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Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by Mowingman, Mar 27, 2001.

  1. Mowingman

    Mowingman LawnSite Platinum Member
    from Texas
    Messages: 4,717

    I am in the market for a 72", diesel ztr. I tried out 3 machines in last few weeks. Here are my observations.
    Tested machines : DC= Dixie Chopper xxwd2600
    EX= Exmark Z XP
    GH= Grasshopper 321D
    All are midmount type.
    All tested on rough ground with heavy growth of 6-8" tall wet ryegrass and weeds.
    Deck & Cut Quality:
    DC: Cut looked good and deck never plugged.Height control pedal awkward to use. Heavy springs on pedal kept pulling deck up to 2.5" height. could not cut at 2.0"
    EX: Cut looked good and deck never plugged. Height control lever and pedal easy to use.
    GH:Good cut and no plugging. Height pedal easy

    Engine & Power:
    dc: Yanmar 25.6hp is a proven engine in mowers. Never lugged down in tough mowing
    ex: Daihatsu 27hp. I think this engine is fairly new in "mower use" . It had good power and never lugged down
    gh: Kubota 21hp engine was too small. However, the new 428D model has the larger 28hp Kubota eng. Kubota has a good reputation in mowing equip.

    dc: Stable side-to-side ,but choppy front to rear. seemed heavy in rear end.
    ex: Very Smooth
    gh: Very smooth

    Seat, Controls, & Inst.
    dc: Comfy seat but it does not adjust forwark or backward. Had to reach too far when pushing steering levers forward. Very smooth steering and this unit did not have the VTC system. Inst good and love audible warning. IT probably saved this eng. when cooling fan failed to run.
    ex: Comfy seat, is adjustable. Controls easy to reach. Inst. ok.
    gh: Great seat made of Cordura to minimize sweating and sticking to seat. An important feature down here on 100 degree+ days. Controls and insts. all well placed.

    Overall Design And Quality (My Opinion Only)
    dc: Good design and easy to work on. Wiring quality is poor and looks like my sons model train wiring or worse.
    Dc has good track record with diesel machines.
    ex: Well designed and solid quality. However their twin mule-drive system looks like a potential maint problem. This may be a work-in-progress as this is their first diesel and rep. kept showing me things that are being improved on current production models.
    gh: Very well designed and high quality shows throughout. Have many years experience with diesels.

    My Choice: I have placed an order for a Grasshopper 428D machine today. All 3 machines are very good. However,I believe the local Grasshopper dealer will be the most responsive if I should have any problems. Also, the factory is only a 5 hour drive from here. I was very impressed when I went by the factory and the president of GH spent 3 hours giving me a tour and answering my questions.
    Ihope the above info helps those of you who may not get to demo these machines. I will be glad to answer any spefic questions. Remember, these are just my opinions and observations.
  2. John DiMartino

    John DiMartino LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,555

    Good evaluation-I agree with everything said on the DC,as for the others,I havent Demo'd them yet.
  3. TLS

    TLS LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 7,943


    I can agree 100% with everything you have reported on. I agree that the 21hp Kubota is just not enough for the 60" class, glad you decided to go with the 428D. I'm sure that you will be very happy with 28 diesel horsepower! Let us know when you get it!

  4. skyphoto

    skyphoto LawnSite Member
    Messages: 221

    Boy some of those Dixie guys are gonna have a hay day with you!!! hahahaha But I think you made the right choice...Grasshopper is all I run with the diesels in them...Like ya said they have a proven track record and are a quality built machine! Keep us updated on how it goes when it arrives!!!!! Would love to hear the pro's and con's after a few hours of use!
    Wish I could order another hopper myself!!!

  5. skyphoto

    skyphoto LawnSite Member
    Messages: 221

    Can I ask how much ya paid? If im not being to nosey!

  6. joshua

    joshua LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,226

    i'm a exmark man but you made a good choice thats tough for me to say. i think in about 2 years that the exmark z xp will be a great mower just needs the bugs out of it.
  7. Mowingman

    Mowingman LawnSite Platinum Member
    from Texas
    Messages: 4,717

    List is about $14900.00. I paid $12425.00 for it, plus tax. :)
  8. TLS

    TLS LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 7,943

    Boy, thats almost pricey enough to have green and yellow paint on it! Those Kubota's are great engines, albiet expensive. Good luck, and dont forget pics for us too!

  9. awm

    awm LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,354

    I hope we can get more objective reports like this.
    I dont agree with everything said but thats the idea.
    Input an evaluation from LCOs working in all the different
    type of conditions.This type reporting is great for us,
    the manufacturers and everyone as it promotes real improvement.
  10. Greenkeepers

    Greenkeepers LawnSite Senior Member
    from NE Ohio
    Messages: 695

    Thanks for giving a nonobiased report. It is good to see that everyone here is valuing your opinions as well. Wow we must have grown up in the past 2 years at lawnsite. If this was an early post there would have been all kinds of bashing. Good report and thanks!!!!!!

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