ZTR for 5 Acres?

Discussion in 'Homeowner Assistance Forum' started by Timely, Aug 9, 2013.

  1. Timely

    Timely LawnSite Member
    Messages: 7

    We have about 5 acres of property to mow pretty much weekly, and some additional areas that we hit occasionally. Sometimes the grass gets pretty long, and it's pretty bumpy in areas. I expect we'd run it about 100 hours per year.

    We've used a Big Box Toro Timecutter for about 5 years, and it was held together with baling wire by the time it bit the dust. We'd like something more robust to replace it. I don't want to overkill for our needs, but I do want something that is up to doing this much work.

    I have been looking at the Kubota Kommander S-series, the Ferris IS600Z and IS700Z, the Exmark Pioneer S-series, and the Exmark Lazer Z E-series. I was also looking at the Dixie Chopper Silver Eagle, but I hired a neighbor guy to cut our grass, and he had one. I asked if I could test drive it, and I found it to be an extremely rough ride. I don't know if there may have been some extenuating circumstance that caused that.

    While our Toro struggled with the workload, it rode comfortably and was easy to use. There was no need to lift the deck, just set the height by moving a handle. It did bog down a lot.

    As for dealers, the Dixie Chopper guy is like 1/2 mile from my house...which is a huge plus. I'm not looking at Gravely because the dealer is kind of far. The other dealers are close enough to work okay.

    What I am wondering is if the level of machines I'm looking at is right for my needs or if some of these ZTR's are more machine than I need?
  2. aaronmg

    aaronmg LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 357

    get a husquavarna or john deere homeowner garden tractor. That's the majority of what you will see people doing with that type of workload
  3. Timely

    Timely LawnSite Member
    Messages: 7

    We need the maneuverability and speed of a ZTR. You know how it is....once you have one, there's no going back!
  4. aaronmg

    aaronmg LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 357

    I just bought a Gravely Pro-Stance 52, so I guess I'm prejudiced for standers, but if your looking to go bigger I would look into a ferris evolution 48". There right around 5k I think. plus they have the icd deck option.
  5. WilsonBoud

    WilsonBoud LawnSite Member
    Messages: 232

    Homeowner here with 3.5 acres.

    My property is very rough, so I went looking for a ZTR that would cut at speed, leave a great cut (no straggles), and do it with a smooth ride.

    I ended up buying a Scag Cheetah (Suspension platform for the rider) in a 61" deck and a Kawasaki 31 hp. This ZTR cut my grass cutting time from 4.25 hours to 1.5 hours, and it does it smoothly and with a "very good cut... purchased this ZTR some six weeks ago.

    My property has never looked better.

    FYI..... I cut the property for 18 years with a Kubota L2900 and a 72" groomer. YES, it cut really nice, but took me 4.25 hours to complete the cut. It was very slow....

    Anyone want to buy a tractor......???

    You may consider something that will cut your grass and not bog down when the rains hit, and you have to let it dry some. By then it could be tall and thick, times many acres. Buy something with a serious engine and ZT3400 or ZT5400 transmissions.

    :usflag: *trucewhiteflag* :usflag:
    Last edited: Aug 9, 2013
  6. farmershawn

    farmershawn LawnSite Member
    Messages: 22

    I definitely do not think you are over-doing it, I think you need to step UP a class in mowers. I just bought my very first ZTR last week.

    I have 4-acres of lawn, and a couple acres of field that I mow as part of the lawn but it is of course quite a bit rougher.

    I also am going to mow my two (2) 10-acre cow pastures several times a year (today for the first time).

    I could not afford enough new mower. Ferris IS2000, Snapper Pro 200xt, Kubota Z200/300, Scag Tiger Cat, Bad Boy Outlaw, etc...

    As a 49-year old the Ferris IS2000 appealed to me the most with the suspension system. The Snapper Pro 200xt was definitely the most bang-for-the-buck (big motors, ICD deck, iron spindles, ZT5400 trannys).

    I started checking Craigslist in the Shreveport area looking for a "big, burly, commercial ZTR" and found a 220 hour, very well maintained, Kubota ZG227 with a 54" deck for $5,500. Used (Tractorhouse) they run $6250 to 8K. At the dealer they run 8-10K. I drove two-hours one way and bought it.

    I am very, very pleased with my purchase.

    The 4-acres of yard were a breeze, high speed, clean as a whistle. Sweet.

    I crept through an acre or so of 5-6' tall (no kidding) pasture weeds yesterday in front of my barn/one of the houses. Jungle-crazy-thick. Then made a couple more passes to get it smooth.

    I also blasted about an acre of cow pasture as the sun was fading, no problems at speed when it was smooth enough to do so. Normal knee high pasture weeds and grass (kept relatively short by my herd).

    I definitely needed all the ZG227 has to offer in terms of power and robust build-quality (it's a freakin' tank).

    IMO, and I am not an expert but recently in your shoes, you need to step UP a level from what you are looking at in terms of machines.

    Find a homeowner, low hour, well maintained machine, pay the same money as a brand-new smaller machine, and get a bigger, stronger, unit.

    Best of luck to you. Hope this helps.
  7. jakes mowing

    jakes mowing LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 294

    If you are looking for comfort look at ferris or simplicity. Simplicity is made by ferris so it has the full suspension with Icd deck(i think). A farmer i know just bought one and he loves it.
  8. caseysmowing

    caseysmowing LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,137

    X2! Don't think you are saving money buying a 5-7k verse a 10-12k mower. Buy something that your grand kids can still use when you are gone.
  9. Nate'sLawnCare

    Nate'sLawnCare LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,001

    For under 8k, you can get a Snapper Pro S200XT with a 61 or 72 inch deck and the 32HP Vanguard Big Block. It should last you many years. The warranty is also pretty good, 4 years or 500 hours right now. They also have 0% financing for 48 months.
  10. Deputy_Swan

    Deputy_Swan LawnSite Member
    Messages: 125

    We can mow that in about hour and half with our deere Z925 w 54 inch deck

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