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Zero Turn Mower Overload

Discussion in 'Homeowner Assistance Forum' started by KYGrassCutter, May 21, 2005.

  1. KYGrassCutter

    KYGrassCutter LawnSite Member
    Posts: 3

    Since my 541 Ford therw a rod two weekends ago, I have been doing some research on Zero Turn mowers on the internet. I have been looking at everything from Cub Cadet to Lazers. What I would like to do is get some feedback from those who are using Zero Turn mowers and a couple of answers regarding horsepower vs. deck size.

    I plan to use the mower to mow my property which consist of a little over 6 acres. The landscape is flat with about a dozen trees. I am looking for something that I should be able to get 10 to 15 years use. The Cub Cadet website suggest a minimum of 23hp and a 50"-54" deck.

    My questions are;

    Is 23hp with a 50"-54" deck enough?

    Is there a recommended ratio of horse power to deck size?

    Am I wrong not to consider the "Consumer" grade of zero turn mowers?

    Are there any particular brands that are more reliable then others?

    TIA, for your help.
  2. Restrorob

    Restrorob LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 11,023

    #1 It all depends on how Quick you want to get the job done,Given what your mowing I would opt for a 60" cut.

    #2 Most O.E.Ms choose a H.P. engine that will give there units the maximum performance for its intended use.

    #3 I wouldn't recommend a consumer grade unit with the size yard you have and how long you want the unit to last.

    #4 There are alot of good commerical grade units on the market,And everybody has there preference as you will see.
    Dixie Chopper ( The worlds Fastest Lawn Mower ) Is what we sell,They are some nice units and they hardly ever see the shop once they leave the first time. Prices start in my area at 6500.00 for a 60" full blown Commerical unit.

    Good luck in your shopping
  3. Tider6972

    Tider6972 LawnSite Senior Member
    from Alabama
    Posts: 649

    You are on the right track and asking good questions.

    (1) 23HP is OK for a 52-54 inch deck, 25 is better! If you mow regularly and don't let the grass get overgrown (yeah, right! :) ), low HP won't hurt you. It's when it gets thick and long you'll <i>need</i> more HP !

    (2) don't know of a formula, but don't buy it underpowered- you can't count on the manufacturers, they all sell underpowered units.

    (3)go commercial if you can afford it. Biggest caveat in homeowners grade is the hydraulic system, I'd recommend separate pumps and wheel motors.

    (4) All the 'majors' are good and reliable: Hustler, Exmark, John Deere, Gravely, Toro, Dixie (their new decks are a ? still, quality of cut), IMO.
  4. KYGrassCutter

    KYGrassCutter LawnSite Member
    Posts: 3

    Thanks for the input. Is the 23 HP enough for six acres, or should I go for a little more hp, like 27? If taken care of, will the 23 HP last 15-20 years? I would prefer to keep the cost around $6,000. What do you know about Husqvarna?
  5. Jayhox

    Jayhox LawnSite Member
    Posts: 21


    I have just under 6 acres, lawn, with about 40 trees. I bought a Ferris 61" and really like it. There are other good ones out there (everyone has their favorites), but I would definitely recommend 60" or larger. You'd be able to mow your yard in about 2- 2.5 hours, I'd guess.
  6. KYGrassCutter

    KYGrassCutter LawnSite Member
    Posts: 3

    After looking around at what is available here in KY, here are the options I have in purchasing a ZTR. Again I am looking at mowing 6 acres of level ground with maybe a dozen trees total. All these are 2005 models.

    1) Cub Cadet Tank M60-KH-EFI @ $7199.00+tax – 28HP Kohler V-Twin EFI Engine and 60” Deck. 3year warranty.

    2) Cub Cadet Tank M60-KW-LC @ $7999.00+tax – 29HP Kawasaki Liquid-Cooled Engine and 60” Deck. 3year warranty.

    3) Cub Cadet Tank M60-KH @ $6999.00+tax – 27HP Kolher V-Twin Engine and 60” Deck. 3year warranty.

    4) Woods M2560K @$7475.00+tax – 25HP Kawasaki V-Twin and 60” Deck. 2year warranty.

    5) Husqvarna IZ5223T @$7175.00+tax – 23HP Kolher and 52” Deck. 2year warranty.

    6) Husqvarna IZ5223T @$6799.99 This is the same as above but, no sales tax as purchased over the internet. No freight either when shipped to a business. Question, is since this one comes crated from dealer does anyone know how difficult the setup is on one of these? Fairly competent mechanic, do own brakes, valve adjustments, etc. on my cars.

    Does anyone here favor one over the other?
  7. Tider6972

    Tider6972 LawnSite Senior Member
    from Alabama
    Posts: 649

    Get #1 ! That's seems a good deal for a 28EFI (best engine on the market! ) and a 60" deck. I thought I 'stole' my SuperZ 60" 28EFI last year for $7800 !
  8. mattbrad2

    mattbrad2 LawnSite Member
    Posts: 2

    This may be a little off topic, but in light of the previous poster claiming the hydrolic system being one of the biggest differences in going commercial: I've seen most of the newer brand residentials using dual motors and pumps and are most now based on the IZT hydro and are usually sealed which is the exact same system I've seen in these commercial mowers you guys so often suggest. I always thought the biggest differece was in the deck (stamped vs fabricated) but again.. I've only been dealing with the 2004/2005 models so maybe things have changed in the past few years.
  9. Green Pastures

    Green Pastures LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,457

    I like #1 the best OF THE CHOICES you listed.

    You'll like the gas savings of the EFI.

    28 HP is excellent for a 60" deck.
  10. iluvscag

    iluvscag LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 741

    The formula is you need a 1/2 horsepower for every square inch of deck. So If you have a 52" deck, you would need a 26 hp engine to run full speed in any kind of conditions.

    54" you would need a 27 hp engine.

    60" you would need a 30hp engine.
    Do you get the picture?

    But in perfect conditions with a 23 hp Lazer and a 60" deck you only need 3hp to spin the blades and the 20 hp to go 10 mph. :)

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