Wright Stander Review

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing Equipment' started by RLS24, Jul 3, 2011.

  1. RLS24

    RLS24 LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,603

    Well I've put 50 hours on my new Wright Stander, so I figured I'd write up a review that might help people who are considering one.

    What I Was Replacing
    I had a 2004 Lesco 54" floating deck Hydro WB with a velke, 19hp Kawasaki. It had lower hours on it, but it was starting to be a nickle and dime machine and wasnt very maneuverable for some of the smaller lawns I was doing.

    Other Machines I Looked At
    The only other stand-on style mower that I REALLY considered was the Gravely ProStance. I visited a Gravely dealer that a friend recommended, and it was always really had to get ahold of them, I'd talk to someone different everytime I called,a in just in the process of going there and demoing one, I was handed over to about 3 or 4 different sales people. That was kind of a turn off right there. I also really didnt like the machine for various reasons. The Gravely was significantly cheaper than the Wright or any other stand on model, and theres a reason for that, we'll just leave it at that. The Toro Grandstand and the Scag V-Ride were out of the question, the Toro dealer around here is a dick and the Scag was out of my price range.

    Wright Dealer Experience
    I guess this only applies more to local people, but I felt it would be good to include it anyway. I dealt with Wegman Motor Works, right here in town. They are the only Wright dealer around here, and conveniently about 10 min from my house. Now, from talking to other people, I have heard a lot of bad experiences with that place, but after dealing with them I can't believe anyone would have anything bad to say about them. I dealt with wither Dave (the owner) or his son Kyle every time I have been there. When I first walked in I talked to Dave and he helped me and took care of me every step of the way from showing me the machine, to demoing it, taking care of the financing, to prepping it for delivery to loading it on my trailer. I have had a couple minor issues with it since I purchased it and whenever I had tot ake it back they would stop whatever else they were doing and took care of it on the spot. They were always very apologetic for it being an inconvenience even thought I kept saying it was ok I understood and I wasnt mad at all. As of right now I have no intentions to go to another dealer because I am so happy with the service they offer there.

    As stated before, this is a 2011 model, 48" Stander with the 24hp Kawasaki FX691V. This was the only one they had in stock at the time. For whatever reason they couldnt move it. They had a lot of 52" Standers in stock, and that seems to be the most popular mower around here period. I didnt settle for a 48" thats what I wanted because I knew I could get it into more places than the 54" deck I was getting rid of. I had previously called around to a couple other Wright dealers that were father away just to get a ballpark idea on price for this same model. Without even wheeling and dealing Dave threw a number out there of just under $7400. I tried to get him to throw the bagger in there for free, which he couldnt but he did give me $100 off on it which brought it down to $99, add in the $150 finance fee from the bank and NY's lovely 8.75% sales tax and I made it out of there at about $8400. Again, based on other prices I was getting in my area, that was a good deal. Verry good deal....

    Initial Impressions
    The first time I drove the ting, I thought I was going to kill myself! It was so fast, agile and responsive compared to what I was used to. I also couldnt get over how compact the machine was. I really felt comfortable on the machine, the controls are at the right spot so I dont feel like I have to reach for anything, I end up standing in more of an upright position and mot leaning really forward (Gravely). The suspension in the platform is also great, and its adjustable as well. The only real complaint I could come up with is the throttle and the choke are kind of in a bad spot, but theres REALLY nowhere else to put them, and its not like they are controls that are constantly being used, so its ok. Its really good on hills, that took a while to get used to. Theres a few spots where I'd always bail off the velke on my old mower and just walk behind it, but I cant really do that on the stander so once I got used to how I had to lean to keep my own balance, theres no problems and the thing holds hills REALLY well actually. It does really well in the wet too. For as heavy as it is, the weight is distributed very well and keeps rutting soft lawns to a minimum.

    Cut Quality
    At first I was a little disappointed with the cut. The mower would leave a lot of "mowhawks" in the lawns and seemed to get clogged up a lot even when not bagging. HOWEVER, I had to remind myself that we have had the wettest spring on record, and for the first month that I was using the mower the grass was always really wet, VERY VERY tall and really thick. In the last month and a half since things have dried out and the lawns are under "normal" conditions, the thing cuts and stripes amazing. I can go full speed and it doesnt miss a blade of grass. Clipping dispersal is great with the deflector in the up position, and it bags really well too.

    I've really only had 2 problems that I needed to take it back to the dealer for. The first is that after a few days of cutting, the gas tank started to suck in. These newer mowers have an evap canister system like you'd find on a car rather than just a breather on the gas cap. I took it back in and the replaced the breather valve in the tank (again, great service from Wegmans). Apparently the issue with that was that the engineer who designed it made it so that if it gets wet with gas, it wont work....and it goes IN the gas tank....but hey it probably looked GREAT on his computer screen, right? The other issue, and this still hasnt been resolved, is that it backfires. I always shut my stuff down at low throttle. I noticed when I was doing that, it would backfire. Like a really delayed backfire, sometimes up to 10 seconds after shutting down. The dealer said that I was not the only one with this problem and they are working with Wright on a fix. They believe it to be an issue with the muffler. The temporary fix is to shut it down at 3/4 - full throttle. I'm not too crazy about that, but since I've been doing that it doesnt backfire. Based on the service I have been getting, I'm sure that when they do come up with a fix or if theres any other problems linked to this, I will be taken care of no problems so I'm not too concerned about it.

    I'm really happy with this mower, as much as I hate to have had to finance it, it is totally worth it and theres no way I could be as productive as I am without it. Unless someone comes out with something better than the Wright, I really have no intentions of going elsewhere. Its a great machine, and I think theres a LOT of reasons you see them on trailers all over around my area. They arent kidding when they say "its the Wright way to mow!" I'm already planning to purchase a second one as soon as I pay this one off.
  2. Aaronnc

    Aaronnc LawnSite Senior Member
    from Zone 7B
    Messages: 354

    Thanks for the review, really appreciate it. I am toying with the idea of downsizing the 60" ZTR to a 40ish-50ish Stander at the end of the season. (Maybe a 50ish ZTR, dunno yet.) We'll see. Thanks for the info.

    Could you possibly comment specifically on why you didn't like the Gravely? I know you get what you pay for, but that's like a 1500.00 difference. That's a lot of coin. The price just looks super attractive.

    Thanks again.
  3. RLS24

    RLS24 LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,603

    It seemed like you really had to lean forward a lot more and it wasnt as comfortable to me. I didnt really like the design of the deck, particularly the very small chute opening. No way you're going to tell me large volumes of wet heavy grass are going to fly through that and not clump. One of the major design features of the Wright that was also a huge selling point to me was the location of the operator platform in relation to the wheels. With the Wright, you're feet are right in line with the rear tires, the Gravely you're actually standing in front of them. I think this has a LOT to do with the ride and handling of the mower. From what I understand, Wright has patents on a lot of these design features, so no one else can use them. Wright put a lot of time and engineering into these things and built this mower the right way (no pun intended). I believe the first Stander rolled off the assembly line in 1997, and really not much has changed about them since then, and they continue to run all over the market with them. That should say something right there. I also did not like the single lever configuration of the Gravely controls. The Wright has a set of levers for forward motion and a set for reverse motion (if you look at it, both sets make a V shape under the dash and act off the same pivot point) and then theres a permanent bar in the middle for hand support. It sounds like its more complicated, but once you use it and then demo a mower than doesnt have that, you dont know what to do with yourself haha. The dealer I bought the Wright from is also a Gravely dealer actually, and he said they sell a lot of ZTR mowers from them, but they usually only order in 1 or 2 ProStance mowers just to have on the floor so people can compare it with the Wright and see that the Wright is a better machine.
  4. ed2hess

    ed2hess LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 14,593

    Gas tank straps are toooo darn tight and that is what shrinks in the sides or at least that is what happened on my two. Happens on all plastic tanks. Shut it off at full throttle and move on.
  5. mowerbrad

    mowerbrad LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 6,268

    I too found that the throttle and choke were both positioned in very poor spots on the wrights, I just couldn't get used to it though. The people who run wrights that I have talked to (not many in my area) say that they are located in great spots (but they've used the machines for a while).
  6. Aaronnc

    Aaronnc LawnSite Senior Member
    from Zone 7B
    Messages: 354

    Thanks for the info. Probably will be looking into them at the end of the season. Again, thanks for the review.
  7. Angelo585

    Angelo585 LawnSite Member
    Messages: 123

    Sorry to hijack, but....

    They are the best and biggest Wright dealer in this area, I traveled from Rochester cause their prices were so good and bought 3 52" Wright's from him!

    Dave and Kyle ROCK!!! best customer service I have ever had!!!!
  8. RLS24

    RLS24 LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,603

    Glad to hear someone else has had a good experience there! I have actually started to replace my 2-cycle stuff with RedMax just because thats what they carry.
  9. Angelo585

    Angelo585 LawnSite Member
    Messages: 123

    Their prices are actually better than the Wright seasonal buying discount, and the Red Max prices are better than i have seen around here, they work on so much volume that they can give great prices.... for me it is worth the hour trip up there...
  10. tacoma200

    tacoma200 LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 5,426

    I found them to be much worse on Hills than the Turf Tiger or New Lazer. Only going up a hill were they better. This excludes the ZK version which was about equal to the two ZTR's mentioned. Just my opinion after running for a few weeks. Nice machines other than that for small lots.

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