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Equipment Question - Home Owner

Discussion in 'Homeowner Assistance Forum' started by adammgregory, May 2, 2011.

  1. adammgregory

    adammgregory LawnSite Member
    Posts: 2

    I have been lurking here for a few months trying to determine what I should buy. I have about 1/2 an acre to cut weekly and in one place it is quite a hill. I have been looking for a used commerial mower, but seems like you have to be waiting for the equipment to buy it, I am always a day behind the guy who just bought it.

    So I have decieded that I should look for a new one, I don't want to spend too much, but don't want a home depot special. I have found two that seem to be pretty good:

    1. Gravely WAW - got a quote of 1600 delivered. But now I see that they sell the same thing at home depot so I am not so sure it is the machine for me.

    2. Simplicity Pacer - Got a quote of 2199 delivered. Seems like a nice mower and has the striping kit (does that really help?) and hydro instead of belt.

    I also looked at the cub cadet but it is the same thing as the craftsman pro line, which seems cheap to me so I took that off the list.

    Any feed back that anyone would have on this equipment would really be helpful.
     
  2. IS500Z

    IS500Z LawnSite Member
    Posts: 246

    The Simplicity is the same as the Ferris Hydrocut and has a single hydro drive system. By all accounts a nice mower for smaller lawns.

    For a half acre do you really need a larger mower than a 21 inch? Also, depending on how steep your hill is, even a 'small' WAW can present a challenge to control it properly.
     
  3. adammgregory

    adammgregory LawnSite Member
    Posts: 2

    My neighbor who has the same size lawn as me used a 21" the first two years and said it took him over 2 hours to complete. I know the lot size is 1.25 acre's but a lot of it is trees, I could be wrong on the .5 acre part.

    May I ask what you mean by is being a challenge to control? My vauge understanding is if I keep some slow forward momentum I will be able to move the mower in a turn on a hill and the drive will keep it from "running away" as I make the turn. I also understand if i get a two hydro or two belts to drive it my life will be eaiser, but the cost seems significant.
     
  4. IS500Z

    IS500Z LawnSite Member
    Posts: 246

    I took the description of 'quite a hill' to mean a very steep hill but perhaps I am wrong. I have a property up north where the backyard is an almost 1000 foot slope down to the shore of Lake Michigan. The slope is probably better than 20 degrees. For years I mowed it with a Great Dane walk behind. If the grass was dry it worked reasonably well. However, if the grass was wet to any degree, even with dew, the mower could lose traction and start to slide. At that point I learned it was best to let the mower go and pick it up when it decided to stop. Do not think that a walk behind will be dead stable on any hill and its weight can be as much of a hazard as it is a benefit.
     
  5. f50lvr2

    f50lvr2 LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 277

    I'd creep on craigslist until you could find a nice hydro walk-behind. Fixed deck is fine since you probably won't change the cutting height often.

    Lesco, exmark, scag, bobcat, hustler, john deere are all good units. It's not uncommon around here to see used walk-behinds go for a couple of grand with 400-500 hrs. on them.
     
  6. Capemay Eagle

    Capemay Eagle LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,750

    If you can swing a few more bucks, you might be able to get into a Bad Boy MZ series, that is if you think a ZTR would be feasable! . I would call a few dealers and see if they have any leftovers! I think the MZ starts at around $2999.00. That would be a Briggs with a 42" deck! (Kevin AKA Saw and Mow could sum up some of the pricing on this mower) This mower would be perfect for a half acre! The MZ is a solid little machine, a few satisfied owners around here. Also as f50lvr2 said, check out Craigslist! You can also check out the free market place right here on Lawnsite! Lots of mowers in there! Some guys are willing to ship! I have seen lots of walk behinds posted. You could also look into a surfer/stander mower, that would be absolutely perfect for your yard if you could find a used commercial stander!

    You did not say where you are located, let us know and I will keep an eye out and send it your way if I stumble on to something!
     
  7. saw n mow

    saw n mow LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 273

    $2999 is the price that the other Kevin aka retrodog (who is a BadBoy dealer) quoted for the MZ42 (42' deck) with the 21 hp, single Briggs. A similar mower is the Hustler Sport.

    It took a little over 1-1/2 hrs. to mow my approx. 1/2 acre (mowable yard) with trees and other obstacles using my 7 yr. old 38" decked lawn tractor. Now it takes about 35-45 mins. with my MZ48.

    Kevin
     
  8. IS500Z

    IS500Z LawnSite Member
    Posts: 246

    The OP mentioned 'quite a hill' that he needs to mow. If that means a steep hill the last thing I would want to be on is a ZTR. Particularly one without ROPS and a seat belt. I still remember watching a commercial mower who tried to due my backyard up north with a new Kobuta ZTR and ended up sliding down the hill (1000 feet with a better than 20 degree grade) and into Lake Michigan. At least the ROPS standing up out of the water gave a birds a nice perch for a few days.
     
  9. saw n mow

    saw n mow LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 273

    I agree. I have a fairly steep slope that I mow. It's not very wide (2-3 passes with the 48" deck cover the slope) or long, and I wouldn't know what angle it is (I've posted pics of it in another thread). I have slid down it, and if I don't mind what I'm doing...I still slide down it. But it can be done with the proper technique. My slope is probably pretty mild to what the OP has to deal with. I have read that certain slopes can be handled going up and down vs cross ways.

    I am very safety conscious and had almost disregarded buying a ZTR because of my slope. But I decided that the slope area was small enough that I could push mow it if I didn't feel comfortable mowing it with the ZTR.

    Anyway...I was just putting out the info. The OP knows his yard (and budget) and can discard my info if needs be.

    Kevin
     
  10. Capemay Eagle

    Capemay Eagle LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,750

    That is why I said "If a ZTR would be feasible"
     

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