ariens/gravely21" comm mowers good?

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by greenbronco, Oct 29, 2006.

  1. greenbronco

    greenbronco LawnSite Member
    Messages: 31

    I need a new 21" mower as many of my accts need them for gate size or just small size of yard. There is a gravely/ariensSCH21 on sale at my dealers for around 900 , it commercial model with a hondaGXV160 and has bumper to bumper 2yr warranty, they also have a Honda commercial for around 1000 and a toro/exmark commercial 1100?. Any way i have tried all three and really like the Swivel wheels on the ariens type(they made it seem like a 21" rider to me) , but also have owned 2 honda commercials so cant decide which is better, always liked the BBC on the honda tho have had trouble with them periodically and not sure how importhant they are. The ariens homeowner model is 600 and cant see a lot of difference, Warrantys; arienshomeowner 90days, honda/toro 1yr, gravely2yrs. any ideas, need one soon
  2. noseha

    noseha LawnSite Senior Member
    from MI
    Messages: 554

    I have a 21'' ariens 900 model flat land mower but does handle hill very well too small rear tires with single wheel drive. I had a break down and had to come up with a mower fast this was in june. So I bought one from tsc cub cadet 21'' with swivel tires in front for some reason I like that. I get a good deal on it for under $400. I know it a tsc mower but for the rest of the year the ariens stayed in the garage as a back up.
  3. hosejockey2002

    hosejockey2002 LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,195

    I've got an Ariens 21 with front casters. It's not a commercial model, but a high end consumer model. It's got the Kawasaki engine and it cuts and bags as well as anything I've seen. The only downsides are it's weight (125 lbs.) and the lack of a blade clutch.
  4. greenbronco

    greenbronco LawnSite Member
    Messages: 31

    ive seen the 21" yardman consumer with swivel wheels, its at $ 400 here, but would it hold up much to regular use also lacks a blade clutch. It seems sometimes difficult to justify $1000 for a 21" but then again i do need some tax deductions and for the yard im still doing need a small mower. Just wondering if I'm the only one who noticed how easy it was to run one or is it just because i havent used it enough. really didn't seem that heavy either. Any others know about Gravely/Ariens sch21?
  5. thesargent

    thesargent LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 400

    you are right, they do turn way easier. all i use is a honda 21 commercial, and it gets pretty tiresome running that thing all day long, especiall in smaller yards where you have to turn alot. i like the idea of casters, but they seem like they wouldnt hold up very well with heavy use. like if you accidently run into something going full speed. but i could be wrong there. as for weight any commercial unit will be over 100 pounds my honda is 126, pretty heavy, but built to last.
  6. Chop Stuff Up

    Chop Stuff Up LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 457

    only problem I have with castors on a 21 is keeping it in a straight line.
  7. mike lane lawn care

    mike lane lawn care LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,707

    i thought about getting one with castors, but i use it on my front banks, which are very steep, i could see it being a probelm, oh well, i'll have to try it out.
  8. thesargent

    thesargent LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 400

    honda has or had a mower(not commercial) with casters and you could lock them in the "straight ahead" position.
  9. john_incircuit

    john_incircuit LawnSite Senior Member
    from NC
    Messages: 310

    Had a 21 Husqvarna with caster wheels, but this just didn't work out. Brought it back to the dealer and got the Honda commercial, this is truly a great mower. Sure glad it is not any heavier, but it bags very well, even tall, wet fescue and the mulching is just about the best I ever saw. Now that I increased the rpm to 3350, it works even better.

    On the down side, the handle ergonomics just don't work well if you have to turn the machine frequently. On the self propelled model, you constantly let go and re-grab the handle bar, what a pain... A "Quick 36 style" operator present / forward motion hand level would be a major improvement.

    Five dollars worth of vibration dampening would also make a big difference. After a long day of using the machine you really wonder what the logic was of not putting them in.


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