Wright Sentar 19 or 23 HP

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by heybruck34, Sep 10, 2008.

  1. heybruck34

    heybruck34 LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 300

    Looking to buy a new Wright Sentar at the end of the season. I had decided on a 23hp 48" model. I like the 48" width because it fits through 3 gates on yards I mow.

    Yesterday I came across a dealer closeout of a 19hp 48" at a significant discount even over the Wright Direct pricing (17% off in Late Fall). We're talking around $1,500 of savings.

    1. What do you guys think of a Sentar with 19hp vs the 23?

    2. What value does the HP canister air filter add to the 23 vs the standard paper element on the 19?

    3. If it were your money- what would you buy? 19hp for $X or 23 hp for $X + $1500?

    I'm replacing a 14hp 48" Scag belt drive with a velke.

    I plan on having this mower for many years- I cut about 10 lawns so it will last a while and want to make the proper purchase decision.
  2. TNT LawnCare Inc.

    TNT LawnCare Inc. LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,157

    Can i ask why you'd want the sentar ? I know you can ride or stand on them , but how much do they want for this. You might be able to get a ZTR 48 for the same price ? We use Wrights standers,which i love . Cant see spending that much more for a Sentar.
  3. heybruck34

    heybruck34 LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 300

    They are more compact than most Z's and I like the sit/stand ability. I had originally decided on a Stander but my knee is giving me problems and the doc said I need to cut back. I figure getting rid of the velke/walkbehind and sitting down will allow me to do the same work but accomplish the doc's orders of "cutting back"

    I like the construction of the Wrights as well- huge hydro pumps, floating deck, well built machines.

    Late fall price for a Sentar 23 hp 48" is 7500.
  4. PTP

    PTP LawnSite Bronze Member
    from Tulsa
    Messages: 1,397

    If you are cutting only 10 lawns and plan to keep it that way, the 19hp will be just fine.

    I have the 19hp Stander and it is working okay but it is a little underpowered when trying to go through the thick stuff. It definitely gets the job done but a little more power would be nice some times.
  5. TNT LawnCare Inc.

    TNT LawnCare Inc. LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,157

    Thats one reason i switched to the standers cause there compact,we need to take multiple mowers out everyday. The 23 would be nice if you have overgrown stuff at times . The 19 should be fine,i always like a little more HP. thou !
  6. heybruck34

    heybruck34 LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 300

    Scag Tiger Cub is 80" long w/ 10cc pumps and ~1000 lbs
    Sentar is 65" with 16 cc pumps ~905 lbs
    Exmark Lazer Z HP 77" long, 10 cc pumps and 1080 lbs for 46" cut.

    Don't know about prices for the Scag or eXmark. Imagine they are pretty similar.
  7. olde_blue

    olde_blue LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 349

    Don't forget that the 19 hp they use on the Sentar is the same displacement as the 23 hp (675 cc). There have been a few threads on lawnsite discussing what is the difference between the two engines. . . if you could figger it out, you could probably upgrade the 19 for less than $1500.
  8. heybruck34

    heybruck34 LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 300

    Olde blue I've seen several posts of yours in the Wright Mfg forum and was hoping you'd weigh in or you would have gotten a PM from me.

    Am I correct in assuming then that you would take the 19hp and pocket the difference? I was thinking I could probably bolt on a completely new engine for $1500 in a couple years if I wanted to.

    What value do you add to the canister air filter?

    The 23 HP would be nice-real nice but I just can't get around the $1500 savings. $500 no big deal but 1500 is a different matter entirely.
  9. 02DURAMAX

    02DURAMAX LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,801

  10. olde_blue

    olde_blue LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 349

    It really depends upon what you mow, to decide if the 23 hp and canister air filter is worth $1500. The 19 hp Sentar do the exact same job the 23 hp one will do--only you may have to slow down a bit in tall grass or when mulching leaves. If you normally mow well maintained, fairly small yards (as the choice of a 48" over a 52" would suggest), it probably will not slow you down very often. The question is: will the 23 hp save you $1500 worth of time (and frustration), and how long will it take to save that time? If it will take more than 2-3 years, it is probably not worth the money. (Other considerations harder to quantify: the 19 may also use less gas in normal conditions, but wear out faster if regularly under heavy loads.)

    Another option for the ambitious: buy the 19 hp, immediately swap out the 19 hp for a new 23 hp (about $1200 or so at a discounter), and sell the 19 hp for $700-800. May affect Wright's warranty. . .

    As far as the canister air filter goes. . . a conversion kit costs about $250, depending on the model of engine (some need a carburetor swap, some just a leaner fuel jet, see http://www.lawnsite.com/showthread.php?t=113698 for a KIA conversion--a bit different). I considered converting the 17 hp KIA Kaw on my 36" Stander, but thought it wasn't worth the money. Alot of people will disagree on this, but I think that the KIA filters, and the stock filters on the 19-25 hp kawasaki's, do a pretty good job of keeping dirt out of the engine--which is there primary purpose. They seal with an o-ring. The filters do get dirty--but so long as they aren't so clogged that the engine runs rich, this isn't a big problem. I clean my precleaner at oil changes (oftener in fall), and change the $15 air filter every 300 hours or so, so the mower will use a maximum of $150 worth of filters over an very optimistic engine lifespan. If you mow in really dusty conditions, this may change your calculations. . .

    All that said, I plan upon buying a 52" Stander soon, and (unless I come across a deal like your 48" Sentar), I will get the 23 hp engine. It is only a $235 option over the 19 hp on the Stander. Different math.

    Also consider this: the 19 hp floor model may be an older model. Make sure that it's serial number is of the latest generation (I've not studied Sentar's much, but I think they are on the fourth model--for a reason: they fixed problems). Go to Wright's website, and look at the serial number breakdown on their parts lists to find the starting serial number of the latest generation. Also, within the latest generation, a late 2007 and 2008 Sentar will have no-flat front tires and a flow-baffle (about $100 and labor to put on yourself) while a slightly earlier Sentar will not have these options. Also, you may expect shorter belt, tire, and battery life from mower which has been sitting for a while.

    Best of luck! I've only test drove a Sentar once (a 48/19), and it was very fast compared to a Stander. I didn't like sitting so far behind the rear wheels on a sharp turn--it felt like the mower wants to toss you off; they aren't as agile as the fixed deck Standers where your body is right over the rear wheels. They still compare favorably with a midmount Z, though.

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