Advice with choosing a walk behind

sagesove

LawnSite Senior Member
Location
on this rock
@jay_b

With your experience on the FW15, how does the mowing time compare with something like an FW25 over a residential yard in the half acre ballpark?


Hard to say. Every yard is different. Every operator on the machines is different. I could take a guess, and with at least 50 hours experience first to get yourself aquainted nicely with said machines, maybe the FW25 36" could shave 10 to 25% off your labor time over the savings already provided by the FW15 up against a 21 inch mower.

I suppose if you compare a walk-behind Ferris 36 inch FW25 to a FW15 32 inch there should be a noticible difference. 36" verses 32" decks. Much more horsepower on the FW25. The FW25 is quite a tank in relation to the FW15. Well over double the weight I believe. But also the FW25 is a more complex machine. And obviously the FW25 is going to be a better mulching machine.

The FW25 does have one distinct advantage at the present time. You can purchase a multitude of different accessories and blade configurations for it. I have hope that more manufacturers will step up in that department for the FW15. For what it is worth though, we are doing just fine with what we can get for the FW15's in a commercial setting at the moment.

Did you also say somewhere in a previous reply anything about leaves in the fall? Again the FW15 can do the work with the right attachment and knowhow to use them correctly.
As usual the FW25 will just do it better.

I think it really depends on you. If you want to walk and mow your yard, either machine should last a homeowner pretty much a lifetime(25 to 40 years) if you do your maintenance and take care of the equipment.
 

lawnsaspire

LawnSite Bronze Member
Location
Illinois
My Ferris FW15's quality of cut improved once I removed the removable baffle at the rear of the chute. Fwiw, I got the go-ahead from the Ferris support/tech guys prior to doing this.

Recently, I purchased a second FW15 and can say my first one w/ over 800 hours on it is just as solid feeling as this new one.

IFF purchasing an FW15, do yourself a favor and order a Drainzit.com HON1420-C.DRA oil drain tube kit to install AFTER draining out the break-in oil at ~20 hours. This will make future oil changes a >SNAP< w/ no messy cleanup.
Do you have to muscle the Fw15 around at the end of turns? Or does it turn effortlessly with the swivel castors?
 

Hurryupelectric

LawnSite Silver Member
Location
Charleston
Of course, at least sometimes. I have about 10-15 hours on mine and little ways present themselves to let the machine do some of most of the work for you. I do a lot of k turns and usually if I give it a nudge in reverse it swings around nicely. It’s obviously not a dual hydro and requires operator input, especially on hillsides. Locking the casters helps in long hillside runs.
 

lawnsaspire

LawnSite Bronze Member
Location
Illinois
Of course, at least sometimes. I have about 10-15 hours on mine and little ways present themselves to let the machine do some of most of the work for you. I do a lot of k turns and usually if I give it a nudge in reverse it swings around nicely. It’s obviously not a dual hydro and requires operator input, especially on hillsides. Locking the casters helps in long hillside runs.
Of course it's easy to turn, or of course you have to muscle it?
 

sagesove

LawnSite Senior Member
Location
on this rock
@lawnsaspire

The FW/SW 15's in my opinion use less energy to muscle around than the majority of 21 inch mowers by far. You still have to initiate turns and angle adjustments with a little muscle. It is not difficult. Once you master the thumb and finger drive bar/mechanism it is so buttery smooth to operate the machine.

What it really comes down to is how fast you want to operate the mower. Blistering through yards at a commercial operators pace you are going to use more muscle to drive the mower. A homeowner at a relatively modest relaxed pace is going to be a lot easier on the body.

Everyone is different in their health, strenght and abilities. I can walk 25 to 28 yards a day with an FW/SW 15 at a commercial residential yard pace no problem. It is a lot of miles walking but I am used to it. I am super healthy and fit. To each their own I suppose. Any homeowner doing their own yard with the Ferris or Snapper FW/SW15's or FW/SW25's should theorhetically have zero issues with working these machines.
 

Hurryupelectric

LawnSite Silver Member
Location
Charleston
Of course it's easy to turn, or of course you have to muscle it?
Sorry, my stander made me soft riding around all season. When it kept raining and I had to use it in everything I definitely missed the stander but I often think about ditching the stander eventually and just running the sw15. I’m using it all week and it’s fine that I’m used to it.
 

Hurryupelectric

LawnSite Silver Member
Location
Charleston
I do really like the sw15, if it wasn’t for July and august in the carolinas I’d easily do everything with the 32”. I was told that getting the snapper might not have been the best financial move because I only bought it for super rainy weeks but it turns out to be useful in many ways. I’m wondering if the stander was the decision I should have made after trying the sw15. I usually can’t mow lower then 2.5 with the Deere, so in the early spring and later in fall I’m going to be using the snapper almost 100% anyway. The snapper is probably waaay cheaper to run through the course of its useful life.
 

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