I am in the market for a standing mower to increase my productivity. Most of my accounts are residential behind small gates. I am considering a 36" and am trying to decide on the Great Dane SS or Wright Stander. Both machines seem to be excellent quality and very rugged. I am a big guy (6' 3", 230lbs). I have a dealer for each brand in my area but really want some unbiased opinions on both of these mowers. I currently use a 21" mower and need to upgrade to speed up my productivity.
I agree with mowerman, great danes are great till they break. Getting parts for them is a joke, it takes forever. Id say go with anything else, unless you can afford to be down any time you need a paart, and a common one, like a pulley or a pto clutch. I wanted to have blade belts just in case, and am still waiting for them.
I was looking at a stading mower because of the speed and maneuverability. I thought about a WB but would rather ride then walk.
Have the parts availability issues with GD been addressed since Deere took over? Has GD always had a parts problem or only since Deere took over. Sometimes with new management, problems can occur until the dust settles.
Does anyone have any experience with Wright mowers?
I have a 36 and a 52 Stander. Theyve been really great though Stand-On riders are not for everyone. Although from what you're looking for, they would be just the ticket. I havent had any experience with GD other than looking at them at a dealer, including the John Deere version.
You should do a search for these machines on this website if you havent already. There is thread after thread that talks about the differences, pros and cons. I read them before I bought my first one. In the off-season when people have more time and energy, a topic like this would have started a fight, LOL.
If you want to ride, then get a sulky. A 36" stander is probably just as, or more expensive than a 36" walk behind with a flex deck and sulky. With the 36" walk behind coupled with the flex deck you get over 4' of cutting swath.
Of course you should demo any mower before you buy. Your accounts will be a major influence on your decision. A 36 WB with a Sulky, couldnt even dream of being as productive as a 36 Stander. Add a Flex-Deck and thats another story. Certainly on accounts with a narrow back gate and a large open back-yard, that combo would be productive. But if there are very many tight spots or obstacles, then the Stander would be faster.
I AM ALSO A VERY BIG GUY 280 POUNDS AND GOING DOWN. THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN THE TWO IS THE COMFORT ON THE SUPER SURFER VS STANDER. ON THE SURFER YOU STAND ON A SPRING LOADED GRATE FOR LACK OF A BETTER DESCRIPTION. ON THE WRIGHT IT IS A THIN PIECE OF STEEL THAT HAS VERY LITTLE PLAY AND YOUR HEEL WILL REST ON AN IRON BAR GOING ACROSS THE BACK OF THE PLATFORM HITING YOUR HEEL ALL DAY LONG. DANE HAS A FLOATING DECK WHICH HELPS WHEN LOADING THE UNIT ON TRAILERS NO BOTTOM OUT, AND FINALLY YOU HAVE ENCLOSED GAS TANK FOR SAFTEY, AND BACK FENDERS WHICH CATCH THE WET MORNING GRASS AND MUD HOPE THIS HELPS
I have a 36 Stander and like it a lot. And before purchasing I was in the same dilemma you are in now, which one to buy GD 36 or WS 36. Im not brand loyal so picking the right one for me meant dealer service and convenience. Which in your case doesnt really matter since the local dealers sell both. So, when comparing the differences always keep in mind the type of yards you have and/or want to have. In my case the GD was more expensive than WS by about $500, not a big deal when considering the cost of a Z but still something to think about. I cant address any problems with part availability for GD but my dealer carries a lot of WS parts, which are in stock. Thankfully Ive only needed a belt so far at a critical time.
Some of the differences that you probably already know, WS has two 18 (16000 fps) blades GD has three 12 (unsure of fps) blades. WS has a fixed deck with spacers to adjust height GD has a floating deck with lever action height adjustment (very nice IMO). WS is about 7mph GD is about 8.5 mph. WS hill stability is very good GD Im not sure about but cant imagine it to be much different. Tire size is the same at 18 x 6.50 8. My WS has a 17hp Kawasaki w/ES GD offers 15 hp and 17 hp Kawasaki engines for the 36 but I dont know if they offer electric start. WS is 60 long GD is 55 long.
Many of the operator comfort features are subjective. IMO, the WS controls were a little easier than GD from the get go, but Im sure it wouldnt take long to feel comfortable operating the GD. The spring platform on the GD is nice, WS has a fixed platform, but (again very subjective) on the WS the normal operating position is to slightly lean more forward than on the GD. And I believe this creates better weight distribution on the balls of the feet rather than the heels, making it more comfortable for me personally.
Ultimately you have to make the decision and you might always wonder if you made the correct one. IMO, either of these machines will provide good service. Good luck.