Need advice on lawn aerator

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing Equipment' started by DiPop, Aug 24, 2014.

  1. DiPop

    DiPop LawnSite Member
    Messages: 19

    I've been looking at walk behind lawn aerators for sale on Craigslist and was wondering if there's any major differences between the Classen, Bluebird or Lesco aerators? They all seem to have the same setup with the roller out front except if they have a B&S motor or Honda engine. They all seem to be in the same price ranged used so I was just wondering if anyone had any experience with any of these three and if one stands out from the next? Also, I see that the Ryan aerators are usually priced higher than the other three, are they worth the extra money?
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  2. Outlawn

    Outlawn LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 735

    Ryan and classen are the same company.
    Rotary tines and reciprocating tines are some of the biggest differences. The ones with the roller are rotary tine. Reciprocating tine are supposed to be better for the soil.
    Wish I could be more input on the difference between the brands. Billy Goat is also popular and should be around the same price range.
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  3. DiPop

    DiPop LawnSite Member
    Messages: 19

    Thanks for the info, I'll do some more research on the tine set ups
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  4. TPendagast

    TPendagast LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 9,752

    if you don't aerate very much (which most LCOs don't) you are better off renting.

    If you do buy, buy the lesco.
  5. larryinalabama

    larryinalabama LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 19,040

    All the machines have their advantages. The 2 types are "drum" and "crankshaft"

    The drum uses the weight of the machine too pull plugs, the crankshaft uses the engines power too pull plugs.

    The advantages of a drum machine is that it pulls a lot more plugs, is more realiable, and costs a lot less. The main disadvantage is that its hard work too operate, and can damage turf eaiser.

    The advantage of a crankshaft machine is that its eaiser to operate, and is lighter. The disadvantages are the price, they will bounce on hard soil, they don't pull enough plugs, and they have too be pushed or have a drive system.

    If your not doing a lot of aerating, and/or your young a BlueBird will serve you well. I think the Ryan has a larger roller in the front and is slightly better.
  6. Exact Rototilling

    Exact Rototilling LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 5,378

    Ted's correct in the area of the amount of aerations many LCO do.

    I mainly run reciprocating. IMHO Aeration is a better fit in the applications program.

    Another big hint is folks who hire the solo service out who don't want to hire an application Co. want the service done dirt cheap.

    This is what I have wrestled with for years.

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  7. olajoe808

    olajoe808 LawnSite Member
    from Zone 5b
    Messages: 221

    Its' not the machine. It's how you use it.

    Solo operator, built on aeration. Ya gotta love this stuff!

  8. Exact Rototilling

    Exact Rototilling LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 5,378

    Hey Larry, The reciprocating units typically pull more plugs per square foot than the drum style.

    There is a new machine in town that can pull deep plugs plus an absolute ton in a single pass. It will out pull ANY tepid and I mean ANY drum style machine to absolute shame and despair with a shocking shear volume of plugs. No need for a double pass.
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    Last edited: Aug 24, 2014
  9. Exact Rototilling

    Exact Rototilling LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 5,378

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  10. DiPop

    DiPop LawnSite Member
    Messages: 19

    Thanks for all the helpful tips, I don't do a lot of aeration but when I do I rent a machine but I figured for the money I make off it and seeding I can just pay for the machine and stop wasting money on rental fees. I'll start pushing aeration more on customers once I own the machine and won't be worrying about the fees

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