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  #1  
Old 07-18-2009, 01:27 AM
bonddude bonddude is offline
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Big Block vs Diesel vs LC?

I will be purchasing a mower real soon and was wondering a few things. Price wise im thinking that I can get more mower for the money if I go for a big block vanguard 30-35 hp. I know their gas hogs and thats why I initially wanted to get a diesel. Thing is with a 30-35hp BB i could also get a 61'' deck and be more proficient.
But..... With a diesel I could "save money" with less "gas" lol. But thing is with the diesel it is only a 21hp (more torque i know). Also I would only get it with a 52'' to allow bagging.
I never had the 29hp liquid cooled kubota gasser priced out but i'm sure its cheaper than the diesel and more expensive than the BB's.
Take into account this is the grasshopper 700 series or mowers.
So my question is- Should I drop more money on the diesel with less hp and smaller deck, or should I go for the BB or LC with 61''. I will be mowing northern grasses, and would like to be able to bag without a problem and mulch.

Last edited by bonddude; 07-18-2009 at 01:32 AM.
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  #2  
Old 07-18-2009, 02:31 AM
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dwlah dwlah is offline
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Ive been demoing a GH 329 BB with a 61in deck
I have an exmark 31 LC 60in deck
Fuel consumption isnt much different both burn about a gal /hour
Things I like about the GH
Smoother ride(dont know if its just because its new and mine is old)
Seems to cut a little bit faster(with exmark my helper is usually blowing off vs with GH hes just finishing trimming but this may be due to me pushing mower harder to see what I can get out of it)
Doesnt seem to bog on the thicker stuff
Things I dont like about the GH
Feels like your sitting on it rather than in it
1 main gas tank rather than 2 seperate tanks
Fuel guage is under the seat

Cant speak to the bagging or the diesel fuel situations
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  #3  
Old 07-18-2009, 04:42 AM
heather lawn sp heather lawn sp is offline
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Running both gas and diesel

diesel runs about 30% longer on same amount of fuel, so 7.5 hours with gas would be 10 hours with the same volume of diesel. On a good day you can get dyed diesel 30% off gas. $4 of gas costs $3 for diesel. Diesel can crank out 25% more torque in the small engines. 21 hp diesel is 26 hp gas for torque.

So fuel costs per day 55% dyed diesel over gasoline. Compare that to the higher costs of diesel engines. It works for us, we are converting over to diesel as the availablity of the diesel engines allow. Currently 2 diesel mower, third scheduled for change to diesel mower next year with 2 more to go. 4 trucks over to diesel. one gas. We'll burn 600 US gallons of gas and diesel a month.
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  #4  
Old 07-18-2009, 09:02 AM
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groundskeeperllc groundskeeperllc is offline
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I bought a GH 329 BB 61" back in the spring and its a beast, i love it, i had a 928 61" and traded it in, the cost to repair those kubota diesel's and liquid cooled engines is high, for instance the kubota radiator from GH is around $1300, no more liquid cooled for me, i would recommend the 61" on the midmount not the frontmount, the 61" frontmount i had scalped alot on hills and ditches, the rep told me not to go bigger than 52" on the frontmount but i didn't listen, I know have two midmount 61".
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  #5  
Old 07-18-2009, 10:21 AM
bonddude bonddude is offline
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Thats strange about the scalping. Did you have the side sawy bushings (or w/e they are called) Sounds like air cooled is the most economical for me, with bagging at least because i think the 21 diesel will have a hard time in the fall. The 52'' only has 1.5'' trim so thats why i'd really like to get the 61''. BB wise should I go for the largest or any old one?
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  #6  
Old 07-18-2009, 11:01 AM
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puppypaws puppypaws is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bonddude View Post
I will be purchasing a mower real soon and was wondering a few things. Price wise im thinking that I can get more mower for the money if I go for a big block vanguard 30-35 hp. I know their gas hogs and thats why I initially wanted to get a diesel. Thing is with a 30-35hp BB i could also get a 61'' deck and be more proficient.
But..... With a diesel I could "save money" with less "gas" lol. But thing is with the diesel it is only a 21hp (more torque i know). Also I would only get it with a 52'' to allow bagging.
I never had the 29hp liquid cooled kubota gasser priced out but i'm sure its cheaper than the diesel and more expensive than the BB's.
Take into account this is the grasshopper 700 series or mowers.
So my question is- Should I drop more money on the diesel with less hp and smaller deck, or should I go for the BB or LC with 61''. I will be mowing northern grasses, and would like to be able to bag without a problem and mulch.
I had already posted before I read this but it backs what I said totally.

Quote:
Originally Posted by groundskeeperllc View Post
I bought a GH 329 BB 61" back in the spring and its a beast, i love it, i had a 928 61" and traded it in, the cost to repair those kubota diesel's and liquid cooled engines is high, for instance the kubota radiator from GH is around $1300, no more liquid cooled for me, i would recommend the 61" on the midmount not the frontmount, the 61" frontmount i had scalped alot on hills and ditches, the rep told me not to go bigger than 52" on the frontmount but i didn't listen, I know have two midmount 61".
If you never want to see the rpms drop, a 32-35 Vanguard will carry the load and never change sounds. I suppose the 21 diesel is on a mule drive, if that is the case you are getting maybe 18 usable hp to the deck (pretty weak).

If you want better fuel economy, less power, longer engine life, more maintenance (liquid cooled), more costly to work on or buy parts for, the diesel is your engine.

If you want worse fuel economy, much, much more power, shorter engine life, much less maintenance, and much less expensive to work on, buy parts for, or replace the entire engine. The big block Vanguard should be your choice.

People just can't seem to get it into their minds, the Vanguard engines are built in a Daihatsu diesel manufacturing facility. The engine in Europe is called a Toyota Daihatsu engine and people love them. People have a brain block about the Briggs & Stratton name, this is not truthfully a Briggs engine except by name alone when sold in the US. This is actually a Daihatsu gasoline engine not comparable to any other Briggs engine, and carries a Toyota Daihatsu name by European people.
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Old 07-18-2009, 11:06 AM
bonddude bonddude is offline
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I have only heard good things about the vanguard which is why I have sort of changed my mind about the diesel choice. What kind of price difference do you think there will be between the 21hp diesel and a 29hp Briggs Vanguard and 35hp Briggs Vanguard. Should I concider the Kubota liquid cooled? The offerings for that are a 700 series 29hp and a 900 series 32hp. Would the price of the 900 series be equal to the 21hp diesel offering? Sorry of all the questions, I just am trying to make the right decision.
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  #8  
Old 07-18-2009, 12:24 PM
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puppypaws puppypaws is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bonddude View Post
I have only heard good things about the vanguard which is why I have sort of changed my mind about the diesel choice. What kind of price difference do you think there will be between the 21hp diesel and a 29hp Briggs Vanguard and 35hp Briggs Vanguard. Should I concider the Kubota liquid cooled? The offerings for that are a 700 series 29hp and a 900 series 32hp. Would the price of the 900 series be equal to the 21hp diesel offering? Sorry of all the questions, I just am trying to make the right decision.
I have no idea of how Grasshopper prices their units and components. I can tell you Kubota makes an excellent diesel engine which conserves fuel extremely well. You are going to be the one making the decision, and really it is hard for anyone to help you.

Some people want the diesel for better fuel economy, some want liquid cooled, some do not. Some people want the extra life of a diesel engine over gas, some people do not care about an engine that will outlast the mower components.

This is a decision no one can make for you, you need to weight your must haves against your wants. I realize you are attempting to gather information for help with your decision. Different people will have different thoughts about what you are trying to decide.

Take a piece of paper and write down the differences you are looking at and their exact prices. Then think of how the machine will be used the largest percentage of mowing time. Compare hp prices of gas versus diesel, versus liquid cooled gas machines, think about upkeep, parts, maintenance cost, and initial investment when making the comparisons, along with what you think will make you the happiest.
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  #9  
Old 07-18-2009, 01:06 PM
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nosparkplugs nosparkplugs is offline
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The never ending liquid cooling vs air cooled. Gas vs Diesel debate's.

Most of us have written so much on this debate, so here is what comes to mind today

If you want a diesel, and it must be a Grasshopper get the largest displacement diesel you can afford. The larger diesel engines is were the diesel advantage shine's the brightest.

I would look at the midmount 300 series Grasshopper 325D with a 25hp Kubota diesel & 61" deck.

or the Grasshopper 721DT front mower.

The Kubota diesel mills will run at lower RPM's when making their peak torque vs a Gasburner BB. You will have less maintenance or oil changes on a diesel, the diesel engines of today are "perky" much better than any gasoline engine I have owned. Their eager to run everyday, diesel is just hard to beat if your mowing in tough conditions. Going from my gas ZTR's to our diesel ZTR daily is where one notice's the diesel advantage.

Their will be those on here that have had trouble with diesels, most troubles with diesels are self-inflicted issue's. Diesels will require less routine maintenance I am talking routine oil changes and filters. Beyond this diesels require no 'tune-ups'.

Be it liquid cooled gas or diesel both have radiators and require the pre-cleaner or screen to be cleaned from time to time. Air cooled engine's have only cooling fins, and pull air across these cooling fins, and these fins do require blowing off, and cannot be accessed easily for maintenance. After running a liquid cooled diesel having a radiator is far easier to maintain, and access for cleaning. I will say some manufacture's choose to place radiators in vulnerable place's, and can be punctured. So one needs to choose a liquid cooled engine wisely, look beyond what everyone is running BS.

Liquid cooling gives you a more stable engine for running in all conditions, air cooled engines are bound to the external ambient air temps. Their simple design is also their weakness.




I am slowly switching over to all diesel myself, the power & torque of a diesel, fuel sipping economy, and low maintenance is well worth the higher intial investment.

So for me it came down being tired of the air cooled engine's, and wanting more productivity out of my hard earned money.

For the record i still own two air cooled Kohlers, and for certain applications their a great choice.



Quote:
Originally Posted by bonddude View Post
I will be purchasing a mower real soon and was wondering a few things. Price wise im thinking that I can get more mower for the money if I go for a big block vanguard 30-35 hp. I know their gas hogs and thats why I initially wanted to get a diesel. Thing is with a 30-35hp BB i could also get a 61'' deck and be more proficient.
But..... With a diesel I could "save money" with less "gas" lol. But thing is with the diesel it is only a 21hp (more torque i know). Also I would only get it with a 52'' to allow bagging.
I never had the 29hp liquid cooled kubota gasser priced out but i'm sure its cheaper than the diesel and more expensive than the BB's.
Take into account this is the grasshopper 700 series or mowers.
So my question is- Should I drop more money on the diesel with less hp and smaller deck, or should I go for the BB or LC with 61''. I will be mowing northern grasses, and would like to be able to bag without a problem and mulch.

Last edited by nosparkplugs; 07-18-2009 at 01:12 PM.
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  #10  
Old 07-18-2009, 03:35 PM
bonddude bonddude is offline
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Well since I am determined to get a diesel mower, and a long time lover of diesel effienceincy maybe ill have to look deeper into bad boy mowers because they are about the only big diesel engines i could afford. So i guess its 25hp kubota on a grasshopper vs a 28hp cat on a bad boy. I think my mind is made up hahaha that is if the bad boy has a collection system. (double blades here i come)
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