riding mower or zero turn?

Discussion in 'Starting a Lawn Care Business' started by kebrowns, Oct 4, 2012.

  1. kebrowns

    kebrowns LawnSite Member
    Messages: 203

    i am looking into getting either a riding mower or zero turn. However, a top of the line riding mowers are about $3000 and less. the zero-turn is about $4800 and up. I am on a budget,Should I use my money to gthe cheaper one
  2. BTLawncare

    BTLawncare LawnSite Member
    Messages: 39

    Hello. I'm not sure what your situation is as far as how many properties you need to mow. I had the same dilema at the beginning of this year. I needed something so I got a riding mowing. It's not as quick as a zero turn but it got me through the mowing season. I wouldn't have been able to do it without one.
    I hopefully will get a z-turn for next season. It will most likely be home a owner model in the beginning but the riding mower was too. I say get what you can afford and move up when you can. I have to keep reminding myself of that. LOL
  3. TuffWork

    TuffWork LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 506

    If your going to get one don't short yourself by getting a non-zero turn when it's what you really need. You don't see very many professional and legitimate landscapers using anything but a zero turn unless it's a walk behind. Look into getting a used zero turn. I paid $7k for my Walker with less than 900 hours. I know that sounds like a lot but it was at least $12k out the door new.
  4. PlantscapeSolutions

    PlantscapeSolutions LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,012

    You also need to be aware that you can't use a zero turn like you can a walk behind. A walk behind will mow hills with ease that a zero turn or stander can't handle. Zero turns in the 36" range also very top heavy. For residential use a walk behind is much better. A small zero turn is going to end up being nothing but a handicap.

    This is why Scag dumped their short lived 36 zero turn. Lots of lazy guys bought the Scag 36 ZTR thinking it was a godsend only to find out it was a waste of money.

    I'm guessing your Bobcat WB is a belt drive PIA. Try to find a hydro 36 WB and you will find it works a world better and will be budget friendly. Investing a money in a home owner quality riding tractor is going to be a bad investment. Plus all the experienced mowing guys in town are going to be laughing at you every time they see your tractor.

    I can tell your inexperienced so make sure you sulky is a true Jim Velke made unit and not a Jungle Jim(or other knock off) piece of crap that doesn't rotate 360. Investing even a penny in a Velke or Sulke that can't rotate 360 is a waste. The clone units all jackknife when you back up instead of simply rotating 180 and allowing you to back up.

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