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Looking for a quality mower

Discussion in 'Homeowner Assistance Forum' started by jzybert, Apr 24, 2004.

  1. jzybert

    jzybert LawnSite Member
    Posts: 2

    I am currently mowing about 1-1/2 to 2 acres of basically flat lawn with flower beds and trees to cut around, and it is time for a new mower. Currently using a homeowner JD riding mower with about a 36" cut; it takes hours to complete the job and it doesn't look that great. Since I enjoy working outdoors, I don't want to contract out lawn care, but I do want to cut back on the time spent mowing so I have more time for gardening.

    After having done a bit of Internet research, products by Grasshopper and Exmark look interesting, but I would like some professional advice including front vs. mid mount, bagging/vacuum systems (there are many deciduous trees on the property) and ease of turning of these or other suitable products. My goal is to purchase a quality mower that is the right size for the job and will give me professional results--I suspect this will be in about the $8K or so range.

    I have read through many other threads on this site and have been very impressed with the thoughtfulness and thoroughness of postings. Looking forward to your replies.

  2. rander

    rander LawnSite Member
    Posts: 45


    I'm not a professional but I have been using an eXmark mower for over10 years. I have a eXmark Explorer with a 20 hp Kohler engine and a 52" deck. Currently we mow about 4 acres of fairly flat lawn with numerous trees, flower beds and other areas requiring fairly precise cutting and an agile machine. It takes about 2 hours to cut and we do it about every two weeks 9 months a year. On the open areas it will do excellent cutting about as fast as it can go. One nice feature is that the hydraulic drive allows you to keep the blades turning at full speed and adjust the mower's speed to maneuver in tight spots. It's a zero turn and can cut within a couple of inches of the deck edge. So the hand trimming is kept at a minimum. For the first 5 years we had the machine it was used to mow about 7 acres of lawn and a couple of horse show rings on a regular basis.

    The machine has been very reliable. If you need parts eXmark has an excellent parts supply system. The major factor is doing the recommended service, oil changes and lubrication at the proper times.

    I suggest you look at one of the eXmark Lazer models which are pretty much the direct descendants of my Explorer.

    I have no personal knowledge of the Grasshopper brand but they do have a good reputation in this part of the country.

  3. jzybert

    jzybert LawnSite Member
    Posts: 2

    Thanks for the info, Russ. Went to look at the Grasshopper and the Lazer over the weekend. Both look like fine machines, but the choice will probably come down to convenience--the Lazer dealer is much closer than the Grasshopper dealer.
  4. rander

    rander LawnSite Member
    Posts: 45

    Julie, that's an important consideration. It's a lot easier when the dealer is convenient to pick up maintenance items like blades and filters, etc or in case it needs to be taken in for a repair. I don't think you'll be disappointed in your choice. Enjoy.

  5. mowhigh

    mowhigh LawnSite Member
    from Dallas
    Posts: 198

    If you're still undecided and there's a Country Clipper dealer in your area (rander is right about its importance) check out the JAZee. I was thinking I would need the commercial Country Clipper Charger (starting at $5500) until I tried a friends 17/42 JAZee ($3995). It handled my overgrown stuff very well, has an easy flip-up deck and convenient single joystick control. With the mulching kit it was easy to maneuver around all my trees, deck, swingset, etc. Good luck!
  6. ripsaw

    ripsaw LawnSite Member
    Posts: 1


    I just spent the last few months going thru what you are going thru now and my best advice is to go out and take as many of them for a spin that you can. I tested about 10 different zero turns and it was pretty easy to narrow my pick down to two, the Hustler Super Z and the Scag Turf Tiger. These two mowers stood head over heels in feel, solidness, handling, smoothness, overall solid machine and by far the two with the best cut over the rest of the mowers I tested (eXmark, gravely, john deeere, etc...). At the end I picked the Scag Turf Tiger 61" with a 27 hp kaw eng. Also I upgraded to the better sup. seat. I love this machine. So go out and test as many as machines as possible.

    GOOD LUCK!!!!

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