Should I buy 48" Bob-Cat or Lesco ?? (Both are belt-driven)

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by Approach, Jan 18, 2007.

  1. Approach

    Approach LawnSite Member
    Messages: 88

    Which is better? The Bob-Cat has bigger wheels, but I like the Lesco
  2. Raven386

    Raven386 LawnSite Silver Member
    from CT
    Messages: 2,169

    IMO Lesco. but go with whichever dealer is the best, closest, and easiest to deal with. both mowers are pretty comparable. i dont want to start any ___ vs. ____ wars but id go with Lesco. my Lesco 48" belt is still going strong, after 3 seasons of beating the crap out of it. But IMO both mowers are comparable.
  3. mastercare

    mastercare LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 289

    I agree that they're both fairly equal. You mentioned that the bobcat has bigger tires? Remember that in the rain belt-drive mowers are horrible. Belts slip, your hand grips slip, everyhting does. You'll want the largest surface area as possible gripping that lawn when things start to slide. Also, if the mowers weigh the same, you'll be distributing that weight over a greater area if you have bigger tires. This is less down pressure on a soggy lawn which results in less tire marks.

    I have the bobcat 48" belt drive. I have had no problems with it of any kind. Mine is the pull-start.... My only advice for any pull-start mower is to buy an extra recoil starter wound with string and a handle. I think they're about $30. If you're mowing 20 lawns a day for 5 days a week, you're looking at about 100+ pull starts per week. Mine starts every time but the recoil string will break. On the KAW engines, its only 4 nuts that remove the whole recoil, and you're back in business in 60 seconds. I wasted 2 hours one day getting the string, and recoiling things I just have a spare. I've usd it twice and its well worth it.

    Just my opinions.
  4. Approach

    Approach LawnSite Member
    Messages: 88

    Dan: Thanks for the advice. Which makes less of a mess on soggy grass (raining) with less tiremarks ---- the Bobcat with its larger tires or the Lesco with smaller tires? ie) The Lesco tires are smaller but fat.
  5. LawnTamer

    LawnTamer LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,986

    Toro T-bar all the way, pistol grip + belt drive = pain and tiredness. Demo a T-bar and you'll wonder why anyone even makes pistol grip belt drives.
    Not to mention that the Turbo-force deck out-performs the Bobcat or the Lesco.
  6. lawnMaster5000

    lawnMaster5000 LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 591

    Buy a hydro, you will Never regret it. Even a used one will easily out perform and out last any belt drive unit.
  7. mastercare

    mastercare LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 289

    To answer your question about which tires are better, you need two pieces of information.

    1. The weight of the machine
    2. The total tires' "footprint" in sq inches.

    If you can measure the square inches of tire that are actually touching the ground for all four tires, you'll have the measurement of your mower's footprint. Take the total weight of the mower, divide it by the number of square inches and you have roughly the amount of weight supported by each square inch. Do it for both, and you'll find out which mower distributes its weight better. The front tires should be fairly close, and the back tires are more important since they support most of the weight.

    Skinny tires actually tear less turf if you're making sharp "pivot" turns. This of course is the wrong way to turn for that very reason, but it may be an issue if you have inexperienced people using your mower. Wider tires will actually create less depressions in the grass.

    And, everyone I've ever talked to has said to get a hydro. I didn't want to spend the $ on my first one, so I have a belt drive. It has worked just fine for me, the only negative is that it doesn't do great in the rain, on hills. If I had to buy a second mower, I would try a hydro, but the belt drive I have has served me fine for a number of years. In fact, now that I have a ZTR I hardly ever use the belt drive, and I'm glad I didn't spend the extra $$ for it to sit on my trailer most of the day.

    Happy Mowing
  8. pugs

    pugs LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,025

    Bobcat...The only complaint I have had about the newer ones with the bigger tires is that they are lighter in the front than the older models.

    The bigger tires are nice though because with the bigger tires the pulleys end up farther from the treads while maintaining the same ratio of tire to pulley. So the pulleys do not get beat up as much going over curbs and what not.

    In any case Bobcat and most other machines are far superior to Lesco in my opinion.
  9. chuck bow

    chuck bow LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 701

    I agree about getting extra recoil , i have did that myself and when i break a pull cord i just slap the new one on and away i go i think for my 17 horse it was 35 bucks . I now have 2 exta recoils as when i had the shop replace my engine last summer i stole everything possible off the old engine that i could use in future
  10. upidstay

    upidstay LawnSite Bronze Member
    from CT
    Messages: 1,564

    I'd say lesco. You'll save a few hundred for basically the same machine. That will pay for a weed wacker and a hand blower.

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