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Walk behind or ZTR....NEED ADVICE

Discussion in 'Starting a Lawn Care Business' started by lawnstyler, Dec 28, 2009.

  1. lawnstyler

    lawnstyler LawnSite Member
    Messages: 29

    I am looking to start my new lawncare business this spring and I cannot decide between a walk behind and a ZTR sit on mower.....I will have 1 mower and I need advice on style (WB or ZTR) and cut size, I am leaning towards 48' to 52'. Most of the yards around me are pretty small with the possibility of some larger yards....all less than 3/4 acre. Please help, Thanks.
  2. Hoy landscaping

    Hoy landscaping LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 836

    i have a 52 inch scag. fits thru most gates, if it doesnt then the yard is usually small anyways and cut it with a 21. walk behinds are cheaper but since your just starting out get a nice used one. look on craigslist theirs always deals.
  3. SangerLawn

    SangerLawn LawnSite Senior Member
    from indiana
    Messages: 736

    There is no way a 52 inch fits through most gates. The only gates that thing will fit through is a double gate and most home owners do not have them.

    I recommend a 60 ztr and a push mower. With the 60 you will be able to handle any lawn size. Use the push mower for any where you cant fit your 60 inch. This will take longer on some lawns but at least you wont be limiting yourself to the size of lawns
  4. lawnstyler

    lawnstyler LawnSite Member
    Messages: 29

    Good feedback on fences...do you really suggest push mowing yards you can't mow with your larger 48' 50' or 60' mower?
  5. lawnstyler

    lawnstyler LawnSite Member
    Messages: 29

    my main question is whether or not to buy a walk behind or a ztr ride on mower....please help. Thanks
    Any other advice for a newbie would be greatly appreciated.
  6. SangerLawn

    SangerLawn LawnSite Senior Member
    from indiana
    Messages: 736

    If you buy a walk behind you are going to limit yourself on the size lawns you can mow at a competitive rate….this is why I said on the above post to get a ztr……if you have a choice.
  7. hackitdown

    hackitdown LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,611

    A ZTR or a stander will allow you to cut many more lawns per week than a walk-behind. If you need to bag clippings, a ZTR with a vac system is way more productive than a WB or stander with a regular steel bagger. If you plan on doing fall cleanups, a ZTR w/vac is the way to go.

    A walk-behind is cheapest, a stander is more, and a ZTR is most (then extra for vac).

    I have a 52" ZTR with vac, a 52" ZTR, a 21" walk, and a 48" stander. They all get used for different lawns. The 52" with vac on manicured lawns that get bagged, the 48" fits through some gates, the other 52 ZTR is a 13mph wide open mow/blow/go machine.
  8. rwar

    rwar LawnSite Member
    Messages: 115

    The answer really depends on your wallet,I wouldnt go in debt for a big zero turn untill I had a good client list to justify it,you can pick up a used walk behind for a good price this time of year and then you would have a backup/hillside and ditch machine later
  9. lawnprosteveo

    lawnprosteveo LawnSite Bronze Member
    from Tulsa
    Messages: 1,930

    Consider a 36" or a 32" walkbehind. It will handle front and back yards...it will handle any slope...and if you get a larger property you can put a $200 sulky on it and ride.

    For mostly small properties, you will get alot more bang for your buck. A good used walkbehind can be found for $1000 to $1500. They are also easy to maintain.

    Save the rider for later down the road. Remember that most small businesses fail because of a lack of cash reserves when they are just starting out.
  10. lawnstyler

    lawnstyler LawnSite Member
    Messages: 29

    Good advice.....KEEP IT COMING....I need all I can get.

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