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Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by ADA, Oct 30, 2001.

  1. ADA

    ADA LawnSite Member
    from S. C.
    Messages: 16

    Sorry this may be long. I have been reading this site now for some time now and the info has been very good. First let me say that I am not a commercial operator, so sorry for posting here. I am cutting about 10 to 12 acres with a 42" Troy bilt (MTD garden tractor with a kohler engine) some lawn some pasture mostly flat and some trees. It is taking me a LONG time to cut. I have been looking into a used commercial mower or purchasing a "finishing mower" to use behind a MF 235 tractor. I am leaning towards the used commercial mower. I have located 2 used mowers and would like some of your professional experience. The first is a Kubota Gf1800 2 wd front mount mower with about 1200 hours showing on the meter. It has the diesel engine and runs very good. It has a hydraulic problem( blowing the hydraulic line out of the pump). I have replaced the O ring and it will last about one minute before it blows the line out. I have carried it to the Kubota dealer and the mechanic said it probably needs a new line , that the line gets weak and will blow out. They have ordered the line and it is supposed to be here this week. The previous owner asked me to see if I could get this problem fixed. I can get this mower for $1500 less the repair bill. The deck looks like it has been worked on and the cut seems wavey. I believe that the front part of the blades are cutting lower than the back the middle differential appears to be angled slightly forward. Any sucess in correcting this problem with out replacing the deck? A freind in the lawn care business said that the deck needs to be jacked on the front ( something that he says he has to do about every 50-80 hours on his fom hitting roots with the deck)but he did not know that this would correct the alignment of the blades
    The second is a Grasshopper with Kubota diesel. It also has about 1200 hours. I have not seen this mower run nor have I seen how good the it cuts. I has a grass catcher but I am not sure all the parts are available for the catcher. Is there anything I should look for on this mower. My friend is not familiar with this style mower. The price is $2500. Thanks A. D.
  2. Runner

    Runner LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 13,497

    First of all, welcome to Lawnsite, and I hope that you find this site to be most beneficial to you.
    With the Kubota, by the sounds of it, the price can be decieving. First of all, these machines were not the greatest cutting things around, as far as final results. Also, if it's blowing hoses like that, it might be a bigger problem than what it appears. It could go right to the hydraulic valves or motors themselves. Also, if this deck has been cut on, and doesn't cut right anyway, I'd skip it. If it was that bent to cut wavy, it could end up wearing out spindles and such as fast as you can replace them too. Just leave this one alone.
    Second, the Grasshopper. With this many hours on it, leave IT alone too. The spindles, the casters, and many other working parts are going to need work. I know this, because I know Grasshoppers all too well. Great machines, but yes, they do wear out. Shop around, keep your eyes and ears open, and see what you can come up with. Talk with your local dealers, watch the papers, and check sites out for used mowers. One good site to look into is www.machinefinder.com . This will help you right from your location. You can also go to Exmark's website and go to the used machine link and find something. One thing about going with Exmark, is that you can't go wrong. There are several other decent brands out there that would be suitable for you as well. Grasshopper would probably be one of them, but this particular unit you were refering to just sounds like it's tired, even though the motor is probably still going strong. Good luck with the search.
  3. strickdad

    strickdad LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 544

    you said in your post that you had a 235 massey ferg. heck if it was me i would go buy a brand new 6ft. (72inch) finish mower and be done with it. you can get a well built "new" one for less than 1500.00
  4. Diesel

    Diesel LawnSite Member
    Messages: 18

    I, too have a large piece of property and for part of it use a 6' pull behind PTO mower on a JD tractor. I think it really depends on the quality of the turf and the quality of the cut you want to achieve. Your tractor probably has deep tread rear tires designed to move the tractor through mud and dirt fields which can leave tire tread marks in soft turf. If you turf is more pasture-like then the tractor will be fine. If you turf is more front yard-like then you may not want to leave tread marks.
  5. ADA

    ADA LawnSite Member
    from S. C.
    Messages: 16

    Thanks for your help. I got the Kubota from the shop and the tube fixed the leak. Cut with it and I got more done in much less time than before and it is amazing what SHARP blades will do for the cut. Cut was not that bad. However large puddle of hydraulic oil oozed out of the "transfer case" overnight. So Runner I am going to heed your advice and "Pass on this puppy". Not even going to consider the Grasshopper.
    While mowing I really paid attention to how MANY turns I actually make while cutting my property . It really is broken up in a lot of small cutting areas and a good many obsticles to mow around. Not a large area to deal with SO I don't know if the finish mower is feasible. Oh Well don't have to cut again until March or So. I will keep reading. Thanks again for the input. A. D.

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