New Contract-new Mower

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by oldturf, Jan 19, 2007.

  1. oldturf

    oldturf LawnSite Member
    Messages: 221

    Well I went of the deep end today. I was awarded a new contract for about 386 acres of parks for the city. They require a 15 ft. mower for the contract so I placed an order for a new Toro 580D with 4 wheel drive and an air conditioned cab. This thing has a price tag of $72,801.00. they claim that the list price is around $85,000.00. Seems high to me but it is the best price that I could get. Has anyone bought one of these lately, and is this a good price? I now have conformation on contracts totaling a little over 540 acres for next year along with my residentals and small commerical properties. I am thinking about getting out of the residental market but have not made up my mind yet. I'll see what happens.
  2. desii

    desii LawnSite Member
    Messages: 193

    Off the deep end....I'll say. That's a nice machine! Congrats on the contract. Are the 386 acres wide open? Or will there be lots of obstacles? Are the parks near each other, or will you have to trailer it alot? How many years are you signed up for?

    I'm asking because I have a large (to me) contract (about 1/2 of yours), use a 580D and a couple other machines, too. I don't know that I would want to do 540 acres with just one machine (and the cost of two is probably prohibitive;) ). I guess my concern would be during the wet season and trying to not get behind with only one machine. I know it will cut some kinda grass, but that seem like alot.

    Of course, with the cab and 4x4 (that's some machine!), you can keep cutting while it's raining:)
  3. txgrassguy

    txgrassguy LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,083

    Provided that is the delivered service price, you didn't do to badly.
    Typically with machines of this type, warranty support by Toro is quite good.
    Transportation though becomes problematic as the over size of this machine necessitates a drop deck goose neck trailer to avoid Commercial Motor Vehicle attention.
    Out of curiousity, did you check into the Jacobsen HR511 or Howard Price series machines?
    I have many hours on all of these machines and the Toro certainly was the nicest overall to run.
    The one aspect of this machine is the relative fragility of the casters for the decks, the operator running this machine has got to pay attention.
    Depending on the diesel that is in it, look for about 4,000 hours of in frame time prior to any real attention being necessary.
  4. desii

    desii LawnSite Member
    Messages: 193

    Unfortunately, the HR5111 wouldn't even come close to keeping up with the 580D. You would need two (which means two operators, too) as it cuts about 8 acres per hr to the 14 that the 580 will do. As far as Howard Price goes, not even close to either the Jacobsen or the Toro, IMO. The 3 HP1280's that I had (many moons ago) were nothing but trouble. Don't know anything about their 16' machine.

    I like my HR5111's and would recommend them, but for smaller properties. In this situation, and good luck finding a decent used one, the Jacobsen HR9016 would be a good choice. Never had one, but they seem like great machines (I'm pretty sure it would be more costly than the 580).

    I found where a 9016 was sold to a town government in 2004 for $65K and I seriously doubt it had a cab encloser w/air, but was most certainly 4x4.
  5. oldturf

    oldturf LawnSite Member
    Messages: 221

    The parks are set up in pretty tight routes. There are 23 parks all together with several in the 40 acre range , most between 12 and 25 acres and one down to 6 acres. I will not put the 580 on the smaller parks and I have quite a bit of support equipment. I use a Ford Newholland MC35 - 84'' cut with 2, 5ft. offset mowers, a 72" john deere 997, 2, 62''Toros, a 54" john deere, a 52"
    great dane, 32" toro and a couple of 21" for close trim. I figure that I can use the 580 on about 3/4 of the total acres and the rest will be done with whatever works out, I have a Toro utility vehicle set up with sprayer for chem
    trimming, thank goodness they allow chem trimming. The 580 will be driven only by myself and my wife, the employees can handle the rest. I also mow 5 miles of highway right of way and wonder if the 580 will be able to handle any of that. I have almost 100 acres of soccer fields that I know it will be great on. I have been doing the soccer fields and right of way for several years with the equipment that I already have and I am pretty sure the 580 will help with those now. I tried to get them to let me run 2 toro 4100s or 455s but they stuck with the 15 ft. requirement so I can only afford one of these beast for now. I am also wondering how well the 580 will handle slopes. I would think with the 4 wheel drive and the wide stance that it will be alright.
    Toro will not make any claims on slope ability because of liability issues.
  6. Envy Lawn Service

    Envy Lawn Service LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 11,087

    Congrats on the contract.

    Congrats on the mower too.... that's a lotta-lawnmower.

    The only thing I don't get is where they get off specifying you use such a big mower.
  7. oldturf

    oldturf LawnSite Member
    Messages: 221

    My point exactly,but they have the power to require what they wish and if I didn't like it I could turn them down. I like the big mower anyway and think that I now have enough work to merit it. The contracts are for 4 years which is very good, I hope. I also bought the extended service plan that extends the warranty to 4 years. I am a big believer in extended warranties.
  8. desii

    desii LawnSite Member
    Messages: 193

    Gimme a call in 4 years and maybe I could take it off your hands and mow in style. On second thought, I'm sure it will still have too much value for me to afford it:laugh:

    As you may already know, the 580 is very fast on road travel. Somewhere between 15 and 20 MPH, I think. Like a rocket for a mower. You probably wouldn't have to trailer it if the jobs are that close. You'll probably have the light kit which would make road travel pretty safe. I actually pull mine around on a 10K lb. 18' deckover dovetail trailer (not a gooseneck) and it takes all of the flat area and actually trailers just fine. The neat part is the front deck is exactly the width of my trailer, 8'!

    With that much support with other machines, you should be just fine with one 580.
  9. Frontier-Lawn

    Frontier-Lawn LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,955

  10. puppypaws

    puppypaws LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 9,164

    They probably want to make sure he has the equipment to handle their work as fast as possible and they want to show the imagine of looking very professional. They like the look of their property being cut with a $85000.00 machine instead of 25 Mexican's with push mowers, it portrays a higher standard of professionalism to the public. Looks go a long way in America that is why men like to hire pretty women to deal with the public they can get more accomplished than one that doesn't have all of her teeth.

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