Zero Turn Mower - Front Disc Brakes

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by ted corriher, Aug 11, 2009.

  1. 1993lx172

    1993lx172 LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,305

    In my defense I did watch the vids, and even though I do not own a ZTR I will send an email to one of the companies listed in the link.

    How close are you to having kits available for sale so that if for some reason a manufacturer doesn't pick up on the idea, we can still get the these brakes.
  2. ted corriher

    ted corriher LawnSite Member
    Posts: 119

    Thanks for contacting a manufacturer about offering the brakes.

    I just got an email from a gentleman who called one of them to ask about getting some for his mower just today. He said that he had a pretty good conversation with them about the advantages of offering our Front Brakes.
  3. fiveoboy01

    fiveoboy01 LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,988

    Properly educating someone on using the mower safely, and not in places where it was not designed to be used, is MUCH cheaper than raising the price of the ZTR, which is already insanely expensive.

    Rollovers and drownings are due to operator error. Let's not sugar coat it. The manuals spell out where the mower should not be taken and what it takes to safely operate it.

    Front brakes may extend that threshhold, but there will still be an idiot who will surpass the laws of physics, ignore the warnings put forth in the operator's manual, and put the mower in a pond and kill themselves.

    Your idea is good and being a mechanical type of person I can appreciate the work you've put into these, but I sure hope that my mower manufacturer does not pick them up. I don't want to be forced to pay even more for a mower because it has yet another feature I don't want nor need.

    If it's an option, yay, fine by me, let the guys who want/need them get them.
  4. fiveoboy01

    fiveoboy01 LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,988

    I'd also like to add that I watched the high speed downhill "out of control" video and I believe there are some things being done in that vid(the actual downhill demonstration part) which could be called misleading... And they're not being done by accident.
  5. ted corriher

    ted corriher LawnSite Member
    Posts: 119

    I can appreciate the way of thinking that no one here wants the price of their next ZTR to be higher, especially in today's economy.

    Now, let's look at this from another perspective. There are Law Offices that do nothing but specialize in sueing ZTR manufacturers. A lot of them. I get at least One Call a day from many different ones.

    When these guys sue the manufacturer and wins, Millions of Dollars come out of the Manufacturers pockets, and their Insurance companies pockets from the judgements against the manufacturers.

    The price of a ZTR manufacturers Insurance Policy has got to be through the ROOF given the tens of thousands of serious injuries that happen every year! Does that come out of their profits? Or do you think that they pass those costs on to the ZTR Consumers?

    Just think about what your insurance policy does if you file a claim as an LCO with your business insurance.

    Now, lets say that for the sake of arguement that a ZTR manufacturer steps up to the plate and installs the brakes standard or even as an option on their commercial ZTR mowers. Do you think that there might be a discount on their mower for installing another level of safety on their mowers?

    Now, let's say that after a year's time that the number on claims on that manufacturer commerical line goes down and that the Tedbrakes do in fact reduce the number of serious accidents.

    I know that ZTR manufacturer prices are high now . . . and I don't want in any way want my brakes to cost you more money on your next mower.

    I know that the manufacturer will more than likely charge you more for the braking system. My point is that the cost savings in the form of insurance discounts could easily pay for the cost of parts and labor of implementing the front braking system. . . . Not to mention Save one of their Customers lives.
  6. ted corriher

    ted corriher LawnSite Member
    Posts: 119

    Like what exactly? We didn't intentionally do anything other than we taped up the wheels (so you could see what they were doing), I got the mower sliding out of control, and then pressed the brake pedal (after I couldn't stop it with the rear hydros).
  7. ted corriher

    ted corriher LawnSite Member
    Posts: 119

    I totally agree that Operator Safety training is extremely important . . .

    I posted in another thread asking about how Operator Training was handled by individual LCO business.

    Do you know how many people who looked at it and then took the time to respond?


    What that tells me is that the safety training is not taken seriously and many operators may not have any safety training at all other than a talk with the business owner or Crew Leader before their first ride, the rest is learned from actual "in the field experience" . . .

    For those that do take the time to train your operators properly . . . Great Job!
  8. 1993lx172

    1993lx172 LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,305

    Hey Ted, I sent an email to one of the listed manufacturers (3rd one down in the far left column), I'll have to see what they say.
    Last edited: Nov 23, 2009
  9. nathannc

    nathannc LawnSite Member
    Posts: 248

    I must disagree with the blanket statement that "rollovers and drownings are due to operator error." That makes the assumption that there are never any other factors at play in such events other than the actions of the operator. I don't think I even need to elaborate on this point.

    Secondly, for the sake of argument, let's say we remove all causes of such tragedies except for those of the operator. Are we simply going to say, as we shake our heads disdainfully at the last few bubbles popping at the water's edge that came from an operator and his ZTR who slid into a pond, "Well, he should have been more careful."

    It is built into us, every one of us, to push the envelope a little, cross the line to some extent. Some will do it more than others. And some of them will pay a heavy toll including their untimely deaths. But, it is that mentality that has been responsible for most advancements in every field of human endeavor. What you seem to be advocating is to let nature weed it out. Let me make a different suggestion. Let's account for typical human behavior in the design of all our technology including ZTRs. This may include front brakes.

    And you're right. There will be idiots that will find a way to kill themselves no matter what safety measures you employ. What I am advocating is designing equipment that is safe for the typical operator and perhaps a little beyond. This seems reasonable to me.
  10. ted corriher

    ted corriher LawnSite Member
    Posts: 119

    Thanks for taking the time to contact them about including the front braking system on their mowers. I am curious myself as to what response that they are giving to consumers requesting the brakes. . .

    The one you contacted was patting themselves on the back for Listening to what improvements the operators wanted in their mower at the GIE Expo, and on the advertisement at the top of the main forum category page.
    Last edited: Nov 24, 2009

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