Originally Posted by Timely
We have about 5 acres of property to mow pretty much weekly, and some additional areas that we hit occasionally. Sometimes the grass gets pretty long, and it's pretty bumpy in areas. I expect we'd run it about 100 hours per year.
We've used a Big Box Toro Timecutter for about 5 years, and it was held together with baling wire by the time it bit the dust. We'd like something more robust to replace it. I don't want to overkill for our needs, but I do want something that is up to doing this much work.
I have been looking at the Kubota Kommander S-series, the Ferris IS600Z and IS700Z, the Exmark Pioneer S-series, and the Exmark Lazer Z E-series. I was also looking at the Dixie Chopper Silver Eagle, but I hired a neighbor guy to cut our grass, and he had one. I asked if I could test drive it, and I found it to be an extremely rough ride. I don't know if there may have been some extenuating circumstance that caused that.
While our Toro struggled with the workload, it rode comfortably and was easy to use. There was no need to lift the deck, just set the height by moving a handle. It did bog down a lot.
As for dealers, the Dixie Chopper guy is like 1/2 mile from my house...which is a huge plus. I'm not looking at Gravely because the dealer is kind of far. The other dealers are close enough to work okay.
What I am wondering is if the level of machines I'm looking at is right for my needs or if some of these ZTR's are more machine than I need?
I have a Kubota Kommander S and although it is a very nice mower for residential use I would probably mark it off your list if you have a very bumpy property. The low profile tires make it a pretty rough ride even with the suspension seat. I am probably going to swap out the rear wheels/tires for something a bit fatter in the near future on mine.
Nationally they seem to be running some really good deals on the Ferris IS2000Z 61" mowers right now and it's the entry level Ferris with the full suspension. It's a little more than the Ferris mowers you listed, but with a rough lot it would be worth taking a look at. For a little more cash the Ferris IS3100Z is even better and that money also gets you into Scag Cheetah territory which has a suspension platform so it rides almost as nice as the Ferris mowers and it is faster.