Equipment question (32 inch, back pack blower)

Discussion in 'Starting a Lawn Care Business' started by Shopkeeper, Oct 16, 2006.

  1. Shopkeeper

    Shopkeeper LawnSite Member
    Messages: 85

    I have been seriously considering getting a 32 or 36 inch mower for next season, but I am worried about making up the cost of it and still making enough money to function on along with the purchase of a back pack blower (probably) and maybe a trailer.

    My questions are as follows:

    1. What would a good 32 inch commercial mower be to get for a small company of hopefully 12 yards a week? (Part time, after school work)

    2. I was thinking about getting an echo back pack blower, not sure on the specs, model #, etc because the last time I looked at it was a couple months back at lowes. It was about 200-300 dollars and seemed like a good blower to use since I am very small right now. (the blower only has to last a few years, the old craftsman I use is older than me and still kicking)

    Thanks for reading!

  2. metro36

    metro36 LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,417

    Here is a piece of advise you should never forget...
    Buy for your dealer and not big box stores.

    Here is another...
    Buy only commercial equipment and it will last.

    Find a good dealer and use him. He will stand by what he sells and care about you. For a mower if you want a new machine look around and see what brand your dealers carry. If I was you I would find a used one and use the money you save towards other stuff. As for a blower find a dealer who carries a the brand you like. Most brands are good. Make sure you buy a pro model such as the echo 751 for example.
  3. Shopkeeper

    Shopkeeper LawnSite Member
    Messages: 85

    Thank you for the advice!

    Keep it coming all (please!) :p

    I meant to mention in my original post that the back pack blower I was looking at was infact an echo, but I wasn't sure on the model number and all that jazz because it has been a while since I looked at it.
  4. MattsMowing3535

    MattsMowing3535 LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 385

    Buy a stihl BR-600 there about 480 or so after tax's sometimes close to 500. But you will never need more power and you could blow a leaf pile as tall as you without a problem (Im 5'5" or so and did :) ) It will last forever and the 4-mix engine is really nice. I think commercail is the only way to go. Plus if you take care of it and make it look like new all the time you can sell it down the road for 300 bucks no problem (in a few years that is) Now if you get this little echo from a big store like lowes or something. You would have to pay someone to take it off your hands down the road. Go talk to a dealer near you they always give deals to new people who want to start a lawncare future. there very nice and honest too!
  5. MattsMowing3535

    MattsMowing3535 LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 385

    Also, About the 32 inch. You should go to a local dealer and ask them if there getting any used equipment in this season. (since it is almost over). They usualy do and want it gone before it comes in. I am getting a 2004 Exmark Viking Hydro 48" For 1500 dollers. Around 1000 hours or less. Now that is a deal if you ask me. I bet you could get a good 32" belt drive for close to or less then 1000. Also, you may think I can buy all this stuff cuase im some big pro. HaHa! I wish I'm 15 saved my pennies ( err. . . i tried atleast) And looked around for a few months went to my state fair (mowers there. . .) And eventauly ran accross this deal! 3 things I think you should rember

    1. Used works good and is all you need at so few lawns that you have.

    2. If you dont buy commercail plan on buying anouther one of whatever you bought in about 1 year. (1 month for some junk)

    3. Buy from a dealer! Absolutly NO OPTION if you want to have service,quality, and most importantly someone that knows something about the equipment!
  6. Shopkeeper

    Shopkeeper LawnSite Member
    Messages: 85

    Thanks for all the advice so far, what you guys have said thus far is very encouraging. More advice is greatly appreciated!
  7. Matts lawn care

    Matts lawn care LawnSite Senior Member
    from MD
    Messages: 829

    i think the best home depot model echo is the 403 or 413
    dont buy frome home depot

    for a mower look at the quick 36 there cheep for being a hydro.

    echo makes good back pack blowers get the biggest you can. it will save you days in the fall.

    i am also turning 16 in about 1 month i would sugest getting more then 12 accounts. i am aiming for 20 next year

    dont forget to save money for doorhangers and good stuff like that 5000 DOORHANGERS FOR 190 GOOD PRICES OVER ALL $$

    if you use vista print use this link and get 25% OFF :)

  8. Patriot Services

    Patriot Services LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 14,506

    Your best bet at this level is to find a used belt drive 32 or 36 inch. the local bargain trader usually has half a dozen for 500 to 1000$. They are easy to handle and cheap to fix if they need it. 10-15-20 lawns just does not justify the cost. It sucks when you lay out your savings and then get frustrated when the jobs dont come as fast you need to make a profit. Growing your customer base takes a long time, especially this time of year. you will make mistakes along the way but dont let them discourage you. Spend the extra money you save from the mower on advertising. Classified ads in the service section work good, as do ads in the local flyer papers. Bulletin board flyers are cheap and productive. Don't waste time with door hangers, too much $$ and work for little return. Above all do great work and listen to your customers. Good Luck and Have Fun!:usflag: :usflag: :usflag:
    ericg likes this.
  9. MattsMowing3535

    MattsMowing3535 LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 385

    hey, Just curiose when you all put out flyers how do you do so? I put them on the flag of the mail box (Or have been) where do you put them i.e. door, mailbox, newspaper slot. . .etc.
  10. J&R Landscaping

    J&R Landscaping LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 5,095

    How many accounts do you have at the moment? How big are the yards? Are the back yards gated at all? The answers to these questions will dictate the answer for your mower.

    You can get an echo PB-413 (the new brother to the older 403) for $299 or so. I do aggree about finding a good dealer to buy from! What mower brands do your local dealers sell?

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