Mower/Dealer Questions What can I expect?

Discussion in 'Homeowner Assistance Forum' started by jeffnoland, Aug 11, 2006.

  1. jeffnoland

    jeffnoland LawnSite Member
    Messages: 6

    I have been lurking on this site and reading many of the posts and need some advice. I am currently cutting 1 1/3 acres with a Lesco 48” walk behind powered by an 18 HP Kawasaki.

    1) I only have time to cut the grass once a week and it should probably be done every 5 or 6 days. There are areas where the grass gets pretty long and maybe I am cutting 2” off. (I could be wrong and it could be more) The mower has 5 speeds, and I generally cut in 3rd gear. It seems that in some areas this is too fast, as the cut does not look even. Should I be able to move through the lawn as fast as I want without worrying about cut quality, or are there times when I would have to gear down? The last few times I had to shift to 1st gear to get a nice cut, which seemed like a crawl. The blades look ok to me, but could this problem be caused by dull blades?
    2) I bought a Bobcat 225 48” Zero Turn Rider, but did not like the machine. The deck was as wide as the width of the rear tires, so it made it very hard to cut under bushes and cut around trees. Additionally, the mower is substantially heavier than the walk behind and therefore seemed to tear up the grass on turns. I also have a swale and hill that the machine did not work too well on – especially when wet. I sold the machine…
    3) Since I am getting older, it is getting harder to do the walking, so I am reconsidering a ZTR. I am looking at Gravely HVZ2350. Obviously this is not a commercial grade mower, but seems built well enough to get the job done for a once a week cut. I see where many of you say to go to the local dealer and try a unit out. Can I expect a local dealer to actually let me cut my lawn with the machine? That would be what I would like, to try the machine for a full cut. However, the local dealer that I have contacted will only let me make a minor test cut – let me drive around the yard and see how the machine performs but not let me turn the blades on very much. Should I expect more?
    4) Would I be better off putting a Sulky on the back of my walk behind? The yard is rather rough and I think I would bounce around a lot.
    5) Anyone in the Lake Zurich/Crystal Lake Illinois area have a used ZTR that they might be getting rid of?

    Thanks for any help!!! Jeff Noland
  2. ed2hess

    ed2hess LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 14,574

    The Lesco should be just fine. Sharpen the blades and be sure that the blade belt is tight. I assume you are just throwing the grass out not mulching? The sulke will be rougher than heck on the legs. Walking never hurt anybody take you time, it is healthy. Any of the mower you mentioned should mow the grass just fine. No, most dealers aren't going to let you take a unit home and tear it up. The distributors will let you do that , the dealer will tellyou who they are.
  3. jeffnoland

    jeffnoland LawnSite Member
    Messages: 6


    Thanks for the fast reply.

    Yes, I am just throwing the grass out.

    Which brings me to another question about mulching. I have mulching blades for the mower. If I run the mulching blades, do you have to seal off the discharge to mulch? I have always put the mulching blades on but never sealed off the discharge.

    I don't think the belt is loose because the engine will really lug down in thick wet grass - if it was loose I would think it would just slip, but I will check it.

    I don't mind walking, but my knees are starting to go and I would like to preserve them. It is great excersise - I can knock it off in about 52 minutes if I shift into 4th on some of the long runs - on a hot day you really work up a sweat. I would have to assume someone that is doing it 8 hours a day does not try to go that fast. You would be worn out...

    What is the difference between a dealer and a distributor?

    Thanks, Jeff

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