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ZTR , A status symbol or A necessity ?

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by MTR, Nov 25, 2002.

  1. MTR

    MTR LawnSite Bronze Member
    from Florida
    Messages: 1,280

    Hi, I have a few questions regarding the ZTR or Z.
    Is ZTR a status symbol or a necessity for all of you LCO here? I feel like everyone must have one in order to be called a big boy or "pro." Is it really an integral part of lawn care biz? I operate small service in my area with WB and feel comfortable both physically and financially the way WB has done to me. If my biz grows more in future, I probably end up getting a 48" or 52" hydro WB/sulky not a ZTR, this way saving both money and headaches.

    I think the Z is for people who don't feel fit physically and just want to sit all day, I could not imagine myself sitting all day getting fat cutting grass !!! (just kidding, I know we all work hard out there, don't get angry).

    Well, having said so, does anyone has some explanation or input, please fire away.

    Walkbehinds in the blood.

    Best regards,
  2. mtr

    What i think or anybody else thinks is a status symbol dont mean jack.

    It's what you think and your cilents think .If you are doing a first class job and your cilent's like it and you are makeing money, if i were you i would give jack **** what any body thought was a status symbol.

    Now ztr aint just for the unfit im 6/1 210 lb ex airbourne auto worker im in excellent condition,the reason we use ztr's is they are more productive they go faster and get done quicker .

    Thats the bottom line for us we cut 212 lawns in 5 days we need to get the most productive machines we can and for us it is mid mount ztr's .I could care less about a status symbol's i care about makeing money and the ztr make a ton for us.
  3. coonman

    coonman LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 686

    I think it just depends on what accounts you want to pick up. Like anything else cars, houses and boats some guys probably try to one up the other guy with their equipment. They want to have the biggest and most expensive. That said, I would think if you want to go after big accounts such as malls and parks and churches it would be wise to have a Z. From my personal experience you can make good money with smaller equipment. We have a two man operation with 2 21inch and 1 32inch an edger and 2 trimmers and 2 blowers. We bring in about 700-850 dollars a day and don't have more than about 5k in equipment. We just concentrate on residentials and small commercials, there are plenty out there.
  4. Fantasy Lawns

    Fantasy Lawns LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,912


    a VERY valid point ...and NO ..... a Z is NOT a status symbol .... fore ...us ....it is a business need ..... which allows us to bid jobs within the market we live in ....gives us the abililty to be competitive ... I could not bid this area (which extends to the right as long as it appears deep) ... the same with a WB

    Here in FL ....most jobs are smaller in lot size .... fore the most part many members here are dealing with +1 acre lots ...which is not the "norm" down here ....so on most resi's a WB will do just find ...but when doing larger commercial sites (or larger resi's +1 acre) ...a Z is a MUST
  5. Sooners

    Sooners LawnSite Member
    Messages: 190

    MTR, you must still be young and fit. I certainly envy you. However, speaking for those of us that are older and fatter, I prefer to sit. After 40 you start getting things like heel spurs, bad knees, bad backs, etc. Let alone strokes and heart attacks in the hot summer.

    A 42" rider would solve that, but those fancy Z's pay for themselves with the right jobs and do it a lot quicker. Can you push mow up to 10 mph? If a push mower can mow consistently at 5 mph (and I doubt it) a ZTR with a 60" deck going 10 mph will do what (6) 21" push mowers can but with one operator. Work out at the gym with the extra money you make with a ZTR.

    Also you do pay a higher price up front for commercial ZTR, but they are made to work 8 hours a day 5 days a week all year long.

    I hope my spelling and grammer are acceptable.
  6. wriken

    wriken LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,154

    Depend on your contracts you have, I have both.
  7. TJLC

    TJLC LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,308

    I owned a Z for a while and NEVER felt I bought it for "status". I bought it because I thought I needed it for my properties. Turns out in my case it was overkill so now I use w/b's with a sulky. If you have big, wide open properties I say go for the Z. The nice thing I find with the w/b's and sulky over the Z is I have the "option" to sit or walk, depending on the property and how I feel that day. This is not intended to down Z's, they are great in certain cases.
  8. awm

    awm LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,354

    i kinda understand where mtrs question is coming from. i use to get some, ignore him, looks from folks w ztrs ,before i got one. just people being small. kinda funny to me. when u think about it. their attitudes are just about the silliest thing i know. as to the ztr itself ,i agree with
    odin ,its just the most productive system .
  9. Bill Davis

    Bill Davis LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 397

    I have both too and I wouldn't give up my Z for the world. Well, maybe I would but it is a great time and energy saver on my big properties and the cut it delivers is second to none.
  10. crazygator

    crazygator LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,048

    I see most of the larger (I mean huge) LCO's here in town have 75% WB's. Why? ability to access more properties and more area. They do have many guys in their trucks though. Less time to train than a Z, and less money if these guys tear one up.

    I think it all depends on where you are, not what you want to look like. If you have larger properties, then a Z might be best. But you could go with a large WB and do just as good, just not as fast. But which ever way, it is your business and no one certain way is always right for everybody.

    If you have built a good reputation and do quality work who cares what you use. If the WB's are doing for you what you need, why change? Remember, dont fix it if it aint broke!

    Now get back to walking and making that money......:D

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