Walkbehind Power Choices....

Discussion in 'eXmark' started by TLS, Jun 1, 2004.

  1. TLS

    TLS LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 7,943

    I'm currently bidding on a few lawns that will require using an intermediate walkbehind.

    I currently have a somewhat new (1996) 48" SCAG belt drive with a less than stellar performing 14hp Kawi.

    It is fine for what I currently use it for (approx 3-4 hrs/week). However, with these new accounts, I will be at least doubling and maybe coming close to 12 hrs per week on it.

    I want Hydro this time around.

    I want a FIXED deck. (Cut height is ALWAYS at 3.5") And weight needs to be as light as possible.

    I want a compact machine. Currently, my SCAG is 69" from pistol grip tip end to the front edge of the caster tire.

    And I want POWER. Lots of it. 15hp on your 48" Viking is simply NOT enough. I've demoed several brands of 15hp Kawi 48" BELT drives and they were underpowered, add to that, driving a hydro, and possibly a mulch kit,.... just not going to fly for me.

    Currently the new SCAG SWZ 48" Hydro with the 18hp Honda looks like what I'm going to have to go with. It has features that I'm used to.....(Electric PTO clutch, pistol grips-I like them!-, same size blades, real hourmeter, etc.) Plus, most importantly, the power jump! 3 more hp and almost 8 more peak ft/lbs of torque (5 more @ 3600 rpm).

    So, unless I see a 17 or more hp 48" Viking in the eXmark pipeline, I'm going to have to stick with SCAG for my walkbehind preference.
  2. eXmark

    eXmark Manufacturer / Sponsor
    Messages: 4,258


    You may want to demo a 48" Exmark before making your decision. The flow control baffles under the deck make a significant difference in horsepower requirements. You might be suprised.


  3. TLS

    TLS LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 7,943

    Thanks Terry,

    But as I said, I've demoed a 48" Belt Metro with the 15hp Kawi. And a 48" Belt drive SCAG with the 15hp Kawi. Cut was nice on both, but power in the thicker turf was not acceptable to me. Add that to a heavier mower, bigger tires, and it spinning dual hydro pumps, and it just doesn't add up. Less is less.

    There is a reason other manufacturers are offering higher HP/inch ratios.
  4. MTR

    MTR LawnSite Bronze Member
    from Florida
    Messages: 1,280

    There is Stander 48/23 Kawi engine with electric start and it is only 55" in length with typical 700# weight. You might want to demo it.

    I agree, I will not go less than 23 hp engine for my upgrade regardless of deck size. period. Money well spent.
    Viking is good but 48/15 is not acceptable, it is not faster or cutting better than my 36" Metro either, I know cause I tried it and decided to wait for the right one.
  5. eXmark

    eXmark Manufacturer / Sponsor
    Messages: 4,258


    As I'm sure you are aware each machine has advantages and disadvantages.

    I probably wouldn't compare the Viking to a Stand on rider. A better comparison may be a Turf Tracer or Turf Tracer HP with a riding attachment. The 48” TTHP is available with a 17 HP and even though the TT has a 52" deck it's still a pretty good comparison.

    I like the TT and the TTHP for the floating deck, quality of cut, ECS controls, ease of maintenance, ability to mow up under objects that most riding mower can not, hill side stability, blade tip speed, depth of the mower deck, simple "no tools" adjustment (for most items) etc. I've never been overly concerned with numbers either. As an example you mention the 55" overall length. This too can be both a positive and a negative.

    The 55" length probably does not help the ride quality that much or help when mowing into shrubs, bushes etc. All the numbers in the world can make thing interesting but not always make the machine do what it is we want it to do.

    Power is another example of how numbers can be a little misleading. You can take two 23 hp engines from two different manufacturers and one will out perform the other. Both have 23 hp but one may have more torque or more displacement etc.

    There was a time when we use the super reliable 14 hp Kawi 15 Kohler single cylinder engines on 48" and 52" mowers. We then began using the 15 Kawasaki twin and wow what a difference. The old singles just could not compete in working power due to the added torque of the twin cylinder.

    Maybe we could use more power but I don't think that means that the current 48" units don't perform well.

    Thanks for the post.

  6. John Gamba

    John Gamba LawnSite Fanatic
    from ct
    Messages: 10,812

    Exmark should try and have a 20HP 48" Ultracut, 27hp 60" Ultracut. I dont think you need a 52 they are big in small areas and small in big areas.
  7. PaulJ

    PaulJ LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,774

    when are giong to build a 20+hp 48" ultacut WB? It has been asked for many times.
    I love the 23hp on my 48" HUSTLER wb

    (Hi John, ready for a mower like mine yet?)
  8. John Gamba

    John Gamba LawnSite Fanatic
    from ct
    Messages: 10,812

    Hi paul.

    We will see how the new deck is.
  9. ScCo

    ScCo LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 251

    add me to the list of people that would love to see a 48" ultracut deck powered by a 20+ hp engine.

    it's time for this to happan exmark. ;)
  10. eXmark

    eXmark Manufacturer / Sponsor
    Messages: 4,258

    We hear ya guys. I'll be anxious to see what the unveil for 05 as well.



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