed, but really...

Perhaps the gravely dixon spindle issue is over-rated. Have you done any searches on the forum here? That's where I heard the comments. Still, I've seen a few out there, so mabe there are Ok. Like i said, I really don't have much insight on them.

The snapper/simplicity homeowner Z's had a following here for a bit. Might want to search for those reviews. Also, people seem to like the hustler mini z and super Z. Still, I thought the hustler wheels were to small for a good ride, and didn't like the integrated motor/pump set-up for the cost.

I do think the S/S setup is also integrated, but cheaper still.

tkcrabby
07-19-2006, 10:53 AM
"Perhaps the gravely dixon spindle issue is over-rated. Have you done any searches on the forum here?" Nope, I didn't know there where any problems with the Dixon Spindles,,, but I'll do a search as you suggest and see what I can find out.....................

"The snapper/simplicity homeowner Z's had a following here for a bit. Might want to search for those reviews." I'll check them out as well.

"Also, people seem to like the hustler mini z and super Z."
Not a dealer close enough for me to want to get one of these.

"didn't like the integrated motor/pump set-up for the cost.
I do think the S/S setup is also integrated, but cheaper still." The Dixon's spec sheet says the "final drive is integrated", what are some of the others in this respect? What is bad about the final drive being integrated?

newz7151
07-19-2006, 11:17 AM
If I were looking at the Dixon's right now, I might be a little apprehensive until it's seen what happens in the final shake out with Dixon having been bought by Husqvarna at the end of June. The way some people complain about getting Husq. parts, what happens if Husq follows the Husq model for Dixon parts as well?

steve45
07-19-2006, 12:15 PM
Like it's easy to get Dixon parts???

I've got a very old Dixon, which is not representative of the newer ones. However, I would NEVER buy another one. Absolutely the worst product I have ever owned!

tkcrabby
07-19-2006, 01:32 PM
I just got back from a local dealer who I'd forgotten about ,,, they handle eXmark and had a 2005 Lazer Z ct , 18hp Briggs, 48" cut,,,, ,,,,,,,,, the guy told me it was $5499 = tax, I asked about the fact that it had been setting outside and was rusted up enough that the left stick or handle was stuck in place and there was a lot of rusted nuts and bolts on it as well as it having a flat front tire,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,, he then said , ok, the best I'll do is $5100 = tax,,,,, still this is a even $1,000 more than I can get the 2006 Dixon Ram, 25hp Briggs and 50" cut for,,,,,, doesn't seem like a very good deal to me ,,,,, I do like the way the mower is made though.

newz7151
07-19-2006, 02:43 PM
I just got back from a local dealer who I'd forgotten about ,,, they handle eXmark and had a 2005 Lazer Z ct , 18hp Briggs, 48" cut,,,, ,,,,,,,,, the guy told me it was $5499 = tax, I asked about the fact that it had been setting outside and was rusted up enough that the left stick or handle was stuck in place and there was a lot of rusted nuts and bolts on it as well as it having a flat front tire,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,, he then said , ok, the best I'll do is $5100 = tax,,,,, still this is a even $1,000 more than I can get the 2006 Dixon Ram, 25hp Briggs and 50" cut for,,,,,, doesn't seem like a very good deal to me ,,,,, I do like the way the mower is made though.

Might want to stay away from that CT if it's in that condition.

Original 2005 list on that mower was $5699.

With Dixon though, it still would make me uneasy that Husq recently purchased Dixon. I'm sure they will keep making the Dixon mower, but if they decided to shut the brand down after a few months or a year, it'd get tough to find parts for a discontinued brand. (not that this couldn't happen with any other mower manufacturer too, but Dixon is still a recent case)

tkcrabby
07-19-2006, 02:54 PM
"With Dixon though, it still would make me uneasy that Husq recently purchased Dixon. I'm sure they will keep making the Dixon mower, but if they decided to shut the brand down after a few months or a year, it'd get tough to find parts for a discontinued brand. (not that this couldn't happen with any other mower manufacturer too, but Dixon is still a recent case)" Yes, I know that is a possibility with Dixon right now and with any mower as you said. As far as the "ct" I'm not too concerned about it having the flat or the rusty nuts and bolts, and I'm 99.9% sure the steering lever would be fine after it got some oiling,,,,,,,,,,,, it's just how the dealer acted and the fact he didn't come down much considering the fact it was last years model and soon will be 2 model years old................ just doesn't seem to be much of a way to do business to me.

dvmcmrhp52
07-19-2006, 03:02 PM
Don't know the dixons. Thought they were cousins to the gravely, and I'd heard they had spindle problems. Which brings me to...

Fab's decks aren't better then stamped. Thats a OWT that is so commonly repeated it's become a 'truth". But, stamped flows air, and grass better. They both mulch and discharge better.


Stamped decks flow beter? Better than what? The air flow in most stamped decks actually sucks because it it quite expensive to design , build, and manufacture deep draw dies to get enough depth out of a stamped deck for decent air flow. Fabbed decks are typically deeper for better air flow.


This all came from three things:

1) Real thick commercial decks being welded up by companies that didn't have the money to buy hi-pressure stamping machines.

Didn't have the money to buy stamping machines?
So you are seriously thinking that a welded deck is cheaper to manufacture than a stamped deck? Please.......

2) Cheap stamped decks being built by some vendors.

Cheap stamped decks being built by MOST vendors.....why do you think craftsman has them?

3) Commercial operators running into stuff all the time and bending up their decks.

Welded decks are tougher because of much tougher conditions that they get used under. there is a reason why stamped decks get bent easily.

So, a home owner is probably better off with a stamped deck.

Not true.

I'd be more worried about pumps, decks spindles, and overall design quality then I would stamped vs. fab.



I'm not sure where you get your info from but............

There are new stamped decks out there that work better than the old junk, however they are few and far between. There is a REAL reason why commercial decks are fabricated.

By the way, I spent enough years as a tool and die maker and a manufacturing engineer to know what I'm talking about.

dvmcmrhp52
07-19-2006, 03:07 PM
I just got back from a local dealer who I'd forgotten about ,,, they handle eXmark and had a 2005 Lazer Z ct , 18hp Briggs, 48" cut,,,, ,,,,,,,,, the guy told me it was $5499 = tax, I asked about the fact that it had been setting outside and was rusted up enough that the left stick or handle was stuck in place and there was a lot of rusted nuts and bolts on it as well as it having a flat front tire,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,, he then said , ok, the best I'll do is $5100 = tax,,,,, still this is a even $1,000 more than I can get the 2006 Dixon Ram, 25hp Briggs and 50" cut for,,,,,, doesn't seem like a very good deal to me ,,,,, I do like the way the mower is made though.




I'd be buying the CT over the Dixon.

tkcrabby
07-19-2006, 03:23 PM
"I'd be buying the CT over the Dixon."
Really?, well if the eXmark Lazer-Z ct would be that much better than the Dixon Ram I'll love to get it BUT,,,,,,,,, the specs don't do a very good job of pointing out that the ct would be any better,,,,,,,,,,, and it's $1,000 more,, no if they came down to within $200 of the Dixon I'd buy it BUT I don't see them coming down to $4,300 when they supposedly started at $5,499 then down to $5,100,,,,,, besides, my original max on a ZTR mower was going to be $3500,,,,, and I have to try as hard as I can to keep it at 4,000-4,300,,,,,,,,,,, that points to one of the two Dixon's that I spoke of above unless someone comes up with a better idea,,,,, which I am open to,,,,,,, it's just that there's not a lot of ZTR's in the 48-52" decks that's in the high $3,000's to low $4,000's

dvmcmrhp52
07-19-2006, 03:36 PM
"I'd be buying the CT over the Dixon."
Really?, well if the eXmark Lazer-Z ct would be that much better than the Dixon Ram I'll love to get it BUT,,,,,,,,, the specs don't do a very good job of pointing out that the ct would be any better,,,,,,,,,,, and it's $1,000 more,, no if they came down to within $200 of the Dixon I'd buy it BUT I don't see them coming down to $4,300 when they supposedly started at $5,499 then down to $5,100,,,,,, besides, my original max on a ZTR mower was going to be $3500,,,,, and I have to try as hard as I can to keep it at 4,000-4,300,,,,,,,,,,, that points to one of the two Dixon's that I spoke of above unless someone comes up with a better idea,,,,, which I am open to,,,,,,, it's just that there's not a lot of ZTR's in the 48-52" decks that's in the high $3,000's to low $4,000's




Correct on the 3-4000 on a ZTR.
The only thing in that price range is a homeowner type mower.
To answer one of your previous questions, the dixon doesn't have wheel motors it's got a hydrostatic trans.

tkcrabby
07-19-2006, 03:46 PM
"dixon doesn't have wheel motors it's got a hydrostatic trans."

Thanks for the info, my scag/ferris/snapper dealer told me that the wheel motor thing was very important,,,,,, is it? If so please explain why......
Also if this is very important please tell me (if you know off hand) which of the 48-52 inck ZTR's have the wheel motors.

Thanks again! :)

By the way, I posted a thread offer on the "eXmark" forum telling about the way the eXmark dealer treaded me and it was removed within minutes!:realmad:

dvmcmrhp52
07-19-2006, 06:20 PM
"dixon doesn't have wheel motors it's got a hydrostatic trans."

Thanks for the info, my scag/ferris/snapper dealer told me that the wheel motor thing was very important,,,,,, is it? If so please explain why......
Also if this is very important please tell me (if you know off hand) which of the 48-52 inck ZTR's have the wheel motors.

Thanks again! :)

By the way, I posted a thread offer on the "eXmark" forum telling about the way the eXmark dealer treaded me and it was removed within minutes!:realmad:



For long term performance yes, the "wheel motor thing" is important. They will out last a hydrostatic trans by great lengths and take much more abuse.

Can't help you too much with which ztr's in your price range have wheel motors other than to say all commercial ztr's have them including the Exmark ct. Homeowner models are cheaper for a reason.

You can tell very easily in the specs for a certain model by looking at the pump size and what wheel motors are used. it will be clearly spec'd as such.
10-20 cc pumps are about the range used.
You can visually see the motors on the wheels themselves. Each wheel will have it's own motor which the rim and tire are directly attatched to.

dvmcmrhp52
07-19-2006, 06:24 PM
By the way, I posted a thread offer on the "eXmark" forum telling about the way the eXmark dealer treaded me and it was removed within minutes!:realmad:



Exmark is getting beaten up lately for their new deck design by many here on the forum so maybe they're getting a bit gun shy........ The Exmark CT doesn't have the new deck style.