Opinions on Ferris Mowers

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by Brian F, Feb 25, 2006.

  1. Brian F

    Brian F LawnSite Member
    Messages: 3

    I am interested in opinions regarding the 26 hp water cooled engine being used on the 2005 Ferris 3000. Also general truth about Ferris mowers. I live in an area dominated by Grasshopper and I have owned several of them but bought my first Ferris IS 3000 last season. I only put about 300 hours on the Ferris last year so I have not had the chance to see how they do in the long run. Has anyone on this site had a lot of experience with Ferris? I am considering going with all Ferris mowers this year but would like to hear from someone who has run them for a long time. I don't know anyone else in my city using them. Also if anyone has a collection system for the IS 3000 for sale, let me know.

    Brian F.
  2. rodfather

    rodfather LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 9,501

    I've had like 20 or so of them Brian during the past 12 years in my company. Extremely reliable machines IMO. I've had 3 wheelers, big and small wb's, and z's. Feel free to email me or a pm with any specific questions you might have.
  3. Trinity Lawn Care  LLC

    Trinity Lawn Care LLC LawnSite Senior Member
    from NJ
    Messages: 946

    I used one a few times last year for some of my bigger accountants. Very nice machine. Good cut, nice ride, strong engine. I would say they are good machines. However, I have never owned one.
  4. rodfather

    rodfather LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 9,501

    BTW, I have 7 of them right now, 2 61" Z's, a 72" Z, 3, 61" WB's and a 52" WB.
  5. Tim Wright

    Tim Wright LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,034

    I have the IS1500z or whatever it is. It is 52inch, 25 Kawa and I love it.

  6. Brian F

    Brian F LawnSite Member
    Messages: 3

    Sounds like you are happy with them. My concern has been with how the suspension is going to do longterm. How many hours do you expect to get out of a typical Ferris. Are you using any of the 26 hp water cooled and how do to think they do in comparison to the air cooled engines. I have had the Grasshopper with water cooled engines but that was Kubota built.
  7. Ramairfreak98ss

    Ramairfreak98ss LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,210

    Ive only used my 1000z from last year for a week or so and i like it. Its my first ztr though so not sure how much my opinion is worth as i dont have any other ztrs to compare it to. I liked their reputation, ive owned and own Simplicity machines now and like the quality. The dealers locally sell a lot of them and they look well built. Theyre also cheaper than a John deere 757 i was considering with a 54" mower deck.
  8. rodfather

    rodfather LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 9,501

    To tell ya the truth Brian, I am not sure anyone really knows how long the IS is gonna last...it hasn't been out all that long (couple years maybe). I don't run my mowers into the ground, I trade them out with relatively low hours with my dealer on a continual type of basis over the years. Then again, I am a PM freak when it comes to service so what I trade in is in great condition for the number of hours the mower might have.

    My 2 61" Z's are air cooled and my 72" Z is lc. All 3 were purchased in early 05.
  9. old dog 80

    old dog 80 LawnSite Member
    Messages: 204

    I don't have a good dealer nearby but have always wondered if the suspension
    messes with a good cut.Like to hear what you have to say!
  10. LwnmwrMan22

    LwnmwrMan22 LawnSite Platinum Member
    Messages: 4,373

    I too trade my mowers with relatively low hours (around 1000, +/-). I on the other hand am a VERY poor PM freak.

    I figure if the mower is under warranty, what do I care??? :D

    Anyways, I've got / had 2 IS4000's. Low serial numbers. My first one was serial number 201, and the second is 436. The were both 2002's.

    The suspension is wonderful. I do larger areas, a school district, parks, etc., stuff where you can mow wide open, as long as the grass dictates so.

    My biggest complaint is this......

    When I got my first Ferris, the cut was crap. Straight up, junk.

    It wouldn't cut dandelions. Now I know mowers aren't designed to cut dandelions, but I had to go backwards to even get 1/2 of them. When you've got large areas, usually what suffers is the chemical budget, so they get weeds.

    The other problem I had was it absolutely would not throw grass. 99% of what I mow is KY Bluegrass. If it was AT ALL wet, even from dew, you might as well stay at home. Plus, since the deck is / was so shallow, there wasn't much suction so you couldn't drive back over the clumps to disperse them in another direction.

    I haven't looked at the new ones. IMO, the problem with the grass dispersal, is they put in baffles, and there's no room for the grass to go, so you're basically forced to try to mulch it all. IMO, and believe me, I'm just a guy that cuts grass, but you need all the room you can get for that grass to get from the left side of the deck, out the discharge on the right, all the while being able to maintain a "decent" speed and quality of cut.

    Now, I'll admit, I'm a complete sucker. My dealer ended up having one sit on the show room floor for a year. He then finally made me a deal that I couldn't refuse, so I bought the second one.

    Both have had starter issues. After about 200 hours, we've always had to use a screwdriver to "hotwire" the mower, since the key won't do it.

    My first mower was in the shop 3 times to get it fixed, after that it got traded. It could just be my shop didn't know what it was doing either.

    I will say though, that the IS is drawing me back again. I might take a look again this year, I see they're offering 1 year 0% interest. I know I'll have to get ahold of the rep though, because I'm not buying one until I can try it for a week.

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