36" or 44" Toro.


LawnSite Member
Here's the deal. I finally sold my JD rider and now I'm going on the advice of many of you and am going to buy a walkbehind this week. I decided on a Toro gear drive, floater with 12.5 Kaw. Now I need to decide on deck size. I'm going with Toro due to dealer proximity. I cut mainly 1/3 acre residentials. I have a 21&quot; for gates. I need to mulch. I'm part time and growing and will be buying a ztr after the business grows so the Walkbehind will be used for trimming and small yards after I buy the ztr maybe next year. The dealer says you can not get the recycle kit for the 36&quot;. I read on here where some say they can get a recycle kit and some say they can't. If you can, does anybody know the part number ? Also, the dealer says with the 36, you often have to put the wheel in the bed when trimming around flower beds because the deck does not stick out on the left side. He said this is the big advantage of the 44. My only concern about a 44 is that I will probably be getting a 44 ztr when the business grows and I can't see the advantage of having 2 decks the same size even though 1 is a rider. <br>Help!!<br>


LawnSite Silver Member
Okay Turfer, this is probobly not the answer your looking for, but it might help. Just my opinion though. I'd go with the 44&quot; now, (you stated all the +'s over the 36&quot; yourself) and when I was going for a &quot;Z&quot; I'd get a much bigger deck than 44&quot;. Unless you have a ton of acerage with limited access (48&quot; or less) then why get such a small rider? I'd go with atleast a 52&quot; or up. If you can't fit in there with the Z use the 44&quot; walkbehind. You have the right idea when you say you'd get a Z and use the 44&quot; as a trim mower, but, if you think about it, your saying use a 44&quot; mower for your main, and then trim with a 44&quot; ??? Doesn't make sense right? Well your on track so you need to make your decision, but take my advice into consideration. I think to make the rider as productive as it can be, you should think about a bigger deck before you purchase it. (price into that much different either :) ) Hope this helps!<p>----------<br>&lt;a href=&quot;http://communities.msn.com/guidosequipmentpics/&quot;&gt;&quot;Guido&quot;&lt;/a&gt;<br>David M. Famiglietti


LawnSite Silver Member
turfer--guido is giving very sound advice.<p>good luck'<p>GEO

Richard Martin

LawnSite Fanatic
Greenville, NC
A 12.5 Kaw is barely strong enough for a 36&quot;. I would opt for a minimum 14 Kaw for the 44 and 15 to 17 for the 50&quot; class. An engine with more HP has a greater ability to keep the blades spinning at max RPM which is critical for mowing grass. This has a lot to do with the Dixie Choppers ability to cut literally any grass in any conditions. While Toro, Exmark and other use 17 HP Kaws on thier sub-ZTRs the smallest engine you can get on any Dixie is 19 HP. Go for the larger engine, you will never regret it.


LawnSite Senior Member
SW Missouri
Buy the 44&quot;. Larger engine would be a plus. I have a 12.5 on a 36 and same on 48. In anything less than idea conditions the 12.5 is not enough for my 48. Forget the mulching idea. Get gators and mow high. It's better for the lawn and helps &quot;hide&quot; the clippings.<br>As for a z. Buy the biggest deck you can use. I could not decide between 52 and 60. I ended up with 60 and NO regrets. I use it anywhere I can. Quailty of cut great. (Exmark)<br>Keep the 21 for tight areas<br>44 for main mower now<br>52 or 60 Z as you grow<br>Good luck


LawnSite Silver Member
If you will only be usingthe walkbehind full time for the first year and only as a backup/trim mower next year dont spend $2500?? on it. Get a good solid used walkbehind and it will last forever. Keep the saved money for the new ztr next year. I have a 36inch walkbehind and a 60inch ztr.... perfect combination! I dont no about the 36 toros but on my 36 gravely the decks sticks out enough to trim right up to beds with out putting the wheel in the bed lol! its mayeb 2 inches but its fine! My 36 has a 12.5 Kawisaki and i have used it in 1 and a half tall grass and it has yet to bog down. 14hp for a 36 is not needed!<br><p><font size="1">Edited by: Evan528


LawnSite Bronze Member
For another $150, get the 52&quot;. I've owned all Toro floating decks and I would buy the 52 instead of the 44, definitely not the 36, unless you have a lot of 40&quot; gates.<p>There is a number of reasons why I prefer the 52 to the 44, production is the #1 reason, but I think they cut nicer, blades are easier to get/cheaper, blade tip speed is higher, I think. I also don't like the &quot;straight across&quot; back of the deck on the 44, seems to catch on the trailer too often.<p>The 12.5Kaw/52&quot; Toro belt is one of the best mowers for the money.<br><p><font size="1">Edited by: Lazer


LawnSite Senior Member
Central Florida
You can pick up a new gravely 36&quot; 12.5hp gravely for 1500 bucks its the smaller unit or you can get the 200 series for 2000 which is what I have with a 14hp kaw I bought mine used last year for 500 dollars it old but runs good I used it as mine front line mower last year then this year I bought a new toro z-master. I would do like evan said and pick up a new gravely I would buy the 150 series if you are just going to use it as trim mower next year gravely's are well built machines.

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