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Scag Cougar

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by SSO 289, Aug 22, 2008.

  1. SSO 289

    SSO 289 LawnSite Member
    Messages: 12

    I'm looking at a Scag Cougar for the clean up season, does anyone know how well they work compared to a Walker or Exmark Navigator? It's priced right, but I don't see anyone using them anymore. Will it suffice, or should I shell out the bucks for a Walker?
  2. Impressions Landscaping

    Impressions Landscaping LawnSite Member
    Messages: 215

    I have a Scag Cougar, I want to say its a 2004 with a 25 horse Kohler Command motor. The machines great, the motor on mine is burning oil due to no fault but the previous owner not putting on a wing nut on the air cleaner. I owned a 2004 Walker before it and I actually like the Scag more than the Walker. There are draw backs to both, such as the Scag being significantly bigger and heavier than the Walker. The frames of the scags are bullet proof, and the motors get cooled a lot better since the motor sits further back in the frame and more "out in the open." What size motor and what year is the machine your looking at? Hours? Mine has 1700 hours on the original hydros and they still feel brand new.
  3. SSO 289

    SSO 289 LawnSite Member
    Messages: 12

    It's a 2005 with less than 200 hours, 25 Kohler.
  4. nosparkplugs

    nosparkplugs LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,444

    Was running Scag Tiger Cub's 48" velocity deck, purchased a Billy Goat HTR1600 debris loader, used that set up for two seasons for leaf clean-up. Then I realized the Scags were not being used as much during the leaf season, and the Billy Goat debris loader to be efficent was a two man job or three man operation always. We sold our Scags, and purchased a new Walker MT GHS 42"GHS 60"SD deck, one Walker, multiple uses, manicured cut, kirby vaccum to say the least, and nothing can touch it for leaf clean-ups. The Walker can be operated with a small one or two man crew during leaf season, and with the ability to "swap" out decks with the quickness makes them a better value if you have to choose between one mower to multi-task, Scags will mulch leafs, but cannot collect large volume's that a Walker can. The Scags are tough well built mowers no doubt; considering you really can only mulch leafs with a Scag, and the Scag collection system is an external, bulky, and expensive, cannot fit through most gates to collect those leafs. Come on what is the better value:hammerhead: WALKER

    Since I switched to Amsoil synthetic lubricants, and use a 15w-40 12TBN heavy duty diesel oil in the Walker, vs the Kohler "reccomended" 10w-30, we have seen a signifant increase in performance, cooler engine compartment temps, and longer oil change intervals with oil anyalsis
  5. mag360

    mag360 LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,446

    The cougar is the scag/walker model.

    I don't think the cougars have a dump from the seat capability which is nice for leaves.
  6. ed2hess

    ed2hess LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 14,292

    We got one that is over 8 years old and like it a lot. It will do fine on picking up leaves......compared to a used Walker with smaller blower it does just as good. I really like the fact that you can sidedischarge, or mulch, or bag with a simple change of those baffles.
  7. unit40

    unit40 LawnSite Member
    Messages: 100

    We have the 27 HP Kawi liquid cooled version. Agree that the machine is heavy and rugged, and comfy with the extended foot platform. With anything, keep an eye on the radiator screen and the flywheel pulley to make sure it hasn't loosened up.
  8. tallimeca

    tallimeca LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,229

    tough machine, but it is heavy and bulky. Doesn't cut or bag as well as a Navigator or Walker. Probably because of the blade orientation compared to how walker and exmark run theirs.

    I would personally recommend a walker or navigator of it from a mechanical/repair standpoint. I don't even cut grass and I can tell you from my use the walker and Navigator does cut and bag better. They handle alot better then the Cougar as well.
  9. ed2hess

    ed2hess LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 14,292

    Not sure why you would be concerned about repairing the Cougar it is pretty darn simple and stuff is all in the open. And you can't expect an 10 year old Cougar design to cut as well as the newer designed units. It gets the job done.....and they are cheap to buy. But my Cougar bagged wet rye grass better than my Walker and both are the same age. And the steering is exactly the same as Walker ....even the bucking up and down. Oh it does have a faster ground speed than the old Walkers.
  10. SSO 289

    SSO 289 LawnSite Member
    Messages: 12

    I looked at the Cougar and the exterior of the machine itself turned me off right off the bat. Even though it's only cosmetic stuff, paint chips, missing parts of plastic around the control panel, dented wheels, etc. just gave me the gut feeling the machine either hadn't been well cared for or the hour meter isn't accurate. In comparison I have a 2005 Z-Master with 250 hours that only has a few scratches on the deck........and it's the machine I learned to mow on with a zero turn. Also, the thing pulled pretty hard to the left so you had to constantly battle trying to keep the darn thing cutting a straight line. I think it would suck up leaves, but it doesn't have the sucction the Walker has and didn't leave nearly as nice a cut from what I've seen out of the Walker's. There were absolutely no signs of striping whatsoever. The little bit I mowed also filled up the hopper almost half way.........you'd have to dump it so often it would eat up a lot of your time.

    I have operated a Walker in the past (toyed around on a friend's machine for a few minutes) and test drove this Cougar. The Walker is the better mower hands down. The one I tried was a 2001 and had around 2000 hours on it, compared to this 2005 Cougar with 170 hours on it. The Walker cut better, went straighter and was easier for me to turn/navigate.

    The problem with all of this............the guy is asking $3750 for his Scag. I found a 2001 Walker with 2000 hours listed in my area on Craigslist for $3950, or a 2004 Walker with 350 hours for $7900. Neither seller will come off their asking price. I understand it's a good mower, but come on! It never hurts to ask, I guess...........

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