Zero Turn Radius Mower - Advice

I want to purchase a small, 48" deck, commercial grade ztr mower and am considering the following mowers: Scag Tiger Cub, Hustler Mini Z, Gravely 148Z, Dixie Chopper Silver Eagle, and Kubota ZD20 or ZG23. I would appreciate any advice regarding the pro's and con's of these mowers or suggestions about other mowers. Thank you for your help.
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I have a 52" Grasshopper with a 20 HP B&S engine and enjoy mowing with it. There is some technique involved in learning how not to scalp / scuff the grass with the drive tires when making 90 degree turns. I'm not sure if one brand of ZTR mower or type of tire is better or worse in this regard.
I test drove a Gravely and the Grasshopper when I was shopping for this a few years ago. After I'd made my purchase I tried driving a Badger (I think that was the name - it was dark green) and I can't say that I was able to tell a difference in how any of the three of them were to drive. Now that I've had a few years of mowing experience I might. The Grasshopper is easy to maintain. the oil drain is easy to reach, and of course the air cleaner is right on top. I recall that there was a discussion on one of the lawn care groups about avoiding mowers with Kawasaki engines because they had a lubrication problem and the engines failed at an unusually young age. I don't know which brands of mowers they were on or whether the problem has been rectified.
I have yet to read any long term ZTR owners with experience with multiple machines give any reasons to purchase on brand over another other than the problem with the Kawasaki engines.
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I observed a ZTR on a neighbor's lot. The operator would turn quickly and by the end of the season deep ruts were cut into the edges of the lawn causing some erosion. I guess these machines would do a good job if the turns were slow, but that's not done. Slow mowing is good for the lawn.
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On Sat, 29 Jan 2005 12:45:31 +0000, Phisherman wrote:

Even with slow moving this still may be an issue in soft soil. You got to figure that the ztr weighs 350 pounds plus what ever you weigh and all that weight is placed over the rear drive wheels. With that said though, you should get good traction with the weight, but I would be wary of any steep grades. It looks like it would flip right over on a good grade. Of course I've never used one, it mearly strikes me that way.
I do a good deal of commerical mowing with a toro 37 proline with a T-bar handle. This is what you call a mid level walk behind. With the sulky attachment, I can mow 4+ acers per hour. Of course you walk behind it or ride a sulky (standing only), but I can mow steep grades with it very safely. If you get into trouble, you just step off and your safe, no rolling onto you.
What ever you do, see what you can do about renting a mower your intrested in. You should be able to find places that will rent to you for the day and in my opinion, it's money well spent. This way you will be able to see if this mower is right for you and suits your liking.
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On Sat, 29 Jan 2005 10:26:21 -0800, Timothy

Wow! 4 acres / hour. What's the width of the mower deck on that and what's the ground speed? That's got to be without too many turns or obstructions. I'm doing about 2 A / hour with the Grasshopper. The deck has a 52" cut and mowing speed is supposed to be 6 mph although I believe it can travel at 9 mph. I mow as fast as the engine will power it.
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