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Reel vs. Rotary

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by sants, Jul 19, 2008.

  1. sants

    sants LawnSite Member
    Posts: 1

    I own an antique show in central NY and mow 12 acres, with another 8 acres that is hayed that'd I like to mow also. I'm currently looking for a new mower, the John Deere L130 I have is falling apart with 325 hours on it. I realize it was never made to mow a lawn like mine, but at the time, it was what I could afford.

    The land is flat and basicly an old alfalfa field. There is very little grass, it is mostly weed.

    In talking with different sales people, I've been told that a reel fairway mower would work fine as long as it's mowed often and kept short. And, that I could mow when the grass was wet which would be helpful.

    I've also been told by others that a reel mower won't cut weeds well and that they are very expense to maintain.

    I have about $6500 to spend and have been looking at used reel mowers with anywhere from 1200-3000 hours on them. I'd like to buy something capable of mowing the 20 acres in 6-7 hours, rather than the 11 hours it takes me now to mow 12 acres. Any suggestions? How many goats do I need?

    I just found this site today and am curious to know what the pro's think? I'm pretty confident about what the sales people have on their mind and it isn't my lawn they are concerned with...
  2. dura to the max

    dura to the max LawnSite Silver Member
    from georgia
    Posts: 2,246

    i think a rotary mower would be a better investment. the units that you mention w/ 1100-1200 hours is a lot for 6-7k. i would get a 60-72" rotary z. dixie choppers are great for large areas. also the new bad boy mowers are great. you ought to be able to find a decent used z w/ 500 or so hours on it for 6-7k.
  3. jkason

    jkason LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 548

    Unless you own your own reel grinder, go with a rotary.
    Last guy I worked for that had a reel grinder was getting $5.00/inch, and that was low.
  4. KGR landscapeing

    KGR landscapeing LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,544

    one cut at the wrong pitch and ur rotary blades r junk. i bet a 72in Z or a front mount would cut that nicely thou with a 48 inch walk behind i could cut about 20 acres in under 7hrs
  5. blackoak26

    blackoak26 LawnSite Member
    Posts: 18

    48"WB+20 acres=7hrs That I would love to see!!

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