View Full Version : What's the best walk-behind?

01-17-2000, 08:24 PM
What is the best walk-behind mower. I'd like to buy a 36in, but I'm not sure what brand. I have heard good things about Scag & Exmark, mixed opinions about Lesco, also heard that Encore sucks. Which one is the best? What about Snapper?I haven't heard much about them.

01-17-2000, 08:29 PM
Go with eXmark.. snapper is not made for commercial use in my opinion.

01-17-2000, 10:09 PM
I would buy an Exmark before a Scag. As a matter of fact I would buy most anything before another Scag. As you may guess I had a problem with Scag. I also had what was probably the first &quot;Florida Model&quot; Scag that replaced my original one. <p>On the plus side, if you don't cut grass in Florida you may be ok. :) And the Scag dealer and distributor recognized the problem and tried to correct it.<br>

Kent Lawns
01-18-2000, 05:23 AM
What about that Troy-Bilt Walk-Behind? They are light, cheap and they are built by Troy-Bilt, so you know they're good.

01-18-2000, 05:40 AM
Kent Lawns, I haven't seen the Troy-Bilt walk-behind that you are talking about. But I would be willing to bet that Troy-Bilt doesn't make it. MTD (not even MTD Pro) makes alot of Troy-Bilt's products. More than likely &quot;Light and Cheap&quot; is a good description of their walk-behinds. <p>----------<br>Doc Shank<br>

01-18-2000, 06:13 AM
Ive looked at the troy bilt for hahas. Its a light, thin homeowner machine. One heavy twig, or hardened dog turd and the blades and deck are toast. At least with a commercial mower, you have a 3/16 inch steel blade and deck to keep the errant stick and stone on the ground. But for $1300 it makes an expensive trim mower.<p>As for the sturdiness, the tillers were good until troy bilt sold out to garden way several years back then the quality took a dive. Make no mistake the new ones are nothing like the one your father had.<p>Bill

01-18-2000, 06:22 AM
I think their limited warranty covers &quot;hardened dog turds&quot; :) LOL

01-31-2000, 05:26 PM
I use a Toro Pro Line 15hp with a 44&quot; deck. The unit is a Hydro which is a must for time and ease. I added a Pro-Slide to tow my carcass around the big lawns and the mower is great. Its good in all weather also.

lawrence stone
01-31-2000, 06:50 PM
Mow Ed the 52&quot; Toro deck is much better.<br>I have both decks. Because the 52&quot; has more<br>of an offset it trims better. Plus it just plain mows better and mulches better. Also<br>because the front casters are wider it is<br>more stable cutting across steep slopes.<p>A cheap way to upgrade to a 52&quot; deck is to<br>buy an old gear drive with a 52&quot; deck and<br>just switch decks (12 bolts and 2 belts).<p>The bagging kits (toro) are interchangable.<p>Try going to traderonline.com and look in the<br>misc. listing using toro as a search word.<p>A new 52&quot; deck is $1500+<br>You should be able to find a complete gear<br>drive unit with a 52&quot; for about $1k.<p>This way you also get a another complete spare mower just buy another sulky attachment plate.<p>IMHO you can never have enough lawn mowers.<p>

JJ Lawn
01-31-2000, 07:32 PM
Don't knock the Troy-Bilt until you try it... :)<p>I used to have one that I used for getting into small gates. I just loved the 33&quot; deck and the compact size. Compaired to some WB mowers the short front(lengh)is great. Takes up less space on trailor, easier to manuvere, and it did have a beautiful cut. I especially liked the crank for adjusting the deck height. <p>But,ya'll are right about the deck...POS. And the frame was not strong enough for commercial use. The engine and drive train seemed to handle the load of everday use though.<p>If some manufacturer would build one in comercial quality I'd buy one in a heartbeat.<p>When I had my truck and trailor stolen, I had left the TB at home. While waiting for settlement, I borrowed a truck, loaded up the TB and mowed all 42 of my yards without missing a beat. Did that for 2 weeks. That $1400 machine saved my business, and gets my praise.<p><p>----------<br>Jim.....from Fouke, Arkansas (Home of the Boggy Creek Monster)<br>

01-31-2000, 07:41 PM
I have a Dual Drive Ferris 48&quot;, fixed deck. I also have a Toro hydro. I have tried the single drive Ferris, which is steered by brakes. I don't like them. They don't turn as well with the straight, non-pivoting shaft of my turf rider sulky. I weigh almost 200 lbs, so it does make a difference. I have never used the mower without a sulky since I can't run at top speed, but I can ride at top speed, or darn near.<p>I spend 90% of my mowing time on the Ferris. My next walk behind mower will definitely be a Ferris. My next Z is also going to be a Ferris Pro Cut with independent suspension. I prefer the Ferris walkbehind because it goes straight since both wheels turn and you steer with your left and right levers. <p>With the T grip on the Toro, you squeeze both sides of one handle. You must squeeze both evenly to track straight. My Ferris automatically goes straight ahead and then you turn the wheels with the pistol grips.<p>It is difficult to explain, but those who have used both know what I'm talking about. Also, hydros have a positive reverse versus a &quot;reverse assist&quot; for gear or belt drives, whichever you prefer to call them. <p>I never have to stop to go into reverse, if you have a belt drive, you have to stop to shift gears, reverse or otherwise. Anyone who is in this business knows stopping or slowing down costs money. &lt;b&gt;Increased production is increased profit, minus the increased costs.&lt;/b&gt;<p>Ferris has the best warranty in the industry. Their machines are covered, both parts and labor, for a two year period. The only exclusions are blades, belts and tires (understandable). They are pretty confident their machines are going to last, and so am I. I drive over 200 miles to buy them new, if that tells you how much I like them. <p>There are many good mowers out there, you just have to find one that suits you. I suggest you demo them and see how quickly you can pick up on the machine's individual controls. One of the dealers was willing to let me use their demo for a week, 200 some miles away. That's service.<p>Ferris may not be prevalent in your area, but in my opinion, they are worth traveling a little for. If you need parts, they will send them within 24 hours to YOUR HOME, not to some dealership who may or may not make sure they make it safely into your hands.<p>I have a line on low prices on them along with Toro, Bobcat and Skag. I know they don't have much competition when it comes to bothe service and price. The two dealers I deal with sell a couple of other brands, but out of what they sell, these are the brands I would trust the most. Also, these dealers are full line dealerships, meaning they sell every model of the brands they sell. Email me at retrolawn@interlink-bbs.com if you want the phone number to one or both dealers. I hope this helps. <p>John

02-01-2000, 08:26 PM
I too have a Troy-bilt. Been in use for the biz (11/2yr.) & I also use it on my own lawn. (.769 ac.) I love this machine! Cuts beautifully and starts first or second try every time. Bought it used from a friend who was aslo in the biz. He used it 1 yr. and bought a Scag. Like an earlier post..... &quot;don't knock it 'till ya try it.&quot;

02-01-2000, 09:44 PM
hey guys-<br>I've demo-ed most of the major brands of WB's, & I like honda so well I bought 2 of them. I bought 2 commercial used ones (1 yr. old) for the price of 1 new one, & I love it. Sep. hydros for each wheel, AND you can drive each one independently; meaning you can mow across the side of a hill, & drive the downslope wheel faster to keep you straight & level on the hill. There may be a couple of others that do that, but I'm not aware of any. They have a good top speed for light mowing or transport, & give a real nice cut & make EXCELLENT stripes. Plus you get the infamous quality of Honda engines. Now they are pricey to buy new; that's why I bought used. You do get what you pay for, most of the time. I happen to like pistol grips much better than a T-bar, Cause they give complete indiv. control over each wheel. I like the ease of use too. Just my two cents worth; you don't hear much about honda's anymore.<br>Smitty

AB Lawn Care
02-09-2000, 05:12 PM
I would suggest scag.We bought a 14hp 36'' hydro and we love it it does where our walker can't fit.I read that some guys had scag dealer problems.We personaly have great dealer service but yes i'm shure that there is alot of scag dealers that are boneheads.We have one in town!So we deal with a dealer 1/2 an hour away.Ya I now it is a pain to drive that far but his service is awsome so it makes up for the drive.As far as exmark vs scag.I'm sure that exmark makes great walkbehinds we were planing on leasing one,but the interest rate was nuts!Both mowers were almost the same in price but I looked at how much more I would end up paying in the long run and we decided to lease the scag.As far as those who say that exmark gives a better cut,I can't say that the don't all that I know is our scag gives a very good cut.That may be becouse it is a small deck but i'm sure that even the larger decks cut well too.Bottom line not really which mower,most are built allmost the same an most are very reliable,the key factor finding a dealer that will be honest do good work and most important have a good parts supply.<br>P.S if you are going to be leasing make sure you find out how much you will be paying in interest.This can save you alot of money!<p>from:Adam<br>AB Lawn Care<p><br>

jimmy jammz
02-09-2000, 08:43 PM
I'd have to say take a close look at a Hustler walk-behind made by Excell Ind. These<br>units are very tough, with the strongest deck<br>in the business.This is also the easiest mower to opperate in walk beinds. This unit can be opperated with one hand and is<br> also a zero turn with t-bar handle. This unit also has a pop holder for the user. Go<br>for a Hustler walk-behind. See ya,Jimmy Jammz