Gravely 472 Demo

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing Equipment' started by puppypaws, Jul 10, 2013.

  1. GMLC

    GMLC LawnSite Platinum Member
    Messages: 4,345

    Again I agree with you. My feeling on this review changed when I realized no adjustments were going to be made and no pics comparing cut on even a some what reasonable lawn were going to be posted.
  2. Ridin' Green

    Ridin' Green LawnSite Fanatic
    Male, from Michigan
    Messages: 16,432

    I wish someone could come up with a blade from another machine that would work on your deck. That size deck def needs high lifts. It's just too far across the front of the deck for the clippings on the left to make on past the others without getting beaten into apulpy clump. high lifts would make a huge difference, and of that I have zero doubts.

    BTW- I was gonna suggest cutting a set of the Deere blades down to try them and see.
  3. puppypaws

    puppypaws LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 9,124

    I mow on a 6 day schedule when grass is growing fast, so for me to go two weeks means it is impossible to mow those areas. It has rained the last 15 out of 17 days, you people have not seen wet until you see what we are dealing with. This is the most rain by this time of year since 1938. There is no "condition that puppy lets his property get into between mowings," it is a matter of being impossible to mow without rutting the ground and getting stuck repeatedly.

    This is the worst cutting year I've ever seen. I have one area that has not been cut this year, I tried one day and got stuck twice, so I gave it up, there is no cutting grass if the mower can't pull itself through the area it is attempting to cut. There is a 20' strip left in the area that had not been mowed in two weeks that is still too wet to cut. I've never dealt with conditions this wet, and it is taking me 3 times as long to do the same amount of cutting, and believe me, it would totally blow your mind to see how much grass I can normally cut in an hour, the 472 Gravely I tried would look like it was tied to a stump trying to mow with my Super Z.
    Last edited: Jul 21, 2013
  4. mag360

    mag360 LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,446

    I noticed the same thing blowing driveways. That was greatly affected when I removed the baffles - which makes plenty of sense.

    This deck leaves a good cut on dry or damp grass with the baffles removed or all the way down. The finished cut is equal to or better than the xr7 deck in stock setup and it tends to make clippings disappear better than the xf1 deck. If I hadn't almost gone with a scag cheetah when we ordered it I would find the cut "acceptable" with the stock blades - We've kept the super z since 2010 after all and managed to produce an acceptable cut and great striping.
  5. CurbAppealKS

    CurbAppealKS LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 448

    I understand bud. Don't think for a minute that we don't know what you are talking about. All I was getting at was that your review of the 472 is slightly skewed because the deck was not set up equally compared to the super z and you didn't give the 472 a fighting chance on turf that wasn't heavily over grown. Now, I know that because of the rain this may or may not have been possible, obviously we don't expect you to take a demo mower out bogging and risk damaging something.

    I think you should try for another demo when the weather conditions change so you can get a better feel for the cut quality of the machine. Please remember, I'm not preaching to you about how good gravely is as I have never operated one. I just feel that the 472 can and will be comparable to the super z in production and comfort if given a chance on equal grounds.
  6. puppypaws

    puppypaws LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 9,124

    Don't think for a minute me and the 472 did not go bogging, I had mud and grass everywhere you could put mud and grass on the mower, the ROP was covered in mud, it took me 30 minutes to wash and clean it up one afternoon.

    You say the decks were not equally set up, there is an adjustable baffle in the deck of my Super Z that has never been changed, you would believe the 472 should give a cut reasonably close. I've never needed to change blade design, or baffle configuration, so maybe I just expected too much from the Gravely.

    I've run both the 472 at full cutting speed, along with the Super Z (accurately checked the speed of both), and there is absolutely no way possible the 472 Gravely will ever be able to cut the amount of grass that can be cut per hour with a Hustler Super Z.

    I can cut more grass per hr. with my 66" Hustler Super Z, than with the 472 for the fact I can maintain more speed on a constant basis in normal cutting. This ain't rocket science, the faster mower with a reasonably close in size deck; if you can utilize the speed will cut more grass every time. When you are cutting small yards, or cutting in areas so rough you can't utilize the speed, there will not be a noticeable difference, but in wide open large area cutting, it will hands down be the Hustler Super Z that is most productive.

    You can take a 60" Hustler Super Z and cut as much grass per hr. as you can with the 72" Gravely. I've run the numbers, and that is running the Gravely at a cutting speed of 11 mph, and the Hustler at 13 mph with 70% cutting efficiency.

    I found myself constantly trying to push the steering levers forward on the Gravely in an attempt to make it cut faster.
    Last edited: Jul 21, 2013
  7. CurbAppealKS

    CurbAppealKS LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 448

    You're talking about one thing in general and that is productivity. The super z very well may be more productive, I don't know because I will never see your property or get to mow it.

    I'm talking about the fact that you developed an opinion of the 472" of which you share with everyone on here. The fact that you didn't alter any of the variables during your demo to try and get the machine to cut differently in wet thick grass is where the problem is. You are here leading some to believe that the gravely will not handle what the super z will, as far as cutting quality goes. I feel like the only way you can come to that conclusion is by ruling out the other variables such as blade style and baffle position, which you didn't do. I grasp that the blade selection is limited and even if there were a set of high lifts available you would never buy a set just to test on a demo mower, neither would I. All I'm saying is, without having an even test don't lead others to believe that the gravely doesn't cut as well as the super z. This opinion is made out of opinion at this point, rather than fact.
  8. puppypaws

    puppypaws LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 9,124

    The "fact" is, both the Gravely 472, and the Hustler Super Z were cutting side by side straight out of the box, no changes made to either mower except for the fact the Gravely had new blades and the Hustler had blades with 62 hrs. of cut time with no sharpening.

    There was nothing hidden, what the pictures showed is what actually took place. I've never said the Gravely cannot cut as well as the Super Z, as a matter of fact, the Gravely gave a very clean cut at the lower cutting height, equal to that of the Hustler, but I can guarantee it can never be as productive.

    I only showed what took place with my cutting situation, there was no Photoshop, no double cutting, what you saw is what both mowers had to offer straight out of the box.

    I know this without doubt, it is totally impossible for the Gravely 472 to cut equally with a Hustler Super Z, and the not equally part comes with productivity. I feel assured you can "probably" lower the the Gravely cut height and slow both mowers down to 5 mph and see no difference in cut results.
  9. K&L Landscaping

    K&L Landscaping LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 657

    I'm pretty much in the same region as puppypaws and I can attest to the fact as to how wet it is. This is the first year that I've actually dreaded going to work, it's an unmitigated disaster around here. As has been said, not too many decks will cut well in this mess.

    The good folks at Gravely are setting me up with a demo of a 460 so I'm interested to see what this mower is all about. I made about 5 stripes on one at a dealership in east TN and I was fairly unimpressed. However, to be fair, I was only on the thing for less than 5 minutes. But in that short time I could tell the ride wasn't as feathery as some have reported it to be.

    I'm currently running a mix of three (3) ICD decks and two (2) Velocity + decks and they are both pretty darn good in this quagmire of NC. The Gravely deck has some tough competition when it comes to cut quality. I'll be sure to post a review of my findings after the demo session.
    Last edited: Jul 21, 2013
  10. puppypaws

    puppypaws LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 9,124

    This was something else I found interesting, my wife normally helps mow, she loves it, but pays very little attention to detail as I would. She had her foot operated on so she has not mowed any for the past five weeks. She cannot drive so I took her to the doctor this past Monday, I mow the road sides for 3/4 of a mile, while we were driving on the road coming back from her doctors appointment she made the statement, "I've never seen the grass look this bad what happened"? I told her it was cut with a different mower, she then said, "that red one," and I told her yes, she said, "there is something wrong with that mower, I've never seen the grass look that bad."

    This was coming from someone with a totally unbiased opinion making a statement about something she would honestly never notice unless it really stood out. I personally did not pay it any attention, but there evidently was a real difference for someone to make this statement without knowledge of; if one mower cuts any differently than another.

    What's that old saying, "out of the mouth of babes."

    People honestly can't comprehend how bad it really is in this area, they only think they can relate.

    I will be very interested in hearing your thoughts on the 460, and it could very well be it does a better job than the 72, but I will be surprised in what we are dealing with at this time.
    Last edited: Jul 21, 2013

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