I'm not in the lawn care business, just a lonely home owner

Discussion in 'Homeowner Assistance Forum' started by sage55, Apr 24, 2012.

  1. sage55

    sage55 LawnSite Member
    Messages: 39

    Let me introduce myself first and say I am now in the lawn care business as it seems many people here might be. In fact I am a new home owner (as of last July). The house sits on just under a 1/2 acre with the front yard being completely flat with no trees and the backyard having a slight down hill slope with about 8 trees, deck, and is fenced in.

    Currently I'm using a small Craftsman push mower with a Honda engine, it's been doing fine but takes some time to mow the yard. So what I'm looking for is something that will provide a good looking cut as well as do it a bit faster.

    Last year I did use a couple times a 54" Craftsman mower but the deck was so wide that when turning around on some places in the back yard the deck would scalp the grass. So now I'm thinking a 42" or 44" would be better suited for my needs, I'm also looking at zero turn mowers and here's the list I've compiled thus far:

    Hustler Sport 42"
    Exmark Quest E 42"
    Bob Cat RZ 42"
    Gravely ZT 42"
    Bad Boy MZ 42"

    Of the list I've compiled a number of features to compare them all and plan on calling around for prices today.

    Exmark is huge in this area, in fact it seems like that's all you see on the trailers of the guys that do lawn care services, however the Quest E has a stamped deck and a C channel riveted frame.

    Hustler and Bob Cat both look very promising in terms of a welded deck and squared welded frame. But the small 15HP kawasaki on the Hustler and the Briggs on the Bob Cat both kind of concern me.

    Gravely has a stamped deck, and I'm not overly joyed by that. Bad Boy, I've never heard of has a year less warranty and just not sure how they compare quality wise to other brands.

    To end this long winded post, another feature that pulls a heavy weight on me, which I believe all of these are, is where the mowers are made... I'd prefer USA.

    With all of that said, does anyone have any feedback they could give me about the mowers or brands above OR do you have a suggestion for another mower which might better suit my needs?

    Thanks in advance.
  2. Capemay Eagle

    Capemay Eagle LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,752

    Off your list I like the Hustler Sport. I would not be concerned with the engine. That engine will surprise you when you get on it and start cutting. I know 15hp does not sound like allot, but for the size and weight of the machine, that engine will serve you well. The BadBoy MZ is also another good pick, it to has the Kawi option and welded deck. These have been the two most popular models the last couple of years for the 1/2 to 1 acre homeowners. To add these are manufactured in the USA.
  3. BTC

    BTC LawnSite Member
    Messages: 150

    Bad Boy has hot spokesmodels. That should count for something.
  4. Madson26

    Madson26 LawnSite Member
    Messages: 8

    You sound just like me, and I had almost an identical list. I would have loved to have a full on commercial unit, but I just couldn't find one in my price range. The ones I did find were pretty beat up. If I was going to buy new from your list the Badboy and Hustler seem to be a toss up, do you like yellow or orange better? They were both going for about 3500 new around me, or 4000-4200 with the Kawasaki engine upgrades. I ended up buying a used Hustler mini Fastrak 42 with the Honda engine for 2500 and I couldn't be happier. The Honda is only 16hp, but you wouldnt know it. It runs through grass that would bog down my old craftsman lawn tractor with a 25 hp Briggs. If you can afford to buy new, I don't think you can go wrong with either.

  5. Bigfish8

    Bigfish8 LawnSite Member
    Messages: 56

    There have been posts on this website about a new Snapper Commercial 36" ZTR. It is a true commercial quality mower and may be in your price range. I purchased a new Gravely Compact Pro 34 a month ago and I am very happy with it. However, had I known about the Commercial Snapper I would have definitely checked it out as I wanted a commercial quality mower. Conduct a search for the Snapper and check out the reviews.

    I just ran a quick search and came up with this one: http://www.lawnsite.com/showthread.php?t=375300&highlight=Snapper+Commercial+36
  6. Capemay Eagle

    Capemay Eagle LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,752

    I wanted to add what you said here. I had an 07 MFT, but I had the 17 Kohler option. I remember thinking that the 17hp was going to be way to small, but to my surprise that engine had plenty. it never bogged down once. There were also a few other guys back a few years ago that had the Honda 16hp and they all said they had plenty of power.
  7. sage55

    sage55 LawnSite Member
    Messages: 39

    Thanks for the feedback so far guys. So far I'm kind of leaning towards the Hustler and might demo one this week.

    I did call one dealer today and they said the Hustler Sport with the Kawasaki engine is a 18HP and not a 15HP, for what it's worth.

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