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Very confused as to which mower to buy

Discussion in 'Homeowner Assistance Forum' started by ladieu, Mar 18, 2014.

  1. ladieu

    ladieu LawnSite Member
    Messages: 5

    Guys, I live on 2 acres which includes a lot of trees and garden beds. Mostly flat but have one corner which has a minor slope.

    My current mower is a Husqvarna YTH1848XPT which is supposed to be "Xtra professional" This mower has been nothing but trouble for me from the word go. At this point I probably spent $700 last year just to get it limping along.

    This wasn't all at once. It was $150 here, $100 there, and I keep telling myself.. OK just another $50 and it'll be good all season, before I know it it's $700.

    It has an 18HP Kawaski engine, and the engine is just about the only thing that hasn't broken at least once on this POS. I know it is past due time to stop the bleeding. (On a side now all the parts are craftsman part numbers.. did I buy a really expensive craftsman?)

    Ok, but I digress... I am looking to get into a better mower for my land.

    I read a bunch of threads and have come to the conclusion that a walk behind mower will be best for my needs. I would like to buy a used one and not break the bank. I'm a young guy who doesn't mind hard work. I just want something reliable, and hopefully FAST. The quality of the cut doesn't need to be stellar, we are country bumpkins... speed and reliability are a must.

    I'm wondering what sort of parameters I should put around this. I saw a 48" Lesco walk behind mower on craigslist for $2000.

    Am I in the right ballpark? What sort of horse power should I be looking for?

    Sorry I search for hours on google to try to find some basic parameters on sizing a lawn mower but I can't find the correct answer
  2. dcfas

    dcfas LawnSite Member
    Messages: 146

    Many mowers have an acre per hour listed in their media packet.

    If you don't have any gates to get through then go large with the deck- at least 50-60", maybe bigger if you can afford it. In my area there is a 10 year old Ferris zero turn with 128 hours on it for 3k. That Lesco is the right idea-- with 12-14 or more hp I think it would pull a sulky/velke. The only risk is with used equipment there is no warranty, of course.

    Overall, used commercial is a great idea, especially if you can maintain the mower yourself. It will likely cut better and longer.

    Good luck.

  3. larryinalabama

    larryinalabama LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 19,468

    Id just get a couple of goats.
  4. ladieu

    ladieu LawnSite Member
    Messages: 5

    Larry i thought the same. If my nordic dogs wouldn't tear them to shreds then it would be a go. They have taken out deer so it's no joke. They are fine with domestic animals and humans, but all wildlife appears to be fair game

    I am going to check out this mower tomorrow. Before I go please let me know if you sense any red flags... it does seem unreasonably inexpensive... I wrote the guy and he said it has 30 hours on it

  5. larryinalabama

    larryinalabama LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 19,468

    Jacobsen is a good name, but Im not sure if they have made any mowers in a long time, parts could be a issue. Mabey someone else who knows more about them will chime in.
  6. AMW Landscaping

    AMW Landscaping LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 630

    Not sure of your price range, but if you want a fast and reliable mower look at the scag cheetah. It tops out at about 16mph.
  7. ducnut

    ducnut LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,566

    I mow quite a few properties that size, and either side of that. I can't imagine knowing, every week, I have to walk 2 acres to get the yard mowed. Personally, I'd rather step up to one of the 52"-60" ZTR homeowner models, from a commercial manufacturer. You didn't list a budget, but, I hope it's not in the $1K range you've linked.

    And, 30hrs is probably the engine, since it's listed as new. The chassis, however, probably has quite a few. Then, you're back in the nickel-and-diming scenario, again.
  8. JohnnyRocker

    JohnnyRocker LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 741

    You can find a belt drive walk behind, like a 48 inch Ransomes Bobcat, and get some wheels to stand on. They cut well, and you can speed along just fine. I bought one years ago for 600 bucks I believe. I have seen similar used models for the same price. They are commercial grade, and will suit your situation fine. Just don't mess around with it when it's real wet out. This would be up your alley perhaps, if you're not wanting to shell out 2-5 grand.
  9. ladieu

    ladieu LawnSite Member
    Messages: 5

    I live near well heeled areas and the professionals I see mowing use that type of mower. No of course you don't walk the whole 2 acres, you stand on a little cart that gets pulled behind it. I'll probably keep looking for something a little newer, but it seems like the best deals going are for used professional mowers.

    The consumer "sit down" ztrs seem more exensive, and the only difference I can see is you get to sit vs stand. Again I don't see the pros using them so I ask why is that?
  10. ducnut

    ducnut LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,566

    The "cart" is called a sulky.

    Because a homeowner ZTR isn't designed to be used everyday, all day. The commercial stuff has a heavier build and drivetrain, larger tires, higher speed; everything is more/bigger/heavier/faster. If you're only mowing your property, a homeowner mower will last a good, long time, if properly maintained. I started out, with a homeowner ZTR. It's 9yrs old, now.

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