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Who has the best suspension?

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by 4 seasons lawn&land, Jan 27, 2008.

  1. 4 seasons lawn&land

    4 seasons lawn&land LawnSite Gold Member
    from NY
    Posts: 3,597

    Who does 4 wheel suspension best? What are all the manufacturers that have it? thanks
  2. mag360

    mag360 LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,446

    Ferris/simplicity is the only one that allows for suspension travel without affecting height of cut.
    Hustlers have alot of options to improve ride quality.
    Badboy has a similar setup to hustler at the wheels.
  3. tb8100

    tb8100 LawnSite Bronze Member
    from TX
    Posts: 1,627

    That's sort of true...

    Ferris and Bad Boy are the only mowers with 4 wheel suspension. Dixie Chopper and Hustler have suspension options on their front casters and both offer suspension seats. Ferris and Bad Boy both offer suspension seats as well.

    The Ferris unit has coil over shock suspension, which folks say rides real well, but it's also expensive to replace.

    The Hustlers are having issues with their Flex Forks wearing out fast, but they're not terribly expensive to replace ($350 maybe?), and they also have their Flex Seat, which is a Michigan seat like Ferris and Bad Boy offer, but the Flex Seat has a different base that allows the chair to rock more or less like a rocking chair. Supposedly the ride is very good.

    The Dixie Chopper suspension is kinda similar to Hustler's I believe, but their suspension seat doesn't have the same function as Hustler's Flex seat.

    The Bad Boy suspension is really cool because it uses rubber blocks to absorb the shock, kinda like a semi truck suspension. It virtually never wears out and is cheap to replace if you ever need to (we've never heard of anyone wearing the suspension out before though <I'm a dealer>). Bad Boy has rear suspension that actually has a bit of travel, and again uses rubber blocks to reduce shock. Additionally, the Michigan suspension seat is mounted on a flip up seat platform which rests large springs that further reduce shock from bumps.

    Dixie, Hustler, and Bad Boy IMO are the best choices for suspension because theirs is strong enough to ride well up to 15mph, something no Ferris can do. I'm a big fan of the Bad Boy mowers myself, but then I'm a dealer too. I guess I'm a little biased. :laugh:
  4. puppypaws

    puppypaws LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 8,921

    Retail for flex forks is $199.00 and retail for the flex seat is $299.00, my Super Z has both.

    The Bad Boy Lightening I ran for 30 hrs. on the same property I run the Super Z rode very well at 14 mph with the four wheel torsion rubber suspension and the suspension seat with coil springs mounted under the base.

    I tell the exact truth and do not bleed any color but blood red, the Super Z rides better at 15 mph than the Bad Boy does at 14 and with a better cut. The big difference is price, you will have to spend an extra $500.00 + tax to get the better ride from a Hustler and it is not worth the difference to most people. I would own a Bad Boy Lightening and think it is probably the most mower on the market for the money.

    I have been talking with them about going ahead and mounting the deck foot assist standard instead of an option and everyone I have talked with at Bad Boy agrees. I told them the expensive part (electric deck lift) was mounted standard and everyone needs the foot assist for sudden quick lift of the deck in certain situations. I think they have the foot assist standard in the works at this time.

    The Bad Boy's deck design and big block engines with cut through about anything with very little rpm drop. The deck really moves grass out in a hurry and this keeps it from pulling on the hp as much.
  5. tb8100

    tb8100 LawnSite Bronze Member
    from TX
    Posts: 1,627

    Agreed on the foot assist. We just got our spring order in and we got the foot assist on nearly every mower we got in. Turns out, you can't get the foot assist on the ZT, which is a mistake as they just upgraded them to ZT2800 transaxles and basically made the ZT a full commercial mower. I seriously hope they make a foot assist for the ZT. With the diesel, we'll have to mount the front weight on the front to get it out from under the floorboard. The foot assist should be at the very least optional on the diesels, but I agree, it should be standard. I don't care if they up the price $300 to add this feature, it's worth it! But knowing Bad Boy, it will be $150 or less. Those guys are amazing about keeping cost down.
  6. rodfather

    rodfather LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 9,501

    Bad Boy and Hustler don't exist where I live so I have to go with Ferris which I currently own (4) of.
  7. puppypaws

    puppypaws LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 8,921

    Did you make your Bad Boy order to include the foot assist from the factory?

    I just talked with Bad Boy and they said when the foot assist was ordered and installed coming down the assembly line it was only $130.00 extra, then the dealer just installed the foot petal. That is a great buy and would be foolish for someone not to order them, I use mine a great deal and can't imagine not having it in place.

    Bad Boy has installed the expensive parts with the electric lift, all other manufactures would charge a good bit more money for that option and the foot assist would be standard.

    Bad Boy told me they expected all their mowers to be equipped from the factory next year with foot assist standard. I said that is great and exactly what I told Wes last year Bad Boy should do for their customers. I think Bad Boy listens to input from customers and potential customers very well.
  8. 4 seasons lawn&land

    4 seasons lawn&land LawnSite Gold Member
    from NY
    Posts: 3,597

    Ferris cant do what? Ride as smooth or go that fast? What is the fastest one?
  9. TomberLawn

    TomberLawn LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,299

    Ferris can't go 15 mph. The bigger models go 12. Mine goes 10. The smallest one, IS500Z, goes 8, but the 1500 and 500 only have rear independent suspension. The front axle pivots.
  10. mag360

    mag360 LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,446

    Just to clarify for the original poster---Ferris drive systems only allow for a max speed of 12 mph. So going 15mph is out of the question based on the pump and wheel motor combination---nothing to do with the suspension itself. Ferris suspension is unproven at 15mph until they up their speeds but I the design is the only one that allows for significant suspension travel without scalping.

    We demoed two of their machines (A 2000 series gasser and a 28hp cat diesel) and both felt a little clumsy but the ride was good with no scalping. One thing I especially liked about them was the fact that you can approach a hill at an angle and when the caster wheel starts to go up the incline the deck raises with it on the same side so there's no need to raise it manually to avoid gouging the turf. It wasn't enough to sell me on the machines (we bought another scag) but it is one of those things you miss when it's gone.
    The worst thing for me was the fact that the front casters stuck out farther past the leading edge of the deck which (I have to admit) was a factor in my decision not to purchase.

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