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Expert Advice

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by axel, Jul 2, 2001.

  1. axel

    axel LawnSite Member
    from jersey
    Messages: 2

    As a homeowner I am very unhappy with the time it takes to cut my lawn (2.25 acres) with trees. It's taking 2 to 2.5 hours with a 46" cut lawn tractor. My question to you is: will a 48" cut walk behind mower reduce my mowing time, and by how much? Yours comments would be appreciated.

  2. Eric ELM

    Eric ELM Husband, Father, Friend, Angel
    Messages: 4,830

    Welcome to Lawnsite. :)
    Most home owners are led to believe the tractor is the way to mow a lawn. I can't help you with w/b mower times, but if you would get a 60" ZTR new or used, you could mow that in 45 minutes easy.

    A friend of mine has about the same size lawn with lots of trees and it took 4 hours with his 48" lawn tractor. It was broke down and I came out and mowed it in 43 minutes. He ended up buying the first Chopper I had bought new in 93 that had 2500 hours on it and 3 years later he still hasn't had problems with it and is loving cutting his lawn.

    I would rather have a used ZTR than a brand new Tractor for mowing. I have a 60" 430 JD that just sits all summer since it takes twice as long to mow with it as a 60" ZTR. Steering wheels and mowers do not mix. :)
  3. grassyfras

    grassyfras LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,475

    Go to http://www.exmark.com/productivity.htm it shows a productivity chart on mower speeds with there deck sizes. At 100% efficentcy with a 48" deck going 3.5 you can mow 1.7 acres but you probbably need to use %80 efficentcy and that would be 1.3 acres. So that would be 2.6 acres in 2 hours. But I would think that with a walkbehind you can cut as fast as you can go, so you could proably do max speed with a walkbehind and get some sort of sulky.
  4. mowerman90

    mowerman90 LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,491

    The BEST way and FASTEST way is to sell your tractor and hire a professional! Perferibly a Lawnsite member!
  5. No but a 62" toro Z with cut it in half.

    But you have to weight the $7000 price tag against that one
    hour saved say 30 times per year.

    But on the other hand if you buy a commercial mower you will not have to buy another machine in your lifetime. And with a 6 x 12 open trailer you could be in the lawn mowing biz. If you had about 6 or so 2+ acre mow jobs you could pay for the machine in one season with just 30 total days worked.
  6. Fantasy Lawns

    Fantasy Lawns LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,912

    A "Good" Used ZTR like a 60's or even 50" may set you back about $3500 ...BUT you will save a ton of time like 1-1.5 hrs per event ..... have a much better machine to do the job with

    If you really enjoy cutting your property ...it's the way to go .... you'll also gain lot's of "Friends" from other's like you that Still like to mow their own lawn ....while they see the new toy ;->
  7. toddco

    toddco LawnSite Member
    from Seattle
    Messages: 56

    I had a similar situation and have found a commercial 48" walk-behind mower to be much faster than the 48" tractor I had before. It cut my mowing time in about half.

    Now the limiting factor is the fact that my lawn is very bumpy. If it were smoother I could probably add a velky and cut at my mower's top speed, which is about 6.2 mph.

    The other benefit I've found is that the cut is much better with the commercial wb.
  8. shorty7616

    shorty7616 LawnSite Member
    Messages: 230

    A 48" walkbehind vs. a 46" lawn tractor will probably not cut too much time....it might cut 20 min, maybe, if you were to get a velke on it. If you are willing to spend $4000 on a new mower plus cost just to save time and not for a nicer cut I would greatly recommend you getting an estimate from several local lawn care providers. Hope this helps!
  9. doublesharp

    doublesharp LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 364

    I cut about 2.25 acres w/lots of trees. Went from a 38" troybilt to 50" 17hp $4995 Dixie Chopper. Cut my time down to 1 1/4 hrs, just about half what it used to take, but it's so much fun I sometimes go slower. I do most of my mowing in rough stuff on a 4x4 Kioti 3054 w/6 ft bush hog. Compared to that the time on a ztr is pure pleasure.

  10. toddco

    toddco LawnSite Member
    from Seattle
    Messages: 56

    Shorty, I found a commercial wb to be much, much faster for me than my lawn tractor which was the same size. A couple reasons:

    1. The commercial wb cut better. It didn't clog or bog in heavier grass
    2. I could go faster on my bumpy property b/c it has a shorter wheelbase and it's easier to go faster when walking then when sitting (was bouncing too much on the tractor.
    3. It is much, much more maneuverable, so I spend a lot less time turning and can cut faster in the tricky spots.

    The fact that the cut looks far better was just a bonus to me. I cut my mowing time almost in half on a 1 acre lawn.

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