best reel???

Discussion in 'Homeowner Assistance Forum' started by tdr6874, Feb 20, 2011.

  1. tdr6874

    tdr6874 LawnSite Member
    Messages: 88

    the switch to bermuda is going on in 3 weeks and the burmuda wil be ready to cut soon there after...i am looking at getting a reel mower....should i get a new tru cut 27 c or for about the same money get a 3 year old factory refurb john deere..the john deere looks like new and has a cast reel assembly and said to be very easy to adjust bed they are over 4k...found one at a john deere dealer here in houston area that has several to choose from at 1800 to 2500....tempting...many say the tru cut is great quality, but is that compared to a mclane...i dont know if the stamped bolted steel is the same class as the cast...anyone with experiance with either please chime in
  2. chaser2587

    chaser2587 LawnSite Member
    Messages: 166

    I own a trucut and I am very happy with it. I can also adjust the reel to bedknife clearance. It's not hard just takes some patience to make the adjustment. I have no experience with a john deere reel mower, but i do know they are mostly used on golf courses. Is the john deere a greens mower?
  3. Will P.C.

    Will P.C. LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 966

    How much yard will you be cutting
  4. tdr6874

    tdr6874 LawnSite Member
    Messages: 88

    3500 sq foot (front yard only)...yes its a greens mower with floating head and i plan on cutting at about 3/8th of an inch....i think it will cut as low as 1/16th up to 1.25 inches
  5. T-Made

    T-Made LawnSite Member
    from Georgia
    Messages: 91

    I also have a Tru cut 20 and a Tru cut 27. Picked both up from homeowners off of Craigslist for around 1,000. They seem to be the preferred Reel mower in North Ga.
    I get good service out of them and a quality cut.
  6. chaser2587

    chaser2587 LawnSite Member
    Messages: 166

    sounds like a good mower. Hopefully the floating head will reduce if not eliminate scalping depending on how smooth your lawn is. Especially if you plan on cutting at a height of 3/8". Your lawn will need to be super smooth.
  7. assemblage

    assemblage LawnSite Member
    Messages: 60

    I followed chaser2587's and cgaengineer's advice and got a used 27" TruCut from the local Toro and Stihl dealer was selling for $1k. They also sell new TruCuts. Here's the pics, . It's also the only shop in town that can actually sharpen the blades and only the owner knows how to do it. His son says he doesn't know how. The owner really tried to talk me out of it, but when he delivered it I think he was happy that I decided to cut my yard with a reel. I felt from shopping around in my area that it's like a dying art...something that only old fanatical men do for their yard.

    I haven't mowed but a few times with it. The first time it made my shoulders sore because it'd just jolt forward when I engaged the clutch. It's got 4 wheels and it's heavy, so it puts down a lot of torque. It gets to it's max speed very quickly... faster than I do, thus the jolting. I got a bit better with it subsequent mows, but it's still quite a beast...and the coolest mower in the neighborhood.

    When I fully engage the clutch (locking it into place), it works great on straightaways... so I see it as more of a fairway mower than a greens mower. The "locking" feature is a bit dangerous because it engages the drive wheels and nothing will stop it but pulling the clutch knob back out. I can actually hold it from moving forward, but it's not easy and I'm 6'4", 260lbs. For curves and edges and tighter spots, I'll just depress the clutch knob a little and it "bumps" foward a bit. With it so heavy, it's just hard to maneuver around tight curves and areas.

    My yard is 2700 sq feet on front and sides and 4600 in the back. So in the back I have those straightaways but have to do more bumping and maneuvering in the front. I think a smaller one would have been better for the maneuvering... but those weren't on sale.

    This year my yard will need some leveling for sure. It's going to take some time to get it nice and level. I'll also have to address irrigation and drainage issues. I'd be thrilled to take it to "fairway" quality. I think I can do that with the tru cut. For greens quality it seems to be just way too much work.
  8. chaser2587

    chaser2587 LawnSite Member
    Messages: 166

    Congrats assemblage! I"m sure you will be happy with it. I'll give you a HINT and tell you that I rarely fully engage the clutch on my mower. I like to mow at a relatively slow pace so I just push the clutch button in a little ways and drive the mower at a comfortable walking pace.
  9. Ira

    Ira LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,375

    I was at the local [only] TruCut dealer today, talking to him about the C27. Unfortunately, he didn't have any TruCut's on the floor that I could look at.

    I was curious as to how easy they are to handle/turn. He said they are "pretty easy" to turn, but that replacing the front casters with a roller makes them harder to turn.

    What is the actual "motion" that you go thru to turn one of these things around at the end of the row? Does it differ depending on if you have a roller vs. casters on the front? My yard is about 22K sqft of Palisades Zoysia (possibly increasing to 32K sqft this summer), and is mostly open and flat. Recommended cutting height for this type if zoysia is 1.5".

    FWIW...I asked him about pulling a sulky with the C27, since TruCut sells one. He said he wouldn't do it because it would cause a lot more wear and tear on the mower drive train.
  10. chaser2587

    chaser2587 LawnSite Member
    Messages: 166

    Imo my trucut is easy to turn. The only place it can be difficult is on a hill. But my reel is only a 20" with a roller. You can either keep your thumb slightly pressed against the clutch button and twist the mower around, or if the mower for some reason won't turn that well you can push down on the handles to lift the front end of the mower up and make your turn.

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