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Exmark Navigator vs Walker comparison

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing Equipment' started by weeze, Feb 20, 2012.

  1. SDLandscapes VT

    SDLandscapes VT LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 581

    Interesting bunch of replies here--I agree that the movies are one sided and I agree that both machines have their issues.

    I own a walker EFI with 48" GHS and I love this machine for landscaped yards up to about 1 acre--it does not replace a walkbehind as it will not mow steep hills/ditches. The bagging is good and the cut quality is good.
    I have demoed several times a navigator and I will be adding one to the fleet probably this season (they are still in production they just added EFI to the line up) You have to do several things to the navigator to get it to perform like a walker
    1) switch out that awful wide single solid tire in the rear for the split setup like the walker (prevents tons of turf tearing and makes for a better ride)
    2) they have added this spring adjustment on the drive levers that allows you to take the stiffness out of the controls and makes it more responsive or walker like.
    3) buy the efi navigator since the fuel economy on the carb model isnt so hot

    Walker pros
    -smoother controls
    -lighter deck with more interchangeability
    -great warranty and excellent company values

    Navigator pros
    -better vacuum and better collection
    -80% mulch option standard with 48" "GHS" deck
    -simpler hydraulic system--uniform to other equipment
    -simplified routine maintenance
    -catcher bin is more rugged
    -small price benefit

    My exmark dealer is better than my walker dealer and we are transitioning to an all red fleet over time. for the properties we service we run two man crews with two turf tracers and a walker/navigator
  2. jlawnservice

    jlawnservice LawnSite Member
    Messages: 54

    own 8 walker diesels been having a hydro issue lately with about all of em they are somewhat of a maintenance nightmare and the walker service in my area is terrible but nothing cuts better!
  3. BPS##

    BPS## LawnSite Senior Member
    from WY
    Messages: 828

    You must have had an extreme vintage mower then.
    Or else it wasn't a walker you had.

    They've been separate pumps/motors even for the ones I've seen back into the 80s.
  4. BPS##

    BPS## LawnSite Senior Member
    from WY
    Messages: 828

    Having interacted with the factory more than once over the years I strongly urge you to document your dealer support issues and give the factory a call.
    That dealer will be getting his poop in a group or moving on. They don't tolerate a bad rep like that.
    My first walker was a 36'' deck back in 98. It mowed like crap. Lot of skippers.
    I had it at the factory and Dean Walker personally worked on it. They couldn't figure it out.
  5. Mikegyver

    Mikegyver LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,803

    Nope...2011 demo. Ill post some pictures of the internals...
  6. BPS##

    BPS## LawnSite Senior Member
    from WY
    Messages: 828

    Please do. What model????

    Having been 15 years since I was thru the factory on a slow day this winter I took a new tour just to see what has changed.
    I did not see any single pump units there.

    It was cool to see their modern plasma cutters, robot welders, computer welders etc.
  7. electric

    electric LawnSite Member
    Messages: 168

    Only Walker offers liquid cooled models in both gas and diesel, this main selling feature is longevity. With reverse rotation cutting decks for enhanced striping no copy can touch the original Walker..
  8. Mikegyver

    Mikegyver LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,803

    It was a 20HP MT GHS 36"
  9. idontdeservethis

    idontdeservethis LawnSite Member
    Messages: 5

    I feel this needs to be said:
    That video was the most unbelievable piece of one-sided, backwards ass monkey s**t i've ever had the displeasure of being exposed to. I couldn't help but notice that on youtub they disabled the comments section. (I wonder why?) Let's expand on some of these issues.
    First of all, I love that we're comparing a brand new, never used navigator; with a busted up/ abused old walker.
    They seem to be focusing on the fact that the Navigator has a thicker frame than the Walker. While that is in fact true, these frames just don't break. You need to do some serious damage to get that frame to crack.

    Too many grease fittings vs sealed chinese bearings. I'll take grease fittings.

    Apparently the walker won't adjust closer than 1/2 inches on the deck; huh so does that mean that exmark has patented the "quarter-inch washer".

    Cast iron gearboxes? Well, Walker has those, they simply give you the option of which you would like -cast or aluminum (and FYI the company that manufactures the walker gearboxes is Peerless, can't get much more reputable).

    The Walker only bags 60% of what it cuts? I would love to know who came up with that little pearl of wisdom.

    I also took notice to the fact that the video mysteriously cut out when it came time to lift the Navigator deck (I'm sure it was just coincidence).

    Onto the "antiquated drive system" on the yellow mower. I've changed plenty of hydraulic pumps and wheel motors, never ... Never ... changed a Walker final drive. For a year or two there was a problem with the Eaton hydro because of oil contamination, but that was always covered under warranty, and the issue has been resolved. I would also like to see him actually replace the hydro belt on the "far superior" drive system; it can be done with enough time, just make sure your kids aren't around; you will be spouting an entirely new vocabulary during the process.

    If anyone noticed, when he was discussing the front casters, and how much larger the navigator's was; the walker casters in that video, have clearly been crashed into numerous objects, and yet somehow, they haven't broken. Its a good thing the Navigators are larger.

    Transforming grass screen in the back as opposed to an additional screen with Walker. right ... because an 11-12 thousand dollar machine is easy to buy, but a $60 accessory; that's gonna break the bank account.

    Some of the things that weren't mentioned about the walker, may include various attachments (2 different snowblowers, plow, loader bucket, broom, and dethatcher, just to name a few). Proven reliability, lower center of gravity, optional deck sizes, Electronic fuel injected engines, and accessories to numerous to mention.

    Now clearly, I'm biased towards the Walker, I just felt it was important to have the other side somewhat represented . If you are considering either of these models, just go to your local dealers and get a demo. Take it out and compare, you'll most likely end up with a Walker.
  10. electric

    electric LawnSite Member
    Messages: 168

    Well spoken! Walkers design can't be imitated. They have an exelent design that only Dean Walker can improve on. Thirty plus years in the zero turn mower business, you can bet my mower bank is with Walker!
    Posted via Mobile Device

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