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View Full Version : Your opinions of choice ZTR


kpl272
04-05-2012, 03:02 AM
Hi, I'm new to this community, but not the industry. My company has used John Deere mowers for years. (tractors) Now I would like to explore off the turf so to speak. Over the years I've been intreaged by the cut of these ZTR's and feel my customers would love the cut too. Only thing I'm not sure which ones offer the best cut. To my knowledge, Ferris, Scag, Dixie Chopper & Exmark seem to catch my eyes & ears often. My question is this: to those who know the cuts of all listed above, which cuts and looks the best?

Snyder's Lawn Inc
04-05-2012, 09:38 AM
Well you need to pick what you like everybody will tell you something different you need demo mowers make your choice
I run Dixie Chopper been owning and useing them since 1985 only brand I ever like I have demo many others and I never found one will out do a DC in my eyes

LawnMan19
04-05-2012, 11:30 AM
Demo as many as you can then you can make your own decision of which one is best for you otherwise everybody will tell you something different.

lifesgood14
04-05-2012, 12:03 PM
I agree with the demo as many as you can and make your own decision for what you are using them for.

I have used Ferris and Exmark.
Ferris Pros:
- its faster
- will make a nice stripe pattern with the stripe kit on healthy lawns
- the suspension offers a more comfortable ride
- if your using the bagging unit the fan has PHENOMENAL suction
Ferris Cons:
- has a harder time with thicker grass and often needs to be gone over twice.
- more expensive

Exmark Pros:
- It will create an even cut in almost any lawn condition
- built like a tank
- less expensive (than the ferris)
Exmark Cons:
- its slower
- the bagging fan unit has terrible suction

My conclusion:
If you have to bag or if your cutting mostly healthy residential, acreage or even nice commercial lawns go for the ferris you won't be disapointed.
However if you do alot of ugly commercial that just get mulched and may have to mow down a few jungles, then go with the exmark.

Although in the end you have to make up your own mind, and it depends on what your willing to pay and what you want the machine to do for you.

mtmower
04-05-2012, 12:20 PM
I've been researching this for the last four months as well and you may want to throw Hustler SZ, Toro, Gravely 400, and Husqvarna PZ and PZ/ZT in the mix. And there is always Bad Boy....not to complicate things further. After looking at and reading a lot, these IMO were the only other ones in my area, other than the ones you already listed, that looked to be in the same category. I would personally rate them in the order I listed them. I don't have a Grasshopper dealer but I've read some good reviews as well on them, esp. when it comes to bagging.

Out of the ones you listed, I'd lean toward the Scag TT.

Keep us posted on what you do. Inquiring minds want to know!:drinkup:

Ridin' Green
04-05-2012, 12:37 PM
Since you are familiar with Deere tractors, take a look at their ZTR's too. For all around, come what may mowing, it's gonna be hard to beat either the Scag Velocity deck, or the Deere 7 Iron. Both cut cleanly in all conditions, and both lay down nice stripes. The Deere MOD deck offers you the choice of mulching or side discharging just by moving a lever.

The new Deere 900's are very good machines, and the Z700 series are darn good too, and a lot less money. I owned a Z720, and for most mowing situations, it is all anyone will need.

Exmark gets lots of praise, but they aren't worth a crap cutting wet grass. They clump way too much. Around me they are way overpriced too, but they have been in the game a while now, and make a decent machine if you can avoid cutting wet grass with it.

Ferris has the best ride, and cuts good too.

Snapper Pro is a very underrated mower, and these days are awfully nice machines for the money.

Gravely is making several very good machines too, and their new 400 series looks pretty promising.

There are many, many good mowers out these days. You need to demo as many as you can and decide which one suits your needs the best.

mow4cash
04-05-2012, 03:38 PM
Looking at the way the machine is built says alot and what engine options it has. I would look at the scag tt with velocity deck first because it makes alot of other mowers look underbuilt and not thought out. I've never heard anyone say a velocity deck cut bad. You got to try for yourself though.

Aaronnc
04-05-2012, 05:14 PM
It might not look the best, fastest, biggest gas tank, etc,etc..... but if quality of cut is of number #1 importance, then nothing beats a Walker. (Well, maybe a Locke Reel mower, but let's not split hairs.)

While everyone will disagree, and I expect them too, here is how I would rank them (ZTR's):

Cut Quality: (of course different grasses and blade combos and pitch can and will affect this.)

1. Walker
2. Scag/John Deere
3. Exmark-Toro/Hustler/Dixie Chopper
4. Gravely/Husqvarna-Dixon/Ferris-Snapper Pro/Grasshopper/Kubota
5. Bobcat/Badboy/Wright

Quality of Construction:

1. Scag/Dixie-Chopper
2. Exmark-Toro/John Deere/Hustler/Kubota/Wright
3. Gravely/Husqvarna-Dixon/Ferris-Snapper Pro/Grasshopper/Walker
4. Bobcat/Badboy

Prettiest:

1. John Deere
2. The rest.........

Now this is my opinion and my opinion only. My lawyers tell me that I have to admit of only having experience/owned Bobcat, John Deere, Husqvarna and Snapper Pro.
The rest I have at least driven/cut with or completely made up out of my bunghole. I did not include Cub Cadet or Ariens, etc, etc..... because these are the ZTR companies I would actually look at and consider for purchase. I'd trade a brand new Cub Cadet for a case of beer and a #2 pencil any day of the week.

If you don't like my list, then please forward all hate mail and rants to Sean Adams c/o Moose River Media.

If you enjoyed this, come back at 10pm Rocky Mountain Time and I'll be reviewing and listing light beers, blade balancers, and make-up removers. Thank you, and have a great day.

javelin377
04-05-2012, 05:35 PM
I really like my Grasshopper. They are made like a tank.
Posted via Mobile Device

mtmower
04-05-2012, 05:45 PM
It might not look the best, fastest, biggest gas tank, etc,etc..... but if quality of cut is of number #1 importance, then nothing beats a Walker. (Well, maybe a Locke Reel mower, but let's not split hairs.)

While everyone will disagree, and I expect them too, here is how I would rank them (ZTR's):

Cut Quality: (of course different grasses and blade combos and pitch can and will affect this.)

1. Walker
2. Scag/John Deere
3. Exmark-Toro/Hustler/Dixie Chopper
4. Gravely/Husqvarna-Dixon/Ferris-Snapper Pro/Grasshopper/Kubota
5. Bobcat/Badboy/Wright

Quality of Construction:

1. Scag/Dixie-Chopper
2. Exmark-Toro/John Deere/Hustler/Kubota/Wright
3. Gravely/Husqvarna-Dixon/Ferris-Snapper Pro/Grasshopper/Walker
4. Bobcat/Badboy

Prettiest:

1. John Deere
2. The rest.........

Now this is my opinion and my opinion only. My lawyers tell me that I have to admit of only having experience/owned Bobcat, John Deere, Husqvarna and Snapper Pro.
The rest I have at least driven/cut with or completely made up out of my bunghole. I did not include Cub Cadet or Ariens, etc, etc..... because these are the ZTR companies I would actually look at and consider for purchase. I'd trade a brand new Cub Cadet for a case of beer and a #2 pencil any day of the week.

If you don't like my list, then please forward all hate mail and rants to Sean Adams c/o Moose River Media.

If you enjoyed this, come back at 10pm Rocky Mountain Time and I'll be reviewing and listing light beers, blade balancers, and make-up removers. Thank you, and have a great day.


Nicely done! My hat's off to you sire.:drinkup: I'd say I'd agree with a lot of your listing placement except maybe on Quality of Construction. Dun dun dun.....I am bias, so lets get that out of the way right now but I think, actually let me back up, I know Hustler would have to bump out the two you incorrectly (probably due to the light beer review starting early.. or maybe the make up remover?) placed in first position. And John Deere the prettiest?? Only a mother could love that thing.

We also need to grace us with your list onMPM (most productive mower). :rolleyes:


What part of Rocky Mountain time is called home?

Ridin' Green
04-05-2012, 06:03 PM
And John Deere the prettiest?? Only a mother could love that thing.




Man, it's no wonder you don't have a new mower yet. You have don't have any taste! :hammerhead: :laugh::laugh:

I bet if a poll were taken, and folks were actually being honest instead of trying to stick up for their own choice, the Deere would win hands down.:usflag:

Aaronnc
04-05-2012, 07:38 PM
We also need to grace us with your list onMPM (most productive mower). :rolleyes:

What part of Rocky Mountain time is called home?

Actually I'm on the coast of NC, far from RMT. Was just trying to add a little humor is all.

There is no such thing as "MPM". Well let me rephrase that and explain.

I could spend a day with you and get to know your route, and then recommend the most productive mower for you, but a generalized "MPM", just does not exist.

What I mean is, if your route is nothing but 1/4 acre postage stamps, then a 72" diesel, war-horse is the least productive, most stupid-crazy mower you'll ever have. On the flip side, if you work for a municipality and/or service acreage, then a 52" 23hp, hydro-gear having tranny, is just a plain disgrace and waste of time and money and anything else I can think up.

Plus, you have to take the operator into account too. If I put my 17 year old, tail-chasing, back-up varsity quarterback, part-timer on my $15k decked-out diesel, he'd have that thing ran up a oak tree or upside down in a ditch before I could belt out the first two lines of Justin Biebers latest hit.

Then again, if I put my 61year old, crusty, chain-smoking, thrice married, yard vet, who wears a t-shirt that says "I survived the drought of '83", who's been there, done that, on my used POS 42" 15 year old Dixon, that I traded for a truck hitch, then he'd be taking a bath in crown royal, texting me every 5 min. in between smokes that he's quitting and heading to the topless bar, and to have his check ready by 5pm.

I look at my business like a NASCAR owner looks at a race. #1 track (route) #2 driver (operator)#3 car (mower). Not in that particular order.

If my route was hilly, I wouldn't even be looking at a ZTR, I'd be looking at a stander. If it was filled with gates, I'd have a 36" on board.

Just too impossible to answer, what is the most productive mower without knowing the route and and/or operator.

I see guys quote that productivity chart that Exmark has out and wonder if they are out of their cotton picking mind. Just another fluff marketing tool to sell mowers with no usefulness at all.

I live down south so gas is fairly cheap down here, and we have no cold weather. We do get hot, but not overly so like some of the fine folks out west. So I don't need EFI, or LC with the added cost or anything like that. My largest property is 1.5 acres so all I need is 54-60". No hills. Fair to average obstacles. Bermuda & Centipede mostly. I run two, two man crews with one part-timer. I mulch everything and don't bag.

So for me, the most productive mower would be a air-cooled 25-27 hp, mulching 52-60". My JD and Snapper Pro fit perfectly and I love them both.
My JD is my baby though. Just saying........

THEGOLDPRO
04-05-2012, 07:49 PM
I hate threads like these, Everyone just says whatever mower they have is the best machine. These type of threads are 100% biased. In my part of CT Exmark and Scag are about the only machines you see on trailers, 98% of the time its an Exmark or Scag on the trailer. Down south they love the Walkers. Its all preference/dealer support.

I would never ever ever buy a walker because for one, in 10 years of mowing in this area i never once seen a Walker on a trailer, And 2 we don't have a dealer support system that's worth a sh1t for walker up here.

Go to the biggest dealer's you have in your area and demo some of the mowers, pick which one you like best based on cut quality/dealer support and go about your merry way.

mtmower
04-05-2012, 08:13 PM
Your all just ignorant and wrong. :nono: None of the listed mowers are worth a wooden nickle!!!! This is the best mower ever built or will ever be built!!! I think......:laugh: Right down the yard vets alley I'd guess. I think you get a company leather coat with chaps covered in tassels when you purchase one. And saddle bags for beer!! This would look good at the biker bar or in the football parking lot.

http://www.ruggedperformance.com/images/cc10ab23edc694afa41f3293196fb859_b6ii.png


http://www.ruggedperformance.com/page2.html

kpl272
04-05-2012, 08:33 PM
Wow. I got more than I bargained for. Thanx to all. Seems like Deere is a popular choice, and that's what I allready have. (455, 2-x595s, & x728.) I know the cut of a Deere ztr. I see a company with them that mow a big fancy factory out the road. Honestly, they don't seem to cut much different than our tractors. The lawns that flip me out are the ones in the high dollar developments with an acre plus lawns. Those lawns look so nice, so evenly cut, at least a 60" cut- I wish I could see what mows them. You all made some good suggestions. Thanx again.

mtmower
04-05-2012, 08:35 PM
Man, it's no wonder you don't have a new mower yet. You have don't have any taste! :hammerhead: :laugh::laugh:

I bet if a poll were taken, and folks were actually being honest instead of trying to stick up for their own choice, the Deere would win hands down.:usflag:

RG on a serious note I went to my super weak JD dealer and was quoted $13k for a 950-960 mod 60", no other options and no demo. I had to slink away. It's just my area. I'm sure they're a heck of a mower. Should have more yellow though:waving:

Bashby
04-05-2012, 08:40 PM
Wow. I got more than I bargained for. Thanx to all. Seems like Deere is a popular choice, and that's what I allready have. (455, 2-x595s, & x728.) I know the cut of a Deere ztr. I see a company with them that mow a big fancy factory out the road. Honestly, they don't seem to cut much different than our tractors. The lawns that flip me out are the ones in the high dollar developments with an acre plus lawns. Those lawns look so nice, so evenly cut, at least a 60" cut- I wish I could see what mows them. You all made some good suggestions. Thanx again.

You could knock on the door and ask them who mows their lawn, then call and ask them what they use.

Aaronnc
04-05-2012, 08:48 PM
I love threads like these, because you get to voice your opinion, maybe get educated, maybe not, learn a little, or learn nothing, champion your brand, or tell how you've been shafted, laugh a lot, or laugh a little, etc, etc,etc.....

It's a forum for folks to talk and discuss, laugh/cry and nothing more/less. Threads like these for the most part are what makes LS exist.

And folks who take the time to read them and post in them, probably super secretly like them, even though they state they don't, because they want to sound smart and/or important.

If you don't like them, then don't read and post. That simple. No one is holding a gun to your head. Unless your just cranky and grumpy by nature, then I would suggest a mild addiction to ease the horror and pain that it creates for you, and maybe throw on a disco LP, and practice posing in a mirror, while working on your pick-up lines, hoping to get laid just a smidgen of a hair more often.

Get a grip dudes. This is an internet forum. Life is too short to go around hating on other folks posts. It makes you ugly, unattractive, and makes you sound like a moron.

Ridin' Green
04-05-2012, 09:05 PM
RG on a serious note I went to my super weak JD dealer and was quoted $13k for a 950-960 mod 60", no other options and no demo. I had to slink away. It's just my area. I'm sure they're a heck of a mower. Should have more yellow though:waving:

Holy smokes batman (or should I say, mtmowerman LOL), your dealer is a thief! I wouldn't have slunk away. I'd have ran away laughing. I paid $10,900 for my 950 60" MOD last week. I was this close to buying a Scag TT w/35 BB and 61", but this one suited my needs a bit better. It cuts awesome, and stripes pretty darn good for not having a kit on it. It's very easy to turn it without scuffing, even on wet turf. I'm pretty happy with it so far.

When are you getting your demo on the SZ?

StanWilhite
04-06-2012, 12:13 AM
Holy smokes batman (or should I say, mtmowerman LOL), your dealer is a thief! I wouldn't have slunk away. I'd have ran away laughing. I paid $10,900 for my 950 60" MOD last week. I was this close to buying a Scag TT w/35 BB and 61", but this one suited my needs a bit better. It cuts awesome, and stripes pretty darn good for not having a kit on it. It's very easy to turn it without scuffing, even on wet turf. I'm pretty happy with it so far.

When are you getting your demo on the SZ?

"Slunk"?.....guess that sounds as good as "slinked"! :laugh:

mtmower
04-06-2012, 12:23 AM
Holy smokes batman (or should I say, mtmowerman LOL), your dealer is a thief! I wouldn't have slunk away. I'd have ran away laughing. I paid $10,900 for my 950 60" MOD last week. I was this close to buying a Scag TT w/35 BB and 61", but this one suited my needs a bit better. It cuts awesome, and stripes pretty darn good for not having a kit on it. It's very easy to turn it without scuffing, even on wet turf. I'm pretty happy with it so far.

When are you getting your demo on the SZ?

Hopefully in roughly two weeks or less. Dealer is 1.5 hrs away. $10800.00 60" with 34 Kaw w/ suspension seat . Asked if he could make me a deal on add ons (flex forks, hitch, belts, filters, pneumatics, rear deck rollers, blades, etc.) that was two weeks ago. Emailed twice and left a message. Yesterday said he was getting close, just waiting on his parts dept. to finalize a couple of things! I was a service manager and service writer in the auto industry before I became the mild mannered MTMOWERMAN and I would have been in a world of hurt if I didn't get estimates to my customers withing hrs. let alone days or weeks. It boils down to not having to rush though so I'm waiting. Will demo Husky earlier probably because they're closer. Gravely I'm waiting till the six or so state rep. comes back through. Hopefully also in the next few weeks.

mtmower
04-06-2012, 12:38 AM
Just found this on craigslist. I'm thinking it may be a scam. What was or was there ever a 850a?

http://kalispell.craigslist.org/ptd/2942078936.html

cutnedge
04-06-2012, 12:42 AM
RG on a serious note I went to my super weak JD dealer and was quoted $13k for a 950-960 mod 60", no other options and no demo. I had to slink away. It's just my area. I'm sure they're a heck of a mower. Should have more yellow though:waving:

Couldn't agree with you more. I just purchased a new Super Z a couple of weeks ago (my second Hustler). I looked at and demoed several but had to go with the Hustler again. What gets me is that it was actually less than that of an ExMark of similar proportions!! Talk about a tank! And the cut with the VX4 has just been remarkable...

Snyder's Lawn Inc
04-06-2012, 02:14 AM
I would never ever ever buy a walker because for one, in 10 years of mowing in this area i never once seen a Walker on a trailer,

Sorry but thats funny
So you are saying only buy what others use So you can blend in with the crowd

Thats ok People here does same thing If a company buys a different brand there 2 others that fallows suit

Around here companies has owned many different brands Jump brands seem like every 2 yrs I ask one guy why He told me he has not found a good cutting mower and this guy has owned gravely,scag,exmark,toro, now he mowing with a Hustler

He like to try a Dixie Chopper but dealer is to far And this guy needs a dealer close so they can service his mowers He dont know how do anything on his stuff

kpl272
04-06-2012, 02:52 AM
You could knock on the door and ask them who mows their lawn, then call and ask them what they use.

I just might do that. Stop out of uniform and in my unmarked truck. Don't want to look dumb and embarrass myself. LOL!

Also, I've been looking at some pics of mowing patterns/strips. Alot of nice looking lines with these different mowers. I think I might want to look at some Ferris- (love the fact that it has suspension), Scag & Dixie Chopper especially. Dixie's are simple looking machines, yet practical. I'm impressed with the double blade system. should cut twice as nice, right?

I'm just so laid back with the responses on here and really appreciate the help. I feel like I'm starting all over again. Just wish I would have decided this sooner. Before it got so busy. Then again, I wasn't worried about it till I saw that lawn on Thornhill Drive. LOL! Bedtime.

joel29m
04-06-2012, 12:41 PM
these are the main ztrs i see with a dealer my area:

scag
hustler
gravely
exmark
deere
dixie chopper
toro

what i barely see with a dealer:

dixon
snapper pro
kubota
ferris
grasshopper
cub cadet

what i never see:

yahzoo


if you have a dealer with the above items, do a demo and go from there. i got a hustler for the dealer location and the size ztr i wanted.

jrs.landscaping
04-06-2012, 07:21 PM
Dealer supprt is the only thing that matters really. You can have a great mower that you love but if the nearest dealer is 3 hours away it cuts from production time when things break.... which they do. We are lucky we have a Walker/Deere salesman who will deliver whatever we need to our shop with a day notice, and the closest location is only 45 min away. As for pricing which I know is different we were quoted 13,500 for a new 997 Z Trak. In my opinion the best Z mower out there, it's fast, durable and I can mow hills that would make a billy goat sick :dizzy:

Ridin' Green
04-07-2012, 02:57 AM
"Slunk"?.....guess that sounds as good as "slinked"! :laugh:

Yes, slunk. An old southern boy like you shoulda taken right quick to that. I know it's gotta be a word, 'cause I heard it all my life (which runs almost as long a time span as yours:eek:) from some other southern boy.:laugh:

Besides, it's right here in my Random House Websters dictionary under the definition listing for "slink", so it's gotta be good-right?.

THEGOLDPRO
04-07-2012, 11:32 AM
Sorry but thats funny
So you are saying only buy what others use So you can blend in with the crowd


Well its a bunch of factors actually,

1. no one i know has one nor have i seen one, so i cant really gauge the type of work they do on our northern grass.

2.the dealer support is garbage here for walkers, i assume because no one has them.

3.they don't offer demo's here, Atleast not the type of demo i want, If im going to demo a machine i want to take one for the day, mow all day with it, get used to it and see how i like it at the end of the day. The walker rep told me he would drive a machine out to me and show me how to use it for an hour then be on his way. Im not going to tell sh1t from a mower in an hour.

So with that said im not buying a walker, And also i despise the way the 3rd wheel makes the stripe look when your done, I think its one of the worst looking cuts on the market with the wavy 3rd wheel mark right down the middle of the stripe.

Ridin' Green
04-07-2012, 12:20 PM
........And also i despise the way the 3rd wheel makes the stripe look when your done, I think its one of the worst looking cuts on the market with the wavy 3rd wheel mark right down the middle of the stripe.

I couldn't agree more. I hate that third wheel stripe. It doesn't make a lawn look "good" in my opinion. It makes it look like instead of beautiful stripes, someone ran back and forth across it with a minibike. A few of my neighbors have them, and they cut fine, but they don't cut any better than any of the Deere's I've had, neither garden tractor, nor ZTR, and I used to cut the lawn right across the street from them, so it was easy to compare. On top of that, most all of them are SLOW.

THEGOLDPRO
04-07-2012, 12:45 PM
Its basically a sales pitch and brainwashing from the walker reps lol, Everyone who owns a walker says the same lame sales pitch the guy told me when i was looking at one, "If you want a manicured cut you buy a walker" More like if you want your lawns to look like piss and have lines all through your stripes you buy a walker.

I would say 99% of walker owners are brainwashed and for some reason think it looks 'Manicured" When in fact it looks like piss.

Ridin' Green
04-07-2012, 12:53 PM
Don't hold back man, tell us how you really feel. :laugh:

If everyone went as slow on a Z as they do on a Walker, then their lawns would look manicured too (providing of course that the guy on the Walker could get the lawn done in one day so all the grass ended up the same length LOL)

clydebusa
04-07-2012, 01:13 PM
I am looking for a scajdtordixchexmhussnap mower they are the best.

Picture a dead horse right here.:hammerhead:

MowinginEureka
04-07-2012, 02:49 PM
I have to agree with the dealer support comment. I have a Walker dealer 1 mile away, they also carry Snapper, and Husqvarna. We have another walker dealer 45 minutes away, 2 Toro dealers within 15-45 minutes and a John Deere dealer 45 minutes away. Most everyone here uses 21" Honda or Toro Walk behinds, for ZTR's they use primarily Walkers, and a few have some Snapper Pros. Personally, I think the Walker bags wet grass like crap, is poorly built, and is expensive to buy and maintain. I might be biased because I think I owned a lemon, I bought a 6 year old 26 hp EFI 42" unit with 200 hrs on it, and for the 100 hrs I owned it I spent 1500$ in repairs, another 400 in parts I installed, and then the ram died for the dump kit and the engine computer went out. I sold the P.O.S. But you cant argue with the ease of that deck tip feature. For those of you that hate the single wheel stripe, they make a kit to put wheels on the sides.

mtmower
04-07-2012, 05:30 PM
I've never run one for any amount of time. It's the leading seller in my area. 90% of the professional companies use them. IMO they look well built, we have good dealer support (one of the only brands that does here), the company seems to go over and above for their dealers and customers, I think they give a very nice cut but at the cost of speed.

Walker likes to point out their front decks save time becuase of less trimming. I disagree. Number one it mows slower, your loosing time, number 2 the time it takes to back up and pull forward fifty times to mow under a tree or fence, your loosing time. What little bit a mid mount might not get, a guy that knows how to use a trimmer can it out as fast or in many cases faster.

Most Walkers around hear are 48" or a 50"ish., esp. if it's a GHS, so your covering less width at a slower speed. I'm running 60" & 66" most of the time.

Then you have the bagging system. You either have a bagger or you don't. Can't add one to the Super B. I only bag 4 or 5 weeks of the season (thatch and leaves). So I have two options buy a GHS and leave the hopper open and drag it around behind me all season so I can't see behind me and will probably tear the lid off while swinging the rear end around too close to something, or buy two of them and still loose time because of speed.

I think most of the attachments are a joke. Not that they're not well made. But I'll be darned if I'm going to drag a trailer through slush and salt coating a $14000 unit and not be much faster than my Ariens 36" commercial walk behind blower for $3000 that can be hauled in the back of my truck bed, saving the damage to a trailer as well.

Then you have the thatch rake. My Walker dealer is my JRCO dealer. They tell me my JRCO tines are almost half the cost of the Walker's and the JRCO looks like a more effective better made unit IMO.

Then you have the aerator. Maybe not a bad deal but I know I can get either of my aerators in many areas I wouldn't be able to get a ZTR with the rear end swinging wide behind me.

I also here they at least were a bear to service (20 plus zirks and a few hidden where disassembly was required to access?) and it seemed like a lot of the earlier ones ate engines and pumps fairly early compared to other ZTRs.

When I lived back east, the only people buying and running them were the wealthy retired and farmers. If you have a shop to keep it all in, not having to trailer in the winter because you using it just on your place and not trying to make a living with it. It's probably a fine unit to own.

It comes down to flexibility and efficiency. For me, a ZTR that can lay down a stripe at a good speed and width, a good trimmer, and a bagger I can make disappear when needed is whats it's all about.

jrs.landscaping
04-07-2012, 05:31 PM
Its basically a sales pitch and brainwashing from the walker reps lol, Everyone who owns a walker says the same lame sales pitch the guy told me when i was looking at one, "If you want a manicured cut you buy a walker" More like if you want your lawns to look like piss and have lines all through your stripes you buy a walker.

I would say 99% of walker owners are brainwashed and for some reason think it looks 'Manicured" When in fact it looks like piss.

We drank the Kool Aid and we love our Walkers. As for "manicured lawns" that was never a deciding factor for us, first was dealer support, around us it's Exmark, Deere and Walker, or a mower from HD or TSC. We use ours to get into all of the small areas our Z's can't. Cemeteries is a big one for us that we need a floating deck that can collect clippings. Not many offerings from other manufacturers in our area. We tried an Exmark Navigator but we felt it was bulky and not a good fit for what we needed. I agree with a lot of statements the rear caster making lawns you mow look like you were chased by a clown on a unicycle. As for speed going from our Deere's to a Walker you feel like you are in slow motion but you can't always mow 15 miles an hour, or with a 72" deck. If we could we'd all work two days a week. Every mower has it's place in a fleet whether it's a walk behind or a 72" Z and everyone has their opinion and it's usually biased to what's sitting on their shop floor.

kpl272
01-27-2014, 04:07 AM
I felt compelled to reopen my original thread.After a year and a half my son and I have narrow the list down. We've tested, talked and pondered these following machines.Out of all the ZTRs tested,studied, all for the exception of Deere,(which lost to 3rd place due to lack of suspention offered)we are down to OUR choice, the Ferris 3100. This was tough because of Scag's Cheetah which I liked very much but the suspention platform seemed to "jerk" a little more than the Ferris.Thats a big issue for me as being in the industry for 20 years, my back and other health issues have taken the toll on me over the years.

I feel the Scag dose have a little better cut,(the Ferris seems to let front tire run down marks, but may be corrected with different blades).

Another must, machine needs to stick to hills/berms. My dealer sells both Scag &Ferris and says the commercial guys tell him the 3100 sticks to the hills better than the Cheetah. This was not something we had actually tested.Just going by what he says.

So, now my question is to you all the REAL PROS! Does anyone support this statement? This may turn the tables as this was an important overlooked issue. We mow many hundreds of yards worth of privacy berms in 2 developements. Ferris or Scag for hills?

Thanx
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Ridin' Green
01-27-2014, 10:37 AM
Deere does now (and did all of last year) a suspension seat, and are supposed to be coming out with flex forks this year, so you may want to take one more look before buying, because the decks are top notch. What about the Gravely 400 series? They have quite a bit of suspension features. I can say personally that the Deere holds hills as well as anything out there. The Ferris should with its very wide stance at the rear.

JTLarson
01-27-2014, 12:07 PM
I don't know about being considered a "real pro", but I have owned and operated Deere, Scag Cheetah, Exmark, Hustler, and Ferris. I will say I think the Ferris holds hills the best out of all of them without "sliding out", but I will say that on really steep stuff (places I probably shouldn't be) that the Ferris hydros have come to a complete stop trying to push and hold the front end uphill a little going sideways on a very steep embankment.
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dannywilliams519
01-27-2014, 01:04 PM
An often overlooked aspect is dealer quality, proximity to your location, and their reputation for getting machines back out to work in a timely fashion. I love Grasshopper mowers and loved our local dealer. but when they closed up shop, the closest dealer was 40 minutes away. Also, they were slow to get equipment back out, and they weren't the most professional. So I got rid of the mowers I loved to go with John Deere because they had, what I felt like, was the most professional, and "on top of things" dealership in my area. Not saying go with JD, But I would put together a fleet based on what dealer you feel the best about. (unless that dealer sells crap like Bad Boy or Cub Cadet......) :) Oh, and I will say, My guys really like the JD suspension seat

Snyder's Lawn Inc
03-08-2014, 04:47 PM
An often overlooked aspect is dealer quality, proximity to your location, and their reputation for getting machines back out to work in a timely fashion. I love Grasshopper mowers and loved our local dealer. but when they closed up shop, the closest dealer was 40 minutes away. Also, they were slow to get equipment back out, and they weren't the most professional. So I got rid of the mowers I loved to go with John Deere because they had, what I felt like, was the most professional, and "on top of things" dealership in my area. Not saying go with JD, But I would put together a fleet based on what dealer you feel the best about. (unless that dealer sells crap like Bad Boy or Cub Cadet......) :) Oh, and I will say, My guys really like the JD suspension seat
So you buy a mower That has good dealer close to you.
Sound like you don't know how to work on your own stuff.

My dealer is 3hr oneway I keep buying the same mower Since its one of the best out there.
Im glad there isn't a dealer near me. So many people fallows what a dealer sales. So I can offer a different cut since I run different mowers
There 10 companies here running the same mowers.

I standout in this crowd

TPendagast
03-09-2014, 03:10 PM
So you buy a mower That has good dealer close to you.
Sound like you don't know how to work on your own stuff.

My dealer is 3hr oneway I keep buying the same mower Since its one of the best out there.
Im glad there isn't a dealer near me. So many people fallows what a dealer sales. So I can offer a different cut since I run different mowers
There 10 companies here running the same mowers.

I standout in this crowd
Some people don't keep their mowers past warranty, they trade them in and get new ones.
It's a different business strategy , but one that requires a close knit dealer
Because they keep your fleet going
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Uturf
03-09-2014, 03:37 PM
I would say to first look at the dealers! even the best mower will break down and need routine maintenance parts. A dealer that has the inventory and will back YOU if there is ever an issue is priceless! Other then that Scag Turf Tiger is what I run. Hard to beat the shaft driven deck and rear drive belt access. I have used mine to bush hog over 6' tall fields and it does an awesome job on the residential properties too.