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Steve Arnold
12-22-1999, 07:57 AM
hello<br>just getting started in business...<br>am about to buy a 48&quot; lesco hydro mower ... is this a good size to start with and what is the general opinion of fixed verses floating decks?<br>Thanks for your help!<br>any input on starting out is greatly appreciated!

accuratelawn
12-22-1999, 04:09 PM
The 48&quot; is a good size to start with. You will be happly with the hydro. You would be ok with a fixed deck at 48&quot;, but if the cost is not too much different, get the floating deck. As far as Lesco, I don't have any personal experience with them. They are made by MTD. So if that scares you.... In my area Exmark is very popular. I have a Lazer Z and love it. Hope this helps, Good luck in the Spring!

bamaturfguy
12-22-1999, 08:16 PM
hi, i started with a 48&quot; scag, still have it although dixie choppers are my daily drivers now. the 48&quot; will get you in and around most places and will be very productive compared to a standard lawn tractor. <p>good luck

Roger
12-23-1999, 08:30 AM
..suggest you scan all the old posts. This question has been discussed many times in the past.<p>I started 3 years ago, buying a fixed deck, 36&quot; Exmark, hydro. I feel strongly about spending the extra money for hydro, better productivity, easier to handle. The 36&quot; machine permits me to get through gates that a 48&quot; machine would not. For my work, I have only a few customers that I would make really good use of a 48&quot; machine, so am satisfied with the 36&quot;. Width will depend greatly on what kind of lawns you will be mowing.<p>Also, consider dealer/service availability. I have had excellent success with my Exmark, but others have posted messages stating that availability of service at the local dealer was very important for them. Fortunately, I've not had to get to my dealer, except once in the offseason for maintenance parts.<p>I've seen some Lesco units in the area, and have looked at them at the local dealer. If I would make a change, I would give them serious consideration. As stated earlier, they are of MTD manufacture, and the same machine (different color) is offered as part of MTD's professional/commercial products.<p>E-mail me if you wish to discuss further.<p>Roger

Roger
12-23-1999, 08:30 AM
..suggest you scan all the old posts. This question has been discussed many times in the past.<p>I started 3 years ago, buying a fixed deck, 36&quot; Exmark, hydro. I feel strongly about spending the extra money for hydro, better productivity, easier to handle. The 36&quot; machine permits me to get through gates that a 48&quot; machine would not. For my work, I have only a few customers that I would make really good use of a 48&quot; machine, so am satisfied with the 36&quot;. Width will depend greatly on what kind of lawns you will be mowing.<p>Also, consider dealer/service availability. I have had excellent success with my Exmark, but others have posted messages stating that availability of service at the local dealer was very important for them. Fortunately, I've not had to get to my dealer, except once in the offseason for maintenance parts.<p>I've seen some Lesco units in the area, and have looked at them at the local dealer. If I would make a change, I would give them serious consideration. As stated earlier, they are of MTD manufacture, and the same machine (different color) is offered as part of MTD's professional/commercial products.<p>E-mail me if you wish to discuss further.<p>Roger

geogunn
12-23-1999, 08:19 PM
yo steve--your question on what kind of mowing machine to start the business with is kind of like &quot;how long is a piece of string?&quot; hard to answer with out us both looking at the string! my response to your question is to go with the 48 lesco hydro, IF, you have done your homework on what is available and for a competitive price in your area. I went with a used lesco 48 belt and have had outstanding results with it. the size was right with only a few backyard gates that I couldn't wiggle through. and I mean wiggle. you can pull sideways to some gates that you can't drive through, drop the handle bars and ease through inch at a time (possibly get a 48 through a 40 inch gate). for other gates, carry a couple of adjustable wrenches and pull the gate. just remember to put it backup!!! <p>my machine is not an MTD version, HOWEVER, I encourage you to check out what that means as far as the quality of the machine. undoubtedly, there should be several responses to your question regarding lesco and mtd. I'm gonna check into the merger of lesco and mtd to find out what it means as far as who makes what. my experience is that lesco is actually closer to the skagg than anything else. the fact is that I've had such good luck with mine that I seldom go to the lesco dealer unless it is for grass seed or chemicals. what I've seen of their mowers on the showroom floor are, however, identical to mine. therefore, if I needed another, and the price was right, I'd buy another.<p>roger comments that he's had great success with a 36 inch cut machine. in my area with a 36 you'd never get through cutting because the yards are usually good size. if your bread and butter yards are small, a 36 might be the ticket. hope this helps. seasons greetings to all.<p>GEO

PIONEER
12-24-1999, 05:32 AM
The 48 is a good size mower, I started out with a 48 button belt drive . I now have a 52 ferris hydro which is fantastic. I also have a 54 johndeere which I would never buy another one ever. Defiantly go with the hydraulic drive you will never want anything else. One thing to consider is how far away is the dealer, you will need parts eventually, and you dont want to wast a lot of time getting them or waiting for them.<br>Dont worry about a 36in. if you cant get through the a gate pass it up. You cant cut them all. <br>

jnjnlc
12-27-1999, 06:59 PM
I agree with GEO. You have to shop around till you find the right thing. Just bought a Toro rider and quickly found out that I now need a 36&quot; walk behind. My suggestion is to analize the yards you have. If you think you need the 36 then go for it. Don't let one or two yards dictate what size you get. Even though I can use the 36 walkbehind I only need it on one yard. I made the right decision on the rider. I usually work by myself and the rider does not get me tired. I do beleive that a walkbehind would be a good compliment to the rider though. <p>Good luck in your search.<p><p>----------<br>Jeff<br>

Bluesteel
02-09-2003, 01:21 AM
yes, this is the best size, what do you think bruce32?

1grnlwn
02-09-2003, 03:46 AM
My Wb is 48" why do people insist on bagging. Do they enjoy hurting the enviroment? If not for those 0@mn composters, Confront would still be ok for residential? AARRGGH.

LAWNGODFATHER
02-09-2003, 03:49 AM
That damn tomato guy had to compost clippings and not let them age.

Damn baggers.

What do you think bruce32

e-RoK
02-09-2003, 04:03 AM
We only have 1 gate where I can't "wiggle" the 48" thru. But you are right, it's a Wiggle. It has to be done one way too otherwise it won't fit. So overall I would say the 48 would be a good choice if you had to have 1 mower. Big enough & yet small enough. If it was me, I'd do a 48in and use a push mower for any area I couldn't get it in. Either that or find lawns better suited to the equipment I had if possible. Also our 48 is a belt drive and when it rains it doesn't handle so well on hills, etc...So again if that was the only mower hydro is the way to go. Oh yea, we used to have a 61" Scag Wb fixed deck and that darn thing leaves scalps all over. I think they are just too big to be a fixed deck. The 48 is also fixed but doesn't have the same scalping issues the 61 did. And as for bagging, we don't do it. I used to bag this one older guys lawn. It was small and you spend more time fussing with the bag than anything else. They fill so quickly. We only had 1 lady in a HUGE home that actually requested bagged since then. And I think it was more just because she was a snob. She told me "That's not how it goes in this neighborhood". But she's another story entirely. Just my 2 cents

TJLC
02-09-2003, 10:44 AM
I had a 36" Exmark hydro, great machine. The only thing I didn't care for was the lack of deck overhang for gettig in close to things. I now run 2 Exmark 48" hydro's (plenty of deck overhang). IMHO get the 48" it seems to be a good "average" size. Good luck.

paponte
02-09-2003, 10:56 AM
Steve Arnold, you have any backyards in your area? Make sure a 48" will fit. Or else you'll be buying another machine!

Ed Ryder
02-09-2003, 01:48 PM
I have a gear drive Lesco 48. It is a good machine at a great price.

Problems:

1. You have to constantly grease those front forks that the castor wheels are on. If you don't do this, those bronze sleaves wear down in no time. Check out the bolts on the deck right behind the castor tires. When the those sleaves wear down enough, your front castor wheels will begin to rub against those bolts. Then the tires will be ruined. I replaced mine with solid wheels and just have to replace those sleaves/whatever you call them - often.

2. Safety levers on pistol grips will kill your palms. Hmm... well, since it is a hydro, maybe it will be different.

That's all I've got for now.

Ed Ryder
02-09-2003, 02:00 PM
Okay... two more things:

Blow out is a problem. Too much stuff comes out the front and gets sucked into the air intake area. This results in crap settling and clogging the cooling fins. If you don't take the top off and blow that sh*t out, eventually your going to have engine problems. Since your machine probably has 2 cylinders, the potential damage is replacing 2 cylinder heads. Since the engine runs too hot when the cooling fins are clogged, some of the components expand, while others of different metals don't. The result is no power and clunking noises. So this is a regular maintenance issue.

Also, don't expect the safety cut-off switches to last long. Mine llasted 90 hours and that was it. I disconnected them after that.

That machine is going to be heavy. If you are loading it into the back of your pick-up, go with metal ramps. The wood ramps will very likely snap at some point (from my own experience).