Is there a difference in cut with a larger mower?

Discussion in 'Homeowner Assistance Forum' started by 87SS, May 7, 2012.

  1. 87SS

    87SS LawnSite Member
    from NJ
    Posts: 35

    I am looking at a ZTR for my 1 acre of property, mostly flat with a couple of hills and am leaning towards a Hustler Fastrak. Putting the cost aside and the ability to get thru gates (not an issue here), is there any difference in cut quality between the 48-54-60 inch versions? I was planning on the 60 to help save time, but assuming same travel speed, etc is there really a difference? I believe all 3 have 3 blades.

    Thanks
     
  2. Nate'sLawnCare

    Nate'sLawnCare LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,001

    A quality mower from a major manufacturer should have a good quality of cut regardless of the size deck. Larger decks will tend to scalp more easily if you have uneven ground. I personally use a 54" deck on my own lawn and the quality of cut is as good as my Honda 21" walk behind. For your 1 acre property, there's really no reason to go with a huge deck, you'll only sacrifice maneuverability. Unless you're planning to move to a larger property in the near future, the 48 should suit you fine, as the 60 may only save you 5 or 10 minutes at the most depending on obstacles.
     
  3. 87SS

    87SS LawnSite Member
    from NJ
    Posts: 35

    Thanks. The wife has already mentioned moving in a year or so, and the area we are looking have similar size lots, maybe up to 1.5 acres. Maybe going with the 54 would be a good compromise, use the few hundred saved from the 60 on the forks or mulching kit.
     
  4. gcbailey

    gcbailey LawnSite Silver Member
    from WV
    Posts: 2,552

    Ya, a big thing on commercial mowers is blade tip speed. On residential riders with a 54" deck the blades are probably spinning at half or less the speed of what a commercial unit's deck blades are spinning. Factor that in with a guy on a 54" Husq from Lowe's trying to mow at top speed some grass is just going to get beat down and not cut.
     
  5. Stan MI

    Stan MI LawnSite Member
    from MI
    Posts: 96

    I went from a 48" deck and just over 2 acres to a 62" deck and just over 8 acres. If I had the time I'd rather use the 48" deck. Less scalp more float over small hills. I think the cut from the 48 looked more like a gang mower.

    Since the 48" deck was on a lawn tractor and the 62" is a commercial ZTR the time savings is dramatic.

    Biggest difference between mowing with a LT and a ZTR is, you don't have to pick the bugs out of your teeth mowing with a LT.

    LOL :laugh:
     
  6. 87SS

    87SS LawnSite Member
    from NJ
    Posts: 35

    LOL. My Craftsman LT has made it 9 years now, more than I expected. The deck is starting to take a beating, uneven cut, constant adjustments required, etc. I have to test one out, hopefully this weekend.
     
  7. gcbailey

    gcbailey LawnSite Silver Member
    from WV
    Posts: 2,552

    I have some family who has one of the 54" Husq from Lowe's that I had previously mentioned. I think in less than 50 hours one of the spindles literally tore from the flimsy pressed sheet metal deck. Guess that 25HP B&S has a little "umph" behind it after all from the PTO kicking in. I'm just amazed at what big box stores can push down a consumer and get them to believe.... hydro transmissions rated at 300 hours, plastic on top of plastic.... but that a whole other sermon for a whole other thread! haha
     
  8. osueric27

    osueric27 LawnSite Member
    Posts: 25

    I currently own a Hustler 54 Fastrack and could not be happier. I have 2.5 acres and cut it in about an hour and a half. As far as blade tip speed, the 54 spins faster than the x-one or super z. Commercial performance in a residential class mower. I have had my mower through one season and cut once or twice a week depending on the time of year and no issues whatsoever. Great mower in my opinion.

    Blade Tip Speed:
    18,600 fpm (48)
    18,910 fpm (54)
    18,410 fpm (60)
     
  9. 87SS

    87SS LawnSite Member
    from NJ
    Posts: 35

    Nice, exactly what I wanted to hear. I figure the dealer is going to want somewhere in the $5400-$5600 range for the 54", not sure how much wiggle room they give to negotiate.
     
  10. osueric27

    osueric27 LawnSite Member
    Posts: 25

    That sounds about right. I think I got mine right around $5400.
     

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