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View Full Version : Do I need a commercial or residential mower?


jaimew
04-07-2010, 03:00 PM
Hi everyone. I'm in the market for a ZTR, and I think I've settled on a hustler fastrak 54 (maybe - I could be swayed ). But I'm not sure if I need a superduty or not.

I have about 5-6 acres to cut. I have a very mild slope (~5deg) by the house. Portions of the yard are rough in spots, but nothing too severe.

My big concern is getting a mower that will last. Will I get much more life out of a superduty? Should I consider something else?

Thanks for your input!
jaime

dbear
04-07-2010, 03:16 PM
jaimew, good day and welcome. Hopefully mohustler will be along shortly to better answer your question. He's a Hustler dealer that hangs out here from time to time, so he'd know the differences between those models better than probably anybody.

In his absence, let me say I'd be leaning toward the heavier-duty machine. Also, with that size yard, I'd be seriously looking at models with a 60" deck, but hey, that's just me. Just a couple of pennies from a former farmboy, and a son of an engineer...

unkownfl
04-07-2010, 03:36 PM
There both kinda slow. I don't see much of a difference between the two besides the ROPS. Both have short rear tires and slow ground speed for mowing the size yard you have. What are the prices of the two machines from your dealer?

jaimew
04-07-2010, 06:57 PM
60" Fast Track SuperDuty - 6300
54" Fast Track Super Duty - 6100
54" Fast Track - 5400

I think I'm leaning torwards the 60".

jaime

unkownfl
04-07-2010, 06:58 PM
For 6300 you could buy a full commercial machine with a different brand.

jaimew
04-07-2010, 08:41 PM
For 6300 you could buy a full commercial machine with a different brand.

Really, any suggestions?

Thanks!
jaime

unkownfl
04-07-2010, 08:51 PM
Toro, Gravely, Snapper Pro, Cub cadet, Scag they may only have a 52"-54" deck in that price range, however its not that much of a time difference.

WH401
04-08-2010, 07:49 AM
With that amount of acreage I would definitely get a commercial mower. Plus as mentioned, for $6300 you can get a pretty decent commercial mower. Any of the brands mentioned above would be good choices. If you can I would get at least a 60" deck, but a 54" or 52" will be fine too. Cutting width isn't going to matter much if the mower can't stand up to the cutting you'll be needing it for.

eatonpcat
04-08-2010, 12:45 PM
Let's see a picture of the property... Is it all finish mowing or just field???
What I'm getting at is maybe you should look into a compact tractor.

jaimew
04-08-2010, 02:00 PM
Well, I dont have a picture handy, but I grabbed this aerial view shot from bing.

I really don't want a tractor. I already have a 1958 jd 420 with a 5 ft clipper. It's just slow. That stuff out in front isn't really a "yard". The grass is more like a pasture. And the clipper bogs down in there from time to time

I hate cutting grass and want to limit the amount of time I spend doing it, but I'm a cheapskate. That doesnt mean I dont want to spend money. I just want to spend as little as possible!

http://simiansector.com/funnyimages/cut.jpg

Thanks for your input!
jw

unkownfl
04-08-2010, 02:20 PM
Where are you so I can get a better understanding of your situation.

jaimew
04-08-2010, 02:39 PM
I'm in southwest Mississippi. Hot and muggy during the summer. It's what makes cutting the grass such a hassle. During the summer you just don't stay out on that tractor in the middle of the day!

unkownfl
04-08-2010, 02:46 PM
Why don't you buy a slightly used machine? I have bought many 7-10k machines for around 3-4 k with 200-400 hours. Who do you have for dealers in your area besides Hustler?

jaimew
04-08-2010, 03:05 PM
I'm within an hours drive of some pretty large dealers. I probably can pick up something used. I'd actually been leaning towards that.

Here locally, you can find Scag, Exmark, Hustler, Kubota, Toro and Grasshopper dealers. I need to call around ask if they have anything used.

Thanks!
jw

unkownfl
04-08-2010, 03:31 PM
I'm within an hours drive of some pretty large dealers. I probably can pick up something used. I'd actually been leaning towards that.

Here locally, you can find Scag, Exmark, Hustler, Kubota, Toro and Grasshopper dealers. I need to call around ask if they have anything used.

Thanks!
jw

Check Craigslist.org

Aaronnc
04-20-2010, 08:47 PM
Buy a couple of goats and some underground fencing and call it a day. With the $3-4k saved buy beer. Lots and lots of beer.

Pro-Scapes
04-20-2010, 09:00 PM
where is SW Miss are you ? Im just north of Hattiesburg and have a commercial Toro I would let go for around 3k. Its only a 48" deck tho so might be smaller than you want. Just serviced... Runs great. Cuts like a dream but it also has a mulch kit on it so its not a discharge mower.

Way I see this is 2 ways. If you hate cutting grass you want a fast mower to get done quick. Toro 60 or 72 would be my choice for that. If you strech the mowings then consider a 580-d but your going to spend twice what the fast trak will cost you BUT your going to get a much better ride.

If you want to be cheap its going to be slow and take you a longer time to do something you hate.

I know where a 60 inch 27hp hustler brand new is sitting for $8500 with a suspension seat. A must for rougher terrain.

Aaronnc
04-20-2010, 10:09 PM
All jokes aside, if you don't care as much for the cut since you mentioned already it's mostly pasture like, I would strongly recommend a Ferris if you have a dealer close by to service it. When I was shopping for mine, I demoed one and found it rode like a Cadillac, head and shoulders above the rest, but I hated the cut. Would do the job though. Just a thought. Pro-Scape might be offering a good deal though, if it fits your needs. I'm not interested Pro-Scapes, but out of curiosity, what's the model number and hours?

MS_SURVEYOR
04-20-2010, 11:14 PM
jaimew,

Welcome fellow Mississippian. Nothing like the grass wars of Mississippi. My enemy is Bahia Grass in Rankin Co. I too mow about 5 acres. For 19 years I used lawn mowers, after lawn mower, until they died in a couple of short years. Mostly Murry lawn tractors. Then in 1999 I bought a Sabre By John Deere 16/46 hydro. It did much better than the Murry mowers, but my lawn keep getting smaller. Every year I had to hire a bush hogger to come in. My wife and I keep saving money for a small tractor or a commercial mower. Last spring the deck on my Sabre rotted out. My wife said get a new deck. I said get a new mower! We got the deck. Then the rains in May and June hit. Bahia Grass grass up to my back pockets. My father in law died the year before, swe were taking care of her place too. She had a Snapper rear engine rider with a deck that was to be short lived. I finally got my Sabre deck painted, and all the hardware transferred. I got started on the mil's lawn. She has a nice lawn. Mostly St Augustine grass. By that time it was middle June and the Bahia was prime for baling. Well past Sabre time. I still own the Sabre. I love that mower. Used it to mow the mil's again this year. Hope to get THE LAWN OF THE MONTH one of the years. Any way it was time to buy something! The wife said a tractor was out! The rental place in Florence sold Exmark and Hustler. A commercial Exmark was out of our price range. I was HIGH on Hustler, being I saw a client mowing on one. I'm a land surveyor. I get to see lots of lawn and mowers. Hustler had a great warranty. The wife didn't like the trans axle drive, or the deck. OK! HOW ABOUT A SCAG! That didn't go over real well. We looked at Gravely, Yazoo, Farris, Snapper, and research to the max. Then we looked at the Bad Boy Mowers at Scott Tractor Supply on Hwy 49, Richland, MS. At first glance, my wife bent down and felt the thickness of the Bad Boy deck. A 1/4 inch thick! What's the drive train? The ZT series has trans axles. NEXT! The Pup series has duel hydro pumps and wheel motors. What's the engine choices? A 23 hp Briggs Vanguard, a 30 hp Kohler Pro, a 31 hp Kawasaki. She did some research. I did some research. I wanted the 31 hp Kawasaki. The wife had a good augment for the 30 hp Kohler Pro. We settled on a Bad Boy Pup, 52 inch, 30 hp Kohler Pro. WOW! What a good move! The Pup and Kohler went to work.

http://i649.photobucket.com/albums/uu216/MS-SURVEYOR/PhotoMoto0148.jpg?t=1271818405

http://i649.photobucket.com/albums/uu216/MS-SURVEYOR/September12009023.jpg?t=1271818522

http://i649.photobucket.com/albums/uu216/MS-SURVEYOR/PhotoMoto0146.jpg?t=1271818672

http://i649.photobucket.com/albums/uu216/MS-SURVEYOR/July132009006.jpg?t=1271818738

The best thing we have done together!

ms

Aaronnc
04-21-2010, 12:03 AM
You know, I keep forgetting about Bad Boy because we don't have a dealer close and I don't see alot around here. Plus for whatever reason, there seems to be a real love/hate relationship with people and Bad Boy. I've never owned or demoed one personally, so I cannot honestly give you my $.02. But what I can say honestly is that the 2 people I know who own them, LOVE them, and it seems that every else dislikes them either out of brand loyalty, nitpicking, and/or being flat out just argumentative. I've heard all the same stories, high center of gravity, bad cut, yada, yada, yada. Again, have NO experience with BB but have walked around one and looked at one, and do seem pretty impressive.

But what compelled me to write this response/post is that I LOVE what BB is doing as in shaking up the industry. When it comes to commercial mowers it's hard to argue on paper their price point/value. I'm not a dealer and have no idea what profit margins are and so on, but when mowers started reaching Hyundai prices and going north of $8500, I started to get really disgusted. I was always under the spell that you paid $2k-$3k for a really good residential mower and $6k-$8k for a really good non-diesel commercial one. About 5-6 years ago when certain gas powered commercial mowers started breaking $8, 9, then $10k, I almost had a nervous breakdown. That being said, when BB first came out with $7k mowers that competed with other brands $10k mowers, I jumped for joy, but without close dealer support, was not an option for me. And yes, I do feel there are better mowers out there than BB, at least IMO with my limited knowledge, but I feel they are hard to beat for the money.

Sorry for the rant, I apologize, but I had forgotten about Bad Boy and am here to say that even though my closest dealer is an hour away, I will give them a long hard look when it comes time for a new mower. (That is if I can find a demo and can haggle!) Hope this helps.

MS_SURVEYOR
04-21-2010, 10:48 PM
You know, I keep forgetting about Bad Boy because we don't have a dealer close and I don't see alot around here. Plus for whatever reason, there seems to be a real love/hate relationship with people and Bad Boy. I've never owned or demoed one personally, so I cannot honestly give you my $.02. But what I can say honestly is that the 2 people I know who own them, LOVE them, and it seems that every else dislikes them either out of brand loyalty, nitpicking, and/or being flat out just argumentative. I've heard all the same stories, high center of gravity, bad cut, yada, yada, yada. Again, have NO experience with BB but have walked around one and looked at one, and do seem pretty impressive.

But what compelled me to write this response/post is that I LOVE what BB is doing as in shaking up the industry. When it comes to commercial mowers it's hard to argue on paper their price point/value. I'm not a dealer and have no idea what profit margins are and so on, but when mowers started reaching Hyundai prices and going north of $8500, I started to get really disgusted. I was always under the spell that you paid $2k-$3k for a really good residential mower and $6k-$8k for a really good non-diesel commercial one. About 5-6 years ago when certain gas powered commercial mowers started breaking $8, 9, then $10k, I almost had a nervous breakdown. That being said, when BB first came out with $7k mowers that competed with other brands $10k mowers, I jumped for joy, but without close dealer support, was not an option for me. And yes, I do feel there are better mowers out there than BB, at least IMO with my limited knowledge, but I feel they are hard to beat for the money.

Sorry for the rant, I apologize, but I had forgotten about Bad Boy and am here to say that even though my closest dealer is an hour away, I will give them a long hard look when it comes time for a new mower. (That is if I can find a demo and can haggle!) Hope this helps.

:drinkup:

Good to hear you say that! I think Bad Boy gets a lot of bad rap for the same reasons you stated. I've not found any to be true. This is the first ztr I've ever owned. The only one I have driven or mowed with. I'm a grass hobbyist because I own grass that grows at an alarming rate. Bahia Grass! Hot, dry summers, the faster Bahia grows. We needed a mower that could keep up with the war. My wife and I did plenty of research. Heck Yea! I would love to own a Turf Tiger! But we had to be real. TT's cost lots of money. We were just mowing for us. We did our research on Exmark. Exmark didn't do Bahia very well. Scag and Exmark did have very good dealer support. Farris, Snapper, Hustler, and Yazoo were good mowers. But they were over priced with no dealer support. OH! I for got Toro and Kubota! Great mowers! Out of our price range! In our research, and looking at the above mowers. Any repairs would have to be with the dealer. There was no way I could get to the part, let alone replace or repair it. We didn't want to dealer dependent. OH! John Deere broke us of that. We needed a rig that could mow Bahia Grass. Take a beating. And be easy to repair at home. At a good price. With company and dealer support. At a good price! Bad Boy fit the bill. It had a good price. Research said it mowed Bahia Grass well. Company support was great. Dealer support was so so. The mower was over built. Repairs were and access to parts were easy. Parts were easy to get.

http://i649.photobucket.com/albums/uu216/MS-SURVEYOR/June-12-2009004.jpg?t=1271901443

http://i649.photobucket.com/albums/uu216/MS-SURVEYOR/June-12-2009005.jpg?t=1271901497

http://i649.photobucket.com/albums/uu216/MS-SURVEYOR/June-12-2009006.jpg?t=1271901593

http://i649.photobucket.com/albums/uu216/MS-SURVEYOR/June-12-2009007.jpg?t=1271901643

http://i649.photobucket.com/albums/uu216/MS-SURVEYOR/June-12-2009013.jpg?t=1271901705

The gas tanks swing out for even better access. All parts are fairly easy to get to and remove for replacement. Bad Boy Company support is just wonderful. A phone call to a real person, and questions are answered. Under warranty with the company, all problems were settled with a phone call, with delivery at the door the next day. I had a rubber discharge deflector tear for no reason, and the 1,000 digit go out on the hour meter. Both resolved by a phone call. At my door the next day. As far as the dealer. It's the same angry guy or girl at the parts counter that hates their job. If you're not spending a $1,000 a month across the counter, it's NEXT! GOD I HATE MY JOB! I'm a simple guy that wants to work on my equipment. Simple is good! Bad Boys are simple. As far as the problems. Bad Boys are good mowing mower.

http://i649.photobucket.com/albums/uu216/MS-SURVEYOR/September12009023.jpg?t=1271903046

http://i649.photobucket.com/albums/uu216/MS-SURVEYOR/July132009005.jpg?t=1271903097

http://i649.photobucket.com/albums/uu216/MS-SURVEYOR/June-12-2009016.jpg?t=1271903196

http://i649.photobucket.com/albums/uu216/MS-SURVEYOR/June-12-2009018.jpg?t=1271903249

As far as ease of use, high center of gravity, my wife and I haven't felt that yet. For $7,000 out the door, we are very happy with Bad Boy.

ms

Aaronnc
04-22-2010, 12:03 PM
Yeah, when I bought my ProCat (Which I love, and I think I got a good deal), I looked at Toro, Scag, Dixon, & Ferris and almost had to be resuscitated right there on the store's floor. But just like boats, I have a disease, and can't stop looking. ;) But since coming to this website, I've noticed BB, and they seem to be good machines for great prices. Even though I'm no longer in the market, I keep drooling over this one: http://www.tractorhouse.com/listingsdetail/detail.aspx?OHID=5663879 Sounds like a GREAT deal if he would take $7k cash. My buddy has an old Exmark he's toying with trading in, and I'm trying to live vicariously through him and keep pestering him to look at this one. (Not sure though if 31hp would be overkill for a 60" deck, plus that big block sounds thirsty. I try to live by the old 5hp for every 12" of deck rule.) But yeah, here in 3-5 years, I'm definitely looking at a BB. Now if they'll just come out with a good walk behind, that would be awesome. Happy Mowing!

cgaengineer
04-23-2010, 07:00 AM
I saw that BadBoy yesterday at Tractor Supply...I would buy it over a HomeDepot Toro any day. That sucker is built like a brick shithouse.

Pro-Scapes
04-30-2010, 07:53 AM
For you home owners in SW Miss I just saw the lineup of Big Dog Mowers at Hattiesburg Cycles. They looked pretty well built.

They are made by Excel which is the parent company of Hustler turf. If interested I suggest you give Larry Myatt a call over there and tell him Billy from Integrity sent you. Looks like a good mower at a real fair price. I was considering picking one up for just at our house so we can leave the toros in the trailer.

The bad boys did look built well but they sit very high... Great for easy of maint and visability. For thoes of you cutting your own property it could be fine but for some of us mowing some slopes and properties with low trees it can make for a day of heartburn or worse.

Whippit96
05-02-2010, 09:44 PM
The bad boys did look built well but they sit very high... Great for easy of maint and visability. For thoes of you cutting your own property it could be fine but for some of us mowing some slopes and properties with low trees it can make for a day of heartburn or worse.

I'm just a home owner, not a professional so I bought the ZT series badboy from Tractor Supply with the 60" deck and 27hp Koehler. I mow five acres and 80% of it is hills. Out of all the hills on my property I only have to mow one vertically, the rest I side hill. I also have about 8-10 decorative trees that I mow under/around with no problem.