Hi there I have a about 1/3 acre of grass to cut. There are many
obstacles like trees, garden beds, kiddy slide, dog run, etc that I
need to negotiate, and it takes me a good 40 minutes on my normal
craftsman rider. But I look out of my window every day and see the guys
wizzing past in their toros and husqy z-turns and dream about them! I
plan to live in this place for at least 10 years maybe my whole life,
so I was wondering if it would be just plain silly to buy a commercial
Assuming I make it through the night after I tell the wife, can I
2nd question - what makes is the prefered? I want a real commercial
one, not the cheaper pretend z-turns from husqy.
I'm still using my small JD rider bought around 1990. I have 1/2 acre in
the back with a lot of obstacles like you have. It takes me about 1.5
hours. I only use the first or slowest forward speed. When I get down to a
big pile in the center I keep running over it with the mower to get it into
I mow the front every week to 10 days. The back I let grow a bit longer.
Sometimes I split the back mowing into 2 days to let the mower rest in
It's been a while since I bought a mower and those prices sure are sticker
I also have a brush mower from this site -
They are a decent company as well as J Deere.
I have an original Cub Cadet lawn tractor (1962) it was probably the most
expensive thing you could buy back then, but has worked flawlessly until I
took it out of service recently in favor of something my kids can use
(safely). If you buy the run of the mill machine, it runs like garbage right
out of the box, has a short life expectancy, and after the first few years,
needs constant maintenance. There was a time that John Deere was the top
name, as was Cub Cadet many years ago, but personally I don't think this is
true anymore. My present machine is a three cylinder diesel, water cooled,
power steering, Kubota, which I like a lot. All the top of the line machines
are going to run you over 6k, but amortize them over the next twenty years
and you're ahead of the game.
On Sat, 21 May 2005 07:35:35 -0400, "RBM" <rbm2(remove
==========================I also purchased a Cub Cadet in the early 60's...ran it until about 5
years ago....still ran fine but all the tires (originals) were dry
rotten and the mower deck had rusted thru and to replace thoise items
made buying a new Cadet the better buy.... BUT I have to admit my New
Cadet is not as good...most likely will only last 20-25 years...
However the original poster wanted a commercial mower... Have no clue
as to why he feels a commercial mower is the "ticket" .
I can understand his "desire" for a zero turning radius mower
I have about that much also. Takes me that long with a hand pushed mower.
I can use the exercise so I can't even justify a cheap used rider. It would
pbroably take me even longer to cut since I too, have obsticals. Years ago
I had a self propelled mower and it took me longer as it was more awkward to
use around obsticals than a push mower. They are nice for long straight runs
but a PITA for tight maneuvering.
if you hafta worry about the wife approvin then you really dont need
one... a good zero turn will last most of us a lifetime, and mow twice
as fast.....a freind just went from 1/2 acre with push mower to 5 acres
and bought a 38" cut sears rider ,takes him all day and then some to mow
the 5 acres.he said his wife couldnt justify spending 8 grand for a
dixie chopper 5 foot cut when a 1000.00 sears rider would do it. but
she aint the one who has to spend 10 hours cutting the yard every week.
shes inside putttin laundry in the washer for her daily weekly chore....
At a lawnmower race I saw a Dixie Chopper that had a real chopper motor
(150 hp helicopter motor). Sounded cool, but in a drag race it was a
handfull and could not quite beat the standard one. Those zero turn
models that can revolve in their own length (2 levers with hydraulic
motors) look like fun.
Frankly, for the size you're talking about, I think it's a case of
neighbor envy not need. First thing I'd do is rearrange the obstacles
to be such that the turning radius required is such you don't need to
back up to make the corners. That's the "first rule of planting" w/
If, otoh, you've got ready cash laying about and nothing better to do w/
it, there are several alternatives besides JD although there's certainly
nothing wrong w/ green as long as you stay away from the "Sabre" line.
Grasshopper is one that is quite solid, not quite as pricey, but doesn't
have the "cachet" if you're after the Wow! factor...
Kinda hard to rearrange a dozen full size trees. Even more with the
evergreens. Hey, I didn't plant them. I if I had a spare $10k sitting
around, I'd call in an arborist.
I think the original poster wants a commercial mower since they are tougher
than some of the wimpy stuff that's sold to homeowners.
John Deer, Gravley, Simplicity, International, and More ... the list
goes on...all "good" ...and all marketed to homeowners...
My limited experience ( 2 purchases in 40 years)...buy from a Farm
machinery dealer...ones which have service departments..
Assuming grass to be cut every ten days for 180 days, that's 18 mowing
expeditions of one hour each.
Renting a model made in Mexico for $30 yields a yearly expense of $540. In
twelve years, you would exhaust the original $6k.
Since the machine would last twelve years (more or less), financially you're
about the same.
Hiring out the project, however, yields 216 hours of additional leisure.
If you make 125K, not a problem. If you make 15K, the wife might complain.
Turn part of the lawn into something that doesn't require mowing.
Combine your little patches into one area with hedges or ground cover
separating the dog run from the garden. Then hire someone to mow it
properly and sip ice tea while you watch them work :o) The couple who do
our lawn are delightful to talk with, but we can't take up much of their
time. If I had to mow my own lawn, I would have much less than I have.
These days it is an excuse for noise, exhaust fumes and dumping poison
into the environment. Noise in our neighborhood is 24/7 - different
garbage collectors, edgers and blowers running all the time....have to
hide indoors to get away from it :o)
Same here! The neighbor mows his lawn about 3 times a week. He does
sections at a time. I guess it's his hobby. His whole yard is so small it
makes me laugh.
Then there is the other neighbor who only comes out to mow when no one else
is around. He practically runs around to get done and hides inside. His
family just moved here last year. I came home and saw him in his yard and
gave him a wave and he hid behind a tree. LOL.
That's my kind of neighbor. In our condo, if one is not in the "kiss
up/kick down" group of friends, there is little likelihood of getting
any kind of decent treatment. One board member took to turning on the
sprinkler when certain people were in the yard. When I was spray
painting some little household trinkets in the yard one day, she did her
usual. I called the police (Sunday afternoon). She said she didn't
have time to check the yard before she turned on the sprinkler. The
police accepted that. I went back to what I was doing, and another zone
came on, getting my freshly painted stuff wet. The police were still
there - four vehicles! I went out and spoke to one officer, who looked
at his watch and said "She is legal now.", meaning that he understood
she not only got me wet but she had been watering during the daytime
hours (10am-4pm) when it is not "legal". What do I do? Building code
here is treated like a joke, and I finally got it - must be the last one
in town :o)
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