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  1. #21
    New Member
    Join Date
    Feb 2012
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    19
    Location
    Frenchville, PA
    Tractor
    2010 Kubota 7040 4x4 w/ cab

    Default Re: Tractor or zero turn

    Thats a good point about bugs and comfort. A zero turn will rattle you around badly on rough ground. If the ground is smooth enough and you can mow fast enough not to damage your kidneys and throw up your last meal (some of you know what Im talking about) you might be able to out run the bugs. Seriously though, a tractor would be much more comfortable. It depends whats more important - time or comfort. Also the right finish mow should mow comparable to a zero turn or atleast my woods mower did.

  2. #22
    Silver Member
    Join Date
    Nov 2003
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    100
    Location
    Ida, MI

    Default Re: Tractor or zero turn

    Anyone have experience mowing the same lawn with a zero turn and a compact tractor?

    I currently own a JD 4110 with a 60" deck. It takes me 2.5-3 hours to mow the 3.5 acre (minus driveway, landscaped areas, and buildings, so maybe 3 acres.) part of my property that is lawn. I've been mowing this yard with this tractor for 7 seasons so I doubt there's much efficiency to be gained.

    I'm considering a Husqvarna commercial zero turn (PZ6034) with a 60" deck and am hearing that I could cut that to around an hour. The time savings is huge for me, especially mentally as I'm getting a bit burned out on the mowing after 8 years. It would make lunch-time (I work from home) or before-work mowing a possibility as well.

    Before anyone says anything about the single-purpose machine, I'd keep the tractor for snow removal, brush cutting on the other 6 acres, driveway maintenance and general yard work. Not having to remove and reinstall the deck would add to the time savings. To be fair I'll have another machine to maintain too so there will be a small adder there.

  3. #23
    Super Member daugen's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2012
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    7,305
    Location
    Washington NC (Inner Banks)
    Tractor
    Kubota L5740HSTC, Massey Ferguson 2615

    Default Re: Tractor or zero turn

    Matt,
    I've come at it from the other angle, starting out with a Gravely 50" rider, which cuts field grass quite nicely, to a 61 Ferris Zeroturn with the full suspension and shock absorbers, which reduced mow time by about 40% or more. ZT's are made to boogey and if your land will allow you some speed safely, you will be amazed how fast you can mow.


    And when you are done you are going to be pretty tired and sore if you've been going full blast. Zeroturns remind me of driving a corvette, fun, high performance, but you always have wet underarms when you're done, because you've been working at it. I didn't find the zeroturn relaxing at all. In fact I'm now going "back" in your reality to a compact tractor, which does ok and boy is the ride infiinitely softer with the bigger tires just rolling over the old furrows, instead of shaking me to death on the Gravely, jiggling me on the Ferris, and almost nothing on the tractor. I'm 62 with a bad back so comfort drove my decision. Just keep in mind there are tradeoffs. If you want to boogey, you will expend some energy keeping up with the machine.
    And unless you are very careful, ZT's will dig up your lawn on turns in any kind of wet weather with a big heavy machine.

    I hope this helps you.If you prioritize speed and performance, a ZT is the way to go. I just sold mine, it plain wore me out. For field work, having a steering wheel seems to be a much better idea. For lawn work, if you stay focused remembering you are mowing at quite a clip, the ZT will really get the job done. But, no steep hills with the ZT and if the grass is wet, you have to be super careful driving a ZT, much more than a tractor or garden tractor.

    I personally slid down a wet sand mound behind my church's parking lot, and totally out of control went through our neighbors split rail fence. Lots of splinters, but not a scratch on the mower. Just my pride hurt, and frankly when you lose all traction, it will get your heart pounding, because you are like you were at six years old with one of those saucer sleds, pretty hard to steer.

    Your "old" tractor might be slow and inefficient, but it has its virtues for sure.
    btw, I'm a retired insurance agent, and volunteer fireman, and have seen a lot of accidents in my time. Including one last fall where my close friend slid on his z turn and flipped into his pond, with the mower coming down on his head. Lucky he lived, with many broken bones. The point of this that just like driving a fast car, things come at you faster, and you can get out of control faster on a zero turn than most other things you can drive, in my opinion.

    ever thought of a wing mower, like a Swisher? I don't use it much but my Gravely gives me a 90 inch cut. Just an idea if the land allows it.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Tractor or zero turn-p1010308-jpg   Tractor or zero turn-p1000025-jpg   Tractor or zero turn-p1030224-jpg   Tractor or zero turn-p1000027-jpg  
    2012 Kubota L5740HSTC3 with FEL and Long solid bucket grapple, TNT, CA forks and stump bucket, Fred Cain subsoiler, County Line potato plow, County Line 1 bottom plow, 1986 Gravely 8199G with tow behind DR rototiller, 50" deck+40" Gravely wing mowers, Echo 450-18 & 600-24, Echo PPT280, 2014 JD X750 diesel garden tractor, 1968 Cub Cadet 125 under renovation, Husky-Speeco 35 ton splitter, ETA heavy duty rake and blade, Northern Tools 55 gal orchard sprayer, tow behind 8hp Little Wonder blower,

  4. #24
    Super Star Member EddieWalker's Avatar
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    May 2003
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    17,601
    Location
    Tyler, Texas
    Tractor
    Several, all used and abused.

    Default Re: Tractor or zero turn

    Quote Originally Posted by Matt_Meiser View Post
    I'm considering a Husqvarna commercial zero turn (PZ6034) with a 60" deck and am hearing that I could cut that to around an hour.
    I only looked at the Husvarna zero turn mowes and Lowes, so maybe this doesn't apply, but I found them to be on the low end of the mowers I looked at. I wasn't aware that they had a commercial line, and I'm wondering if they are just calling it that to make them sound more heavy duty then they are. Are you looking at a dealer or a box store?

    Before you buy, go look at some real commercial mowers. They are night and day in build from residential mowers.

    You might not need commercial, but you sure wont regret it if you bought one. Being out in the country, and mowing that much land, I'm worried that you will regret buying a light duty mower, regardless of what it calls itself.

    Eddie

  5. #25
    Super Member Gary Fowler's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
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    9,658
    Location
    Bismarck Arkansas
    Tractor
    2009 Kubota RTV 900, 2009 Kubota B26 TLB & 2010 model LS P7010

    Default Re: Tractor or zero turn

    If you have lots of flat open ground, one of those swisher mower behind your tractor style mower would really cover some ground. Just pull a pin and drop it to mow around your trees. I suppose they would work with a ZTR but you would sure have to limit your turning radius but with 2 mowers with 60" cut, man could you cover some ground. I think they are about $1200 new. I have tractors and ZTR and now only use the tractor for the heavy back pasture stuff. The ZTR is really fast, but like everyone is saying, they will beat you and beat you good. Everytime I hit a hidden hole, I swear every vertebrae from my skull to the tail bone compresses. Mine has no suspension so it is a bone rattler but it is fast and really climbs hills great, not so great coming down as not much braking on them and mowing on a side slope is really hard if it has any more than 5 % grade. I think they recommend max of 8% grade or maybe its 8 degrees. Anyway if there is enough slope for you to kind of slip sideways in the seat, then it is nigh impossible to keep the ZTR's on track. I mowed down more than a few of the wifes shrubs and flowers before I realized that you just cant go uphill with one to maneuver around an obstacle.
    Summary, if you just need to mow and dont anticipate needing anything else (Front end loaders are really handy but kind of awkward to mow with), get a good diesel commercial grade ZTR preferably with a suspension system and the best seat that you can find and hang on to your hat. They will cost you about the same as a 25 HP tractor with a mower perhaps a few thousand less, but not enough that you will be jumping up and down happy.
    2010 LS P-7010C 20F/20R gear tractor & FEL, 2009 Kubota B 26 TLB, RTV 900 Kubota,17 foot Lund boat with 70HP motor, 2012-20 ft 12k GVW trailer, 2011- 52" Craftsman ZTR mower, 2013 Ferris Zero Turn, 3 weed whackers, pressure washer, leaf blowers, 7 foot bush hog, 8 foot landscape rake , 8 foot 3 PH disc, 2 row cultivator, 350 amp Miller AC/DC welding machine and all the tools needed to keep them all repaired and running.

  6. #26
    Super Star Member
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    Feb 2008
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    11,348
    Location
    somewhere usa
    Tractor
    Deere 110tlb, 4520, x749, L130

    Default Re: Tractor or zero turn

    Quote Originally Posted by Matt_Meiser View Post
    Anyone have experience mowing the same lawn with a zero turn and a compact tractor?

    I currently own a JD 4110 with a 60" deck. It takes me 2.5-3 hours to mow the 3.5 acre (minus driveway, landscaped areas, and buildings, so maybe 3 acres.) part of my property that is lawn. I've been mowing this yard with this tractor for 7 seasons so I doubt there's much efficiency to be gained.

    I'm considering a Husqvarna commercial zero turn (PZ6034) with a 60" deck and am hearing that I could cut that to around an hour. The time savings is huge for me, especially mentally as I'm getting a bit burned out on the mowing after 8 years. It would make lunch-time (I work from home) or before-work mowing a possibility as well.

    Before anyone says anything about the single-purpose machine, I'd keep the tractor for snow removal, brush cutting on the other 6 acres, driveway maintenance and general yard work. Not having to remove and reinstall the deck would add to the time savings. To be fair I'll have another machine to maintain too so there will be a small adder there.

    One acre per hour seems slow to me my Big box rider when running correctly can mow my lawn at that rate. A garden tractor can easily mow over 1 1/2 acres per hour with a small deck. The large zero turns can mow an acre in about 15-20 minutes give or take. To take full advantage of the zero turns I would think your lawn areas need to be very smooth, then you can fly.

  7. #27
    Silver Member
    Join Date
    Nov 2003
    Posts
    100
    Location
    Ida, MI

    Default Re: Tractor or zero turn

    I have a lot of obstacles to mow around and a wider mower would create as many problems as it would solve. It is very flat around here. In SE Michigan hills are places where they backfill around a house.

    The commercial series ZTRs are a total different machine than the stuff sold at the big box. Very comparable to my friends kubota. I have not looked at SCAG or any of the other commerical units because I'm quite content with the dealer--they are my JD and Stihl dealer as well--and the dealers for the other brands that are reasonably close I'm just not familiar with.

    This is the unit I'm looking at. http://www.husqvarna.com/us/landscap...wers/pz6034fx/ Not cheap by any means but my time is worth it to me if the savings is there.

  8. #28
    Super Star Member
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    Feb 2008
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    11,348
    Location
    somewhere usa
    Tractor
    Deere 110tlb, 4520, x749, L130

    Default Re: Tractor or zero turn

    Quote Originally Posted by Matt_Meiser View Post
    I have a lot of obstacles to mow around and a wider mower would create as many problems as it would solve. It is very flat around here. In SE Michigan hills are places where they backfill around a house.

    The commercial series ZTRs are a total different machine than the stuff sold at the big box. Very comparable to my friends kubota. I have not looked at SCAG or any of the other commerical units because I'm quite content with the dealer--they are my JD and Stihl dealer as well--and the dealers for the other brands that are reasonably close I'm just not familiar with.

    This is the unit I'm looking at. HUSQVARNA PZ6034FX - Zero turn mowers Not cheap by any means but my time is worth it to me if the savings is there.

    I am no expert on zero turns but the specs on that Husqvarna look pretty good. Should speed up your mowing considerably. The two things I would be concerned about would be the electric blade clutch what appears to be flat casters. I prefer the hydraulic pto clutch and rounded shoulders on the caster wheels.

    I know everyone says the zero turns are faster than riders and I am not arguing with that. But I will comment that when mowing with my x749 at full speed 8.5 mph seems pretty fast. My lawn is very smooth but there is no way I can do that on most lawns, they are too rough. I mention this because to utilize the higher speeds your lawn will need to be smooth as a pool table.

  9. #29
    Bronze Member kycontrols's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Posts
    67

    Default Re: Tractor or zero turn

    Exmark has a good chart on acres per hour

    Exmark Lawn Equipment

    A big advantage a zero turn has is how you maintain a higher efficiency when changing directions. The more trees and obstacles you have will have a direct impact on how a zero turn compares to a lawn tractor
    _____________________________________________
    TC31DA, Loader, Quick Attach Bucket and Forks
    Box Scraper
    48 Scag Tiger Cub
    King Kutter Sub Soiler
    5 Foot King Kutter Tiller
    Land Pride HD25 Post Hole Digger
    90 Inch LandPride Side Discharge Mower
    Atlas Hipper from Ken Sweet
    Lots and Lots of Apple Trees

  10. #30
    Super Member
    Join Date
    Jul 2009
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    6,940
    Location
    SW WA
    Tractor
    Kubota BX2360

    Default Re: Tractor or zero turn

    One half acre around the house with a riding mower once a week or so. The rest a couple of times a year with a tractor.

    Enjoy watching the wind blow through the tall grass.

    What's with these HUGE lawns with all the work?

    Bruce
    (5 acres, no lawn)

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