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What to bid on 15 acres

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by curry, Jun 27, 2001.

  1. curry

    curry LawnSite Member
    Messages: 211

    I am going to bid on a business that has approximately 15 acres to mow. Very few trees and hardly no weed-eating or edging. A flat, wide open area for the most part except around a few buildings. I do not know what to bid on such a large commercial area. I do not have any equipment to handle that large of a area but would consider purchasing a tractor and shredder if the business would commit(in writing) to a 2 year contract. Here in Texas I would probably need to mow 3 times a month for 3 months and 2 times a month for the other 2 to 2.5 months. What do yall think I should bid? I also saw one of those mowers that you pull behind a 4-wheeler that has its own motor attached. I think I could rig it up and off-set it on my 42" Snapper ZTR and have a total cutting path of about 84". This would do away with the expense of a tractor and shredder(I forgot to mention that they are using a shredder now so I could also). I need help on bidding and also if anyone has knowledge about those mowers you pull behind a 4-wheeler. Again, the area is very flat so I think my Snapper wouldnt have a problem pulling it.
  2. curry

    curry LawnSite Member
    Messages: 211

    Forgot to mention that the going rate for a normal, residental yard that takes 45-1hr goes for around $30-$35. This will give you an idea of rates around here.
  3. awm

    awm LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,354

    just curious,does this buisiness just not want to dress up the place.sounds like a minimal amt of effort to me.to each his own.
    dont know much about the pull behind finish mowers,but if you could sell them on a complete ,keep it right service,it could pay for a 60
    ztr. then you can take on a lot more work. your situation may not allow that but thought id run it by you.later
  4. Fallguy

    Fallguy LawnSite Member
    Messages: 95

    $50 per acre x 15 acres = $750.......also i wouldnt dare let a place go more than 2 weeks unmowed - also id stay away from pull behind mowers - what you need to do is sell your mower or park it and get a bigger mower - snapper is awesome - and your 42 is probably decent - but speed is money - i would look into a bigger deck and bigger mower - if you got that account then it would pay for some really nice equipment - my 52in snapper z rider is rated at 6 acres per hour. but i wish i would have went with the 73in deck and a deisel motor. good luck - hope you get the bid.
  5. Eric ELM

    Eric ELM Husband, Father, Friend, Angel
    Messages: 4,830

    I sure would like to see that 52" Snapper mow 6 acres in an hour. That is just 1 acre less than a 72" mower going 15 MPH and you have 20" less of a cut.

    Most big lawns you are going to have to drop the price per acre to get them. I would think $30 an acre is more like it for that size lawn since there is little trimming to do.
  6. AltaLawnCare

    AltaLawnCare LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 961

    I have a pull behind trail type mower. I only use it with the JD on one account, its a large field very bumpy, and weedy(doesn't have to be perfect). I also use it on my own property, again a field which is bumpy. The only justification on using this set up is that the area is bumpy so you have to go slow and the wider cut helps make up lost time.
    The down sides of the trail mower is that it takes much more room to turn around, you will have more trimming, you have a separate engine burning gas(and my swisher only holds about 1 gallon), you have to take up valuable trailer space, and also you have to have both decks mowing at the same height.
    As stated before, I wound't recommend using this set up to try to make money.
    In two or three years I'm gonna get some type of 72" rider with a diesel :cool:
  7. Fallguy

    Fallguy LawnSite Member
    Messages: 95

    There it is - if your a non believer read the article about my 52in snapper z rider - dont see why the dealer would lie - maybe you owe it to yourself to try a snapper for a day .:confused: also - eric - please let me know if you do email the dealers - im curious about what my blade tip speed is on my 52 and i know you dont mislead with your information.
  8. Sammy

    Sammy LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,734

    I think they mean 6.16 a.p.h. for the 61", not the 52". You would have to mow at 11-12 mph to do 6 a.p.h. with a 52"
    Anyone that thinks they can mow 100% of the rate the mfg. gives is just fooling themselves, at least in my real world you cant.
  9. stslawncare

    stslawncare LawnSite Bronze Member
    from DE
    Messages: 1,484

    well let me mention this, i can mow about 7 acres, which include various buildings, fencing, trees etc in an hour (ive timed it) i do this using a 50 hp kubota with a 3pt landpride mower that is 6' i think. if u were to get maybe a 30 hp with the same mower or even a belly mower, u could probably do this new job in an hour (no buildings less turning then what i do), can also use on the other property and yours also. we did not get belly mower for the one reason that we do a lot of other work with this tractor (farming)
  10. geogunn

    geogunn LawnSite Gold Member
    from TN
    Messages: 3,010

    currey--I have never used a swisher pull behind but the main idea that I don'tlike about them is that if the mower throws something out the front, you are in the kill zone if you are sitting close to the ground. I don't know if sitting on a four wheeler would get you high enough to be safe.

    I have hit and thrown lots of things with my 48 wb and all have gone out the front or side. None of them have exited the rear for some reason.

    my largest cut is about six acres and it goes for $200. hope that helps. good luck.


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