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Help! Homeowner looking at Hustler Raptor SD's.

Discussion in 'Homeowner Assistance Forum' started by MKIVTTdTerror, Apr 21, 2014.

  1. MKIVTTdTerror

    MKIVTTdTerror LawnSite Member
    Messages: 20

    I'm currently in the market for one and I'm having a bit of a hard time choosing between two in particular. It's between either the RSD 48 or the 54. Now, here's my dilemma, I only have slightly less than a half acre and while the 54'' deck is probably not needed, it's only a $100 difference between the two. Should I just opt for the 54, or would it be overkill? We're only talking about a 6 inch difference, but some would probably argue that even the 48 would be 'too much'. It really boils down to cosmetics at the end of the day, because I really like the way the 54 looks with the commercial-sized tires on it.

    And yes, I used the 'search' feature and couldn't really find anything that directly/indirectly addressed my problem.

    By the way, I know someone will chime in and say that I don't really need a ZTR for this size yard, but it's what I want. And keep in mind that I can't really go any smaller because the smallest you can get in the SD lineup is the 48'' deck. And obviously the regular Raptor is out because I want something that's a little more commercial and that's serviceable. Here's some facts to help you guys help me:

    -The yard is mostly flat
    -Not really any obstacles to speak of
    -No gates or fences
    -Storing it shouldn't be a problem

    -I might pick up a next door neighbor's yard if I can to help offset the cost of the new mower and to sort of pay myself back.

    I've had an ancient Snapper riding mower with like a 36 inch deck (which was the last mower we owned), and it took forever to cut my yard-- probably an hour and half to two. This would be my first new mower I've ever owned, the others were old Snappers that were all hand-me-downs. By the way, I've used this site extensively while I was shopping for ZTR's, and it has helped me tremendously! I have learned a lot from you all. So much so, that I've decided to become a member.

    Thanks for any help/advice!

    Last edited: Apr 21, 2014
  2. theeplaymaker

    theeplaymaker LawnSite Member
    from PA
    Messages: 22

    I think from what you described it's basically down to which one you want. If you don't have any tight spots to get into that the smaller deck would help then you shouldn't have a problem. Since you are spending so much on a mower for just your yard get what you want so you don't have buyers remorse. I just bought a eXmark Pioneer S in a 48" and love it so far and I only have 3/4 acre. I was looking at lower models and with how much I was spending anyways I figured I'd go all out and get the one I wanted, not needed. With my old riding tractor it took 2.5 hours because of all the obstacles. This mower does it in .8 tenths of an hour so like 45 minutes.

    For that size yard though I would suggest the 48" for maneuverability. Maybe even step up to a Fastrac 48" to get the best of both worlds!
  3. MKIVTTdTerror

    MKIVTTdTerror LawnSite Member
    Messages: 20

    Thanks for the reply! Yeah, I like the Fastrak a lot but for my needs, it's a bit more than I wanted to spend. I'm sure you paid quite a bit for that Pioneer too though. And I timed my yard guy yesterday, and it took him exactly an hour from start to finish with either a 48 or 54.

    But yeah, my more practical side is telling me to just go with the 48'' deck...
  4. guest

    guest LawnSite Member
    Messages: 5

    My yard is larger than yours (1.0 acres), but I faced the same dilemma as you. The 54" is overkill for my yard size, but for an extra $100 you get the larger front/rear tires over the 48" model. I was more concerned with traction than looks, because I have some spots in my yard that stay fairly wet.

    I got my tape measure out and walked around all the "tight spots" in my yard. There are no places the 48" will fit that the 54" won't in my yard. I ended up buying the 54" and I have really been enjoying it. I live close to you (Prairieville) and cut St. Augustine; it leaves a beautiful cut on my lawn and I imagine your grass is similar.

    I recommend you see if the 48" will fit anywhere the 54" won't fit in your yard, then make your decision. If the 54" will fit everywhere the 48" will, you like the bigger tires of the 54", and you don't mind spending the extra $100...
  5. MKIVTTdTerror

    MKIVTTdTerror LawnSite Member
    Messages: 20

    Right on brother/sister! I'm so glad you posted. You're practically in my back yard. Lol. Who did you buy yours from? Gautreau's? And how much did you end up paying, if you don't mind me asking? (I want to make sure that I'm getting a decent deal...)

    Way ahead of you on that one! I measured the other day and at my yard's most narrow spot, the 54'' would still clear. But yeah, I'm just concerned the 48 would be overkill, much less the 54. But like I stated in my previous post, it takes my yard guy exactly an hour, and that's precisely where I'd like to be time frame wise with mowing. Not sure about the type of grass we have here since I'm by no means a guru.

    Anyways, tough call for sure. I'm sure I'll be happy with my decision either way. And thanks for your input!
  6. guest

    guest LawnSite Member
    Messages: 5

    I bought it from Gautreaux's for MSRP $3999 (cash/no financing).

    It will take under 30 minutes to actually mow your lawn if you have few obstacles with either deck (this doesn't include string trimming). If you are sure that you want to go with a Raptor SD, then I would go with the 54. I think both are overkill for your yard and I probably wouldn't choose either if I were in your shoes.

    I'd go with a 42" deck (possibly stamped), EZT transmission ZTR. With 1/2 an acre you will struggle to put 30 hours/year on a 42" ZTR. A light duty machine should last you many years. The standard raptor would probably be my choice actually. Food for thought. Make sure you get what you want so you don't have buyer's remorse.

    Do you have a MKIVTT supra? If so $4k should be nothing to you... ;)
  7. MKIVTTdTerror

    MKIVTTdTerror LawnSite Member
    Messages: 20

    Haha! Who the hell are you man?! Knowing about Supra's and all. I may even know you from being deeply into the car community and all.

    But yeah, I can't cheap out like that with the regular Raptor. I guess I'll probably go with the SD in 48'' and have something slightly less overkill. Maybe I should buy more land and just go badder and bigger? Lol. And when I say an hour, I mean from start to finish. Like spraying, trimming, mowing, blowing, etc...

    Oh and, I was also shopping at Gautreau's. Seems there's not much mark up on these because I called like 10 different places, and same story. Basically pay MSRP, or no mower.
  8. SkeetShooter

    SkeetShooter LawnSite Member
    Messages: 54

    I had a similar dilemma on my end. I decided to stay away from the Raptors and my big reasons were this. The only real difference between the SD and the regular one (besides price) is the hydros are 2800. Its still the same engine and I believe the same deck. For $4K you could get a really nice commercial walk behind (skag, gravely, or bobcat) that is the same size. Get a sulky for it and rip it and grip it. Thats what I am going to be doing. If you are not going to be buying it for actual commercial duty and you don't have crazy hills, there really isn't a reason for a ZTR that is $4K with a residential motor on it, and basic serviceable hydros.
  9. MKIVTTdTerror

    MKIVTTdTerror LawnSite Member
    Messages: 20

    There are more differences than just the hydros. The SD has a 626cc engine, while the regular Raptor has a 603, the tires on the 54'' deck are the same as used on the commercial units and the ones found on the 48'' are still beefier than those on the Raptor. You get armrests on all versions, better ones on the 60'' and you also get an engine cover on that same model. And basically all the metal on the whole mower is heavier duty than what's on the regular Raptor. Again, more commercial grade. Oh and, faster ground speeds and beefier/commercial casters too. And I'm sure there's other things and differences that I'm forgetting.

    And a walk behind is out of the question for me personally. But I thank you for your input regardless.
  10. MKIVTTdTerror

    MKIVTTdTerror LawnSite Member
    Messages: 20

    *Service meter and foot adjusted deck height on the SD models too.

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