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Outdoor Power Equipment Discussion, Repairs, Buy or Sell Outdoor power equipment discussions. Questions on commercial lawn mowers, lawn mower, mower parts, lawn tractors, engines, edgers, trimmers, pole saws, aerators, hydro seeders, snow plows, chain saws, stump grinders, trucks and trailers?

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Outdoor Power Equipment Discussion, Repairs, Buy or Sell

Outdoor power equipment discussions. Questions on commercial lawn mowers, lawn mower, mower parts, lawn tractors, engines, edgers, trimmers, pole saws, aerators, hydro seeders, snow plows, chain saws, stump grinders, trucks and trailers?
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  #11  
Old 02-20-2012, 08:21 PM
wandfsmall wandfsmall is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hedgemaster View Post
Does the hydro make it easier to operate, or is it just more reliable?
Hydro is smoother, and easier to operate as you have no gears in the unit. It is based on the flow of oil and a valve similar to a water faucet controlling the speed. I know this is a simplistic view on a hydro system but in effect is is how they work the pump pumps oil that pushes the wheel motor.

I feel they are more reliable if taken care of correctly. But as for repair you have to have a good shop as a lot of mechanics do not know how to fix them.
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  #12  
Old 02-20-2012, 08:27 PM
Hedgemaster Hedgemaster is offline
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Good to know.
I knew the Worldlawns were Chinese, and have already read most of what I could find about them online, including finding a few places that actually listed prices. Seems they run about $1,400 new, so the price he gave me of $1,000 for the demo seems fair, although I'd ask if he can do better, or throw in a bagger or extra blades.

The Cub Cadet linked in the post by HAMPTON ROADS LAWN CARE has me thinking, as it's about the same price as the Worldlawn and has the same 10.5 hp engine. The thing I like about the Cub is the adjustable deck. The thing I don't like is that I couldn't just take it to my dealer for repair. (Tractor Supply near here carries the Cubs)

Another thing that I'd have to check into is the "steering".

I'm reading that the Cub has to be manhandled to turn it, but I can't confirm it.
I'm not sure how the Worldlawn works - I THINK it has independent controls for each side, so I ASSUME that means you can "steer" it.

I've never operated a walk behind, so I'm not sure how they operate, or if there are different types.
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  #13  
Old 02-20-2012, 08:31 PM
Hedgemaster Hedgemaster is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wandfsmall View Post
I am not sure how a small dealer can just order other brands of mowers... is he getting them from other dealers and reselling them somehow? For me to carry a brand of equipment it cost over $50,000 per line for parts and equipment to start up. It is not something you just order one or two in. I would check this out a little before buying as this does not sound legit.
Well, not "any" brand. Just the ones he "carries". It's just that "carries" is a bit of a misnomer since he doesn't seem to STOCK much of anything.

I picked up brochures for Exmark, Bob Cat, Ferris, Toro (his main line), Worldlawn, and there were a few others.
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Old 02-21-2012, 08:34 AM
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Originally Posted by Hedgemaster View Post
Noted. Aside from the lower price, one of the reasons I was leaning toward a belt drive was ability to "fix it myself". I'm not a great mechanic, but I can do basic stuff and I'm willing to learn.

Here's a question for someone...

What's the difference between the gear drive and a hydro drive?

Aside from mechanical difference and "hydro is better", what does hydro do that a gear drive doesn't? This seems to be assumed knowledge, as none of the literature explains the difference.

Does the hydro make it easier to operate, or is it just more reliable?

the hydro has no belts to contend with as well as far more power in the event you use a sulky and they are not affected in wet weather being there is no belts to slip and best of all you squeeze the handles all the way and you have reverse.

hydro is far easier to operate and the only draw back that i can think of is the initial cost of ownership.
after i bought my first hydro years ago i would never buy a belt driven machine again.
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Old 02-21-2012, 11:05 AM
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Hydro is a lot more expensive initially and in the long run. It is hard to maintain those yourself if you are not a some what experienced mechanic. Belt drives are excellent when it is not raining but when it does it can be a pain. But a trick my dad and I use is rub a bar of dove soap all over the belt for a good 20 minutes and that will work like a charm in the rain. It sounds wierd but give it a try it works. But other than that if you have the mone get a hydro and SCAG all the way. Those commercial SCAGS are expensive but they last for at least six years no problem. Make sure when you are buying the mower you look for the t of metal used, sturdiness, and the mower. Those are one of the most important parts for picking out a mower for longevity.
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  #16  
Old 02-21-2012, 05:29 PM
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I'm not sure what I'll do yet.

I spent some time on ebay looking at mowers just to get a feel for what tings are selling for. I saw some Toros that were around $1,000, but they looked like they should be in a scrap yard.

I was doing some research on non-commercial mowers too and the only one's I saw that appear to be available around here are the Cub Cadet, the Troy Built, and the Sears "Professional" - all of which are the EXACT same unit. (except that the Craftsman has a 12.5 hp engine as opposed to the 10.5 hp on the other two - it also has a headlight and runs about $50 more than the others)
The biggest "plus" with these are that I could finance them for 12-18 months.
The trouble with buying used is that you can't do that. (except for my dealer's offer to allow me to make payments - but that doesn't help if he has nothing in stock)

I guess it's going to boil down to whether I decide I can live with a homeowner mower for a season or two, or if I happen upon an unusually good deal on a Toro.

I'd rather buy from my regular dealer, but maybe I'll check out some other dealers to see what they have available in used mowers.

Perhaps if I wait, more used mowers will become available as guys buy new units for the upcoming season?
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Old 02-21-2012, 10:34 PM
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I think I've decided - sort of.

I happened across the Airens walk behind from Home Depot and was reading through the reviews.

There was something that I read that concerns me. A few people mentioned difficulty on hills - going across, the front wants to roll downhill and they have to fight to keep it straight.
A few of the larger lawns I have are sloped. They are also the larger lawns that I thought a walk behind would help me cut more quickly.

I think I'll scrap the "homeowner model" idea entirely. It would probably be OK if I were only mowing flat lots, but there isn't a property in this area that doesn't have at least a portion of the lawn on a hill.



I think I have three options:

Buy used.
HOPE something becomes available that is around $1,000 and isn't beat to hell.

Buy new.
HOPE I can get 0% (or near it) financing for 24-36 months.
MAYBE I can do this - depending on cost of unit.

Wait until next season.



ETA: I haven't completely ruled out the Worldlawn unit. I still have some things to look into regarding the Toros and I need to find out how the Worldlawn operates - are the wheels powered independently? I THINK that's part of the issue with the lower quality mowers as far as steering ease and operation on hills are concerned.

Last edited by Hedgemaster; 02-21-2012 at 10:38 PM.
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  #18  
Old 02-22-2012, 11:20 AM
Hedgemaster Hedgemaster is offline
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What's the difference between a fixed deck and a floating deck?
Aside from the obvious that a floating deck isn't "fixed in place."

Keeping in mind that I'm looking at either a 32" or 36" unit:

Would I regret a fixed deck?

Does a floating deck improve the cut?

Pros and cons of each would be helpful.
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