Please help me spend my money....

AsharperImage

LawnSite Member
Just getting into the business FULL time ( I lost my regular job a few months back) and I'm going at it full force. I've already got one mower purchased (52" Toro Z) and have the trailer situation taken care of. I'm wondering however about the small stuff????

What type of hand helds should I buy (I'm leaning toward Stihl mostly because of the dealer network where I live however there are husky dealers as well) What do I need to purchase to get started I'm thinking the 600 series backpack blower and the 130 Kombi system with several attachments would get me started please help me make a smart decision.

Also I need help choosing a 21 inch push mower... For this i'm totally stumped there is a Toro and ExMark dealer as well as a Honda dealer here so those are my basic choices is it worth spending $$$$$$ on a comercial 21. Thank you in advance for your help I'm investing most of my savings into this venture and don't want to get burned.

PS I already have a good relationship with all three dealers so that isn't an issue.
 

tony b

LawnSite Member
The first thing I would try to do is buy low hour used equipment. The stihl 600's are good blowers I just sold all of mine for $250 ea. I have a kombi unit but they are expensive. I don't know how many accounts you already have but if its around 10 or so I would go as low budget as I could at first especially if your unemployed. Around here I could probably buy enough high end used equipment to do a startup for way less than you paid for the toro.
I started my biz from literally nothing and don't know your financial situation. but I will give you an examples of silly stuff I did to start. The kombi with attachments is about $800 but a decent set of electric hedge trimmers at lowes is $50. Need an extension tape them to a pole prunner that cost $35 and buy a $219 string trimmer and save yourself $500. Is it as good..... no way. Will it work and do just as good of a job ......yes.
 
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AsharperImage

LawnSite Member
That's very good advice and I am looking at used equipment the toro I bought is a 2007 that has 104 hours on it and for 2500 I think i did very well. I am also looking at a 60 Exmark Turf Tracer with 500 hours on it I think I can get for around 3000. My reasoning for getting good handheld was a total lack of used product out there. I have a decent amount of savings I'm willing to invest into this business and want to buy the right stuff first. Everything I'm looking at new the dealers are willing to deal on price for. Thank you for the advice I will certainly take it and watch my costs.
 

clc19chase

LawnSite Member
Location
Wetumpka,AL
get u a br600 magnum, fs 100 linetrimmer, bg86 hanheld blower, I know people who will buy the hedge trimmer attachment, and when it is needed they slide the trimmer head off the fs 100 and slide the hedge trimmer on for extended trimming. That eliminates buying the HL100K hedge trimmer
 

billpiper

LawnSite Member
Just getting into the business FULL time ( I lost my regular job a few months back) and I'm going at it full force. I've already got one mower purchased (52" Toro Z) and have the trailer situation taken care of. I'm wondering however about the small stuff????

What type of hand helds should I buy (I'm leaning toward Stihl mostly because of the dealer network where I live however there are husky dealers as well) What do I need to purchase to get started I'm thinking the 600 series backpack blower and the 130 Kombi system with several attachments would get me started please help me make a smart decision.

Also I need help choosing a 21 inch push mower... For this i'm totally stumped there is a Toro and ExMark dealer as well as a Honda dealer here so those are my basic choices is it worth spending $$$$$$ on a comercial 21. Thank you in advance for your help I'm investing most of my savings into this venture and don't want to get burned.

PS I already have a good relationship with all three dealers so that isn't an issue.
Looks to me like you'll only use a 21" mower occaisionally or on small properties. I have a snapper 21" commercial i bought used & it's great. I also have a Honda HRX 217 that I've had for several years ands it's been great too, although it's about done at this stage. My advice would be to get a consumer grade, high end 21". They'll cut well, hold up reasonably well and will be half the price of a commercial. I like Honda, but that's based on my experience.

The combi you're looking at is the most powerful and the heaviest. The lightest commercial grade that Stihl makes will do everything you need and will be somewhat lighter. I have the line trimmer, hedge trimmer, and edger attachments. I have found the pole hedge trimmer to be heavy & a little awkward at times, but it's indepensable when you need the reach. Since I'm trimming more shrubs, I find I need a lighter trimmer for the accessable shrubs. The BR 600 blower is a beast, but expensive at $500. I see them used on CL or $250 to $350. I have found that I need a stand-alone line trimmer, but I got a deal from my dealer on a demo, but I work with my son a lot.

Good luck
 

mowerbrad

LawnSite Fanatic
Don't blow your budget spending money on stuff you don't need yet, buy that stuff when you have an actual need for it. You can get do basic lawn care with a BR600 and FS70 or FS90 (either trimmer will serve you well and is designed for commercial use).

A Kombi system is nice but you only see the price savings after buying 3 or more attachments. The only problem that you might run into if you only have a kombi is if the powerhead breaks down, you lose all the tools that you have for the kombi until the powerhead is repaired.

Don't worry about getting a handheld blower, I had two backpack blowers and two handheld blowers a couple years ago and honestly never found a need for the handheld blowers. I ended up selling the handheld blowers and keeping the two backpacks.

Honestly, a trimmer and blower is pretty much all you will need to do the basic lawn care tasks. I don't know how many hedge trimming jobs you plan on getting, but you may just want to buy a hedge trimmer when you start getting the work for one. Same with an edger. You can actually edge a maintained property with a string trimmer, its just establishing that first edge that requires an actual edger.

You may want to look on the marketplace on here to see if any used stihl equipment is for sale near you, it may be worth a look, especially if it could save you a few hundred bucks.
 

Jimslawncareservice

LawnSite Platinum Member
Location
mn
Of you have a z why do you need a 60" walk behind? Start with a husky 21 with the wheel barings in the wheels. 300 bucks or so. You must have holes in your pocket from your burning a hole in it.
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AsharperImage

LawnSite Member
All excellent points and NO I do not have money burning a hole through my pockets I am however fully on-board with top notch equipment and it seems there are some deals to be had in my area this time of year. I think you are correct though I'll hold off on some of this stuff till the job comes up and I need it right away. My reasoning behind wanting a walk-behind is the few lawns I already do are pretty hilly and I thought a walker would be much easier. Thats why I have you guys though to help me make smarter choices. As far as why a 60"? well honestly I'd prefer a 48 or maybe even small however I can get the used 60 cheap! Do I wait and get a smaller mower or do you think a 60 is manageable for a wide varity of lawns? The few lawns I have now are actually quite large 2+ acres but I'm assuming there will be a lot of smaller ones to come. Thanks
 

billpiper

LawnSite Member
All excellent points and NO I do not have money burning a hole through my pockets I am however fully on-board with top notch equipment and it seems there are some deals to be had in my area this time of year. I think you are correct though I'll hold off on some of this stuff till the job comes up and I need it right away. My reasoning behind wanting a walk-behind is the few lawns I already do are pretty hilly and I thought a walker would be much easier. Thats why I have you guys though to help me make smarter choices. As far as why a 60"? well honestly I'd prefer a 48 or maybe even small however I can get the used 60 cheap! Do I wait and get a smaller mower or do you think a 60 is manageable for a wide varity of lawns? The few lawns I have now are actually quite large 2+ acres but I'm assuming there will be a lot of smaller ones to come. Thanks
Would seem to me that a 60" WB would be a bit of a scalping problem on hilly or uneven lawns. How big you need would depend on how big the lawns are that you cut. I would think at 36" WB would pair up well with your ZTR 7 may elimnate the need for a 21" for the most part. Anything you couldn't get to with the 36" you should be able to gert with the trimmer.
 

SouthSide Cutter

LawnSite Bronze Member
Location
Washington In
Get a trimmer, a handheld blower, a 21" mower from Lowes and when you start making money get a backpac and some other things. And leaf season is over anyway. Ran handheld blowers for 11 years before ever getting a backpac. And I never use a backpac unless I am at a bank or place that has a big parking lot. Takes to much time putting it on, can be blowing by the time you get it on. Time is money!!!
 

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