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TurfTechTN
06-14-2009, 12:56 PM
Hey guys, I operate in east Tennessee and as you may well know there is not much flat ground here. I am going to prurchase a zero turn soon and am curious to learn from you guys that mow on some hilly terrain what machines perform well and why. My concerns are traction, don't want to be spinning tires and making a mess, stability is also important with a lower center of gravity. How steep of ground do you mow? Any input from your experience would be greatly appreciated. Thank you!

barlowlawncare
06-14-2009, 01:37 PM
hello turftech, we have about 90 resid lawns and I would say more than half of them have some type of steep hill somewhere on the property, and my hands down favorite to use is the walker stander, the one we have is old with thousands of hrs on it and on its last leg but it hands hill and such with ease we also have 2 60in xmark ztr's one 2008 and the other im not sure its a lot older and the new one is horrible on hills! the old one not so bad because the back tires are very worn down so u get a lot more traction. I wish we could buy worn tires for the new one. The new lazer turfs lawns so easily but with the worn tires on the old one, even if it spins it doesnt rip all the grass out! and like slicks on a race car u get more traction on the grass. In my area it has been raining all season, there has been only one dry week this season where it didnt either rain during, before, or after we cut so we have been using the stander and old lazer most of the time. but to answer you question, we love the stander for anytype of hilly lawns and as soon as we can afford it we will be replacing the old one with a brand new one! The beauty with the standers is they cut like a walk behind but with the speed of a ztr, and the new ones have adjustable decks which are also great so u can lift as u cut on these hill side terrians with mole hills and rocks and what ever you can just lift the deck as you go over and drop back dwn and keep going. the new lazer has this foot pedal too which we love. Im currently making my own for the old lazer i just need to find someone to weld it to the mower for me! Anyone have a new stander pls chime in cause i'd love to hear poss and negs about them thx

tacoma200
06-14-2009, 02:06 PM
The 09 Toro's, 09 Exmark Lazers, or any year Scag Turf Tiger. Pre 09 Lazers are not good for this.

barlowlawncare
06-14-2009, 02:59 PM
i ment wright stander for some reason i keep writing walker!

tacoma200
06-14-2009, 03:02 PM
This thread may help
http://www.lawnsite.com/showthread.php?t=277202&highlight=turf+tiger+steep

TurfTechTN
06-14-2009, 10:50 PM
tacoma200, Thanks for the link with the Turf Tiger pics. Impressive!

TurfTechTN
06-14-2009, 10:55 PM
Hi Barlow,
Thanks for the info. I will do some research on those. I have a Better Dually 44 that does pretty good on the hills. I am getting requests to do larger projects with lots of area to mow and want a wider deck and a bit more speed, plus I would mind sitting sometimes, you know what I mean. I appreciate the feedback from someone with the experience. Thanks, Bruce

SfTD_service_CENTER
06-14-2009, 11:23 PM
heard bobcats arent that bad on hills and are alot cheaper than the exmarks and scag mowers. if price is a concern i would look at them, and the great dane, country clippers. those are all highly reserved for hills and some have the opions of a joystick contrall instead of twin stick, if maybe you like the idea.

barlowlawncare
06-15-2009, 12:38 AM
No problem the new wright standers have a wide range of decks available I know they have at least a 60" available from going to their web site the new ones also have a little seat that you can add to it. We are saving for one now and I can't wait to get it, the old one we have has not done us wrong and the control you have on steep slopes is amazing. Also when ever I do get a little scared you can always just step one foot off the back and sorta push it as your goin its hard to explain but once you use one for awhile you just figure all diff types of ways to use it. Like I said what impresses me the most is the way they cut they look as if you used a walk behind which imo is the best looking cut? the website also claims like 13mph which is just as fast as our 08 xmark, also the way the center of gravity is on them you just feel like you can do anything on them I am able to whip around trees, bushes, garages. I think anyone who has to cut hills and smaller yards also should at least find a dealer and demo one

CowboysLawnCare
06-15-2009, 01:35 AM
I bought a 2009 Exmark Lazer Z 48" recently. It does great on the hills due to the new design of the fuel tank under the seat keeping a lower center of gravity. Even if wheels spin, doesn't tear up grass very much at all.

chrisvinky
06-15-2009, 08:59 AM
I have some big hills where I live and due to dealer support, went with Grasshopper after I demoed one.

I have the frontmount and it spins a little sometimes going UP a hill, but when you go down a hill and pull back on the sticks, it stops dead in its tracks.

I liked that after about taking out a tree when I demoed a Dixie Chopper.

One hill that I mow is probably in the 30% range and I mow it by backing up it and going back down and repeating. They also make a traction kit to go on them that will help to hold the backend down on really steep hills.

SfTD_service_CENTER
06-15-2009, 06:53 PM
I bought a 2009 Exmark Lazer Z 48" recently. It does great on the hills due to the new design of the fuel tank under the seat keeping a lower center of gravity. Even if wheels spin, doesn't tear up grass very much at all.

what engine you have??? that is a really nice mower i wish they made a 44" deck so i could replace my dixon

CowboysLawnCare
06-16-2009, 12:49 PM
I chose the Kohler 20. Yea, I wish they still made the 46'' cut but stopped makeing that last year.

SuperZ
06-16-2009, 02:18 PM
When I was looking at a ZTR I was also concerned about hill mowing. After a lot of searching I ended up buying a Hustler Super Z, and I have been extremely pleased with it. I am not a commercial operator, however I mow some pretty steep slopes and my mower is about like a goat. I have to be careful that I don't become overly confident as I have found that it is not so much the slope that is the limiting factor for me, but a consideration of moisture in the grass, type of grass (clover holds so much moisture even when the ground is dry), and the type of soil that I am on. Some of my ground are areas have had a lot of organic matter (old forests) and that ground is extremely "powdery" and that gets very difficult to mow. Of the different ZTR's that I have run (Dixon, Dixie, and Toro) my Hustler is considerably better. I seem to have a much lower center of gravity and more control in my hydrostats. The key for me are slow and consistent turns (like Tacoma) and concentration on the front wheels of the machine. They will tell you if you are starting to get into trouble. Just my $0.02 for what it is worth.

SfTD_service_CENTER
06-16-2009, 03:07 PM
I chose the Kohler 20. Yea, I wish they still made the 46'' cut but stopped makeing that last year.

wow you will probly get some really good fuel consumption numbers with the motor. especially with the 12 gallon tnk that mowe can probly run for days witout refueling. i have a kohler 23 vtwin and it runs a bagger all day and it seems pretty good on fuel for its size too!

CowboysLawnCare
06-16-2009, 08:08 PM
Yea I love my ole mower now. The Kohler don't burn no fuel at all it seems. No complaints.

pequeajim
06-23-2009, 08:40 PM
I have some big hills where I live and due to dealer support, went with Grasshopper after I demoed one.

I have the frontmount and it spins a little sometimes going UP a hill, but when you go down a hill and pull back on the sticks, it stops dead in its tracks.

If you have a hydraulic lift, then just raise the deck a tiny bit and you will get more traction going up the hill.

I am getting a 930 Grasshopper demo at my place tomorrow. I have 17 and 23 degree hills in my yard.