How do ZTR's do on steep hills?

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by lee b, Jan 17, 2001.

  1. lee b

    lee b LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 6,147

    I'm thinking about swapping two JD tractor mowers in on a Lazer. The only problem might be one large commercial property. This property has some pretty serious slopes, steep enough that even laying over on the fender sometimes they slide or try to roll. I have no experience with ztr's , but they look less stable than a tractor with 4 controllable wheels. I can mow these slopes now without using a walkbehind, and really don't want to have to use one. If I swap will I be able to mow my slopes with the Lazer? Thanks.
  2. Runner

    Runner LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 13,497

    MUCH better than you can with a tractor! Make sure you get a full sized Lazer, and you can't go wrong for hillsides.
  3. LJ lawn

    LJ lawn LawnSite Senior Member
    from NJ
    Messages: 356

    you can mow it vertically straight up and down,but if it's that steep you'll just slide right off.
  4. kutnkru

    kutnkru LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,662

    I've heard guys talk about mowing steeper slopes than 45 degrees without slipping or loosing time.

    Just what I've heard.
  5. Eric ELM

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

    Demo it, that's the best way for you to find out if it will handle it. I can take my Choppers on any hill I could with the John Deere 430 with a 60" deck. I had the wheels reversed on the JD too, for a wider wheel base. The wider the wheel base, the better you are off on them hills. Get a 60", not a narrow one to stay on hills.
  6. lee b

    lee b LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 6,147

    Sorry but I can't mow up and down these slopes because they drop off into deep concrete ditches. They have to be mowed side to side. LCO who used to mow this property said it was dangerous to use ztr because if one drive tire got a little ahead of the other ztr would turn downhill and slide; either forwards or backwards into ditch. I helped him retrieve his ztr 3 times out of these ditches and once he rolled his Kubota tractor into one.
  7. 65hoss

    65hoss LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 6,360

    Maybe you should get the ztr and new accounts. :cool:
  8. mowerman90

    mowerman90 LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,491

    I've had my 725 Grasshopper w/52" deck on some pretty steep drainage retention areas. I'd guess about 45*. As far as side to side mowing on such slopes is concerned, I've done it without problems, but I've felt really luck when doing it.
  9. Hardy Enterprises

    Hardy Enterprises LawnSite Member
    Messages: 116


    I have a 72" Lazer Z EPS and it does great on hills. I feel it will hang with any other riding mower once you have some experience cutting hills with one. I recommend finding a safe hill (one with some open area at the bottom) to learn on though. Basically I have found that I can cut any hill up to the point that it literally slide down it as long as I keep the nose of the mower going either side to side or up hill. I can go side to side turning uphill with no problem. I can cut up and reverse back down hills so steep that the mower slides when going side to side and still stay in control. The only real problem I have found with mine is when you turn the nose down hill. You can go down hills with no problem if your careful and don't try and stop before you get on a flat, but if you ever get the nose going down hill and try and stop on the hill you better grab hold of something because your going to the bottom in a hurry.

  10. Mr.Ziffel

    Mr.Ziffel LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 291

    Just a note of interest on the steepness of slopes. Slopes can be expressed in degrees as a few of you have done, but more commonly they are expressed as a percentage. Those of you who've driven in the mountains have seen the signs "STEEP GRADE - 6% SLOPE". Well guess what? A 45 degree slope is a 100% grade! There isn't a ZTR, lawn tractor or even a push mower with a person behind it that can mow a 45 degree [100%] hill! Think about it in terms of roof pitches if you're familiar with them. A 12/12 pitch is a little steeper than you could even think about standing on isn't it? Well, that's a 45 degree slope, or as I said before, a 100% slope, 12/12=1.00 [x 100 to express it as a percentage] = 100%.

    So you don't think I'm trying to be a know it all, I admit that I'm not sure how you back into the number so that the STEEP GRADE of 6% can be expressed as a degree, but if 45 is 100%, then 6 which is steep for a truck is a heck of a lot less of a slope than 45 degrees. I think it might be about 13 degrees, which is a heck of a long way from 45. Homer knows a math major who might be able to help us out here. Will

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