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View Full Version : Mower decision- scag or dixie


Sir mowsalot
01-05-2007, 12:20 PM
Ok i run a scag wildcat which i love. It holds hills like a tank, it cuts incredible, and my dealer is to good to be true. The only problem i have with it is how it cuts in high wet grass. It clumps, and i have done things to minimize it, but there is only so much you can do. Also there is 3 different scag dealers all within my mowing radius(the one is the worst, but still well stocked), so if anything breaks i am not limited to just go back to my dealer which is out of the way.

I used to have a dixie chopper, and that thing cut high wet grass like you couldnt beleive, it fans it out and i never had to clean underneath the deck ever, but it sucked on hills. The dealer is only 3 minutes from my house. He is ok to me and treats me fair, but not nearly as good as the scag dealer. Plus he is the only dixie dealer around, so i would be limited to going to just him, and he is a small dealer. He is somewhat stocked but not like the scag dealers.

I have batted this around for months and i still dont know which way to go. I keep thinking about how much i have to work when the grass is so thick and wet. When its like that i cant help but think i will take the inconvenience of only one dealership over 3 just because that dixie will rip thru that wet grass like nothing, and i will not have to keep cleaning the deck.

What do you guys think?

J&R Landscaping
01-05-2007, 12:40 PM
I have never seen the big plus with the choppers. I have a couple dealers around me but I hardley ever see dixies on any lco's trailer. I would stick with the scag but thats JMO.

tacoma200
01-05-2007, 03:25 PM
Ok i run a scag wildcat which i love. It holds hills like a tank, it cuts incredible, and my dealer is to good to be true. The only problem i have with it is how it cuts in high wet grass. It clumps, and i have done things to minimize it, but there is only so much you can do. Also there is 3 different scag dealers all within my mowing radius(the one is the worst, but still well stocked), so if anything breaks i am not limited to just go back to my dealer which is out of the way.

I used to have a dixie chopper, and that thing cut high wet grass like you couldnt beleive, it fans it out and i never had to clean underneath the deck ever, but it sucked on hills. The dealer is only 3 minutes from my house. He is ok to me and treats me fair, but not nearly as good as the scag dealer. Plus he is the only dixie dealer around, so i would be limited to going to just him, and he is a small dealer. He is somewhat stocked but not like the scag dealers.

I have batted this around for months and i still dont know which way to go. I keep thinking about how much i have to work when the grass is so thick and wet. When its like that i cant help but think i will take the inconvenience of only one dealership over 3 just because that dixie will rip thru that wet grass like nothing, and i will not have to keep cleaning the deck.

What do you guys think?

First time I've heard that. Scag's velocity deck and the JD 7 iron II deck have the best reputation on wet grass. Are you using the old advantage deck on the Scag?

Sir mowsalot
01-05-2007, 03:44 PM
First time I've heard that. Scag's velocity deck and the JD 7 iron II deck have the best reputation on wet grass. Are you using the old advantage deck on the Scag?

yea advantage deck it is a 2005 model. I havent been keeping up with the new products and such so i wasnt aware that scag has a new deck, im gonna have to check it out.

Mike Blevins
01-05-2007, 04:06 PM
My wildcat has the old deck and cuts wet grass really well. You might try the eliminator mulching blades scag makes.Also you can adjust the plate just under the front of the deck for better mulching or different mowing conditions.

DixieChopper88
01-05-2007, 07:07 PM
Hey man you should definitley get a dixie, got a 60" this year, no problems at all. I mowed my church and the grass was around 8" tall and wet and it had no problems, i've never got a scag because my cousin in law switched from scags to dixies because of the longivity. Hope this helps.

Envy Lawn Service
01-06-2007, 01:06 AM
Yeah... Scag has a really nice one now.
I'd go that way over the new choppers any day.
(lots of cutting quirks with them now I've read)

Also, I wouldn't steer you away from Scag... but how are your Lesco's or Cub Commercial dealers in your area? I think I told you before, but these decks are second to none in wet grass, doesn't clump, doesn't clog and never needs scraping out. I mean just take a good look at my avatar pic and other pics I've posted of it.

On days like when those pics were taken, you were either sitting at home, or out struggling hard. Meanwhile I'm freight-training like it's any other day. Heck, it does so well that many times I wish it would rain so there would be no dust and it would be cooler.

At the moment I AM very curious "what" you have done to minimize problems with your deck. I'm discussing a related but separate subject about this as we speak

Sir mowsalot
01-06-2007, 08:53 AM
Yeah... Scag has a really nice one now.
I'd go that way over the new choppers any day.
(lots of cutting quirks with them now I've read)

Also, I wouldn't steer you away from Scag... but how are your Lesco's or Cub Commercial dealers in your area? I think I told you before, but these decks are second to none in wet grass, doesn't clump, doesn't clog and never needs scraping out. I mean just take a good look at my avatar pic and other pics I've posted of it.

On days like when those pics were taken, you were either sitting at home, or out struggling hard. Meanwhile I'm freight-training like it's any other day. Heck, it does so well that many times I wish it would rain so there would be no dust and it would be cooler.

At the moment I AM very curious "what" you have done to minimize problems with your deck. I'm discussing a related but separate subject about this as we speak

HI Envy,
Its always good to hear from you and get your opinion. I will definately go and look at the lesco's again. I almost bought one before but went with the scag because at the time lescos service guy was a real *dont bother me, im busy* kinda attitude. I just knew we wouldnt hit it off. But maybe he got his act together by now, or maybe lesco is using someone else. Is the lesco and cub tank parts interchangeable, because i have a real nice cub dealer not to far away.

It is impressive to say the least with how well your z performs in the wet heavy grass. I beleive you, and that is exactly what im after, im tired of having to clean underneath my deck.

I am also going to go and talk to my scag dealer about these new decks, and demo one. If it does alot better in the wet grass than the advantage deck, then i will seriously consider one of those, based on the fact that i have the worlds greatest dealer. For me dealership is one of the biggest factors, because i learned the hard way about poor service from dealerships.

To answer your question about what ive done to minimize clumping. Well, first i have checked and re checked the deck angle. I have tried the typical different blade combinations. Fiddled with the baffle. Still i have to clean underneath the deck way to much, and im just not happy with the clumping. There is just only so much you can do, and it comes down to deck design and really you cant overcome that totally, no matter how much you try.

Rons Rightway Lawncare
01-06-2007, 10:23 AM
Envy, how can you reccomend a Lesco ZTR to anyone? Who works on them and where can you go where there is parts in stock for them? I would say buying a Lesco ZTR is one of the worst possible choices a LCO could make.

Around the Charlotte area, if you want a good ZTR and one where you can get parts or service quickly, it is going to be either Scag, Toro, Exmark.... These are the brands that have strong dealer support in this area, and these are the mowers you see on the majority of trucks and trailers riding around in this area.


Sir Mowsalot, See if your local dealers will let you demo a new Scag with the velocity deck. I just sold my old Scag " wildcat " with the advantage deck and that deck sucks compared to the velocity. I think you can even buy a velocity deck to put on your older wildcat.....

Sir mowsalot
01-06-2007, 11:41 AM
Sir Mowsalot, See if your local dealers will let you demo a new Scag with the velocity deck. I just sold my old Scag " wildcat " with the advantage deck and that deck sucks compared to the velocity. I think you can even buy a velocity deck to put on your older wildcat.....

Hmmmmm....... this is very interesting, now you got my wheels turning.

Envy Lawn Service
01-06-2007, 01:14 PM
Sir Mowsalot, See if your local dealers will let you demo a new Scag with the velocity deck. I just sold my old Scag " wildcat " with the advantage deck and that deck sucks compared to the velocity. I think you can even buy a velocity deck to put on your older wildcat.....

Hmmmmm....... this is very interesting, now you got my wheels turning.

This is why I said "I wouldn't want to steer you away from Scag"

The new deck seems to be getting rave reviews and you seem very happy with your dealer.
I think your chances are very good for a good demo and a good trade-in deal.
If that deck is what they say it is, I bet that's what you get.

Yes, the Cub is exactly the same as the Lesco. No difference.
In some places the Cub costs from a little to a lot more though. Just depends.
But for that you get a 3 year warranty and a typical dealer setup, ect...
Plus in some areas you are better off to go with the Cub because of the Lesco employees.

In my area, I was better off with Lesco.

dtrap420
01-06-2007, 05:02 PM
The newer style velocity deck is far superior to the old Advantage deck which was horrible on thick wet grass as the deck will really hold wet grass. The new velocity deck has been completly redone from the advantage and is an amazing deck. You shoud make sure you demo it before you decide on anything else other than SCAG.

Grass-Masters
01-06-2007, 06:24 PM
Sir Mowsalot, See if your local dealers will let you demo a new Scag with the velocity deck. I just sold my old Scag " wildcat " with the advantage deck and that deck sucks compared to the velocity. I think you can even buy a velocity deck to put on your older wildcat.....

Does anybody know what it cost to swap out a new deck, and do you know if spindles and evrything are interchangeable. I would like to do this.

WALKER LANDSCAPE
01-06-2007, 06:27 PM
I vote for the SCAG built very well.

Envy Lawn Service
01-06-2007, 06:38 PM
Does anybody know what it cost to swap out a new deck, and do you know if spindles and evrything are interchangeable. I would like to do this.

Now there's a million dollar idea I thought of too.
But I never brought it up.

I figured most of it would be interchangeable.... HOWEVER...

I also figured the main part needed... the DECK SHELL...
Well I just assumed it would not interchange... and here is why...

If you look at the new deck shell, it is a lot straigher across from the center off.
Center of the deck off to the chute opening.

The old deck is a lot more this shape put front ^
So I just assumed they stretched the wheelbase on the right side to fit the new deck shell.
(relocated right caster farther forward)

HOWEVER, I COULD BE MAKING THE WRONG ASSUMPTION

But heck, here are some pics so you understand what I mean.

NEW Velocity

http://www.scag.com/images/V%2BDeck_underside.jpg

Advantage

http://www.scag.com/images/Advantage_underside.jpg

Grass-Masters
01-06-2007, 07:26 PM
I am not sure, there seems to be enough room on my tiger cub for the differance in size. But it would be great if I could order a shell and go for it. I really do not see any changes from my 04 to newer ones except the deck. I asked the dealer a couple weeks ago about this, he never did get back to me. I call him back on monday and see if they found out if it can be done.

Envy Lawn Service
01-06-2007, 07:31 PM
It would be nice if you could and it would save you and Sir a lot of money too.

Stabbing in the dark, I'd say the deck shell will probably run around $1,000.

Grass-Masters
01-06-2007, 07:36 PM
that would be great, $1000 or $6-7000 to upgrade. I could save a ton. Hopefully they have an answer for me on monday.

Sir mowsalot
01-06-2007, 08:11 PM
Yea Envy i see what your saying according to looking at those pictures. There is a slight difference.

I called my dealer today, and he is gonna check and find out if i can switch decks with just using the deck shell and then using all of the components off of my old deck. He isnt sure, but i should find out sometime next week. He is also gonna check price on it.

He hasnt gotten much feedback for the new velocity deck in the wet grass cause this year its been on the drier side here where i live, but according to alot on here this deck is far superior.

tacoma200
01-06-2007, 08:13 PM
I read this forum all the time, you'll be hard pressed to find a negative post on the Velocity deck. That's coming from an Exmark fan.

Rons Rightway Lawncare
01-06-2007, 09:29 PM
Other than the front wheel maybe not having enough clearance, having had both a early model Wildcat - before it was even called a wildcat - and a brand new one.... I believe everything would interchange, certainly the spindles and the bulk of the hardware.

Best thing to do is to bring your Wildcat to the dealer and park it right next to a new one and get out the measuring tape and start measuring to make sure all the decks hard points are in the same place etc... But I believe it will interchange.

The velocity deck is far and away better as a all around deck over the advantage deck. It alone is worth whatever cost you have to pay to upgrade - be it buying a new mower, or just replacing the deck -

BUT....

The velocity will clog up if your mowing tall wet grass. It will stay cleaner.... longer.... and better.... than any other mower I have ever used, but it will load up with clippings and leave clumps and a mess here and there.

My yard has no sprinkler system and our well is too low of a pressure to run a manual sprinkler, so I put out Winter Rye in the fall so I have a nice green lawn all winter - Fescue just won't germinate for me in the fall without the sprinkler here. Anyway, cutting my lawn with this thick green rye grass, even when " Dry " the mower will fill up under the deck with clippings and start dropping grass clumps.... especially if I stop the blades. I cut my lawn two days ago and took off about 2 inches of height and the lawn was slightly wet, and I had to go back with a rake and bucket to pick up all the clumps. Filled up a 5 gallon bucket 5 times with all the clumps the mower left.

Now to be fair, my old Scag with the advantage deck.... I would bet I would have had 5 times more clumps to pick up on the same lawn under the same conditions. I just don't want to overhype the new Scags, they will still load up if your cutting wet grass... Just not nearly as bad as any other mower I have ever used.

And Envy, I mean no disrepect to you over the Lesco mower thing... it is just that we have two BIG lesco stores here and both are always slammed with people coming in for product. It is rare to even see a mechanic at one and the other store I don't think works on them at all. They keep nearly no parts at all in stock and I don't believe they offer any kind of loaner if you need service and they can't jump right on it. The Lesco walkbehinds are good units, overbuilt and I would not think twice about buying one as I don't think they would likely need to come back to the shop for something... The Lesco ZTRs look OK.... not nearly the fit and finish of the more popular units, but it does look like a decent unit, just not something I am willing to gamble on in case the thing has a major breakdown and the guys at Lesco tell me it may be a few weeks while they wait for parts and a mechanic to show up to turn the darn wrench...!

Fire Shark
01-06-2007, 10:36 PM
Ron's,
My email is eatingsmoke@ctc.net can I get you to send me an email.
Would like to ask question off post.
Thanks in advance.
Joe

Envy Lawn Service
01-07-2007, 03:24 AM
Envy, how can you reccomend a Lesco ZTR to anyone? Who works on them and where can you go where there is parts in stock for them? I would say buying a Lesco ZTR is one of the worst possible choices a LCO could make.

Around the Charlotte area, if you want a good ZTR and one where you can get parts or service quickly, it is going to be either Scag, Toro, Exmark.... These are the brands that have strong dealer support in this area, and these are the mowers you see on the majority of trucks and trailers riding around in this area.

And Envy, I mean no disrepect to you over the Lesco mower thing... it is just that we have two BIG lesco stores here and both are always slammed with people coming in for product. It is rare to even see a mechanic at one and the other store I don't think works on them at all. They keep nearly no parts at all in stock and I don't believe they offer any kind of loaner if you need service and they can't jump right on it. The Lesco walkbehinds are good units, overbuilt and I would not think twice about buying one as I don't think they would likely need to come back to the shop for something... The Lesco ZTRs look OK.... not nearly the fit and finish of the more popular units, but it does look like a decent unit, just not something I am willing to gamble on in case the thing has a major breakdown and the guys at Lesco tell me it may be a few weeks while they wait for parts and a mechanic to show up to turn the darn wrench...!

Ron, I didn't 'puff up' there or anything. I just didn't take the time to respond.

To a degree, after having also been to the Charlotte area Lesco's... I have to kind of agree with you in a way.

I've told this story in a different manner before long ago, but here it is again. YEARS AGO, I took a trip down to the Charlotte area and hit the Lesco locations to shop for mowers... based on web-related recommendations.

The last one I went to... I believe is considered the Pineville location? Well I can't say I was impressed with any of their locations. But at that time, I believe that little place had the best staff on hand. But they didn't have crap on-hand for equipment. I think one smaller Z with a flat, one walkbehind and another couple in the crates still.

But in any event, the manager there was the one to put something on paper for me. He wrote me out a heck of a quote for a 60" Ztwo and a 52" hydro walkbehind. If I'm not mistaken I think he came in right at $10,000.

It was dead of winter and I was in no hurry, so I went home to sleep on it.

Given the distance involved for me and the big fact that my experience really was not 'confidence inspiring'..... I ended up passing on the deal.

In hindsight, that was probably the biggest mistake I have ever made in this business. But at the time, and given the situation... it seemed like the right thing to do at the time.

I just didn't have the confidence in Lesco, or in their people, or in the product due to the price.
In the end, I went on to make some very costly mistakes.

I passed on Lesco 4 times, 4 years in a row, and wasn't even considering them the 5th time when I did actually end up buying.... But that was from the Winston Salem location.

********************

Oh, and there was also the incident when the Green Industry Expo came to Charlotte. I was in attendance and so were the Charlotte Lesco guys. I was in the booth talking with them and asking if there were any plans at Lesco to adopt the 'Wide-Track' setup on the 60" mowers like Cub Commercial.

The guy told me YES and gave me this whole spill as to how it was just exactly like the 72". Same widetrack frame, same 33hp engine, but with the 60" deck and front axle assembly.

So I asked about getting one, he went to the computer, came back and said he had one left at the Charlotte store. So we did some stuff and I put it on hold at GIE to take delivery/pick it up following the show weekend.

So I came home thinking I was going to call ahead and go down first of the week to cut the check and pick up my awesome 33hp 60" Wide-Track Ztwo and a mulch kit. Even jumped online to share the news and everything.

Well, as it turned out, Charlotte Boy didn't know his @ss from a hole in the ground because no such unit even existed.

*********************************

But since buying, Lesco has never let me down on anything. It's been a big relief for me to get away from the 'local-yocal' hometown dealers and their pathetic service/support/parts delivery in this area.

With Lesco, all I have to do is push some buttons to get the parts/supplies I need.
Telephone keypad or keyboard.

The UPS man comes and drops the parts at my feet 'next day' for critical items.
Maybe the day after for supplies.

Rons Rightway Lawncare
01-07-2007, 10:21 AM
I usually shop at the Pineville store.... or if I want to go to a cleaner location I go to the newer Matthews location. The guys there are always super nice, but they just don't have a service dept worth a hoot. The pineville store has a dedicated area for service, but like I said... often times it is unmanned and mowers and stuff piles up while they find a new mechanic.

Early last year, the Matthews Lesco had all their ZTR's on sale. Can't remember the prices to a t, but the 48/52? incher was like 4500$, the 60 incher was around 5000$ and the 72 incher was still under 6000$ If I remember correctly. Whatever the prices were they were dam cheap! And tempting. Still after seeing the service departments or lack of, and seeing the cut these mowers do, I passed and would probably continue to pass. But like I said, I have run the Lesco Walkbehinds and their fixed deck 52 inch hydro walkbehind is one of the best WB's I have ever used and it is usually one of the cheapest on the market. I would buy one in a second if I ever decide to get a walkbehind in that size range.