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ed's lawn service
03-18-2003, 09:19 PM
:confused: I'm starting my own business and I wanted any advice anyone would give me. I have been in the business since I was 14 and currently own a 20", 6 hp Murray push mower, a Craftsman curved bar trimmer. I've been doing the lawns of two older ladies and a younger lady and have just made a contact with a gentleman who has three group homes and wants me to do his lawns this season. I am considering buying a Wright Stander mower which I have seen several of the lawn guys in this area using. I was also wondering if an Echo trimmer or a Stihl trimmer would be better. I appreciate any info!! :p

Mike Bradbury
03-19-2003, 03:00 AM
http://www.agry.purdue.edu/turf/index.html

DLS1
03-19-2003, 09:31 AM
Welcome aboard.

Try the Search button above the 'EverythingGreen.com' icon at the top of the page. Search for 'Wright Stander' or Echo, etc. and you will get lots of old threads about these topics.

AGG Lawn Maintenance
03-19-2003, 10:19 AM
Hey Ed. I checked your profile and see you are 16 years old. My advice is it check with your school and see if you can get into a vocational program for horticulture.(landscaping). I also started doing landscaping at 14 years old. As my interests grew I found myself signing up for a horticulture class. I also signed up with the FFA or Future Farmer of America. I started my company with two partners at the age of 16 years old. (Before I could drive) My one partner was old enough to drive. We (3 of us) saved all our money to buy used commercial mowers and equipment. We didn't have any credit or co signers. I am no longer with my partners but don't miss them. (more money in my pocket). I always heard from older people that I could not do it. I stuck to my guns though. The road was not always a smooth one but I got past the pot holes through time. Just about everything I said I was going to do I did. I will be 31 on April 11. I own my own house. Plan to get married in October. And own a clothing company. You may find some guys will get on you for being so young but don't let it bother you one bit. If you stick to your guns you will be one of the many success stories. Lots of luck to you Ed. Keep us posted!!! Travis

mower_babe
03-19-2003, 02:24 PM
Hey Ed, about the trimmers, We have Echos and Stihls. The guys like either trimmer equally well, but I prefer the echo because it starts on the first pull, every time. I am not saying anything bad about the Stihl, but to me, the Echo feels better balanced.
Hey, don't let the age thing get to you. I sometimes get comments about the fact that I am a woman and not a big, burly man. Just smile and say that your work speaks for itself. Good luck, we have been at it for only five years and I still hear it!

mklawnman
03-19-2003, 04:39 PM
Hey Ed
Do some searching on this site, theirs alot about trimmers on the site along with stand on mowers and walkbehinds. Also take alook at whats in your area as far as dealers are concerned, and talk with them if they seem to be great people to deal with then demo out a machine and see how you like it.
Echo here and also Scag
Matt

ed's lawn service
03-21-2003, 01:13 PM
Thanks alot for all the info. I will probably buy the Echo since it is a few bucks cheaper. Also my uncle who used to be in the business, used them and he says that they are good. Another question. Do you usually bag the grass clippings? My one customer is very picky about that and I was wondering if that is an issue to worry about. :D

Frosty_03
03-21-2003, 01:56 PM
I was wonder are you still going to school? Please Ed if your not stay in and get that high school diploma you will never regert it, and as AGG Lawn said check with your school or community college. I am glad to see that you are industrious, hell my kids are sucking me dry with their college tuition. Anyway back to you. I also started out young learned all I could from father and others in the business then joined the navy and now I am starting my own. I find that this sites and others like this are very helpful. Your are doing the right thing asking question. I would save my money this year and but commercial equipment as I could afford it. Its take time to get it all together, but keep up the good work and it will all come together for you. and yes there will be times where you are not going to want to get up, but remember when those mowers are sitting idel you are not making money. One more thing Please get an education.
"Later DUDE and God Speed"

"I wish I had a son like you"

ed's lawn service
03-21-2003, 06:35 PM
:) I've read quite a bit on Lawnsite about passing out flyers to get you more business. I was wondering how succesful that is. I saw one post that said success level was high while another post that said that the success level was low.

mower_babe
03-22-2003, 01:04 AM
Ed, about bagging. DON'T. Definitely try to mulch. If it looks great mulched - that is what I do. For the first 3 years, we only bagged. What a time sucking waste of money. You lose money all the way around. On a few of our accts - the grass is so long and we start early, so it is usually wet and we have to bag. You don't want to compromise quality. Now, I am looking at this from the point that I have never charged more to bag a lawn than to mulch it. There are some guys that charge per bag or per hour if it takes longer to bag. We don't, but it might be another avenue to explore if a customer insists on having it bagged.

DLS1
03-22-2003, 09:21 AM
If someone wants me to bag then it cost at least $5 extra. You got to haul it off and extra time for bagging. To me the grass looks just as good with a good mulching mower. If you give them the same price for bagging and non bagging they will probably always say bag it.

ed's lawn service
03-24-2003, 09:11 PM
Thanks again for all your info. :) The lady that wants me to bag is one of these people that even though they have money, they don't want to part with it so it should be no problem convincing her of the benefits of mulching.
I am thinking about getting some business cards or flyers, and I was wondering what sort of information should I put on a flyer. I don't want to brag about myself and am sort of out of ideas. This site is sure helpfull. Thanks in advance!:D

LawnMowerMan2003
03-27-2003, 03:44 AM
Hopefully I can give you helpful advice. I started mowing for some neighbors on my street when I was 15, and all I had was my dad's 3.5 HP craftsman, with no self-propel. I would definitely reccomend a straight shaft Echo, I forget the model number of the one I had, but it has a 26cc engine and I paid about $330 a few years ago for one, so it's probably more now. It was lightweight, and had plenty of power, and runs a dual line head with heavier line than your Craftsman can use. I don't think I'm exagerating when I say you could easily do the edging in half the time with the Echo I used. If you can't afford that model, I would go with a smaller Echo straight shaft. I had almost no problems with mine at all, even after years of use, but unfortunately it was stolen. As far as advertising, honestly, I have better luck making signs, but depending on where you live you could get fined for posting signs, and it's a little more difficult than flyers, in some ways. On my flyers I just put the name of my Company, the basic services I provided, and something like "Relax while we do the hard work for you!" I also wrote the estimates in for customers, if I could see the back yard, and I think I had a great response rate most of the time. I also made sure I had a very competitive price, which can be a risky strategy, because I tended to underbid, but I figured it was better than sitting around doing nothing.

yards ahead
03-30-2003, 07:15 PM
The wright stander is a good choice . I think that a 52" would be your most efficent machine for a main machine. Also personaly i buy all Redmax or Shindawia

LawnMowerMan2003
03-30-2003, 10:33 PM
I was happy with my Shindawa T27, although it used to cost signifigantly more than the Echo SRM-2600 and was heavier. It might be better built. Is that the the trimmer you use?

ed's lawn service
03-31-2003, 07:33 PM
Hi,
The nearest commercial mower dealership in my area has a MTD Pro walk behind that they are offering for a reasonable price. I was wondering if anyone has had any experience with this mower.:D