New mower from Ferris...32" hydro

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by GarPA, Nov 19, 2002.

  1. GarPA

    GarPA LawnSite Silver Member
    from PA
    Posts: 2,585

    Finally got in touch with Brad Shea at Ferris...hey Rod he says he knows you since you are such a Ferris Fan...anyway told him I needed a stable mower for some hilly properties and the Ferris design with the big tires and low center of gravity caught my interest...he talked about their SD and HD 48"...then he said they will be shipping a new model soon...32" hydro 15 Kaw Twin w/b.
    Retail is about $2500...hes sending specs on it.
    Well I'll bet some of you will say just go with a 48 but I am temtped by this setup...first of all I need a new 21"...so theres a $1000 I wont need to spend...a 32 can go anywhere a 21 can...plus the front casters lock on the Ferris for better hill holding...well long story short, at least on paper this new mower has me interested....I know some of you are not Ferris fans...but from all I've reserached, most guys are well satisfied with their product....and this new configuration could be just what I need and no need to replace a 21....he thinks they'll be shipping them soon so a demo will be in order for sure....any points of view are welcome
     
  2. TLS

    TLS LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 7,937

    My biggest problem with 32-36" WB's are that they are USUALLY a longer overall length mower than a 48" WB of the same make!

    Why?

    Because of the blade overlap. One spindle must be forward of the other. A 32" mower is nothing more than a 48" deck with one spindle missing (the left one usually). Now they mount the caster fork on the front of what USED to be the center blade of a 48" mower. This makes the overall package 4-6" LONGER than a 48" mower.

    A 36" mower is simply a 52" mower with the left blade chopped off, so they're even LONGER with their 18" blades!

    What they need to do!

    Make a Walker type gearbox drive deck with timed blades, so that they don't need to offset the spindle location forward to get a good overlap. Make it side discharge, as a rear discharge would be insane with a WB. Or design the deck SO well that 100% mulching would work.

    Now also, make the track width a few inches narrower so you have some trimmability.

    Make the tires somewhat small in diameter (both caster AND drive) so that they can be mounted as CLOSE to the deck skirts as possible to prevent scalping.

    Make cutting height relatively easy to change.

    Make sure its plenty powerful. And an overall balanced machine.

    Make sure its a hydro with some type of comfortable handlebar control.

    There, to my knowledge, isn't such a commercial mower out there. Only thing that comes "close" is the lightweight homeowner Troy-Bilt POS 33".

    Now that I gave away my invention of the decade.....


    :eek:
     
  3. Ryan Lightning

    Ryan Lightning LawnSite Senior Member
    from CA
    Posts: 554

  4. rodfather

    rodfather LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 9,501

    Good deal Gary. 32" with a 15hp Kawi ought to do it for ya. Shoot, I didn't even know they made a 32" mower.

    Shows you how much I know:dizzy: :dizzy: :dizzy:
     
  5. gogetter

    gogetter Banned
    Posts: 3,256

    And $2500 for a hydro (even though it's only a 32") is a good deal.
    My 36" belt drive was $2000. I'd definately pay $500 more for hydro. I might have to pay a visist to the Ferris dealer.
    I do wish it came with something other then normal pistol grips though.


    And what does this mean (taken from thier site):

    "the new HydroCut is the landscape industry's only compact commercial walk-behind mower with hydrostatic drive"

    Exmark makes a 32" hydro, don't they?
     
  6. bruces

    bruces LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 648

    Seems like the 37" overall width is a little wide for a 32" cut.

    Might still have trouble w/ 36" gates.

    Are the Exmark & Encore 32" mowers that wide?
     
  7. TLS

    TLS LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 7,937

    Bruces,

    I believe that the 37" width is with the chute DOWN. I saw where it says it, but I cant believe a 32" machine can be 37" wide at its narrowist.
     
  8. PaulJ

    PaulJ LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,776

    Sounds like a good candidate for a "flex-deck"
    15hp and a 32 "cut is plenty of ponies. add the extre 18" and 15 hp should still do a decent job. just another Idea
     
  9. rkbrown

    rkbrown LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 533

    From Ferris' webpage: "With an overall width of 37" (deflector up)..."

    Exmark Viking (hydro) has a 32" that comes with a 15 HP Kohler. They don't have a spec with deflector up, but with it down it is 43.3"
     
  10. nola_dan

    nola_dan LawnSite Member
    Posts: 4

    I demoed the Ferris 32" Hydrocut today. Dealer said that it was a single hydro...and that was the reason for the difference in turning compared to the gear drive models. I don't know how hydros work... but I did like how easy it was to go both forward and in reverse; I just thought the gear drive model (Bobcat) was easier to turn around. My questions: Who else has this Ferris? Do you like it? Are you just as efficient with its steering as you would have been with a gear drive? It is the first one to be bought from my dealer....so no other local LCO's have opinions to share with me:( . Thanks for any input.
     

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