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  #31  
Old 01-25-2000, 01:44 AM
Doc Doc is offline
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Join Date: Dec 1999
Location: New York
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Stephen,<p>Thank you for your help. Homer is in agreement with you. He stated that they are not the best thing to use either. We will leave that one alone. Thank you. What mower do you use? <p>Doc
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  #32  
Old 01-25-2000, 06:07 AM
HOMER HOMER is offline
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Location: Alabama the Beautiful
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Doc, <br>A midmount mower is what you have been looking at, the mower deck sits beneath the rider/behind the front wheels. A front deck mower is similar to something you would see on a golf course. The deck is out in front of the operator. Most commercial mower mfg.'s make a front deck. Exmark, Scag, John Deere, Grasshopper and Toro to mention a few. Walker mowers are also an out front mower. The midmounts are more maneuverable and get the job done faster, they also have the ability to make a zero radius turn. An out front has more mechanical parts and are not something I see many commercial guys use. You can't fit many on a trailer! Dixie Chopper does not sell an out front. The ability to cut grass well is dependant on the design of the deck, how it is chambered, how the air flows in & out of it. They should all cut grass well.<br>I would ask about the blade tip speed though, I believe in higher speed! <br>I use a 6&quot;Black & Decker bench grinder, I have not invested in the real thing yet! I do know there was a post earlier on concerning blade sharpening. Go to the top of the page and click on search, it will pull up all the pages concerning this discussion. I do know that others mentioned what they used.<p>The aerator I looked at had 3 seperate tine assemblies. I assume as you turn the outside tines slow down and the inside speed up. I asked Eric about his and he said you would not tear the grass unless you made a extemely sharp turn. I have not used that one yet but am in the market, even if I have to rent one. I hope this helped.<p>Homer
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  #33  
Old 01-25-2000, 08:26 AM
Stephen Stephen is offline
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Location: Sullivan County, NY
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Doc- currently i have a 36&quot; and 52&quot; Scag walkbehinds, a 48&quot; woods walkbehind and a 52&quot; Exmark Lazer Z ZTR, i have 4 trimmers: 2 echos, a green machine and small stihl, red max and echo hedge trimmers and a little wonder push blower that doubles as a vac i hook up to my trailer and a echo hand blower.<p>----------<br>Stephen<br>
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  #34  
Old 01-25-2000, 08:29 PM
Doc Doc is offline
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Homer,<p>Thanks again for your answer but this time I am very confused with it. I have seen being cut with the Walker, SCAG Turf Runner, EXMARK Explorer, and JOHN DEERE Z-Trak. As I stated previously, these are the machines used by the lawn care professionals in my area and they are small. I thought from the information I found on the net that these are also ZTR machines. Please feel free to correct me if I am in error. I need clarification on this matter.<p>Doc<br>
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  #35  
Old 01-25-2000, 08:30 PM
Doc Doc is offline
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Stephen,<p>Thank you for sharing your equipment list with me. I have read the posts concerning your equipment and most were favorable. Have you had any problems with anything?<p>Doc<br>
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  #36  
Old 01-25-2000, 08:56 PM
accuratelawn accuratelawn is offline
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Doc,<br>The mowers that you listed-<br>Walker JD Z-Tract Exmark explorer are ZTR mowers. The difference between those mowers and say a Dixie or Lazer is that they have the deck out front whereas the Dixie and Lazer are mid mounts.<br>Jeff<br>Take a closer look on their respective web pages. Exmark.com Walker.com
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  #37  
Old 01-25-2000, 09:44 PM
Doc Doc is offline
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Accuratelawn,<p>Thank you for explaining this to me, but would you do me one more kindness and help me to under the advantages and disadvantages of each type. <p>Doc<br>
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  #38  
Old 01-25-2000, 11:12 PM
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Keith Keith is offline
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The mowers you listed that are front mowers are ztr's. I use a Grasshopper 721, and Yazoo/Kees ZTMax for riders. The Grasshopper is a front deck mower and the ZTMax is a mid mount. The Grasshopper has a three cylinder liquid cooled Kubota gas engine. As far as reliable engines, they are probably tops. The problem with Grasshopper has been the support from dealers to distributors to the Grasshopper company itself. I really liked mine when I first got it and really it is still a good mower but without a good dealer and distributor I would not recommend it. The mower is extremely well built but it is almost like you are dealing with a separate company when it comes to service and parts. Others may have better dealers/distributors and may not run into the problems I have with Grasshopper.<p>The Yazoo/Kees is a lot like the Exmark Lazer. Exmark and F.D. Kees are based in the same small town in Nebraska (Beatrice). I chose it over the Lazer based on price and a couple of other small things. It is obvious that Exmark and F.D. Kees had a good relationship when these machines first came out. From what I understand, a company bought Yazoo and F.D. Kees in 1998 and that's where the use of Yazoo/Kees name came. Exmark was bought by Toro in 1998. The ZTMax really has nothing to do with Yazoo. The two brands are built in different locations. In fact I asked a Yazoo dealer for a price on a ZTMax and he could not get them, he was a Yazoo dealer but not a Yazoo/Kees dealer. In late 1999 the F.D. Kees part of Yazoo/ Kees was purchased by Husqvarna. So now there are four companies making mowers that originated from one. Hope I didn't confuse anybody. LOL<p>As far as which cuts better, they both cut very well. The front deck is a little more stable on steeper hillsides due to its length and lower center of gravity. The front deck will mow under things and in corners better. If you have a really tight spot you can pull into or under something more easily. The downside is it is longer and you have part of the machine in back and you really have to be careful not to sling it into anything, but it is not that hard once you get used to it. <p>The mid mount mows a lot faster (generally) and will mow fairly steep hillsides. They seem to be much simpler and on the average yard is just fine. If pulled up to a bed midmounts will just back out without any damage. Sometimes front mounts, with their small front wheels, will tear the grass if you are not careful. The midmount does not stop as well on hillsides. Other than that they are both good machines. Midmounts just seem to be the way to go.<p>I would base my choice on the dealer support. You will not go wrong with the Lazer or a Dixie Chopper if you have a good dealer. They are both really good machines. I live in Florida which is of no help to you, but both machines are popular here and both cut well.<p>If catching clippings is important, I hate to say this, but Walker is the clear cut machine to have.
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  #39  
Old 01-26-2000, 06:11 AM
HOMER HOMER is offline
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Doc, <p>My suggestion would be to have the respective deaalers bring their midmount ztr's and their out front mowers and demo both. I have never operated an out front mower so I could not give a fair overview of one. I have heard a lot of bad things about the Scag Turfrunner, even from the dealer. There is one or two that run a front deck mower in my area, one is a Kubota, the other a John Deere. I finally saw a Walker being used the other day by a Co. that commutes bak and forth from a town 30 miles from here. My dealer sells Walkers and nobody in my town buys them. The problem for commercial cutters is the overall lengt and size of the front decks. I would have a hard time getting around some of my smaller yards with one. I would also be limited to the # I can get on my trailer. I am hauling 3 mowers now and it takes a 20&quot; trailer to do this. I know I couldn't fit 3 (maybe 3 walkers would) out front mowers on it.<p>Your situation is different,yours will be a dedicated machine staying on the ground at all times. It is easier to change the blades on the out front mowers because most of them have flip up decks. I would have to demo one myself one day to find out more about them, pros and con. Make the dealers work for their sale! Get all of them demo'd and go over them with a fine tooth comb. Drive them yourself, they may not let you engage the blades except on the true demo units, I could not cut with mine until it WAS mine. It will be a process of elimination for you and the others.<p>Scott
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  #40  
Old 01-26-2000, 02:28 PM
Doc Doc is offline
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Join Date: Dec 1999
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Keith,<p>I wish to thank you for your time and help. No grasshoppers in my area but it sounds like a good machine that is poorly backed-up. I have seen this happen many times over the years. You would think companies would learn from the downfall of so many before them but they donít. I have not heard anything good about SCAG, I think I will remove them from my list. I also read some other posts that indicated that the original owner has left and started a new company. Things like that usually cause problems in the initial phase of separation. I have some concerns about the small front wheels tearing up the grass. Is this an operator problem or machine one. Hills are not a problem. Ideally catching clippings one cut and mulch the other is what we would prefer. Since we cut every four days that would give enough time for the mulch to break down. <p>Doc<br>
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