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Don't laugh - rear engine rider???

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by A1 Grass, Oct 2, 2002.

  1. A1 Grass

    A1 Grass LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 330

    In a small business (1-2 men), has anyone used a rear engine rider like a snapper or Ariens? Would it be foolish to try?
  2. rkbrown

    rkbrown LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 533

    imho RER's will not stack up to the performance of either a good belt driven or hydro wb. They are not commercial quality. You will wind up spending more in the long run on an RER than on commercial grade equip. Just my .02
  3. marley

    marley LawnSite Member
    Posts: 91

    I had a snapper rear engine when I first started. Payed way to much for it and it ended up crapping out on me after a month. Then I went and got what I should of gotten in the first place. A commercial walk behind. The kind of mower your talking about will not last you. There is not to much price difference between a 36 walk behind / gear drive and a rider like your talking about. Good luck.
  4. FrankenScagMachines

    FrankenScagMachines LawnSite Platinum Member
    from IN
    Posts: 4,739

    The answer is NO. I have one and love it, it is a super mower but I only have one lawn it's half acre, right now, it's a Toro 8-32, circa 1987. Super mower best of the rear engine riders IMO but do not get it to plan on using it for commercial usage. I'm going to upgrade to a w/b and get more lawns hopefully. I love this mower but you'll never find another rear engine rider like it. It is built about commercial quality but it's not zero turn and while it has a fast blade you can't mow as fast as a commercial mower and the biggest problem is that it doesn't look at all professional.
  5. bob

    bob LawnSite Platinum Member
    from DE
    Posts: 4,254

    You'd be better off with a walkbehind. RER will not turn as tight as a WB and cost you lots of time.
  6. A1 Grass

    A1 Grass LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 330

    Ok... re-phrase...

    Let's say I need some equipment just to get started and I could get a good deal on a RER. I should be able to use it effectively to MAKE MONEY for now, while planning th purchase of something professional (and presentable) in the future - when business takes off.... right?

    It's ALL about getting started on a minimal budget. (NOT trying to be cheap)
  7. captdevo

    captdevo LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 932

    run Forest....run.....lol

    there are a couple guys around here that use rer snappers like forest gump....i just kinda chuckle!!

    but, hey, you gotta start somewhere!!! Eventually you'll be able to get something nicer...i'd opt for a W/B
  8. Doogiegh

    Doogiegh LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 871

    I used a RER to start out, a John Deere RX-75 in fact.. Whopping 8.5 HP on a 28 inch cut.. and it didn't zero turn either so I had to mow in a Z pattern and then go back over the lawn a second time to re-do all the spots I missed.

    Thing is I bought it for $500 from some old lady. It worked great. I cleaned it up, washed it off real nice, and wiped it up with Armor-All wipes, sold the silly thing for $750 a year later... Go figure. <G>

    So if you can get a RER for CHEAP, use it, fix it up (wash it) <G> and then sell it to a homeowner, go for it..

    Use that money then to step up to a Walk Behind.

    Check out Exmark's 0% financing options if you are just starting out.

    I bought mine in April and have made payments using the money I've made off of lawns.. with 0% you really can't go wrong.

    Just don't take longer to pay it off then it should. The interest after the 1 year or whatever grace period will kill ya!

  9. lawnkid

    lawnkid LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 935

    Go for a w/b right away. Don't waster your money on those things. REr's are like training wheels on a bike. When you've mastered the RER's you can move up to a Zero-Turn Rider. I'd go with a 36" belt drive. 32" is too small in my opinion. a 36" will get anywhere a 36" will. Most gates are 36" so you'd be best with a 36". The extra 4"s is a big difference. i understand y you don't want a 48" or 52" yet, but i would definitely go for the 36".
  10. Rhett

    Rhett LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,071

    I believe you would be better off going with a walk behind right off the bat. The Ariens RER start at $1799 and if used commercially only have a 90 warranty. This time of year it would not be hard to find a new 36 walk behind for pretty close to the same cost, with a decent warranty. Or look in the paper, in my area there are a few one year old walk behinds for sale cheap.

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