Originally Posted by Ridin' Green
If you read through this PDF, you'll see they are really more of a high end homeowner/low end commercial mower. Both the diesels weigh in less than many gas models from other name brands which is great for the turf, but it tells me that there's not as much material in their construction overall, and they have much lower BTS's as well. They also have tunnel decks, which I know firsthand will cut every bit as good as any deck made, but not when you're dealing with large amounts of thick grass, and taking of several inches at a time at high speed as is common in the spring. They do look interesting though, and I hope they turn out to be
another good choice eventually.
Looking at the specs on the mower deck options, they do list a 60" and 72" standard deck, which are not tunnel decks, and then they list the 72" tunnel deck.
Your statement about the "tunnel deck not cutting well when dealing with tall, thick grass when taking off serveral inches at a time at high speed as is common in the spring" is contradictory to the basic reasoning behind the function of a tunnel style deck. If you read the Gravely info on the Pro Ride mower deck, or if you find some of the old EverRide Warrior Advertisements and videos of it, you'll see that it was designed to excel in the very conditions that you say it's not good at.
My experience with my Gravely Pro Ride has also backed up those statements. With the tunnel deck Pro Ride, I have been able to cut tall, thick spring growth at a high speed, when the ground is smooth enough. It will cut it clean also. I't ONLY disadvantage when cutting in those conditions is the clippings will be longer because the tunnel deck is working as designed in those conditions, which means that it is getting the clippings out of the deck quicker, which keeps the blades from getting overwelmed with the excessive amount of clippings. YOU can't hardly make the Gravely Pro Ride throw clumps in tall, thick grass. I always hear that the 7 Iron and Velocity plus decks won't hardly clump, neither will the Gravely Pro Ride.
I know that we live in different regions of the Country and have different kinds of grasses to deal with so I can't say that the Gravely Pro Ride / EverRide Warrior deck will work well in northern grasses but it does fine down here in Bahia country. Btw, I did get to use it in some tall/thick bahia late last summer and it handled it very well and at a pretty good speed also.
Also, contrary to the perception of some , about tunnel decks, when cutting normal growth grass, (bermuda, zoysia, st. Augustine) mine will discharge clippings that are fairly small, not as small as an Exmark Ultracut, Bobcat or my Lastec but it does chop them up noticably.
In one of the old EverRide threads, I think it was "Lawns Etc." that had used the warriors and JD's with the 7 Iron deck and he compared the cut between the two as pretty equal but that the JD would produce finer clippings.
I'm not saying that the tunnel deck design is the best deck ever, just that a tunnel decks main attribute is to excel in tall, thick grass. It might not work as well at 4" and above in the finer northern grasses but down here it (at least the Pro Ride deck anyway, as I have no experience with the MF/Iseki tunnel deck) works very well.