Starting out

Discussion in 'Starting a Lawn Care Business' started by jeffthurow, Aug 17, 2005.

  1. jeffthurow

    jeffthurow LawnSite Member
    Messages: 6

    When I start my lawn business in the spring, I will be using a complement of my homeowners stuff. John Deere 48" , 22" walk behind, trimmer, blower, etc. and moving toward buying more heavy duty stuff as I can afford it.

    Have lots of you guys started out this way? What are some of the major differences in the way the commercial machine cuts versus residential equipment? Obviously it is heavier duty but will you be able to see a big difference on a lawn cut with commercial equipment versus non commercial equipment? ie, fancy roller marks or patterns??? Will I be able to achieve the look the customer wants with my residential equipment?
  2. Bulletproof

    Bulletproof LawnSite Member
    Messages: 155

    We started out A LOT smaller and with less effective tools than you are using! Funny thing is we use a lot of brand names now (JD, Exmark, Kubota, Stihl, Echo, Husqvarna) yet some of our original residential equipment is still kicking better than some of the heavier duty stuff!

    You shouldn't notice much of a difference in cut if you are cutting the lawns weekly, you may be spending more time with the smaller equipment but it'll look as good AS YOU MAKE IT LOOK.

    Good luck
  3. Runner

    Runner LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 13,497

    I started out with a pushmower and an old beat up van.
  4. goodgreen

    goodgreen LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 374

    I had a homeowner utility cart the first couple of years and the wheels finally fell off one day!!! :laugh:
  5. topsites

    topsites LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 21,653

    No, I worked delivering pizzas and then washing dishes for 2-3 years while I put away 5 thousand dollars so then I bought 2 used wb's, 2 new bp's, a new trimmer, a VERY used 27-year old truck, a new 6x12 trailer and the usual little bs like shovels and rakes AND I already had a hydraulic jack and a complete set of hand tools.
    BOTH those wb's are no longer in service thou I kept one to do my own yard with.

    3.5 years later, I own a 7-year old and a brand-new wb, a 3-year old and a new bp blower, a 2.5-year old and a brand-new weedeater (the first lasted only 1 year) and of course the usual edger, hedge trimmer, chainsaw, core aerator, tiller, pushblower, spreader, wheelbarrow, etc...

    It still messes with me, I run around during the slower times using all the old equipment while I wait for busy times or break-downs to use the new stuff while it sits under the house shining away, lol.

    But more than a few start with less, some start with a 4-cyl p'up and a pushmower.
  6. SunSwept

    SunSwept LawnSite Member
    Messages: 93

    When if gets right down to it ... the blades turn round and round on nearly all of them. I dare anyone to say they can tell the difference in the cut that each blade makes or even the machine.

    What I can tell you is that the DECK will make a big difference. If the baffles aren't right in it then the grasss won't discharge very well and you could leave a lot of grass clumped on top of the lawn. Whatever machine you use ... make sure of the deck.

    One of my best cutting machines is a 10 year old SABRE with very sharp blades on it. It is a spare that I keep around and use from time to time. It is uncomfortable, slow, dirty and ugly. It even has a hole in the deck. But it has never let me down and cuts better than most of the other machines that I have. Most of you reading this would agree that the SABRE is pretty far down on the list of mowers that we would want to buy.

    And if you want those fancy stripes there are a multitude of ways to get them from dragging chains to having mudflaps that drag the ground.

    Again, when it gets right down to it, the blades turn round and round on most all machines.
  7. mcwlandscaping

    mcwlandscaping LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,163

    I have a pretty good collection of equipment for someone my age. I started with a new Honda Harmony (i am still using it for backyards), a broom, and a $59 weedeater trimmer. Now i am doing pretty well! Can't wait for a truck!

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