walker vy z

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by rosolar, Nov 14, 2006.

  1. rosolar

    rosolar LawnSite Member
    from Mass
    Posts: 172

    Right now I have a 62" z master. Mowing solo I average about $70/hr. My accounts are residental, but are mostly 3/4-1 acres. I would like to use a walker to increase my quality and eliminate clippings, my concern is that each lawn will take me a lot longer due to the slower speed and smaller deck.

    I guess my question is how many of you mow 1acre+ lawns with walkers? Has anyone switched from a z to walker, or a walker to z?

    I put a quick vac collections system on my z for cleanups, but the chute bouces around and you have to go slow, and the spindles are taking a beating. Most of the time I need to go over the lawn twice to get up the leaves.
     
  2. tomo

    tomo LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 660

    hello, walker r way slower than a decent ztr and i am switching from walker to ztr 4 the larger jobs , although u r on the borderline .Walkers r rougher to ride if the ground is not flat [small drive tyres ] Remember all the collection decks r gear driven ,so hitting objects in the grass takes on a whole new meaning ,after repeated hits more severe damage usally results. I am retiring my walker to mainly green grass jobs of the domestic to very light commercial type. As the bagger machines typically have more engine issues [horizontal shaft ] than the vert shaft i would go the diesel way way more reliable.

    tomo

    ps think about when a walker sucks up choc bar wrappers onto air intake screen of motor and with out a oil temp guage this leads to very short eng life
     
  3. MOW ED

    MOW ED LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 5,028

    I have both and started with the Walker for all lawns. I have owned a Walker since 1998 and will always have one. I have the 52SD deck and the 42GHS. The bagging for the Walker is excellent but I will admit that you will be slow. I also have a Toro 62 that is my main mower. It is also my main fall leaf grinder and the Walker is only used on hi profile properties to vacuum up the little clippings leaf over. The Walker is however a major money maker in the spring with dethatchings. Its size is perfect for that job. I do a couple of 3/4 acre jobs every week and I also use the 62 on some 6K lawns and I notice a huge difference in time. There is also a difference in appearance but my customers are ok with me using the 62. I couldn't economically mow a 1+acre lawn with the Walker and bag at the same time. It can be done but people won't pay what its worth to bag. If you have the capacity to bag and remove lots of grass and make the money then a Walker is for you.
     
  4. rosolar

    rosolar LawnSite Member
    from Mass
    Posts: 172

    What setup do you have on your z for leaves in the fall? My customers seem fine with the results of the 62" as well. Worst comes to worst I double cut on the lawns that need it at heavy growth period.
     
  5. rosolar

    rosolar LawnSite Member
    from Mass
    Posts: 172

    if your mulching the leaves, and make regular visits to the accounts during the fall how do you handle cleaning out the garden beds.
     
  6. MJB

    MJB LawnSite Silver Member
    from Wa
    Posts: 2,869

    With lawns that size I would look at Grasshopper they have a big metal hopper that hold more if you need to bag large lawns. I rarely use my walkers on larger lawns unless I can get more money. I have mulched the leaves down to nothing and used either machine for bagging up the leaf grindings just to leave it cleaner. But I preffer mulching only, people are to cheap to pay the difference here.
     
  7. Willofalltrades

    Willofalltrades LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,000

    They have that situation under control. There is shear bolts on the blades that absorb the impact. There's one in the drive shaft also.

    The chocolate bar thing is a 1 in a million chance. I have run mine through a ridiculous amount of leaves many times. Just stop use your BP blower and blow the compartment off if it becomes an issue.

    If your properties are high end then a Walker is the way to go. You can use a 48" GHS for fall/spring and a 52" or 62" deck for the rest of the year. The machine performs outstanding when it comes to leaves. I demoed the 52" deck for my Walker and I am positive I will be adding it to my fleet next season. Don't use the GHS all season. I got so aggravated with not being able to get in and out that I thought about selling the machine. Thats when fall came and I fell back in love. Oh I forgot to mention I am doing the same size properties. Two are around the two acre mark. You will slow down a lot. Yet I only have the GHS deck so, add one of the above mentioned decks and you should be good.
    I will be selling my Deere WB next season also and adding a Wright stander to make up for the loss in productivity with the Walker.
     
  8. Willofalltrades

    Willofalltrades LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,000

    Oh sorry that third paragraph is such a mess, to many thoughts at once.
     
  9. tomo

    tomo LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 660

    hello, shear pins donot save every part all the time !! Repeated hits will stretch deck g/box housing eventually [they r made of alloy remember]This can lead to oil leaks around the blade spindle and drain deck g/box es.
    If u hit some thing that causes a dead stop of the blades the pto box mounting bolts can work loose .[Eventual self destruction of pto box]
    The first item happens over a long period 800+hrs
    The second item pto mounting bolt although rare does happen [this info is from importer service section ]
    Plastic is what i am refering to in general .plastic does not break up as leaves do. It really depends on the conditions u mow in .
    The worst mistake a walker owner can make is assuming it is bullet proof ,the machines require a little more maintenance than most . U can use a walker reasonablly hard but remember it is definetly a machine that will make u pay 4 bad maintenance and abusive operation.
    I would recomend a walker pref diesel but as i have mentioned u must beaware of the pitfalls.[no mower company perfectly designs its machines,walker r a typical case eg same part and many many upgrades]
    :waving: tomo
    ps i currently own 2 walkers and turn spanners on many more
     
  10. MOW ED

    MOW ED LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 5,028

    The 62 is set up with atomic blades and I modified my oem discharge chute to make it a mulch plate. I have really good results with this set up as the 26EFI has lots of extra power when things get thick. I have literally mulched 4 feet of leaves to dust with this machine. The garden beds are usually done one or 2 times max with the final visit being a good clean. I use a Redmax 8001 BP blower for that job. If the property is high profile it may get a quick run over with the Walker after all leaves are mulched down to finish it off.

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