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Toro Turbo Force Deck Users -- question

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by RichmondR, Aug 27, 2004.

  1. RichmondR

    RichmondR LawnSite Member
    Messages: 106

    Is the adjustable baffle feature something that you actually use, or do you just leave it wide open all the time?

    I'm looking at getting one of the new Z400 series ZTRs for a large residential lawn (also looking at a JD 717A or 727A), and I am wondering whether this feature is a good reason to move up to the ProValue (Z440) model over the estate model (Z400). My dealer was telling me that almost none of his commercial cutomers using the Turbo Force deck ever adjust it. According to the dealer, the Z400 deck IS a TurboForce-style deck with a fixed baffle (it sure looks that way to me).

    I know there's a number of other significant differences between the 400 and the 440, but I'm just wondering if the dealer was trying to sell me the Z400 he had on the show floor (he didn't have a 440), or whether he was just trying to save me some money.

    BTW, I know the Z400 is brand new, but if anyone can compare the cut quality of the TurboForce deck and the JD 7-iron deck, I'd appreciate hearing about that too.

    And yes, I will demo, demo, demo... ;>)

    Thanks guys.
    Rich R.

    JSMLAWNCARE LawnSite Member
    Messages: 137

    I have never moved the baffle in 4 months.
  3. Steve1

    Steve1 LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 292

    My experiences with a Z557 Z-Master and a Deere 7-Iron 777, both 60" decks were very good. However, in wetter, taller grass the Deere cut cleaner the first cut and had hardly ANY grass at all stuck to the underside of the deck.

    The TurboForce deck did a good job but it did clump some and even at one time felt like it was going to plug off. This was with the baffle wide open.

    I also did not like the roll over bar on the Toro unit (and you could not delete it from the price although it is removable once delievered from the dealer) nor did I like the feeling that I was sitting higher overall than on the Deere. And, if memory serves me correctly here, I do not think that the Toro had greaseable caster spindles - the Deere did, which was a big issue for me.

    On dry grass with a fairly normal mowing height, they were pretty equal, all things considered. I just found on MY demo's that the Deere 7-Iron cut better the worse the conditions became. That's why I bought the Deere.

    However - either one is an outstanding piece of equipment - enjoy your demo's and good luck.
  4. I have two 60 inch toro 's 555 and 557 .. last two or three days is the first time in the lasT month or so .Because of dry condidtions i havent adjusted the baffles much.

    Last couple days it been raining like pouring piss out of a boot been wet .

    I adjusted the baffles where i like them for wet conditions very little clumping discharge was even and perfect .

    That is the key to this deck getting the baffles adjusted for all kinds of conditions ...and the baffles make this deck the one or two best decks on the market ...If not the best.
  5. RichmondR

    RichmondR LawnSite Member
    Messages: 106

    Guys --

    Thanks -- appreciate the comments.

    Steve1 -- I agree with you about the rollover bar -- the Z400s have it welded to the frame, so there's not even a question of taking it off. On the other hand, I'm looking right now at a big picture of a Z400 on the front of the brochure and there appear to be grease zerks on the caster spindles. I have a big picture of the 500 series as well but they're not in the same spot, if anywhere. As to the deck, that could be because the deck is stamped, with less places for the cut grass to hide.

    On the other hand, I felt like I sat slightly lower on the Z400 than the JD 717; also the Toro had more deck height settings (1/4" spacing) and I prefer the Toro controls on the side (instead of between my legs); the spindles are absolutely massive on the Toro as well, although I cant say that the are necessarily stronger than the JD. The Toro also appears to have more accessories available, at least for now.

    Thanks again -- as is the case with many questions like this on this board, it will come down to a demo.

  6. Fareway Lawncare

    Fareway Lawncare LawnSite Silver Member
    from Canada
    Messages: 2,222

    Heard rumor that eXmark may have a deck Coming that will Allow the Baffling to Come Down to Full Mulch Position...Now that Would be Something !
  7. John Gamba

    John Gamba LawnSite Fanatic
    from ct
    Messages: 10,812

    I think it will be on the NEW explorer.
  8. ple_1969

    ple_1969 LawnSite Member
    Messages: 204

    Hey RichmondR

    Are you sure about the Z400 ROPS being welded to the frame? I was looking that the Z400 with the 48" and 52" deck the other day. The ROPS was bolted the frame right below the engine. My dealer said that it would bolt right off.

    By-the-way, I'm in the same boat you are. I'm selling my walk behind and buying a small frame ZTR. Just tired of walking. It looks like it come down to the Z400 or the Z440. There is about an $800 difference between the Z400 and the Z440. I'm on the fence. However I heard a lot of good things about the Turbo Force Deck and this might sway my decision.

    Yes your right that they baffle might never change, but it nice to know that if I would ever need to open it on close it to match conditions I can.

  9. DaveVB

    DaveVB LawnSite Member
    Messages: 95

    My dealer told me once that if they look the same but have different levels, they probably have cheaper parts in the lower level of mower. Looking at the website, the 400 has smaller tires, by this might you surmise they have lesser quality hydraulic motors etc.....than the 440?
    Just a guess, but maybe it will give you something else to look at.
  10. low end 400 looks like toro is positioning for high end homeowner use to me ..The ground speed should be better on all of them ...only 8.3 mph.19 horse kawi and 20 horse kohler are the only engine options.

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