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  #11  
Old 01-09-2011, 07:23 AM
Lefet's Avatar
Lefet Lefet is offline
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Location: Jackson, NJ
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Quote:
Originally Posted by americanlawn View Post
I trust you, so I'd like your advice. We currently use Ryan 48" tow-behind aerators (36" actual plug width) for large properties & open areas. With these "beefy" hydraulic-lift "tow-behinds", we can double the number of tines to pull out more plugs, but we have to add weights. Maximum speed = 8 mph. Plug depth varies between 1 inch to 3 inches depending on soil moisture and type. (I know a one inch plug is a rip-off)

I also believe it's easier on the body to "sit" rather than "ride" (like turfcobob said before), and we use walk-behind aerators for trimming & gated back yards.

Questions:

1) We run "two-man" aeration crews, so would it pay for me to buy a Lawn Solutions ride-on aerator?

2) Does "riding" the LS unit wear you out by the end of the day?

3) How many aerations do you do each fall to justify the $8500 investment?

4) Any breakdowns/replacement parts needed?

5) What is the lifespan of the LS ride-on? (our Ryan tow-behinds are over 15 years-old, and they still hold up)

6) What is the effective aeration width? 36" or what?

7) Is customer support good & timely?

rscvp, thanks cuz I'm still considering
May I ask what you use to tow with? I am considering going this route also. Can't justify the expense for LS Rider as we didn't do too many last year, would like to do more this year. Average lawn size here is 15 -30 with a decent mix up to 45. Small amount of gated, less area. I have a Craftsman tractor (15hp B &S liquid cooled), I use around the house. (We have an acre) took the deck off and mostly use it for pushing, pulling, moving firewood, plowing the driveway. Am trying to find someone to fabricate this hitch:

http://www.hearth.com/econtent/index...wthread/55832/
(post #7)
So I can move the trailers around.

Thanks
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  #12  
Old 01-10-2011, 05:18 PM
MnLefty MnLefty is offline
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Join Date: May 2006
Location: Minnesota
Posts: 359
Larry- See my responses in blue. If you ever get up to the Twin Cities before you buy, let me know and you can come run ours around.

Quote:
Originally Posted by americanlawn View Post
I trust you, so I'd like your advice. We currently use Ryan 48" tow-behind aerators (36" actual plug width) for large properties & open areas. With these "beefy" hydraulic-lift "tow-behinds", we can double the number of tines to pull out more plugs, but we have to add weights. Maximum speed = 8 mph. Plug depth varies between 1 inch to 3 inches depending on soil moisture and type. (I know a one inch plug is a rip-off)

I also believe it's easier on the body to "sit" rather than "ride" (like turfcobob said before), and we use walk-behind aerators for trimming & gated back yards.

The machine is compact enough, you can use it anywhere you would put your T's, maybe even smaller properties than that. The only place we didn't use it was where it physically does not fit, inside a gate, between beds etc... and there were not too many spaces like that. It will pull plugs like crazy, no fear of "cheating" the customer. Spacing is as good or better than our Plugr walk-behinds. It's also VERY simple to use, and after the tiniest bit of practice VERY hard to damage turf with the aerator.

Questions:

1) We run "two-man" aeration crews, so would it pay for me to buy a Lawn Solutions ride-on aerator?

It would in the sense that you would be able to run guys solo for the majority of your properties...

2) Does "riding" the LS unit wear you out by the end of the day?

No more than riding a stander mower, a Z, a T, a Permagreen, or any other "stand-on" unit without a seat. There is no extra "beating" from the aerator, only the wear and tear of riding a machine across imperfect ground. After an adjustment period of "getting your legs under you" many mowers feel better after a day of standing rather than sitting... your legs are better shock absorbers than your butt or back.

3) How many aerations do you do each fall to justify the $8500 investment?

We did just over 80, a bit over a million sq ft last year, billed out a bit more than the cost of the machine... but I bought the machine with the intention of dramatically increasing those numbers this coming year. I honestly believe we could now do 2X that in the same time frame as years past. Aeration used to be viewed as a necessary evil, now I look at it as a big time revenue potential.

4) Any breakdowns/replacement parts needed?

As long as the machine is updated/new from LS, nothing major. Ours was at a dealer, and LS had a bad batch of pulley arms that were a few degrees off on angle, which led to belt tension problems. LS had the updated part coming overnighted our way before we even discovered the problem.

5) What is the lifespan of the LS ride-on? (our Ryan tow-behinds are over 15 years-old, and they still hold up)

That I obviously can't answer, but I would suspect it will be similar to other aerators... The machine will likely see no more than 100 hours per season, so I expect it to last quite a while.

6) What is the effective aeration width? 36" or what?

If memory serves it is 28", but it easily makes it up in speed. "Speed" of the tines is driven by ground speed, so it produces the same core spacing if your creeping or screaming.

7) Is customer support good & timely?

Absolutely... see #4.

rscvp, thanks cuz I'm still considering
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  #13  
Old 01-10-2011, 07:01 PM
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grassman177 grassman177 is offline
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Location: leavenworth, kansas
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so, i have a ?

if it is that good, why not go ahead and make a larger model to offer those looking for more production where say a 46-48in model would be a much better option?

anyone know of any plans.

i know they chains have a pretty good track record, i really like the reliablilty of hydros like a zplug
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  #14  
Old 01-20-2013, 02:04 PM
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americanlawn americanlawn is offline
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Join Date: May 2006
Location: midwest
Posts: 5,638
Quote:
Originally Posted by Lefet View Post
May I ask what you use to tow with? I am considering going this route also. Can't justify the expense for LS Rider as we didn't do too many last year, would like to do more this year. Average lawn size here is 15 -30 with a decent mix up to 45. Small amount of gated, less area. I have a Craftsman tractor (15hp B &S liquid cooled), I use around the house. (We have an acre) took the deck off and mostly use it for pushing, pulling, moving firewood, plowing the driveway. Am trying to find someone to fabricate this hitch:

http://www.hearth.com/econtent/index...wthread/55832/
(post #7)
So I can move the trailers around.

Thanks
We pull our Ryan pull-behind (hydraulic lift) aerators with John Deere 445's. They are 22 HP. Ryan manual suggests a 20 HP tractor or more. Total width of the aerators = 48". Effective aeration width = 36". If you run the standard set of tines, you won't pull as many plugs as we prefer. You can actually double the number of tines, but plug depth suffers. So we ended up adding 50% more tines, and added a 50 lb weight on top of each aeartor.

Problem is dry ground, soft ground, going up wet slopes, and can't get in tight areas or corners. I like the idea of a stand-on aerator cuz you can adjust the pressure to compensate for hard/dry soil as well as soft ground.

The 2012 drought caused us to do more than ten times the normal number of seeding jobs. Our favorate seeding method is to apply seed - then aerate 3 or 4 times over the seeded areas. We also used mostly turf type tall fescue rather than KBG or rye.

In 2013, we plan to purchase a stand-on aerator. I hate blowing that kind of cash for a piece of "seasonal" equipment, but I think it's time I get out of the 'dark ages'.

MnLefty -- thanks for the invite. Stop here anytime you're in the Des Moines area. I'll buy.
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  #15  
Old 01-20-2013, 02:18 PM
djagusch djagusch is offline
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Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: MN
Posts: 3,454
Quote:
Originally Posted by americanlawn View Post
We pull our Ryan pull-behind (hydraulic lift) aerators with John Deere 445's. They are 22 HP. Ryan manual suggests a 20 HP tractor or more. Total width of the aerators = 48". Effective aeration width = 36". If you run the standard set of tines, you won't pull as many plugs as we prefer. You can actually double the number of tines, but plug depth suffers. So we ended up adding 50% more tines, and added a 50 lb weight on top of each aeartor.

Problem is dry ground, soft ground, going up wet slopes, and can't get in tight areas or corners. I like the idea of a stand-on aerator cuz you can adjust the pressure to compensate for hard/dry soil as well as soft ground.

The 2012 drought caused us to do more than ten times the normal number of seeding jobs. Our favorate seeding method is to apply seed - then aerate 3 or 4 times over the seeded areas. We also used mostly turf type tall fescue rather than KBG or rye.

In 2013, we plan to purchase a stand-on aerator. I hate blowing that kind of cash for a piece of "seasonal" equipment, but I think it's time I get out of the 'dark ages'.

MnLefty -- thanks for the invite. Stop here anytime you're in the Des Moines area. I'll buy.
Your just buying because Turfco is finally going to have one for sale.
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