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View Full Version : Scag TT vs Exmark NLZ 60" demo results...


jjurich
06-15-2009, 10:52 PM
I'm no pro, just a home user mowing 3 acres. I've been studying what all you pro's buy and these two brands seem to best fit my lawn, which is basically one long hill. I had been mowing with a Kubota FZ2400 72" 24hp diesel. It needed repairs for the 1st time in 8 years of me owning it, so sold it and started looking. And yes, these are probably both over kill, but I like buying quality and really want to minimize the time on the mower.

I demo'ed the 29/60 NLZ and the 29/60 scag TT as they hold the hills well, and both dealers are great here. Here are my observations that I'm sharing to try and give back to all those that have helped. I'm no expert, so here goes...

Exmark Pro's:
Air cooled engine has noticeable more torque.
Mowed much quicker then TT. Did lawn in 70m vs 90m on the TT.
Easier to control hydro's, less divets turning.
Seemed more stable on the hills and more maneuverable then the TT.
5 year residential warranty (2 yr engine).
Deck is easier to set height on by a tiny bit (rod that you turn on NLZ that lines up w/ a groove vs cotter pin on the TT that has to be pulled for it's rod).
Superior weight distribution vs TT.
Cut. Clipping smaller, though potentially not as dispersed as TT's.
0% financing for 3 years. This is nice even though I can pay cash, I'd just as soon get the interest from my credit union (4%). Yes, it is really is 4%.

Exmark Low's:
Had the ISO mounted seat and it wasn't even close to the comfort of the TT's full suspension seat. Coarse, I was mowing faster on the NLZ, but that doesn't account for all I felt.
Fuel consumption will be higher then the DFI TT, though less stuff to break.
Build just doesn't feel quite as nice compared to the tank like TT.

TT High's:
The ride on this thing was sweet! I can see how you could ride this all day vs being pretty shook up on the NLZ. My lawn has lots of natural aeration via moles :)
Velocity deck. D*mn near have to wear goggles with this thing. Drove over our sandy asphalt road and still digging sand out of my hair and eyes.
Cut. I did mow at like half the speed of the NLZ due to the under powered engine, but the cut was dead on, though the clippers were larger then NLZ's.
Build quality. Frame is so solid and rigid. Seems built heavier then the NLZ by far. Multiple hydro filters, shaft drive, slightly more accessible engine, more gauges, etc

TT Low's:
The 29 kawasaki water cooled, dfi engine seemed like a dog compared to the air cooled kawasaki 29 on the NLZ. I think peak torque on the LC is 44 and the air cooled is 53 is my memory serves. You could tell. Engine bogged down severely going up the hills pushing any speed in thick grass. I had to mow slower, 90m vs 70m on the NLZ going same direction. The engine about dies if you engage the PTO at half throttle. I suppose the weight difference might contribute to this as well.
The front deck seemed to lift more on hills turning then the NLZ. The whole weight distribution seemed superior on the NLZ as I almost got stuck on the TT mowing around landscaping trying to back up a hill. Wheels spun multiple times on the TT in various odd spots on the hills and don't remember that happening once on the NLZ.
Weight. Seemed like the TT was had more skidding and sliding vs NLZ on my property. I felt that I could really feel the extra weight the TT had vs NLZ and that it was a detriment in so far as handling is concerned. That likely gets better with experience and I have next to none on any ZTR, so take it w/ a grain of salt.
3.9% for 60m.

So, I'm leaning towards the 34/60 NLZ with the iso and Michigan seat. I really would love to have the scag as the engineer in my is drawn to the over engineering of that model and that velocity deck mows some serious grass. The 35 vanguard will solve the power problems, but I'm not sure about the handling issues I encountered. Maybe the ground was a bit softer/wetter. Sure was noticeable though. I also really like the 5 year warranty on the exmark though. Decisions decisions...

Ok, I've typed enough. I welcome your comments, especially from those who've mowed with both. Tacoma, when are you doing your demo???

Regards,

JJ

GravelyGuy
06-15-2009, 10:57 PM
Thanks for the review. The 29 has torque for sure. I have been engaging the PTO at like 1/4 throttle with no trouble. My 26 LC KAwi on my other mower had to be at 3/4 throttle or it struggled/died.

tacoma200
06-15-2009, 11:30 PM
Thanks for the great review JJ. It may take me a while before I can arrage a demo because of the rain and amount of work I'm doing. Sometimes hearing a review from some one with a fresh perspective is refreshing. I'm sure a greater percentage of people will favor the Lazers and I understand why. I expect to enjoy the Lazer demo but I know at the present time I need at least one tank of a ZTR for some of the heavy stuff. Power and traction haven't been a problem with the 35 hp model Turf Tiger Two great mowers no doubt. Who knows, I may have a fleet of each one day, but the buiness is not there yet. Thanks.
PS do yourself a favor and get the full suspension seat on the Lazer. You might as well be comfortable.
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marcuslawnguy
06-15-2009, 11:41 PM
Im surprised no one has done a up to date comparison with a Scag turf tiger and a Gravely equivalent. Here it's Scag, Gravely, Deere or Exmark. But I don't know much about the gravelys. But glad to see the comparison with the scag and exmark. I was looking at the gravelys the other day and they seemed built like a tank like a scag but I did not demo it or look at it very very closely. but it seemed more scag tank like than a badboy or exmark. not knocking the brands just saying what I saw.

MileHigh
06-15-2009, 11:50 PM
Good review and comparison.

FastMan
06-16-2009, 12:28 AM
jjurich, I did a comparison review between the TT and the NLZ here a couple weeks ago, and it was very similar to yours on so many points. I even had the same issues with the 29 hp on the TT. I thought something was just amiss with it, it was that bad.

jjurich
06-16-2009, 05:13 PM
Got pricing on the 34/60 with the suspension seat and OCDC, $11400. The Z3 equivalent minus OCDC is $11,8000. Thought the toro might come in cheaper. Both have to order it in, as it isn't a model they have. That's the price if one does the 0% for 3 years. Both said would be $200-$300 less for cash. People seem to like the ultracut deck better then the toro's.

Oh, I demo'ed the 29/60. Handling was great, will the extra 30lbs of the 34/60 make that much difference on the hills with wheels lifting or overall balance? Hard to think it would.

JJ

FastMan
06-16-2009, 07:59 PM
Oh, I demo'ed the 29/60. Handling was great, will the extra 30lbs of the 34/60 make that much difference on the hills with wheels lifting or overall balance? Hard to think it would.

JJ

It's a good question. I've seen comments from a few people on here who have the 34, and they seem equally enthused with the handling as you and I were on the 29. That suggests to me if there is a difference, it's not significant.

hackitdown
06-16-2009, 08:44 PM
Based on your review, it sounds like the Exmark is a no brainer once you deal with the ride quality. A suspension seat option may do the trick. Or adjust teh air pressure in teh back tires. The better ride may make it feel more solid like the Scag. The only other negative was fuel consumption. But will cutting one large lawn per week...

The Scag list of negatives was quit long, with no easy fixes.

shovelracer
06-16-2009, 08:47 PM
For what its worth I complained about the 29DFI being underpowered last year. After 3-400 hours it loosened up and isnt so bad. Main reason for feeling underpowered is the shaft drive deck setup the scag runs. Step up a few horsepower on the scag and it will be a better comparison. I have had and love both mowers. The exmark leaves as cleaner appearance because of the smaller clippings on regular grass, but the scag can outmow it in the heavy stuff. Scag is much more sensitive to setup with all the baffles and such and harder for new guys to learn on. The exmark is pretty much idiot proof with less adjustments necessary. The scag is a better mower IMO once it is setup for your conditions. Although perhaps overkill for your needs. Good review non the less.

r.eckley
06-16-2009, 09:11 PM
I have 29-60 NLZ when i traded i kept the michigan seat from my old mower.
Bolted right on kept the rubber iso-mounts and rides much better. Took about all the backslap out. the dealer was happy to have a new seat on the trade. If you get the good seat be sure to use the rubber mounts.

jjurich
06-16-2009, 09:18 PM
I looked at the torque #'s again, and I was wrong. The LC and air cooled numbers are the same, 44, at 3600 rpm. The 53 for the air cooled is at a much lower rpm. My bad... Still seemed anemic. I will miss the lower gas consumption. Will take me 7 years to get 400 hours, or at least that's about what I put on the Kubota while I had that...

Would agree about the exmark being idiot proof driving. Was very easy to pick up. Looking forward to cutting an hour off my mowing. If I can stop having to mow every 4 days, that will be a huge plus with this new mower as well. You couldn't get mulching blades for the kubota, and it didn't disperse very well. If it was wet, major clumping and grass stuck under the deck. So, I'm mowing about every 4 days to get an acceptable look and not have to mow the clippings a 2nd time.

JJ

tacoma200
06-16-2009, 09:24 PM
I concede that the Exmark is the better choice for the average operator.But they are not really comparable models to each other (Scag and Exmark don't really have comparable models at this time).
Plain and simple the Lazer is a new modern ZTR aimed at the average suburban LCO's needs. Nimble and easy to operate. The Turf Tiger is almost an industrial design, that is some what dated, and even after 10 years still is able to hold it's own against any machine on the market. But it is designed for large open jobs and is closer to the Lazer XS. In the hands of a skilled operator it has few cons. It took me about 50 hrs to adjust to the Turf Tiger but it is able with the help of the efficient Velocity deck and an engine above 30 hp to tackle jobs that would be much more difficult with an Exmark with any version of the Ultra Cut. The Turf Tiger is not designed to compete with lighter,shorter,more nimble machines though in the right hands it can. I like Exmarks and may own another one day but I use the right machine for the jobs I do at the moment.
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jjurich
06-16-2009, 09:33 PM
Yes, it is a shame the less industrial scag models don't have bigger engines. I've got enough slope on the hill and it is loonggg, that I really don't think a 27 hp tiger cub is going to cut it. Shame, I was really hoping to have that orange beast in the garage and enjoy a nice glass of kool aid that every else talks about. I've got just the bottle of whiskey to mix in it :) Might be worth a test drive though, since it ways about 200 less.

I'll have to do some searches now and see what people are saying about the cub's.

JJ

tacoma200
06-16-2009, 09:54 PM
The new Lazer is going to be hard to beat overall, that's why I'm willing to concede it would be a better choice for most.
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marcuslawnguy
06-16-2009, 09:54 PM
a tigercub is no baby and holds hills and is a tough mower. i love them and think the perfect set up is trailer with a 48 cub and a 61 turf tiger.

johnnybravo8802
06-16-2009, 09:54 PM
I'm no pro, just a home user mowing 3 acres. I've been studying what all you pro's buy and these two brands seem to best fit my lawn, which is basically one long hill. I had been mowing with a Kubota FZ2400 72" 24hp diesel. It needed repairs for the 1st time in 8 years of me owning it, so sold it and started looking. And yes, these are probably both over kill, but I like buying quality and really want to minimize the time on the mower.

I demo'ed the 29/60 NLZ and the 29/60 scag TT as they hold the hills well, and both dealers are great here. Here are my observations that I'm sharing to try and give back to all those that have helped. I'm no expert, so here goes...

Exmark Pro's:
Air cooled engine has noticeable more torque.
Mowed much quicker then TT. Did lawn in 70m vs 90m on the TT.
Easier to control hydro's, less divets turning.
Seemed more stable on the hills and more maneuverable then the TT.
5 year residential warranty (2 yr engine).
Deck is easier to set height on by a tiny bit (rod that you turn on NLZ that lines up w/ a groove vs cotter pin on the TT that has to be pulled for it's rod).
Superior weight distribution vs TT.
Cut. Clipping smaller, though potentially not as dispersed as TT's.
0% financing for 3 years. This is nice even though I can pay cash, I'd just as soon get the interest from my credit union (4%). Yes, it is really is 4%.

Exmark Low's:
Had the ISO mounted seat and it wasn't even close to the comfort of the TT's full suspension seat. Coarse, I was mowing faster on the NLZ, but that doesn't account for all I felt.
Fuel consumption will be higher then the DFI TT, though less stuff to break.
Build just doesn't feel quite as nice compared to the tank like TT.

TT High's:
The ride on this thing was sweet! I can see how you could ride this all day vs being pretty shook up on the NLZ. My lawn has lots of natural aeration via moles :)
Velocity deck. D*mn near have to wear goggles with this thing. Drove over our sandy asphalt road and still digging sand out of my hair and eyes.
Cut. I did mow at like half the speed of the NLZ due to the under powered engine, but the cut was dead on, though the clippers were larger then NLZ's.
Build quality. Frame is so solid and rigid. Seems built heavier then the NLZ by far. Multiple hydro filters, shaft drive, slightly more accessible engine, more gauges, etc

TT Low's:
The 29 kawasaki water cooled, dfi engine seemed like a dog compared to the air cooled kawasaki 29 on the NLZ. I think peak torque on the LC is 44 and the air cooled is 53 is my memory serves. You could tell. Engine bogged down severely going up the hills pushing any speed in thick grass. I had to mow slower, 90m vs 70m on the NLZ going same direction. The engine about dies if you engage the PTO at half throttle. I suppose the weight difference might contribute to this as well.
The front deck seemed to lift more on hills turning then the NLZ. The whole weight distribution seemed superior on the NLZ as I almost got stuck on the TT mowing around landscaping trying to back up a hill. Wheels spun multiple times on the TT in various odd spots on the hills and don't remember that happening once on the NLZ.
Weight. Seemed like the TT was had more skidding and sliding vs NLZ on my property. I felt that I could really feel the extra weight the TT had vs NLZ and that it was a detriment in so far as handling is concerned. That likely gets better with experience and I have next to none on any ZTR, so take it w/ a grain of salt.
3.9% for 60m.

So, I'm leaning towards the 34/60 NLZ with the iso and Michigan seat. I really would love to have the scag as the engineer in my is drawn to the over engineering of that model and that velocity deck mows some serious grass. The 35 vanguard will solve the power problems, but I'm not sure about the handling issues I encountered. Maybe the ground was a bit softer/wetter. Sure was noticeable though. I also really like the 5 year warranty on the exmark though. Decisions decisions...

Ok, I've typed enough. I welcome your comments, especially from those who've mowed with both. Tacoma, when are you doing your demo???

Regards,

JJ
In one section, you said the the engines were both 29 HP and then you said 34 on the NLZ-which one? I've had 3 Exmark's and they didn't even come close to handling a hill like the TT-they spun a lot compared to the TT. I'm not sure how you managed to divot more with the TT-that's the whole purpose of the extra dampening-to not divot. I rarely divot unless the ground is wet. I left a lot of divots with the Exmark.

SfTD_service_CENTER
06-16-2009, 10:08 PM
the new exmark is supposed to handle hills better than the older version.

he tested a 29 and he might want the 34 just because they are only a couple hundred more bucks!

jjurich
06-16-2009, 10:45 PM
the new exmark is supposed to handle hills better than the older version.

he tested a 29 and he might want the 34 just because they are only a couple hundred more bucks!

Exactly. The 29 NLZ was also bogging down going up the hills. Enough, I had to slow down to keep the blade speed up. That's why I'm contemplating the 34.

Wetness wise, it might have been a bit wetter/softer the day I had the scag, but not by much. Course, could mainly be pilot error/learning curve on the TT.

Both are great machines for sure.

JJ

TMlawncare
06-16-2009, 10:50 PM
In one section, you said the the engines were both 29 HP and then you said 34 on the NLZ-which one? I've had 3 Exmark's and they didn't even come close to handling a hill like the TT-they spun a lot compared to the TT. I'm not sure how you managed to divot more with the TT-that's the whole purpose of the extra dampening-to not divot. I rarely divot unless the ground is wet. I left a lot of divots with the Exmark.
We have a 04" lazer Z 60lc. It feel like you are driving on ice compared to the next lazer. It is the only Z I felt like I could be going down a steep grade, stop and back up the hill and turn. It is that well balanced and the hydros are just silky smooth and quiet. You feel the different within 5 seconds of operation this machine.

SfTD_service_CENTER
06-16-2009, 11:02 PM
3460 just go for it! it makes the mower keep blade speed at its highest most all situations im sure you would like it!

tacoma200
06-16-2009, 11:35 PM
No one has mentioned parts availability. Most of the parts on the new Lazer are going to be specialized like John Deere. Most parts amd repairs will probaby go through the dealer while most ZTR,s use standardized pumps, wheel motors, etc which are readily available from suppliers. So if a part does fail you won't be able to order thru such places as J-Thomas etc for a lower price. No more low cost easy pump/ wheel motor replacment. I know most do not do their own work though. Old lazer parts are readily available and industry standard. You can order almost any part overnight.
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marcuslawnguy
06-16-2009, 11:39 PM
No one has mentioned parts availability. Most of the parts on the new Lazer are going to be specialized like John Deere. Most parts amd repairs will probaby go through the dealer while most ZTR,s use standardized pumps, wheel motors, etc which are readily available from suppliers. So if a part does fail you won't be able to order thru such places as J-Thomas etc for a lower price. No more low cost easy pump/ wheel motor replacment. I know most do not do their own work though. Old lazer parts are readily available and industry standard. You can order almost any part overnight.
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I agree I hate specialize parts I go through that with my deere walkbehind time to time. I couldn't even imagine having to deal with ztr.

CowboysLawnCare
06-16-2009, 11:57 PM
Go with a Exmark. I just bought a 2009 NLZ and love it. I used to use a Scag Turf Tiger with a 27 Kohler and just doesn't do what that NLZ will do.

lawnman7
06-17-2009, 12:02 AM
I'm no pro, just a home user mowing 3 acres. I've been studying what all you pro's buy and these two brands seem to best fit my lawn, which is basically one long hill. I had been mowing with a Kubota FZ2400 72" 24hp diesel. It needed repairs for the 1st time in 8 years of me owning it, so sold it and started looking. And yes, these are probably both over kill, but I like buying quality and really want to minimize the time on the mower.

I demo'ed the 29/60 NLZ and the 29/60 scag TT as they hold the hills well, and both dealers are great here. Here are my observations that I'm sharing to try and give back to all those that have helped. I'm no expert, so here goes...

Exmark Pro's:
Air cooled engine has noticeable more torque.
Mowed much quicker then TT. Did lawn in 70m vs 90m on the TT.
Easier to control hydro's, less divets turning.
Seemed more stable on the hills and more maneuverable then the TT.
5 year residential warranty (2 yr engine).
Deck is easier to set height on by a tiny bit (rod that you turn on NLZ that lines up w/ a groove vs cotter pin on the TT that has to be pulled for it's rod).
Superior weight distribution vs TT.
Cut. Clipping smaller, though potentially not as dispersed as TT's.
0% financing for 3 years. This is nice even though I can pay cash, I'd just as soon get the interest from my credit union (4%). Yes, it is really is 4%.

Exmark Low's:
Had the ISO mounted seat and it wasn't even close to the comfort of the TT's full suspension seat. Coarse, I was mowing faster on the NLZ, but that doesn't account for all I felt.
Fuel consumption will be higher then the DFI TT, though less stuff to break.
Build just doesn't feel quite as nice compared to the tank like TT.

TT High's:
The ride on this thing was sweet! I can see how you could ride this all day vs being pretty shook up on the NLZ. My lawn has lots of natural aeration via moles :)
Velocity deck. D*mn near have to wear goggles with this thing. Drove over our sandy asphalt road and still digging sand out of my hair and eyes.
Cut. I did mow at like half the speed of the NLZ due to the under powered engine, but the cut was dead on, though the clippers were larger then NLZ's.
Build quality. Frame is so solid and rigid. Seems built heavier then the NLZ by far. Multiple hydro filters, shaft drive, slightly more accessible engine, more gauges, etc

TT Low's:
The 29 kawasaki water cooled, dfi engine seemed like a dog compared to the air cooled kawasaki 29 on the NLZ. I think peak torque on the LC is 44 and the air cooled is 53 is my memory serves. You could tell. Engine bogged down severely going up the hills pushing any speed in thick grass. I had to mow slower, 90m vs 70m on the NLZ going same direction. The engine about dies if you engage the PTO at half throttle. I suppose the weight difference might contribute to this as well.
The front deck seemed to lift more on hills turning then the NLZ. The whole weight distribution seemed superior on the NLZ as I almost got stuck on the TT mowing around landscaping trying to back up a hill. Wheels spun multiple times on the TT in various odd spots on the hills and don't remember that happening once on the NLZ.
Weight. Seemed like the TT was had more skidding and sliding vs NLZ on my property. I felt that I could really feel the extra weight the TT had vs NLZ and that it was a detriment in so far as handling is concerned. That likely gets better with experience and I have next to none on any ZTR, so take it w/ a grain of salt.
3.9% for 60m.

So, I'm leaning towards the 34/60 NLZ with the iso and Michigan seat. I really would love to have the scag as the engineer in my is drawn to the over engineering of that model and that velocity deck mows some serious grass. The 35 vanguard will solve the power problems, but I'm not sure about the handling issues I encountered. Maybe the ground was a bit softer/wetter. Sure was noticeable though. I also really like the 5 year warranty on the exmark though. Decisions decisions...

Ok, I've typed enough. I welcome your comments, especially from those who've mowed with both. Tacoma, when are you doing your demo???

Regards,

JJ

GO WITH WHAT YOUR COMFORTABLE WITH, YOUR USING THE MACHINE NOT YOuR CREW+your paying for it. go with what you like you will be using it, id go with comfort not quality of cut. i mean on those big machines the cut doesnt realy matter it good just change out the blades

tacoma200
06-17-2009, 12:34 AM
I must say that the Lazer warranty for homeowners would be hard to pass up. I'm sure they want to boost confindence in the new Z and this is a great way to do it. Thumbs up on the warranty. Cut matters to me but both cut great in the right type grass. Heavy,wet, tall Scag. Moderate with small clipping and smoother appearance Exmark.
I think he will go Exmark which is probably the best choice for most especially with the 5 year consumer warranty. I may wait for the "next" new Lazer due in Summer 2010. It will have the Trivantage deck, integrated engine/pump/wheel motor combo, and 3 cup holders. Just joking of course.
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