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brbolin
09-06-2006, 04:36 PM
I'm not sure if this is the correct place to post this or not, especially as I'm not even in the landscaping business.
I do have a need that I want to run past the professionals, though.
I have a 2.5 acres of land, with a bit of a hill in the middle, and my John Deere L120 pooped out on me. I'm needing a better mower, and have been looking into the Zero-Turn models. I am on a limited budget, so I can't just go out and get a Kubota or something like that.
I have been told that the Cub Cadets are rather shoddy, and to stay clear of them and the Toro models.
I've had my eye on the Simplicity Champion, but have been unable to find many reviews on this model.
Do any of you have experience with Simplicity mowers, and if so, do you like them? Do you have any other suggestions for what I should get?
Again, if this is a "professionals only" site, please accept my apologies and disreguard this post.

Thanks for your time!

-B

Dirty Water
09-06-2006, 09:57 PM
Personally, since your only going to put aroudn 50-60 hours on your mower each year (as opposed to a pro putting that much on in a week) you would probably be fine with a $2000 Toro Timecutter from HD or Loyes.

Its basicly a smaller stripped down Zmaster with a stamped deck. I think it would be totally fine for what you have.

http://www.toro.com/home/images/tcz420_r_s_2065_lg.jpg

steve45
09-06-2006, 11:53 PM
Hey, B, this IS the Homeowner's Forum. Make yourself at home.

I'm a homeowner (I did have a lawn service on the side 20 years ago), but I was sick & tired of crappy residential equipment. I came here to learn about the good stuff.

I ended up buy a used mower. It cost about half of a new one, and was about halfway through it's expected service life. I figured that I could mow my one acre of grass for many years with minimal problems. I went with a Scag Tiger Cub. It's a well built, heavy duty machine, but there are other excellent brands out there as well. I think there are some high end Cub Cadet mowers that are pretty good. You might look at Hustler, Exmark, John Deere, Dixie Chopper, etc. (I know I'm leaving some out). Local support from your dealer is important, so see what's available in your area.

Lumberjack
09-07-2006, 02:02 AM
I'm not sure if this is the correct place to post this or not, especially as I'm not even in the landscaping business.

Nope your in the right place and forum.


I do have a need that I want to run past the professionals, though.
I have a 2.5 acres of land, with a bit of a hill in the middle, and my John Deere L120 pooped out on me. I'm needing a better mower, and have been looking into the Zero-Turn models.

So long as the land is not to rough and the hills arent too steep a z will get er done fairly quick.


I am on a limited budget, so I can't just go out and get a Kubota or something like that.

A used commercial might do it. I'm quite partial to Gravely@home for new machines....


I have been told that the Cub Cadets are rather shoddy, and to stay clear of them and the Toro models.I've had my eye on the Simplicity Champion, but have been unable to find many reviews on this model.Do any of you have experience with Simplicity mowers, and if so, do you like them? Do you have any other suggestions for what I should get?

Shoddy yes but still better then most homeowner equipment. It is a shame that reviews are hard to find for any mower.

noseha
09-07-2006, 07:59 AM
Personally, since your only going to put aroudn 50-60 hours on your mower each year (as opposed to a pro putting that much on in a week) you would probably be fine with a $2000 Toro Timecutter from HD or Loyes.

Its basicly a smaller stripped down Zmaster with a stamped deck. I think it would be totally fine for what you have.

http://www.toro.com/home/images/tcz420_r_s_2065_lg.jpg
wrong!!! nothing like a commercial unit:hammerhead:

brbolin
09-07-2006, 03:39 PM
Thanks, gang!
So, what'd probably be best for my 2.5 area would be a good, used commercial mower...and a dealer than can service it if needed nearby?
My lawn is in no way smooth as a table top. I've got a few roots and stuff I have to maneuver around, and just one hill I will have to crawl up, but other than that, I feel pretty confident that a Z will easily get the job done. Hopefully...it will also cut down on my 3-4 hours of trimming...if nothing else, cutting my 3-4 hours of mowing will be a blessing.

Thanks, again!

Dano50
09-07-2006, 04:12 PM
I'm dying to try one of those mowers. From my perspective they look like a blast to ride.

Now once you get your mower, don't forget to use Fluid Film (http://www.eurekafluidfilm.com) to keep it lubricated, protected and to keep the grass from clumping underneath. If you haven't tried it before, visit our sponsored forum (http://www.lawnsite.com/forumdisplay.php?f=156) and send me an email (dwilliams@eurekafluidfilm.com) for your free sample. That goes for anyone else who has yet to try the best corrosion preventive, lubricant and penetrant on the market. Odds are, once you try it you'll be hooked.

LarryF
09-07-2006, 04:29 PM
Thanks, gang!
So, what'd probably be best for my 2.5 area would be a good, used commercial mower.


As another homeowner, I don't completely agree. You never did say how much you were willing to pay, but I think you should be very careful about getting a machine an LCO no longer wants. If he's getting rid of it, there must be a good reason, and that reason is probably that repairs on the commercial ZTRs are usually pretty expensive. You might spend about 3 grand to purchase a used machine and another 2 thousand in the next couple of years keeping it running. I agree completely with the advise that a homeowner with a big lot should go after a commercial unit, and that's exactly what I did a few years ago. I think I got a break on a previous year's model, so that's what I would recommend you do rather than take over someone else's headache. This seems like the right time of the year if you would want to try that. I picked an Exmark Lazer HP, but several weeks ago I was in a local Lesco store and they still had some 2005 54" ZTRs with the 23 HP Kawasaki engine. If they still have them and the 2007 models appear soon, these might be a good deal for you.

TAZ
09-07-2006, 04:39 PM
Depends on what your budget is. Most of the big players offer a birage of financing options. I have owned a comercial toro unit and it served me well for years. I have an exmark now that I like allot. For only 2.5 acres any small comercial Z would do. Hustler, exmark, Toro and Scag all build solid comercial units.

The lesco units mentioned above are basically cub tanks and they sell for allot less. Allot of LCO's around here use Lesco equipment. You might want to go to Lesco's web site and find your local dealer as the pricing they are offering on their units is very agressive.

-TAZ

Dirty Water
09-07-2006, 11:44 PM
wrong!!! nothing like a commercial unit:hammerhead:

I didn't say it was.

I said its like a stripped down zmaster. As in control layout and feel, not saying that is a zmaster.

Its a perfectly fine lawn mower to put 40 hours a year on.

brbolin
09-08-2006, 09:41 AM
That's one concern I have with buying used...why was it traded-in, and will I have to put more money into it than if I would've just bought a new one in the first place.
The idea of finding a model that is a year or so older, but still "new' is a good one. I'm hoping to go shopping tomorrow to look around.
I really like the looks of the Laser-Z's. The bigger, fuller back tire makes me feel more comfortable when thinking about what I'll be using it for.
Has anybody tried any of the Simplicity line? They have a Javelin, which I feel is going to be too small, but the Champion looks like it could be a winner. It's their "tweener" mower...bigger than a usual residential, but not quite as big as the commercial ones they sell.
I'm hoping to stay in the "under $5000" area, but I haven't told my wife how much one might be yet, so it may be lower. ;)
Actually...she probably won't care because she's been as frustrated with our L120 as I have been, so I'm sure she'll understand.

Rinker97
09-08-2006, 10:26 AM
I went with a new Scag walk behind when I moved to a larger yard. I see you are in Southern Indiana. Go to Louisville Tractor and see what they have. They might have some used zero turns that were trade-ins or last year models they are closing out. Ask for Scott (tell him I sent you). He took great care of me.

Greg

brbolin
09-11-2006, 11:23 AM
Thanks for the ideas, everybody.
I have a quick "recommendation" question...
Say I'm leaning towards one of the following, what are everyone's thoughts?

Simplicity Champion -
44"-50" decks (looks stamped)
20hp B&S or 20hp Kohler engines
Rear Suspension
Front shocks

Cub Cadet Z-Force 50-
50" deck (floating/stamped)
23hp Kohler engine
Smart Jet deck washing system
Pivoting front axle

Hustler Mini FasTrak-
36"-42" decks (welded)
16hp Honda/15 hp Kohler/17 hp Kohler
Foot operated deck system

I don't have prices on these... I think the Cub was about $4000. The Simplicity is about $4700. I have no clue on the Hustler. There are all going to be at the "high end" of my budget, so if there are other suggestions, try not to have them be higher than these in price.

Again, the 2.5 acres I mow aren't the smoothest or flatest.

Thanks, again!