Ventrac v.s. Steiner

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by CP Estates, Jan 25, 2007.

  1. CP Estates

    CP Estates LawnSite Member
    from North
    Posts: 45

    The Ventrac looks like everything one could ask for in a machine for larger lots (2 - 8 acres). Having read the other posts, I'm looking for an objective opinion on which of the 2 - all things considered, would be a better buy.

    Also, what is the best way to turn an articulating machine like these around to do your next pass when you come to the end? I'm using a zero-turn now and have the 3-point turn down so that I don't tear the grass while lining up for the next pass, but I can't figure out an efficient way on one of these!
     
  2. gl1200a

    gl1200a LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 518

    If you're serious about this you had better research WAM. 2 to 8 acres would take a lifetime at 72" a pass. Wide Area Mowers are to be taken seriously for larger areas. The John Deere 1600 does 11 FEET per pass. Toro also makes them and used John Deere can be found easily.
     
  3. gorrell

    gorrell LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 536

    WAM's(wide area mowers) in my opinion are very over rated. Unless you are a municipality, governement agency, or have more money than you can shake a stick at, you don't need a wam. Labor is way cheaper than running and maintaining a $40,000+ piece of equipment. We mow over 500 acres weekly and do not own a WAM. We use 72" 230 Steiners and 72" diesel Dixies. The operators are either retired or 2nd job operators. I buy good used machines and keep them in perfect shape. I always have a spare machine or two to back up if needed. Does anyone have a spare wam to use if needed. I seriously doubt it. WAMs are cool indeed to look at, but not needed by most.............Lynn
     
  4. Rtom45

    Rtom45 LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 456

    If I'm not mistaken, Steiner and Ventrac are basically the same machine. I think Steiner sold out, the owners/designers got bored, built the new machines and called them Ventrac.
     
  5. wahlturfcare

    wahlturfcare LawnSite Senior Member
    from iowa
    Posts: 533

    I have used steiner and love em. to turn left you turn completely, then turn right backing up. opposite for the other direction.
    I know that steiner brothers first came around in 74 and and split in in the late 90's to form 2 companies that still make each other. But are both exactly the same except for name and color.
     
  6. CP Estates

    CP Estates LawnSite Member
    from North
    Posts: 45

    I'm still trying to figure out how to turn these machines around. If I follow the directions of "wahlturfcare", then when after you've turned left and are going to back up turning right (essentially a 3-point turn), how come when you go from fully articulated to the left to fully articulated to the right, you don't tear the sh*t out of the turf????:confused:
     
  7. cantoo

    cantoo LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,910

    wahlturfcare, not even close to the same machines. Same idea but different like saying a Ford truck is the same as a Chev truck. Ventrac is built by the sons of the original Steiner family designers. I have 2 Steiners and considered a Ventrac but I'm too cheap to buy new and there are few used ones around.
    We very seldom use ours for cutting unless it is over grown lots or bad hills. We have a 5' deck and a 6' deck. We use them for almost every other job though. Front mount sprayer, front mount fert spreader, grass seeders, aerators, small boom lift, cable plow, cultivator, rigid broom sweeper, carry all box, forks, stone picker, turbine blower, soil blade, leaf plow, snow blade, dethatcher, front mount winch, and a leaf loader.
    We run 61" Bobcats for most of our cutting. When we did the soccer fields the Bobcats would be done one field and the Steiner would be about 2/3 done the other. It didn't matter who was driving the machine. Turning around eats too much time. Trimming in tight quarters is almost impossible due to the long length. Trailer space is also a problem. I can just fit a Bobcat and one Steiner with deck on my 20' trailer. The 4x4 is great but most times not needed for cutting. Fuel useage isn't near as good as the Bobcats. We have one diesel and one gaser.
     
  8. cantoo

    cantoo LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,910

    CP, just do a big question mark at the end of the run. If you want to go left then at the end turn right make a big loop turning to the left and back down the next row. Turns require big headlands. We usually do all the back and forth cutting then go around the exterior several times to get rid of clumps and any missed grass when turning.
    Sounds like you need to do a demo before buying. On one of your properties would be best.
     
  9. Walker in Colorado

    Walker in Colorado LawnSite Member
    Posts: 7

    The stiener brothers owned stiener tractors bur sold it to a british company in the 70's and became Venture products and made ventrac tractors. I would chose Ventrac because it is american and it is a little bit more powerful.


    Pro Turf lawn care
    72' Scag turf tiger and bagger
    40' Exmark vantage and bagger
    30' Toro timemaster and bagger
    2 echo trimmers
    2 echo back pack blowers
    1 echo hand held blower
    Ram 3500 commercial cummins turbo diesel dump truck
    Haulmark car trailer
     
    Last edited: Jul 23, 2015

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