All wheel steer tractors

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by Joel B., Jul 29, 2002.

  1. Joel B.

    Joel B. LawnSite Senior Member
    from MN
    Posts: 458

    I know the "big guys" don't like the tractors for mowing and I hope I don't catch too much heck for bringing this up.

    One thing I didn't like about the Exmark was the tendency (sp) to tear up the grass if you aren't careful. I know there is a learning curve as far as operating ZTRs, but I've talked to some experienced ZTR operators who say they even sometimes tear up the grass if they are in a hurry or just not thinking. The scary thing for me is that it only takes a second of not thinking to tear up the grass. I can only imagine what some picky customers say about that.

    This is where the AWS tractor might have an advantage since both drive wheels turn at the same time (Or at least I think they do on a AWS). I know on my JD LX 176 I never worry about tearing up the grass, I don't even have to think about it. Also, when winter comes, the tractor could be used for snow removal and as a possible back-up to a plow.

    I know the ZTR would probably mow faster than a tractor but I would think the fact that the tractor would be easier on the grass would be an advantage.

    Thanks for putting up with all of my questions,

    Joel B.
     
  2. Richard Martin

    Richard Martin LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 14,700

    Come on man, you're telling people about some of my concepts for future projects. This winter's project is making a belt drive Exmark Metro have positive reverse using nothing but Exmark parts. That reverse assist sucks and has got to go. A companion project to the positive reverse is getting the mower into reverse without shifting.
     
  3. John Gamba

    John Gamba LawnSite Fanatic
    from ct
    Posts: 10,812

    Don't waist Your time they Call It a Hydro Walk Behined.
     
  4. chariot

    chariot LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 319

    How about a mower like the Exmark Turf Ranger? Other companies make similar models also. As for the Z I have one and have ever since 1998. I do not find myself tearing the grass when I get in a hurry because I have become so use to the way that I turn I just do the same motion, but at a faster speed. As for tearing the grass when not paying attention, they should be glad this is all that they damaged. Operating a mower like a Z is not the time to start day dreaming.
     
  5. Richard Martin

    Richard Martin LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 14,700

    John Gamba wrote:

    Don't waist Your time they Call It a Hydro Walk Behined.

    Yeah, I know. What would be the sense of putting 30 bucks worth of parts on a gear drive and getting hydro performance when you can just spend $1500 to $2000 more and get a hydro.

    BTW, if you want to see how my "Project Gravely" turned out go down to your local Gravely dealer and look at the new Pro G series.
     
  6. Joel B.

    Joel B. LawnSite Senior Member
    from MN
    Posts: 458

    Um, how did we get on the topic of belt drive vs. hydro walk behinds?? I was hoping for info on AWS tractors.

    Thanks,

    Joel B.
     
  7. Jusmowin

    Jusmowin LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 727

    Joel, I was thinking about the same thing last week as I was finishing up a clean up. How nice a Big Ole JD aws tractor with a cyclone rake behind it would make my solo operater self QUITE HAPPY about right now.
    SO LETS HEAR IT FOLKS, What are the pros & cons of these AWS tractors. I am a solo operater who is not concerned about SPEED but only quality of the cut and versatility of the equipment . So here are my questions ;
    Does anyone use one of these tractors on a day to day bases for mowing ?
    How do you like the AWS system ?
    Is the AWS system relieable (does it break alot or have lots of problems )
    Are the parts (JD) much more expensive than say EXMARK or TORO ect....
    Do you ever wish you bought a Z mower instead of a AWS JD X tractor ?

    Thanks for the answers in advanced, but please keep the answers related to the topic at hand . THANKS
     
  8. Joel B.

    Joel B. LawnSite Senior Member
    from MN
    Posts: 458

    Jusmowin,

    Thanks for bringing this back to the top.

    Joel B.
     
  9. Brieldo

    Brieldo LawnSite Member
    Posts: 192

    I used a JD 425 AWS for 4 years. It is great for a trimming "TRACTOR" but if you want true trimmability, a AWS tractor isnt the answer. THey still have a turning radius and have their shortcomings. THe other thing is that with the AWS package, you cant have the bigger back and front tires so the ride is rougher and you lose ground speed. Yeah, they're kool, but I'd rahter have a Z...we had the AWS, then got a 2wheel steer and now will be getting an Exmark:D
     
  10. Jusmowin

    Jusmowin LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 727

    THANKS BRIELDO for the reply,I also heard that they are a little rough on the body but are far from slow at 8.5 mph thats not bad for a tractor ! Iwas wondering how reliable the AWS system was on the tractor or are they a PM nightmare? I would also be towing alot so that is also an issue . THANKS
     

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