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aeration / 2 wb or one ride on??

Discussion in 'Turf Renovation' started by fl-landscapes, Jan 13, 2010.

  1. fl-landscapes

    fl-landscapes LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,542

    Just curious what you guys who do renovation work think. If you were purchasing new aeration equipment would it be more beneficial to buy the most productive ride on unit like the lawn solutions? Or for less than the price of the ride on unit buy two hydro walk behinds from lawn solutions. I know a lot of people will say the ride on is better for larger properties and this is true but it can be used easily on the smaller properties because it plugs in reverse and while turning. From what I understand it gets in tight spots well and no need to follow up with a smaller unit in most cases. Now the benefits of two smaller units are. Total cost of two units i believe would be $2000 less than a ride on. Larger properties you could have two going at once and actually get more plug area out of two hydro's compared to the plugging width of the ride on. Also if you had different jobs going you could send them out separately. Which way would you go, one ride on or two wb's?
  2. fl-landscapes

    fl-landscapes LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,542

    no opinions? I thought it was a legit question. Maybe I think too much.
  3. Barefoot James

    Barefoot James LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 984

    How many aeration jobs you got? What is the average size? What is the largest? What marketing efforts do you plan on to grow this area of your business?

    With these variables it will be easier to give you some thoughts.
  4. djagusch

    djagusch LawnSite Platinum Member
    from MN
    Messages: 4,350

    Your labor cost tends to be the largest expense in the biz. If you can produce equal amounts of work with the ride on compared to wb units then the ride on will decrease your cost of sales.

    The $2,000 difference can be made up for quickly on labor alone. Then fuel and maintenance should be less also compared to running two units. Also the laborer will be less tired after use of the ride on that could help productivity also.

    When you talk about having the two units on two different sites your increasing costs by needing two vehicles (ownership, maintenance, etc).

    If you have enough biz to support the purchase I would think the ride on would be a wise move.
  5. willretire@40

    willretire@40 LawnSite Bronze Member
    from VA
    Messages: 1,390

    I would just hate to have one ride on because if it breaks down you could possibly have down time waiting for a part.
  6. lawn king

    lawn king LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,410

    Both are fine machines. We use walk behinds for small and medium size lawns. We break out the tractor with the woods pl72 for the big acreage.
  7. fl-landscapes

    fl-landscapes LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,542

    its more of a hypothetical question at this point. I have a wb billy goat right now and will upgrade at some point but it got me thinking about advantages of one large machine compared to two smaller ones. Flexibility was my biggest thought.
  8. willretire@40

    willretire@40 LawnSite Bronze Member
    from VA
    Messages: 1,390

  9. shortgrass01

    shortgrass01 LawnSite Member
    from SC
    Messages: 160

    Walk behind! Depends on you seasonal work load. In my opinion Aeration is over rated in a residential lawn. If your getting alot of traffic and asking for you lawn to respond quickly.. then yeah.. But for residential once a year is plenty. Some lawns need more attention than others, but over all most lawns are not compacted like say, a golf course where the roll flat every thing.
    Again if renovation means hard pan or clay based yards; Id say you need it. However in a state I luv, Florida doesn't see much clay based soils. Helping it to allow the nutrients to flow straight through isn't a good thing if you doing applications too. mho
  10. fl-landscapes

    fl-landscapes LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,542

    Again its just a hypothetical question to anyone in any region buying an aerator. Whether or not it is smarter to buy two walk behinds or one ride on unit. As far as FL we aerate before we top dress with compost to try and improve the sandy calcareous soils we have here on the coast to allow better moisture as well as nutrient holding capabilities.
    (make it less hydrophobic.....slow down the leaching)

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