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  1. #1
    Gold Member NoTrespassing's Avatar
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    Kubota 1999 L3710 HST FWA

    Default front mount 'vs' mid mount deck ztr's

    Can someone speak to the advantages and disadvantages of front vs mid mount ztr mower decks? Price, maintenance, durability, speed, etc.

    Thanks,

    Kevin
    L3710 HST/LA681FEL/6ftRM/6ft Woods aerator/6ft Woods Box Scraper/roller/speader/posthole digger

  2. #2
    Gold Member
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    Default Re: front mount 'vs' mid mount deck ztr's

    The only real advantage with a mid-mount is they are physically shorter, and can get more of them on a 16' landscaper's trailer, hence their popularity with LCOs. Mid-Zs have a much wider range of classes with everything from entry-level (aka semi-disposable) consumer to top-of-the-line, beat-em-up-all-day-every-day, heavy duty commercial. I think they also run a sizeable bit less (with the exception of maybe the diesel, propane, and LNG powered ones,then it's probably negligable) than a comparable quality front-mount ZTR, but usually the front Zs have greater flexibility of uses and attachments. The industry has stepped up and made many attachments for mid Zs (snowplows, dethatchers, spreaders,...) but I think the front-Z still gets the nod. Front-Zs offer the ability to reach under low tree branches (pines) much more effectively and easily; and their cut may arguably be a little better since you're not driving a heavy caster over the grass before cutting it.

    All that said, I ended up with a mid-Z (DC LT2700-60D) when I was last shopping. Granted it's not really a directly comparable machine to any front-Z, but it more than met my needs, and was at a price no front-Z could remotely touch. After 6 years, I have no regrets despite still thinking front-Zs are cool.

  3. #3
    Platinum Member bucktaker's Avatar
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    Kubota L5740

    Default Re: front mount 'vs' mid mount deck ztr's

    but I think the front-Z still gets the nod. Front-Zs offer the ability to reach under low tree branches (pines) much more effectively and easily; and their cut may arguably be a little better since you're not driving a heavy caster over the grass before cutting it.

    +1 Love my front mount Woods 6215 with kubota diesel, I dont haul on the trailer and have a front mount snow blower . If foot print isnt a issue get a front mount
    Kubota L5740 La854
    MF 35 Deluxe gas wloader...For sale

  4. #4
    Elite Member
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    John Deere 1070

    Default Re: front mount 'vs' mid mount deck ztr's

    I like the fact that a lot of front z's will lift the deck off the ground, even if only slightly. Also as stated before, there are more attachments for them. I don't have one but I have the next best thing- a three wheel bunton. Given a different budget I would be buying a diesel grasshopper front deck.

  5. #5
    Super Member
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    Default Re: front mount 'vs' mid mount deck ztr's

    Front mount generally costs a little bit more and takes more floorspace, but most are better built than mid mounts (the kubota F series from what I understand is essentially a BX turned around), come in 4wd and you can get all kinds of attachments for them.
    Many have it setup so that the front deck can be lifted very high for maintenance (some to vertical) which makes cleaning off the deck or changing blades a piece of cake (no jacks needed).
    I have driven and worked on both a Deere front mount (4wd 1980s vintage machine) and several mid mount Zero turns (Exmark Lazer Z 60-72", Huskvarna "Commercial" 60", Cub Cadet "Tank", etc).
    While the front mount is (IMO) a little slower (might have been that machine) and little bit harder to get into tight places (due to the larger size) it is a tractor, not a lawnmower and is more versatile.

    Aaron Z
    A human being should be able to change a diaper, plan an invasion, butcher a hog, conn a ship, design a building, write a sonnet, balance accounts, build a wall, set a bone, comfort the dying, take orders, give orders, cooperate, act alone, solve equations, analyze a new problem, pitch manure, program a computer, cook a tasty meal, fight efficiently, die gallantly. Specialization is for insects.
    Robert Heinlein, Time Enough for Love

  6. #6
    Elite Member
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    Default Re: front mount 'vs' mid mount deck ztr's

    I believe you are referring to front mount mowers and not necessarily a ztr. There are mowers that drive just like a mid-mount ztr but instead of being balanced over the deck the mower frame has a set of rear casters and the drive tires act like a ztr- and with joysticks.

  7. #7
    Gold Member NoTrespassing's Avatar
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    Default Re: front mount 'vs' mid mount deck ztr's

    Thanks All,

    I'm looking at used front decks now. Like dbear said, I think front Z's are cool. On the other hand, I can't justify $10K+ to mow my lawn.

    The lawn service we used to have where I work used Walkers. If I had a beautifully manicured lawn in town I'd have to get one. They are very cool with the collection system and auto dump.

    With my lawn I'm thinking Grasshopper or Woods. Are there similar setup in other brands I should be looking at?

    Kevin
    L3710 HST/LA681FEL/6ftRM/6ft Woods aerator/6ft Woods Box Scraper/roller/speader/posthole digger

  8. #8
    Super Member
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    Default Re: front mount 'vs' mid mount deck ztr's

    Quote Originally Posted by mikehaugen View Post
    I believe you are referring to front mount mowers and not necessarily a ztr. There are mowers that drive just like a mid-mount ztr but instead of being balanced over the deck the mower frame has a set of rear casters and the drive tires act like a ztr- and with joysticks.
    Good point. I haven't driven a front mount ZTR (only drooled over them at shows), but they look nice and seem to hold their resale value better than a mid mount ZTR.

    Aaron Z
    A human being should be able to change a diaper, plan an invasion, butcher a hog, conn a ship, design a building, write a sonnet, balance accounts, build a wall, set a bone, comfort the dying, take orders, give orders, cooperate, act alone, solve equations, analyze a new problem, pitch manure, program a computer, cook a tasty meal, fight efficiently, die gallantly. Specialization is for insects.
    Robert Heinlein, Time Enough for Love

  9. #9
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    Default Re: front mount 'vs' mid mount deck ztr's

    While not strictly a zero turn, my kubota GF1800 front mount serves me well. Four wheel drive, 60" deck, diesel, and can mount a snowblower on the front in the winter. That little tractor is a mountain goat, it will climb any hill.

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