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Old 02-26-2007, 06:29 PM
chris638 chris638 is offline
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Which size engine to have

I'm getting ready to buy a 48" walk behind, but I don't know which size engine to get a 15 HP or 17 HP. Both are Kawasaki engines. The 17 HP is about $500.00 more than the 15 HP. Is the 15 HP going to be enough or I am better off going with the 17 HP? It is a Snapper Pro, hydro drive if that helps.
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Old 02-26-2007, 06:39 PM
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MOW PRO LAWN SERVICE MOW PRO LAWN SERVICE is offline
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Get the 17, are you running a sulky you will need the extra power.
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Old 02-26-2007, 06:43 PM
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Lynden-Jeff Lynden-Jeff is offline
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15 has been good for me but if I did it again I would get the 17 for the electric start.

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Old 02-26-2007, 07:18 PM
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JKOOPERS JKOOPERS is offline
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i have a 52 with a kaw 17 great power for mowing weekly . but it will bog with really high and wet grass.
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Old 02-26-2007, 07:20 PM
pugs pugs is offline
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On, a hydro I would go 17 on a 48" machine. Gear drive 48" a 15 would be ok.
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Old 02-26-2007, 11:59 PM
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lawn guy1350 lawn guy1350 is offline
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definately 17 hp
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Old 02-27-2007, 12:03 AM
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Raven386 Raven386 is offline
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the bigger the better.
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Old 02-27-2007, 12:13 AM
Ed Ryder Ed Ryder is offline
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I agree with Pugs. And horsepower is good.

What are your reasons for getting the hydro? And how much are you going to pay for it?

I have 2 walk-behinds that are gear-drives. I don't use them a whole lot. But the gear drives perform fine. I just use them for small areas and hills that I can't hit with a rider.

I do think a hydro walk-behind would increase efficiency compared to a gear-drive, and they are a lot easier to back-up. You can also mow in the rain with a hydro, while the belts can slip on a gear-drive.

For new guys starting out, I think a gear drive can be sufficient while you build up savings for a rider. The rider makes things much easier, especially with your hands. (Pistol grips cause hand pain.)
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Old 02-27-2007, 12:17 AM
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lawnpro724 lawnpro724 is offline
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I have the Toro 48" w/15hp kaw belt drive and it does fine so unless you have the hydro go with the 15hp you won't notice much of a difference in power w/ the 17hp their the same engine with bigger carbs for the additional 2hp.
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Old 02-27-2007, 12:48 AM
chris638 chris638 is offline
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Thanks for all the great input. I'm definitely getting the hydro. Most of the yards we will be doing are going to be less that half acre, almost all residental. Therefore I don't have a great need for a rider, plus it seems like to me that most walk behinds are just as effecient as riders without doubling in price. Especially in the size yards were doing. Appreciate all the good info.
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