Choosing the Best Commercial Walk Behind

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing Equipment' started by AvaScapes, Dec 8, 2012.

  1. AvaScapes

    AvaScapes Banned
    Messages: 7

    Hey Guys,

    Relatively new to the site, and finding good info all the time! I have not seen a great deal of discussion around choosing the best ZT mower, or Commercial walk behind. (am I just missing it?)

    To date I have only utilized Honda Commercial Walk Behind Mowers, which do great, but I am signing up more and more larger properties, and will need to pull the trigger on a larger mower soon.

    I'm all over the place on this one, there are several good ones out there, with new stuff coming out all the time!

    I'm not trying to start a debate, I realize everyone has their own opinion...Just looking for any insight you all might have. When one is about to write a check for between 5 and would be nice to have as much info as possible! :)

    On a side note....if any one out there is in the Seattle area, it would be great to network with a few more local folks.

    Thanks in advance for reading, and sharing!
  2. orangemower

    orangemower LawnSite Silver Member
    from pa
    Messages: 2,768

    I won't get into all the different brands. The bottom line is, you need to go to each manufacturers website and read everything about the mower brand and the size YOU think you'll need. Then when you have specific questions about a brand then ask away. As it is right now, we don't have a clue how big any properties "might" be. We don't know what type of grass, how difficult the terrain is to maneuver a ztr or WB. All these and a ton of more info would make helping you a little easier.
  3. metro36

    metro36 LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,417

    Go to each fo your local dealers, get a feel for the sales and service departments. A good dealer is a very valuable tool. You need one who can get you up and running fast in the event of a breakdown. They should have a good parts inventory and a good service department. That way if its something you cant fix yourself, they can get it done for you. Talk to the salesman. If they are a good salesman and know their product, they will know what works in your area.

    Once you find a good dealer and a model that you think will work for you, its time to demo. Try the machine on your properties for at least a full day. Then try some other machines. Once you have tried a few, you will get a feel about which model is best. Then you can make your decision.

    No one can tell you exactly what works for you. You need find that out on your own as what works for someone else might not be the best fit your you. It all depends on your operating conditions.
  4. KS_Grasscutter

    KS_Grasscutter LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,338

    I'd look for a floating deck, hydro drive,and controls that aren't pistol grip style. Aside from that i'd determine brand by first finding a good dealer and then buying what they sell.
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  5. CowboysLawnCareDelaware

    CowboysLawnCareDelaware LawnSite Senior Member
    from DE
    Messages: 585

    Demo a bunch of machines from your local dealers.

    You have to big decisions to make:
    1. Which were your favorite mowers?
    2. Which dealer stocks the most parts and is the best to work with?

  6. ed2hess

    ed2hess LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 14,592

    That will narrow it down:dizzy: That eliminates Scag and Snapper and Ferris I think. Mostof that isn't important the thing you should focus on is getting a unit that gives a good cut on the grasses in your area. So look around and see what people are using. You aren't likely to wear any unit out. Oh unless you can fix em get a good dealer. And don't be a sissy the pistol units are some of the best. If you can't run a pistol snapper than you wouldn't be able to run a trimmer.
  7. Darryl G

    Darryl G Inactive
    Messages: 9,500

    Ditto that. Different mowers shine more in different conditions.

    A good dealer is also very important. In my immediate area you will see a lot of Bob-Cat mowers because the dealer is excellent. There are Hustler, JD, Exmark and Scag dealers as well but the Bob-Cat dealer will do whatever it takes to keep you up and running, up to and including pulling a motor off of one of their floor units.
  8. AvaScapes

    AvaScapes Banned
    Messages: 7

    Thanx guys, that is some good stuff! Sounds like my biggest challenge around here is going to be the dealer. I have had some pretty crappy experiences and for the most part, try to stay away from them and handle things myself. That will not be as do-able in these larger mowers. I see a ton of ExMark around here, so sounds like I should track down that dealer and do some more legwork. Thanx again!
  9. Darryl G

    Darryl G Inactive
    Messages: 9,500

    The Exmark Turf Tracers are good machines but I'm not sure the deck would be the greatest where you are...wet a lot right? I hear good things about the new Scags decks not clumping in wet condtions.

    You have Exmark dealers nearby and one of them is also a Husqvarna dealer too...Steel Street Power Equipment in Lakewood. You also have Scag dealers in Edgewood and Sumner. You've got John Deere dealers in Tacoma and Olympia. Not sure how far any of those places are to you time wise and I don't know how current it is or exactly what they all sell and service. You might also consider Ferris and Snapper Pro.
  10. AvaScapes

    AvaScapes Banned
    Messages: 7

    Thank You Darryl. Your right....a lot of clumping in these wet conditions. We are based in Gig Harbor/Tacoma, so all these dealerships are accessible and will be checking them out. I liked the Ferris when I looked at it, but am hearing that I should stay away from pistol grips. Not sure why....maybe a durability issue? The John Deere Dealership in Tacoma is not very good....and will check out the Scaggs dealerships in Edgewood and Auburn/Sumner.

    Really appreciate all your input!

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