Man I need a "Z"

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by Mikes Lawn Landscape, Sep 6, 2003.

  1. Mikes Lawn Landscape

    Mikes Lawn Landscape LawnSite Senior Member
    from Texas
    Messages: 458

    The lawns I'm picking up all seem to be 1 acre props that havn't been mowed for a month right now I use a 42" LT to mow them.
    Last night did a prop that took 1 hour to weed whack and 2 hours to mow give or take.

    My theory is to get to about 75% capacity I'm only at 20% right now and get a ZTR.

    My question is do I go ahead and get the ZTR first thing next spring or go ahead and wait until I get to the 75% capacity.

    And the lawn I did last night had about 20 trees and some flower beds to mow around and had to double cut about 1/2 of it. Assuming the 42" LT took me 2 hours how much time could I shave off the mowing time with a ZTR say a 48"

    Any help would be appreciated
  2. GraZZmaZter

    GraZZmaZter LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 740

    Do a search. There has been PLENTY of talk on this subject.

    Personally i am confident in my marketing and selling abilitles and would go ahead and buy the equipment. ( it makes more of a challenge for me )

    This is a tough time of year though and you may want to wait til spring if you think you cant pay the new mower note through the witner....
  3. work_it

    work_it LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 976

    I know the initial clean-ups are taking up a lot of your time, but will get better as you become more familiar with the property. I would suggest holding off until spring/early summer. That way you can save enough money so that you can pay cash or be able to pay it off quick. Another thing to consider; how much leaf removal are you going to be doing this year? If you have enough business lined up you could get the mower now and let it pay for itself that way.
  4. It’s getting so late in the season that it might be better to wait for a great deal. As far as waiting until you get 75% of your estimated capacity, I wouldn’t wait. The only reason for me to wait on a new mower is saving up the cash, as financing is more risk than I’m willing to take (drought, flaky customers, etc.).

    But it seems like work comes to those with the tools. Spending extra time cutting large properties with a small mower will leave you less time (and opportunity) to find the new accounts you’re looking for. Plus you never know what might catch a new customer’s eye and seeing a new mower seems to draw attention. Of course anyone can buy a mower, but having a ZTR at least makes you look serious about your profession.
  5. As far as going to a 48” ZTR from a 42” Walk Behind, the ZTR will be at least twice as fast at producing cut grass. Due to larger deck size, ground speed, and reversals.

    An example of size increase alone: I have an account that takes 3 solid hours of mowing with my 52” Stander. When I tried it with a 61” Stander, it took just over 2 hours. That’s about 30%-33% faster by increasing the deck size 9” alone. I tested it twice, but wouldn’t have imagined that was possible.

    Since you already have a 42”, you might think about a 52” or a 60” ZTR.
  6. John Gamba

    John Gamba LawnSite Fanatic
    from ct
    Messages: 10,812

    You will be better off with a 52" rider like the man of steel said. You will have better trimming on the left side.
  7. Mikes Lawn Landscape

    Mikes Lawn Landscape LawnSite Senior Member
    from Texas
    Messages: 458

    Thanks guys I will be shopping for my new ZTR this winter for purchase early spring I hope. Bluesteel I like your theory Buy it and they will come. GraZZmaZter you make sense buy the equipment and then get out there and get the business to pay for the beast.

    Thanks everyone
  8. crawdad

    crawdad LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,938

    Mike, I like your sig line. Similar to mine, same theory. Some people need to be reminded that good reliable work ain't cheap.
  9. Mikes Lawn Landscape

    Mikes Lawn Landscape LawnSite Senior Member
    from Texas
    Messages: 458

    Crawdad I'm learning real quick the best thing for my business is to walk away from jobs that dont pay. Had a customer call the other night with 3 1/2 acres to do he described it and said it was a little overgrown because his mower was down. I get there and he had not weed whacked all season or mowed in a month. I quoted him $800 he said no thanks,and I smiled as I got in the truck because I knew for him to do it it would take him at least a week and some other poor LCO can have it and tear up their equip.
  10. Navig8r

    Navig8r LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 477

    Mike..... consider this...... Shop now..... being late in the season, you may find a good deal on a 2003 machine. When I bought my Lazer last August, I got a financing deal with no payments till April, no Intetrest till March. So since I was goin to buy it this year anyway, I took it home last August instead..... was nice to be usin it for the rest of the season, and for leaves, with no payments.
    Did I read it correct? Are you using a lawn tractor now?
    If so, with your description of the lawn that took 2 hours, I think would be about 45 minutes to 1 hour, TOPS, on my Lazer. Much more manuverable around trees, and seldom need to double cut. Add that to higher ground speeds (I MOW faster than my old Wheel Horse could GO!) and you'll be amazed.

    Do you know what you want yet???

    Demo a machine and see what it can do for you.... then work the #'s to see if it's feasible.
    Good Luck

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