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Buying a new mower... need advice

Discussion in 'Starting a Lawn Care Business' started by nfllifer, Jan 30, 2007.

  1. nfllifer

    nfllifer LawnSite Member
    Messages: 3

    I'm taking over the mowing duties of rental property I own/ manage. Currently paying $4,000-$6,000 depending on growth. I'd like to stay under this prefered around $3,000 for a mower.

    I will be using a trailer to get from property to property. In all 8-12 stops and an avg of .5 acres per place.

    Debating between a ZRT and a Walk behind. Any suggestions

    Also wondering about brands and deck width. Interested in a 48" walk behind comercial grade Huskavarna.

    Are the walk behinds easy to turn, can you turn tight circles? Any feedback is appreciated.
  2. Mr Priceless

    Mr Priceless LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 412

    Well, for $3,000 you won't be getting a decent ZTR at all. A 36" Hydro WB with 15-19HP is plenty enough for 12 1/2 acre yards, although still, it will be hard to find a quality machine like that for your preferred spending.
  3. Matts lawn care

    Matts lawn care LawnSite Senior Member
    from MD
    Messages: 829

    You will need at least 5k for a 44" zero turn.
    Sounds like you need a hydro walk behind like nfllifer said.
    You might want to look at the Fast 44 if you don't have many hills.
  4. LB1234

    LB1234 LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,208

    If you are buying a new COMMERCIAL ZTR than 3k is out of the question. Although for 1/2acre properties I wouldn't recommend a Z anyway. Any gates to consider? If so, what width? That will probablly determine your starting point cause it will limit your size of purchase.

    In addition 3k is probablly going to place you out of the running for a hydro WB.

    Therefore you are probablly already limited to belt driven walkbehinds in the 32-48 range.
  5. gmcplowtruck

    gmcplowtruck LawnSite Member
    Messages: 174

    if your spending 4 to 6,000 a year why dont you try spend that on a ztr because the first year it would have paid for itself on what you would of paid someone else for a years service i know in my area you can get a comercial ztr 48'' deck and 19 horse motor for $4,999 mainly toros and exmarks
  6. txgrassguy

    txgrassguy LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,083

    For what it is worth - here is my .02$ worth.
    Buy the best belt driven walk behind you can afford for the money you have allocated for the purchase.
    The efficiency of a 36" versus a 48" is measurable, I personally would go with a decent used 48", buy a decent commercial 21" for the tight areas, and make sure you have a good hand trimmer and blower.
    Depending upon the transport vehicle, you should be able to haul everything around in the bed of a full sized pick up.
    Mulching or bagging shouldn't be necessary if you run double blades, the bottom blade being a high lift and the top blade being a gator type mulching blade.
    Idealistically, chopping up leaves and other cellulose heavy organic material isn't ideal for turf, buy hey - you can only do what you can.

    GARRETTWOOD LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 347

    Spend Some Extra Money And Buy A Scag 48'' Walk Behind About $5500.00 They Don't Break And They Run Forever.
  8. Willofalltrades

    Willofalltrades LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,000

    Well Lesco has a gear drive 48" walk behind mower for $2800 I would say it works. Its not the fastest or most productive but it will cut the grass and keep your properties looking good. I have no experience as to the reliability of the machine.
  9. Willofalltrades

    Willofalltrades LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,000

    And yea once you get used to a walkbehind its easy.

    Can it turn tight circles? UUHH the mower will... will you? (its has a 0 degree turning radius.. DUH!) lol
  10. Mr.Lawn

    Mr.Lawn LawnSite Member
    from Florida
    Messages: 93

    Have you looked at Better products for a walk behind?? They are who i purchased mine from. They are a great company and a great product. Their customer service is great before during and after the sell. Look at their family album on their site. They have a picture of their machine in the back of a ford ranger. Check it out. Have you looked on e-bay for commerical zero turn??? They have some good deals.

    When it comes to help, everybody in this forum is great. I have learned so much from them. Randy


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