My very first mower as a kid was a Craftsman push behind reel mower with the open bag catcher on the back.
My first mower that I used commercially in the business was a Toro 42" garden tractor.
Did it hold up? The definate answer is not for commercial use. I liked it because it was new and I was making money but I only had a few customers. Once things grew the tractor was just plain worn out. The motor was good but all the rest of the parts were worn. After 2 years of what would now be considered mild use it was time for commercial. I went with Walker and a Toro commercial WB. My advice for anyone that is serious in the business is to buy commercial from the start.
Check out the SPONSORS, they keep this site going!!!