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Have it narrowed down, need help making decision

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing Equipment' started by PhilsPhanatic, May 20, 2020.

  1. PhilsPhanatic

    PhilsPhanatic LawnSite Member
    Messages: 5

    Hello all, long time reader, 1st time poster

    I have been doing tons of research on ZTR's to utilize on my own 2 acre fairly wide open property, as well as 3 or 4 other 1+ acre yards I will be cutting pretty regularly. This may grow into something more permanent/professional in the future. I am just outside of Philly in the burbs, mostly KBG and TTTF lawns. My own lawn is always soft, very high water table, probably putting close to 500ft of French drains in later this summer.

    Because of the wet and soft, I have tried to find the lightest ZTR's with the widest tires while still getting somewhat commercial build quality. This has led me to the following contenders, I am looking for opinions on 1. comfort for a larger operator, I am 6'2", 300Lb. 2. Cut Quality on these northern grasses, not a full time operator so I will generally be able to avoid wet grass, not necessarily wet/soft soil. 3. Durability/Ease of maintenance. 4. Bang for the buck.

    The contenders w/ current quotes:

    Scag Patriot - 61" 25hp Kohler Command Pro, regular non velocity+ Deck, ZT3400's, 10mph, 952lb, 24x12x12 tires, 3yr 500hr warranty - $6600+tax (would have to add hitch)
    *Like that it has a gas gauge and a brake pedal, no floor flip access to spindles, gas tank mounted high on side, wasn't a huge fan of deck adjust set up, very little info on the cut performance of this deck.

    Kubota Z421 - 60" 23.5hp Kawi FS730V, ZT3600's, 10mph, 904lb, 24x12x14 tires, 4yr 500hr warranty - $6550+tax (Can add full suspension seat for about $500)
    *Like the very low and wide stance, brake setup and cockpit storage/features, low profile tires may ride rough, any reason to be concerned about FS Kawi, not sure about cut quality other than a couple reviews that say its good.

    Deere Z740R - 54" or 60" 23.5hp Kawi FX730V, HC Pro (9Iron) Deck, ZT3400's, 10mph, 1046lb-1076lb, 24x12x12 tires or tweels for $800, 4yr 1000hr all Deere warranty - $8000+tax for 54" regular tires
    *Like the handle integrated parking break and full suspension seat, love the option of 54" still with the wide tires, don't like how high up you sit, tweel option is a plus, will the HC Pro give the same legendary cut quality as the 7iron Pro?

    Toro Z-Master 2000 74492- 60" 24.5 Toro 708cc commercial, TurboForce Deck, ZT3400's, 10mph, 920lb, 24x12x12 tires, 4yr 750hr all toro warranty (Extendable to 5yr with maint kit purchase) - $6700+tax or $7200 for the same unit with FX730v
    *concerned about toro motor quality and small displacement, but 5yr warranty is very nice, not a huge fan of deck adjust or parking brake.

    Toro Z-Master 2000 HDX w/ MyRide 74494 - 60" 24.5 Toro 708cc commercial, TurboForce Deck, ZT3800's, 11mph, 1036lb, 24x12x12 tires, 4yr 750hr all toro warranty (Extendable to 5yr with maint kit) - $7800+tax
    *Same as above but love the idea of the MyRide assuming my weight doesn't overwhelm it.

    Looking to make a decision in the next two weeks, finding it very difficult to get demos on the not quite full commercial units. The Kubota/Toro dealer is less than 5 min from my house, Scag is 10min, Deere is 20min, reputation is good at all of them but I have no personal experience.

    Open to other options, but needs to be around 1000lb with 12" wide tires, all of these units have the same size front casters.
  2. Shindaiwa_operator

    Shindaiwa_operator LawnSite Member
    Messages: 39

    Welcome! I’ve heard good about Scags.. I don’t personally have experience with any of your mentioned mowers. Would suggest going with one that you have a dealer nearby.
  3. TPendagast

    TPendagast LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 17,504

    The Scag patriot deck has what was basically known as the “square deck”
    The tech is from an era before they had names for decks , like velocity or advantage
    The advantage come out around 1999
    So the deck on the patriot is older than 20 year tech
    That being said
    It was a fine deck with little to no problems on 100s of thousands of machines sold

    if you’re looking at rutting lawns as your major issue, it’s not weight you want to worry about ; it’s psi

    a stander with a wider tire is going to be lied forgiving than any rider except the more expensive ones and judging from the models you’re considering you’re not in the market for the pricier machines.
    You can also get something like the weight stander ZK in something like this:


    there’s very few riders you can do that with that won’t be in the 40 Gs range to purchase.
    Mark Stark likes this.
  4. MrGraff

    MrGraff LawnSite Member
    from Texas
    Messages: 6

    I am partial to Kubota, but I have experience with scag and toro as well. Of the machines you've listed they are all very similarly put together with mostly the same parts. I would go with the highest powered unit you can afford, past that demo each of them and see which ones your more comfortable on and what layout you like.

    Engine wise I'd pick Kawasaki over Kohler, and I'd pick Toro's vtwin over the Kohler as well.
  5. OP

    PhilsPhanatic LawnSite Member
    Messages: 5

    Thanks guys, I wasn't aware of the need to stay so far away from Kohler, figured their top of the line engines would be pretty decent. I looked at standers but they arent any less weight than the sit downs I am looking at and I am focused on the PSI on the ground which is why I'm only looking at units with the 12" wide tires.
  6. MrGraff

    MrGraff LawnSite Member
    from Texas
    Messages: 6

    I wouldn't say the Kohler engines are bad, but they do have a reputation for not being as troublefree as the Kawasaki motors.
    PhilsPhanatic likes this.
  7. mstrat

    mstrat LawnSite Member
    from Ohio
    Messages: 41

    I'd be leaning toward the Kubota personally...but that's because I like Kubota stuff! I ended up landing on a Bob-Cat for my mower only because the local dealer was very good and much closer (10 minutes away rather than 35)
    PhilsPhanatic likes this.

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