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Rookie wanting a Zero Turn...

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by Jeff Tracey Enterprises, May 2, 2008.

  1. Jeff Tracey Enterprises

    Jeff Tracey Enterprises LawnSite Member
    Messages: 104

    :confused:I am another one of those firemen that is also in the Lawn Care business. I currently have a used 36" Bobcat Ransomes walk behind and it works great!!! I paid $500 for it and put another $300 into it and it's working great for me. But the only problem is is that busting ass I can only mow around 7 yards a day, ( including edging, weedeating and blowing.) I am debating on getting a zero turn so I can mow more yards in 1 day and or mow more than 1 day a week. I have been looking a little bit, ( 38 week pregnant wife doesn't know my idea, but knows my buying habits) at zero turns but dont want to shell out 5 or 6 grand on one. Also I cant get anything bigger than 48" due to the door on my building is 54", So I have been looking at Lowes and Home Depot for smaller zero's. Does anyone have any ideas or experience using or dealing with the Toro Z4200 timecutters or the John Deere EZTrak's?? I love my Bobcat and was also looking at the Bobcat Fast Cat( though I haven't checked on price.) I know these decisions shouldn't be based primarily on price but I own a very small business so..... Any imput would be greatly appreciated. Thanks again Jeff

    Jeff Tracey Enterprises
    2005 Toyota Tacoma 4x4
    5x8 trailer
    36" Bobcat Walkbehind
    Crappy Troybuilt Straight Shaft Trimmer
    Stihl BR 380 Backpack Blower

    Seagrave's- God's gift to the Fire Service!!" Bar none The Tuffest Fire Trucks On Earth..."
  2. totallawncare25

    totallawncare25 LawnSite Senior Member
    from TN
    Messages: 288

    you can get an EXMARK 28hp kawasaki 52in ztr for about 7800 brand new and it would fit in your building trust me had one and same trouble with the opening and mine fit
  3. StevieZ

    StevieZ LawnSite Member
    Messages: 104

    I have a few co workers who have large yards and ask me what they should buy. I have 2 rules.

    1. Stay away from new equipment at the big box stores. One guy bought the biggest huskvarna tractor from lowes, I found it $300 cheaper at the dealer nad the dealer would have set it up nad tested it before delivery.

    2. Check the local dealers for used equipment, and talk with the dealer. I stopped to look at one piece, got to talking nad he showed me the back forty. A whole row of equipment people abandoned. He had a ransome that looked good, Need an engine for $150. My local Deere dealer Has a Gravely front deck 20hp 60" for $1800. If you look around you can find deals. On good equipment not Junk. My 94 deere 54" WB was a dealer back lot special. He went through and paid the tax for $1200, I've had it 3 years. I just bought a Bobcat Hydro WB 36" w/40" snowblower for 1700. He took my Deere GS45 on trade. (also a back lot Special) The deere needed a wiring upgrade and regulator.

    So Bottom line it you are willing to do some work, And Checking around. You can find a larger mower to fit your need. Personally I would look for a 48 or 54 gear drive WB. They are cheaper and will cover more ground. Also a sulky will help with large areas.
  4. sikagrass

    sikagrass LawnSite Member
    Messages: 238

    Do you have a hustler dealer near you? I bought a mini fastrack with a 42 iinch cut for under 4000. This is its 3rd full year and its still holding up. Very happy with it.
  5. TomberLawn

    TomberLawn LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,299

    I wouldn't buy a zero turn or any power equipment from Lowes or HD. You'd be much better off finding some used commercial equipment like StevieZ said. I see that you are in Charlotte. There is a large dealer down 601S between Monroe and Pageland that usually has a good selection of used equipment. They usually cut some pretty good deals because they sell volume (over 1000 mowers a year). When I was in there last fall getting a grass/leaf catcher, they had some Surfers in the warehouse that they bought from a dealer that was closing. I think the guy told me $3500 for them. Seems like they were 52". I'm sure they're gone now, but you never know what they might have come in from a buy-out or trade-in. The name of the place is Whitley Lawn and Garden. www.whitleylawnandgarden.com

    Also, since you're a local, I checked out craigslist.org to see what was in the area. I found just a few. Call some area dealers and see what they have on the trade-in lot. You can get a used commercial mower that will last a lot longer than a new residential mower and pay the same or less for it. While you're at it, I suggest spending $200 and getting an Echo SRM210 trimmer to replace the Troy-Built. There is no comparison between vibrating, underpowered homeowner tools and smooth, powerful commercial tools.

  6. J&J Customs

    J&J Customs LawnSite Member
    Messages: 165

    i was reading on one thread the other day and someone said the eztraks are built pretty solid i havent tried one out yet but im thinking about doing so plus with them starting at $2899 for the 42" its not that bad of a price, i have actually rode the troybilt mustang 50" surprised on how well it cut... but thats just cut plus it was brand new i have no idea how well they last
  7. Martin Mowing

    Martin Mowing LawnSite Member
    from Kansas
    Messages: 83

    Hey, its always nice to see other fireman on here that also do lawncare. My FD is fairly small 13 per shift line guys and there are 4 of us that mow in our off days, 24hr shifts are pretty conducive to lawncare, huh?

    Someone said something about a fastrack, that may be a good option for you but of course I live 10min from the factory so they are plentiful around here. If you need to bag invest in a walker, I have two and love them. You can get as small as a 36" with those but will spend more unless you can find a good used one.
  8. TomberLawn

    TomberLawn LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,299

    Have you seen en EZTrak up close? The tires are tiny and the frame is very light. Next time you are at Lowes or HD, grab the front end. I guarantee you that you can pick it up and almost flip it backwards. The only advantage of that would be that it's easy to get the blades off to sharpen--just stand it up like an old Snapper. If you want a 42", look at a Bob-Cat Fastcat or Hustler FasTrak or FasTrak Super Duty. Even though they are residential mowers, I'd bet they are heavier built and have better dealer support than what you buy at a box store.
  9. bfstrider

    bfstrider LawnSite Member
    Messages: 35

    If you visit the dealer on 601 South ask for Chad. He owns the dealership and is great to work with.
  10. Itsgottobegreen

    Itsgottobegreen LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,177

    I would find yourself a used wright stander. A 52" 19hp version. You can pick one of those up for $2000-2500. It will out mow a walkbehind and almost be as productive as a ztr in acreage. But if you are mowing small lawns, its the best thing since sliced bread. As it will out turn and out cut a ztr.

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