when to purchase a z or similar machine

Discussion in 'Pesticide & Herbicide Application' started by woodlawnservice, Feb 19, 2019.

  1. woodlawnservice

    woodlawnservice LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,180

    always stuck on when... when am I big enough to justify the 12k price tag. I personally think the new steel green would fit us best but which model? we do a lot of large areas but also small as well, its a big mixture... as of now we use a skid sprayer, backpacks, a lesco chariot with spray boom( never use to spray just use hopper for fert.) and two zero turns ive fabbed to preform very very similar to a z spray. capacity is just a little less as I run more carrier. So small yard we use the skid, big open areas we use the zeros, in-between are the hard ones... I thought the lesco would be good for it but I reall don't like how it pivots in the middle. its just awkward..?? our zeros are calibrated at 65k a refill on 25 gal capacity.. they work GREAT! just refill a bit more than id like (knowing I could use less carrier) would get us there... but at what point is a z more productive than my zeros? I really don't know.. I can spray 1 acre and edge it all in roughly 35-40 min. im not sure a 10-12k price tag is justifiable.... so im think ok maybe a jr to fit that's small to med sizes, but then is it really faster than pulling a hose that I can edge all at the same time?? hard for me to decide that.. im a tight wad, but if it saves me time or money id make the investment. I look for a used one all the time but just never come across a decent deal
     
    hort101 likes this.
  2. That Guy Gary

    That Guy Gary LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,412

    Keep in mind on med-large (roughly 10k+) it's very easy to spread and spray at the same time.

    I run an Exmark, I can spread and spray 2 acres+ an hour on large properties.

    Even on smaller lawns you can save a lot of time, the machines can all move at 5+mph, much faster than a guy dragging a hose. Don't need to reel in your hose and then grab a separate machine for granular.

    There is also the fatigue factor. With a ride on you'll perform just as well at the end of a 10 hr day as you did at the start.
     
  3. ETM

    ETM LawnSite Bronze Member
    from GEORGIA
    Messages: 1,877

    Once you pull the trigger you will ask yourself why you didn’t do it sooner. Just buy one.
     
  4. woodlawnservice

    woodlawnservice LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,180

    But will I? I have my two zeros I use for my bigger yards 20k and up.. fatigue is virtually nothing since u ride them... I can maneuver them very easily and even get in some smaller areas.... so will it save me any time? I dont know...? Mine are setup up like the older lesco ride ons. My smaller city yards I think itd be hard to even get a z on. Trees, beds, etc on top of just minimal turf..
    Pulling a hose dont really wear us out as our routes are a mixture of both, pulling hose and riding the machines. So fatigue truth told is more of passing out material on the neighbouring houses.. lol
     
  5. AnotherOkie

    AnotherOkie LawnSite Senior Member
    from Newalla
    Messages: 539

    I was in the same situation 4-5 years ago. Had 2 skids and had just bought a new atv(wore out 2 before it) with a 25 gal tank and 14 ft boom. I couldn't understand how I could justify $12k+ machine. I found a very used z max about 3.5 hours away for $3500. After about an hour I figured out that I had been missing out and fooling myself. Have since bought 2 new machines and cut back to one skid. Myself and a helper can consistently do 800k-1.2 mil sq ft/day and not be worn out or filthy dirty at the end of the day.
     
    dishman89 and ETM like this.
  6. woodlawnservice

    woodlawnservice LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,180

    I can understand that... but as my zeros are a bit different than an atv.. as mine is a zero turn, have my speed down to a pat, 10' spray width, all the adjustments u have with a z.... and its comfortable! I sit down on it vs standing up on a rider... I even have a wand. So i dont have to get off to edge. I can see how it would speed up vs using a skid but i dont use the skids much unless the zero turns are just physically to big for the property. With me and my helper on our zeros, we have done over a million in a day and like you say.. not worn out of even dirty. The only part we get dirty at is refilling and mixing as I dont carry my nurse tank pre mixed... just plain water.. I try to justify the costs.... but I cannot find a z cheap enough to use out as a demo per say... all I find are over 6k and have 1,000 hrs plus... for that price, I just assume spend 11k on another zero turn and build another system like I have on mine and have the flexibility to quickly detach it all and mow with it... or pull an aerator etc...
     
  7. AnotherOkie

    AnotherOkie LawnSite Senior Member
    from Newalla
    Messages: 539

    Understandable on all accounts. The only other thing to account for is the Uncle Sam factor. Some people may be selling a 1000 hr machine, in order to buy a new one for a tax purposes. You're spot on price and hours. I've got a '16 max that is approaching 1000 hours. Still operates like new, but I'm trying to determine when the best time to sell and replace is. I have ran one up to 1700 hours and it was still rocking. Sold it to a friend. I guess it comes down to personal preference. 20 minutes for a house on an acre lot. Knock out 3 before a fill up is needed.
     
  8. ETM

    ETM LawnSite Bronze Member
    from GEORGIA
    Messages: 1,877

    Well I guess only you can answer your own question. :cool2:
     
    tdoeizreal and woodlawnservice like this.
  9. woodlawnservice

    woodlawnservice LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,180


    That's my problem.. lol
     
  10. ETM

    ETM LawnSite Bronze Member
    from GEORGIA
    Messages: 1,877

    I was on the fence also for a yr. One of the Best decisions I’ve made in my business of 20yrs if that helps.
     

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