Toro Proline 21" as a bagger?

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by satireirony, May 27, 2007.

  1. satireirony

    satireirony LawnSite Member
    Messages: 13

    I want to buy a high-quality 21" mower, and am interested in the Toro Proline with either the Honda or the Kawasaki engine, BUT...

    Can anyone tell me how well the Toro Proline 21"s bag? This is how the mower will be primarily used. I'm not so much concerned about bag logistics - how well it fills or how hard or easy it goes on and comes off, but rather how good the vacuum suction of clippings and leaves is and how good the bagging cut is with the standard blade.

    The Honda Commercial looks to be too heavy to be comfortable, although it seems to have a better rep as a bagger. Are the Honda handlebars long enough to give you good leverage when turning?
  2. Roger

    Roger LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 5,933

    I had a LawnBoy 21" with a side bagger for a few years. The transmission wore out in the early Spring a few years ago, and I needed to have a machine quickly. I bought a Toro ProLine 21", with 5.5hp Sisuki engine. I used it the rest of that season, and the first couple of weeks the next season, then parked it. The reason was poor bagging in difficult conditions. I bought another LawnBoy with side bagger -- far superior for the kind of bagging in my area.

    I did all the changes -- took out the kickers, got a high-lift blade to replace the OEM blade. But, the discharge opening just does not handle the quantity of debris. Clippings hang in the chute. The early Spring growth here is very sappy, making any bagging difficult (don't even start the discussion about bagging vs. mulching -- been down that road far too many times!).

    Last season, I used the Toro a few times for small jobs. This season, it has not even had fuel in the tank. I have had many troubles with the LB regarding the engine, but would not think of pulling out the Toro as a replacement.

    The boxy bag used on the Toro is difficult to handle, compared to the cloth, zipper bag of the LB. It is easy to work with three or four LB bags on a job. They can be carried empty to a location, filled and then carried back to the trailer, a couple of bags at a time. Several can be packed in an 18 gal plastic container on the trailer. None of this is true for the Toro bags. However, the Toro bag will hold a bit more grass. The Toro bag will not empty easily when very full.

    Having said that, there are a few LCOs in my area who are using newer Toros, with Kaw engines. The choices are limited -- no longer any offset-wheeled LawnBoys (used to be the workhorse), and not much Honda presence (lack of dealers).
  3. lawnboy dan

    lawnboy dan LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,711

    good post -toro pro line is a poor bagger . the honda is one of the best and so was the jd jx85/75
  4. satireirony

    satireirony LawnSite Member
    Messages: 13

    Great answers that will help me avoid a mistake. Thanks!

    Is the new Honda Commercial too heavy to be comfortable?

    And also, isn't the staggered wheel LB still available, just with a Briggs 4 cycle? If so, does anyone have experience with it?

    Is the JX75 Deere a viable commercial or semi-commercial option?

    All of these questions framed within bagging (no, we don't want to get into the wisdom or lack thereof of that!) being the primary mode.
  5. HazellLawnCare

    HazellLawnCare LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 832

    We bag with the Toro Prolines all the time. I think they work fine. I am wanting to replace them with the new commercial vaccupack by Toro though. It is a commercial mower that is designed to bag.
  6. lawnboy dan

    lawnboy dan LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,711

    the lawnboy is still aval. but i fear not for much longer. the briggs should be a reliable preformer. the jx 75 was redesighned and has been cheapened in my view. i dont know about the comm honda but the older models were extreme tanks. husky has a very good brand new comm but finding it may be hard
  7. J&T Kiev

    J&T Kiev LawnSite Senior Member
    from N.W In.
    Messages: 416

    On the grass types in my area, the Toro\Exmark 21 inch mowers bag, good to very good in dry conditions with Toro's standard recycler blade, replace the recycler blade with a high lift blade, it'll pack the grass in the bag tight and full.
    The dedicated bagger Toro just brought to market is outfitted with a two bushel bag, you'd have thought Toro would have outfitted a mower designed as a dedicated bagger with a larger capacity bag.
  8. TMlawncare

    TMlawncare LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,199

    We have used the Toro prolines with the suzuki engines for the past several years. We have three of the them all with the bbc, which is the only way to go. In my opinion the toro is an excellent machine, it does a excellent job mulching and bagging. In our area its all cool season grasses and there is always a heavy morning dew. The lawns are always wet. The prolines do a better job bagging wet grass then any mower we have ever used. One thing the prolines are a little weak at is picking up trash or matted down leaves out of the turf. The Honda is much better in this regard. But as far as bagging the clippings being cut, the toro leaves nothing behind even in 6-7" tall grass. As far as reliability goes, there is no equal.

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