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Ok i'll try and be as helpfull as i can but what are you looking for Gear or Hydro??
I have a 36" eXmark Metro Geardrive it's a nice little mower but it's only 12.5 hp the newer ones have 15 hp
when i first bought it there was a "sale" going on and got it for $2,332 with tax then i bought a velky and a catcher so it fits what i need but i may try to swing a deal and get a hydro but only time will tell
It really depends on what your needs are you will get many different answers so aside from what i said find your nearest dealer and see if you can demo some of the machines and see what fit's you best FYI if you can afford it go hydro
I'll give you a short list of pros and cons
Pro- 36"to 32" will fit through most any gates
Con- they are a PITA fo mowing large areas where you could use a larger machine 48" + (large gated props)
Con-PITA to change cutting height(vs floating deck)
Pro- no matter what you go with gear or hydro it will pull a sulky/velky
Thast all i can think of right now any other questions PM me and i'll see if i can help good luck
i have 2 scag 36inches one with a 14 kawi and the other with a 12hp kawi, there bothe great machines never had a problem with either one of them, they pull a velke great and to me changing the height isnt all that bad u just undo the pin on the front caster and moves the spacers up or down, if i was you i would have to say go with a scag you cant beat them
The bottom line is this. If you want a quality 32" or 36" commercial everyday mower, from any of the well know, reputable manufacturers, you are going to pay between $1999 and $2499.
I have a 36" Exmark Metro that I like. I paid $2199. Choose the dealer you like the best. There is not a whole lot of differences in any of the 36" walk behinds. Your going to pay about the same amount no matter what brand you choose. So go to the dealer who you trust to give you the best service after the sale.
All that being said you should be able to get what you want for around $2000. The local Gravely dealers sell their 36"s for $1999 here.