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View Full Version : Residential ztr that bad of an idea?


nola lawn maintenance
02-10-2012, 06:54 PM
Im to the point where it's time to make a move and buy a ztr. I have a few friends in this business and some use commercial grade and others use residential grade. Both are happy. All of my properties at this time ( a total of 15, none are commercial) are manicured. I would not be going into overgrown lots. Anyone been in this spot before?

Lefet
02-10-2012, 06:59 PM
Are you asking whether or not you should buy commercial vs non commercial rated equipment?

nola lawn maintenance
02-10-2012, 07:05 PM
Yes. I have been going back and forth between commercial and residential. I have always used 21" commercial wb. I just can't do it anymore. When I settle on commercial i start worrying about the price, then when i settle on residential i worry about the quality of the equipment. It's a vicious cycle, lol.

lukespapa
02-10-2012, 07:38 PM
Yes. I have been going back and forth between commercial and residential. I have always used 21" commercial wb. I just can't do it anymore. When I settle on commercial i start worrying about the price, then when i settle on residential i worry about the quality of the equipment. It's a vicious cycle, lol.

Have you thought about the Snapper Pro? I was interested in this before I bought my Gravely Compact Pro 34. My problem was that I was ready to buy, and could not find a dealer that had the Snapper in stock. I read many good things about these, and would definitely consider in the future. This may be a good compromise between commercial and residential. And I believe there is plenty of info on the Snapper Pro here on Lawnsite.

Lefet
02-10-2012, 07:42 PM
I wouldn't want to buy residential equipment for commercial use. Just when I needed it the most it would break down.

crazymike
02-10-2012, 07:42 PM
commercial mowers usually have thicker, higher grade steel for decks, etc... different warranty regarding hours. Some components in the drive and engine may be higher quality.

Personally, you're better to go commercial. But it depends on your costs and how long you plan on being in business.

If you just want to make some money this summer and get out. Go residential. If you want to grow and grow, look at commercial equipment.

MOturkey
02-10-2012, 07:44 PM
The answer, to me, is basically whether you want to go cheap now, purchase something that will get you by, or spend some money and get a piece of equipment that will last you well into the future, and will handle the load with a minimum of issues as your business increases. I vote for the latter.

Florida Gardener
02-10-2012, 07:44 PM
There's a reason mowers are commercial grade. They are made to be used professionally. Even if u only plan to do a few yards, you may grow and want to do this full time. Buy commercial from the get-go. Better resale too. If u can't afford new, buy used.
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BPS##
02-10-2012, 07:53 PM
If u can't afford new, buy used.
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Very good advice.

There are some great used machines around. Just gotta look for them.

Some one mentioned warranty..... if you buy a home owner grade and use it commercially you run the risk of voiding the warranty.

djagusch
02-10-2012, 08:01 PM
Im to the point where it's time to make a move and buy a ztr. I have a few friends in this business and some use commercial grade and others use residential grade. Both are happy. All of my properties at this time ( a total of 15, none are commercial) are manicured. I would not be going into overgrown lots. Anyone been in this spot before?

What have you been using? Just Commerical 21"s.

If this is the case buy a used 36" to 48" w/b mower. It will be more productive and reliable than a residential ztr. If you can buy a new w/b do that.

What you will find is by doing that you will cut down on your time with your current accounts so you have more time getting more.

nola lawn maintenance
02-10-2012, 08:30 PM
I have been using just one commercial Snapper 21". I cut by myself, no help.

justinc
02-10-2012, 08:34 PM
Why do you need a ztr for 15 lots? I would think you could get by with a walk behind, unless they're huge lots. If you bought a 48 or even a 36 walk behind you might be surprised at how much your productivity goes up. If you absolutely need a ztr, I would buy a used one like others suggested.

nola lawn maintenance
02-10-2012, 09:05 PM
I see everyone pretty much agrees on commercial. I have looked at the Snapper Pro 36". Last i checked it was around $4000. Not bad, I can afford that. Ive also looked at the Wright Stander 32" and 36", Gravely Compact Pro 34" and a Scag. The Snapper is about $1500 less than the rest. (I haven't checked prices locally recently). All of my yards are on the smaller side and most have gates, so i believe the smaller cut will be better. I will have to give the Snapper a second look. Any input on the Snapper would be appreciated.

nola lawn maintenance
02-10-2012, 10:02 PM
I guess im just tired of walking. But a larger wb with a sulky would work also.

417lawncare
02-10-2012, 10:17 PM
ive been in several dealers shops when an lco using residential equipment comes in with a problem or need work on his mower. Usually when the customer leaves my dealer laughs! If its not meant for everyday all day use then save some money in a seperate account for repairs.

417lawncare
02-10-2012, 10:19 PM
look at a vride they are at fleet pricing till the end of Feb.

jkingrph
02-10-2012, 10:21 PM
All I want for my personal residential use is commercial grade!

Valk
02-11-2012, 12:05 AM
Residential quality mowers are built to be used ~once/week.
At the above rate, a commercial mower does 1 year or more's worth of use EVERY week X how many weeks you use it in a given year.

Greyst1
02-11-2012, 12:38 AM
There is no comparison between resi and commi's.... It would be like wearing slippers when boots are needed.

As for your thoughts on snapper pro, i think that's a very wise choice. Snapper pro is total bang for your buck with strong, robust, well engineered machines. I run ferris and will prob end up buying a snapper pro WB. I'm waiting on the ICD deck to come to Ferris/Snaps WB's.

Anyhow, get yourself a 48 walk for a 52 ztr. 52's are versatile but always get commercial if your going to be using it commi.

Wecutgrass
02-11-2012, 01:09 AM
i was in the same position as you and i bought a 1996 scag wb 36" that was used to cut this guys 1 acre property once a week. it had almost no hours on it, i got it for a 1,000 bucks, and boy did that mower make me way more then a 1000 dollars. I then sold the scag for 1000 and bought a used gravely 34z (the new model is a compact pro 34) for 3000. just an idea you could take that route or not. I find that once mowers hit 10 years old the prices pretty much plateau.

417lawncare
02-11-2012, 10:37 AM
IMO you shouldnt get a 52" mower cause most residential gates average 40 inches. But do get a commercial mower.

billpiper
02-12-2012, 07:40 AM
I agree with you about being tired of walking. I'm 59, have had spinal cord damage, and walking just wears me out. I can cut maybe 3 lawns a day if theyre not too big walking. Just Bought a Gravely ZTR. I can ride all day, get more yards done faster. If you only have a few yards a commercial will last for years - you won't have to replace it for a long time.

Valk
02-12-2012, 05:02 PM
I think more folks here on LawnSite need to define themselves as
BETTER at sitting, or,
BETTER at standing, or,
BETTER at walking.
There's a style of mower that MIGHT best suit them IFF they can DEFINE themselves...possibly with their DR's help.


Personally, with no medical conditions, I'd rather WALK ALL DAY than stand or sit...BUT, THAT'S JUST ME.

The good lord built us to work/hunt/plant/harvest/drink beer...and if we we have discomfort then we need to RE~define ourseselves.

ReddensLawnCare
02-12-2012, 05:16 PM
I have posted regarding the snappers on here before. They are good walk behinds, but have minimal ground clearance if you ever do have to hop a curve. The cut is good, but one downside of the snapper is the weight, very heavy. Same deck as the scag for the most part, but the adjustment is great.
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nola lawn maintenance
02-12-2012, 06:05 PM
Commercial looks like the way to go. I'm going look at a used Exmark wb, i think it's a 36". I have only seen pics. Comes with a sulky. Will let y'all know about the details and the price and maybe you can let me know if it's worth it or not.

205mx
02-12-2012, 06:30 PM
dude, get on craigslist or ebay. Find yourself a good used Kubota. I have two. Selling one because I need to upgrade trucks. They are great.. used commercial Is better than new residential. Trust me I made that mistake. If you are close to my location I'd let you test out my used Kubota.

jiggz
02-13-2012, 12:07 AM
It really depends on the brand, and whos going to be using the machine.. If its you you might not need a machine thats ready to go to war..residential grade is ok for commercial use if you go with a company that builds tuff machines.. For example i would feel comf ey saying a residental bobcat would be a real nice afforadable machine.. A toro timecutter ztr for example would be a waste of money especialy if employees are running it.. Ill giva ya a month or 2
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Thats if you must have new..

I would by a nice used commercial peice if i were you

stevenf
02-13-2012, 01:08 AM
A high end residential model is perfect for what you need. I have a 48" gravely hd zt. It was 4,900.00 out the door and I am on the third year of 30+ weekly lawns. Only had one spindle go out and it was under warranty. Well worth the money.
Scag freedom z, gravely hd zt, hustler mini z.... all are good and make a great backup when you need to buy a commercial machine.
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Lafman
02-13-2012, 10:40 PM
Hard to go against the grain, but i would buy a good residential model. I was in the same boat as you. I ended up with a Toro 42". On its fourth year now. Not bad for a $2500 investment. Cut 37 yards a week with it, plus 1 big yard thats 2 acres. Spend what you can afford. No need for a big model if the yards are small, esp with gates to the backyard. When this one finally goes out, i MIGHT upgrade to the Gravely 34" commercial, ONLY because i can put a third party side mount grass/leaf catcher on it, due to the straight discharge chute, which the residental models don't have. But the price difference is about $1500, so i might end up with the same unit. I don't think i would ever buy used lawn equipment. Just like a used car, you are buying someone else's problem, or they would still have it.

nola lawn maintenance
02-13-2012, 11:26 PM
Im also skeptical about buying used equipment. A friend of mine uses the Gravely 34" residential ZTR, going on his fourth season with no major problems. The price for the Gravely 34" commercial in my area was well over $5000 the last time I checked. Im sure it's worth it but i just can't swing that note right now. I'm going look at a Toro Proline 32" wb, fixed deck with a sulky tomorrow, it's used but has low hours.