Efficency Options

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by tdman415, Sep 16, 2005.

  1. tdman415

    tdman415 LawnSite Member
    Posts: 7

    Hello, I am a 16 yr. old just about 2 seasons into the lawn business and I need a bit of help making some future decisions...

    Current Equipment
    03`Ferris 1000is 52" 23hp
    03`Exmark tthp 48" 17hp
    02`Exmark Viking 36"

    Details

    • 17 Lawns
      (2) lawns 5 + acres
      (15) 1/4- 1/2 acre normal neighborhood lawns
      - 4 lawns have 50 inch gates in the back
      - 1 lawn has a 38 inch gate

      Questions

      1) I feel I need to make a few changes to increase my productivity. First off, I mow all my lawns but the 2 5+ acre lawns with one other person, I use the 48 on the front and my friend mows the back with the 36, regardless of a gate. On some/most of the lawns I finish the front before he is finished in the back and then proceed to finish what he hasn't while he switches to trimming/edge and blowing. I have come up with a few options which I feel will increase my productivity.
      Option 1
      Sell the 48 and buy a 52" wright stander
      -With this option I would mow the entire property while my friend trims/blows.
      -This would also be helpful because I could have two 52" running on my 2 large properties, because the 48 stripes look to small. So usually i just mow the 2 big ones w/ the ferris 52" while my friend weed eats.
      -The downfall to this is after selling the 48" Id be looking at about $2000 extra to get into the stander.
      Option 2
      - My thinking is, I already have a 52" why don't I just mow all properties with the Ferris 52" and use the 36" in the back, but i think such a big mower might hurt some of the smaller lawns and upset a few customers. However, i do not think a stander would cause this problem.
      Option 3
      -My other idea would be to keep running the 48" and 36" on the smaller lawns and eventually sell the Ferris 52" and purchase a new Exmark 60" triton deck (when it comes out), This would be very help full because: first It would help me mow my two large properties quicker and with better quality, and second it would open larger more commercial accounts in the future (which i feel is much more profitable then the normal $30-40 lawns)
      I know this is a long and drawn out post but any help would be much appreciated. In addition please give opinions on the following.
      -What is the most efficient way to run a 2 man crew according to my lawn specifications?
      -Would i be that more productive running a stander to a tthp, and cut quality between the two?
      Thanks alot for any help.
      Located in KC
     
  2. ed2hess

    ed2hess LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 13,314

    You need to look at your overhead and not efficiency, you already got more mowing power than you need for 17 lawns.
     
  3. topsites

    topsites LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 21,653

    I agree, I think if you concentrate on getting MORE lawns first, your problems will fix themselves. If anything, I'd get rid of the 3-footer, how anyone cuts grass with anything below a 44" is beyond me, that COULD be the reason your friend is slow, you know it takes 30% more TIME to cut grass with that small a machine.
    Meanwhile, if you switch from a 48" to a 52" that's a choice you'll regret, you'll hardly gain 5 percent in the tradeoff as the 52 is a behemoth compared to the 48" ESPECIALLY if the 48" is a fixed deck. Matter of fact, both my 48's run circles around any 52" all day long, for the main reason being size and weight, which translates into speed and agility. But, the 36" is too small: Do yourself a favor and get ANOTHER 48", then get rid of the 3-foot gated yards (THAT will increase your production BIG time is no more wasting your time with those small mowers, I keep trying to tell you guys DON'T do 3-foot gates because you'll end up cutting grass with mickey-mouse mowers), and then get yourself a TON of new customers and you'll be set.
    You can still do gated yards with the 48" but they have to have a 4-foot gate as the 48" fits through MOST 4-foot gates (it's a tight fit, but take it slow and ease it on through) and just get rid of the 3-foot gated folk and time to let them move on to the next inexperienced Lco but DO give them fair notice, don't just drop them this is not their fault, heh.
    I don't have anything BUT 48" mowers (2 of them) and it's all I use, I got 55 yards and I can do between 8 and 12 / day by myself while I laugh at the guys who have to cruise around the whole yard 3 more times with their smaller mowers (less cut PATH) before they're finished.
     

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