OK, here I am after all these years, dealing with my first strong quality complaint. Honestly I have never been here before and I don't think I am really in any position to be the one pointing the finger of blame in any direction.... So I was hoping some of you could help me decode this one and figure out what is to blame... This could well end up being my first quality issue cancellation. Here is the situation... OK I took on a customer last year. Not a great lawn by any stretch. But other than one small issue... a great customer. That issue may or may not be important so here is a link. http://www.lawnsite.com/showthread.php?t=126204&highlight=trim+thorny+shrubs Anyways, on to the lawn. Not a good lawn. Heavily shaded. What grass is in it is thin and whispy as a result. Lots of weeds like clover and lots of MOSS. Part of the lawn is a very loose/soft organic topsoil, while the other areas are clay with no topsoil and some of that is very hardpacked. A lot of the total area is VERY steep. Most of you guys wouldn't want to attempt it. So the customer has only paid me to mow it. But overall, it has improved quite a bit since I started doing it. But still, those of us who are Pros know these shade lawns need continous maintenance, which this customer does not seem to be concerned with doing. So I have just cut it and did the best by it I could. But anyways, plenty of praise from me and only a few minor complaints all year. All being turf/clover/moss damage. Took some moss divots with the anti-scalp wheels due to cutting height is steep spots. Of course the wheels hitting caused marks from the tires too. Raised the cutting height and took care of that. Left a skid mark coming down a slope (rain). And two tire marks on separate occasions. Both in the clover on the clay hardpack. Once it was wet and once one of the front tires was in a hole when I stopped to turn. Anyways, only one of those had to be brought to my attention in the form of a complaint. Those of you who have cut such places know what it is like to try to do it with zero turn equipment. It's like being on eggshells and you are "aware" of every move you make on the lawn. So you always see the damage right away most of the time. But, it time I got all those areas pretty well healed up. But this spring, I found myself wondering why I had not heard from this customer and the other two neighboring accounts. Saturday I was in the area and decided to drop in. So all goes pretty well until I make my way to this customer. He comes out and asks me if I can bring a smaller mower out to do his lawn this year. I used to haul a lawn tractor around to do these types of lawns. But not anymore. I just got rid of most of those type lawns and quit hauling it around anymore. So anyways, we went through the whole song and dance about how much longer it would take to cut it with something else and how much more it would cost and he made reference to how long it used to take someone else with a 21" (I mow and trim 3 lawns in that time). I told him my mower essentially had 3 of those mowers underneath it, at which point he made reference to a lawn tractor (I'm not pushing it and the lawn tractor is small). I just told him I would have to charge him double or maybe a bit more to come out doing it with the lawn tractor. So Of course he doesn't like the idea of more expense and says if I can't he might have to find someone else. At this point I'm not being shaken by this and he can tell it. So he trys to shake me by making reference to possible people he could get to do it. Still I was not affected. It's no easy lawn anyways and I'm not loosing any of the margin I make to do it. So I just start probing to see what his issue is with my "big mowers" and he starts telling me about some turf damage he is unhappy about. He says it looks like I have been rubbing the side of my deck against the bank behind his well house by trying to squeeze between to two to mow. (Yes the bank is steep enough and a sudden enough transition that this is possible) But while he's telling me this I am puzzled. Never remeber hitting there and it seems I recall I could probably squeeze a 72" through. So I ask him to take me and show me. So we go to have a look. As we approach I see bare clay. But after close inspection I realize this was an area that was really mossy. There was a place a few inches wide by a few feet long that looked bad. This is where my lower tire ran when I mowed across the slope. This area is VERY steep and what has happened is the knobbies on the Turfmasters near the edge of the tire tore the moss base. Probably happened when I made a double pass there to get all the leaves on the last visit of the year. Over the winter water soaked in the soil in these areas. As the ground froze and rose up the moss continued to break apart and the soil crumbled during the freeze-thaw process. I explained this to the customer and also went into detail about the difficulty involved in trying to service such a tender lawn. And I told him what could be done for the lawn itself to make it healthy, strong and durable. I didn't get a bite on that. So I just told him he was welcome to find someone else to do it if he wanted to. I told him I couldn't really offer him any other options beyond that or taking better care of the turf unless we could reach some other compromise... I told him for a bit more I could just cut the troubled area with something else, but not the whole lawn. I just told him it was his decision and that I would have no hard feelings either way. He said he would think it over and let me know what his decision is. I said fine by me, gave him a date I would hold his spot in the schedule until before filling it and I was on my way. End of story but not end of thoughts.