Anyone else just run 21"s

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by tamo, Dec 30, 2007.

  1. tamo

    tamo LawnSite Member
    Posts: 213

    Just finishing up my first full year and I used 2 honda 21"s that served me well. I work in Portland, OR in urban neighborhoods so my yards aren't very big -- most about .10 acres or less.

    Its me and brother doing the work so right now one of us mows while the other handles edge/trim/blow and it times out pretty well.

    I'll be starting with about 40 customers that I had this year and will be with me next year too. I want to try to expand to 80-100 accounts if possible. I'd also like to move into nicer neighborhoods with bigger lawns.

    While a 36 or 44 isn't absolutely necessary it would obviously save some time.

    Anyone else just run 21's.

    From experience how much of a life saver is moving up to a bigger mower.

    I see better outdoors is having a sale on their '07 mowers. The sam's are sold out, but they have the entry level mower for $1800. Does that mower get the job done?

    thanks
     
  2. DA Quality Lawn & YS

    DA Quality Lawn & YS LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 8,919

    I ran just a 21" mower this past season...albeit I had fewer weeklies than you did. For yards as small as what you have been mowing, 21" is the way to go. Mow them up like football fields or putting greens with the 21, get an excellent reputation for your quality first and foremost, as it sounds like you have done. Then consider a larger mower to improve your efficiency ONLY if it passes your own test for quality of cut. I have a hard time looking at someone cut a .10 to .25 acre lawn with a rider, leaving burnout marks, and not trimming where the rider wont reach. Of course, if you are considering larger lawns, a 36" would be warranted. Best of luck next season with your business!
     
  3. delanceyburnett

    delanceyburnett LawnSite Member
    Posts: 43

    burn out!!!!! by the end of the season. of course im guessing that the texas mowing season is a little longer. me and my wife also started with a murray 21" some years ago. we are alot older now and probably would die if we had to push mow again. we now have another employee that helps us with 27 resid. and 7 apartment com. i would have to say that you only buy what you need. cash only no overhead.
     
  4. Mr. Big

    Mr. Big LawnSite Member
    from Erie PA
    Posts: 31

    I have 1 crew that just runs 21" Proline's on very small (under 2k) residentials. They do about 80 lawns per week. We tried 32"'s and 36"s but wasn't worth it.
     
  5. lifetree

    lifetree LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 5,369

    This is really the only reason you should get a larger machine ... if it measures up to your expectation concerning quality of cut, etc. !!
     
  6. P&C Lawn Care

    P&C Lawn Care LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 373

    We ran 21's for a long time and if they are residential yards you should not have a problem. 21's give the best cut of any mower. However if they are not self propelled this can wear one down quickly. Depending on what brand/type 21 you have you may only want to expand to a nice Toro or Honda Commercial mower. If you are using one of these types then I do not believe you will get a nicer cut by buying a larger walk-behind mower. You may only increase your time saved, but if it compromises the quality is it really worth it? Remember your customer doesn't care how fast you can do it, they only want to see a quality lawn/yard at a reasonable price. If you go larger look at quality of cut vs speed. This is why I use a Walker zero-turn.
     
  7. deere615

    deere615 LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 5,676

    Thats all I use, for now. Maybe a 36" in the near future.
     
  8. S man

    S man LawnSite Gold Member
    Posts: 3,562

    I used to only run 21"s until I bought a 34" phazer ztr for bigger lawns. I can use my z on smaller lawns too because of the size and quality of cut from the tri vantage deck. My z saves a lot of time and still leaves a nice cut. I still like my 21"s and use them often but riding saves so much time and energy.
     
  9. sikagrass

    sikagrass LawnSite Member
    Posts: 238

    Think of the fatigue factor. If you are planning to expand you will soon find you need a bigger mower. No doubt the 21 does the best cut,but if you are trying to move up in the numbers game the bigger mower is going to win hands down.They dont call it a Quick for nothing and Ive been beating myself over the head for the last year for not buying one.
     
  10. shane mapes

    shane mapes LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 537

    for the past few years i have used the Honda's [21] with no problems , i moved up to the metro 26 last year and it has paid for it self already. i too have small lawns and the 21 is a better cut . but the 26 is not that bad ......
     

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