Ready to buy

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by gogetter, Apr 7, 2001.

  1. gogetter

    gogetter Banned
    Posts: 3,256

    Ok, have the money ($5000) to buy equipment and finally get started for my first year.
    Lawns in the area I'm targeting are somewhat small (3k-7k sf).
    Had mind set on 36" wb.
    Kinda like the Toro 36" 12.5 Kawi belt drive ($2,495).
    Did a search, didn't find alot on them.
    Any thoughts on this mower?
    Thanks guys.
  2. accuratelawn

    accuratelawn LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 922

    Do you have any accounts yet?
  3. David Gretzmier

    David Gretzmier LawnSite Gold Member
    Posts: 3,645

    new is nice, but you can usually find good hydro walks used for less than 2 large. I've always thought the perfect first machine would be the Dane gateway, except I've heard it won't go through a 36"gate. I ahve 2 36" toros that are awesome, 1 belt and 1 hydro and they might be for sale... dave g
  4. 65hoss

    65hoss LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 6,360

    Toro wb's are good machines. I would go demo the tbar and other types of controls before buying. I personally didn't like the tbar. But I see many people that do like it.
  5. lakegastonla

    lakegastonla LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 296

    Anyone who buys a used machine for their MAIN moneymaker is asking for trouble!! I would definately buy NEW at first, cause if there is one thing you don't need right off the bat, it is downtime and the added expense of having a dealer fix your used machine that has NO warranty! Don't take the bad advice about "a used hydro" or "I might have one for sale". You are just starting, so I would get something you can COUNT on with dealer support. Also, I would make sure that my dealer had a loaner program if my machine was going to be in the shop longer than overnight. I would also get a 48 inch mower, it's a good all around size. Will cut 99 percent of where you need to get, while cutting the bigger sites much faster. Also, the extra weight upfront helps a lot when pulling a sulky. A couple of good choices in your price range are the TORO or LESCO fixed deck walk behind mowers. Around 2500, and they cut very nicely!! Aword to the wise on used: The Pro's are selling this equipment for a reason. If you don't know what to look for you could get a used up machine.

    [Edited by lakegastonla on 04-07-2001 at 06:39 AM]
  6. T-Bone

    T-Bone LawnSite Member
    Posts: 59


    Take into consideration the service you can get for whatever make equipment you buy, new or used. If your going to start with this size lawns then a 36" deck would be appropriate. It will make a good backup in growth and won't take up much room on your trailer. Myself have bought new and used epuip pending cond, and needs and have had good luck. There are lots of people every year who think they want to start a lawn biz. and buy new equipment then its for sale within 12 mounths, some of which have be cared for with say 150 to 250 hours on them, and others who have just out grown. It doesn,t necessarily mean something is wrong with equipment just because its for sale. I would suggest getting your customers lined up first before any purchase.

    Good Luck
    Hope this helps
  7. awm

    awm LawnSite Gold Member
    Posts: 3,354

    That is small yds .If thats really going to be the market 36 would probably be best way to go first.luck an all
  8. gogetter

    gogetter Banned
    Posts: 3,256

    Thanks for the input guys. Just to cover some of the comments made.
    I would prefer new equip, but if the right piece of used came along I would consider it. Haven't seen anything worth considering around my way though.
    Definately want to start with smaller equip and smaller lawns. There's lots of 'em around here and I think it will be a good niche to start in because the big guys seem to want the bigger/higher end properties in the area.
    A 36" will work fine for my target area and as noted, will be a great back up machine for when I grow.

    Accuratelawn, no, I don't have any accounts yet (well, 2 friends of the family if that counts LOL!). Why do you ask?

    Thanks again all.
  9. Roger

    Roger LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 5,923

    I probably will incur the wrath of many readers here, but here goes ...

    If you lawns are only 3-7K sq ft, forget about a w/b for this season. Use a very good quality 21 hand mower. This will work well for these sized lawns, and get you a customer base. After one season, you will have a much better idea of what you need and what will work for your area.

    I work solo with a 36" hydro and 21" LB comm hand mower. For lawns that are 7K or less, I do not use the w/b - it remains on the trailer. In other cases where the front is 5-6K, I mow the front, sides with the 21" machine, then use the w/b for the larger rear areas. Many yards are not smooth and the smaller mower does better on the uneven terrain (not talking about simple holes, but dips). Also, in some cases the terrain is sloping, and the smaller mower will do a much better job. I only have one customer that has a 6K sq ft property, but others that have small front yards.

    We don't know all the circumstances of you getting started, how quickly you wish to grow, how much time to spend, etc. What I'm suggesting: For small money, you can get started and do well for those small lawns. But, get a good quality hand mower for this approach - it will be your only machine, and it must do a good job.

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