Home > Zero-Turn Mowers (Commercial) > Scag > Turf Tiger << Back to List of Reviews

Scag Turf Tiger Review

Overall Rating:
Build Quality:

Solid Mower!! Posted by picker77 on 07/18/2010

This was a dealer's demo ('03 model, purchased in early '04) with 12 demo hours on it. Has the 61" Advantage deck with a 27 HP Kawasaki liquid-cooled V-twin and shaft drive to the deck. I mow 5-8 acres of mixed pasture (more like tall lawn), regular lawn, and some fairly rough woods paths and trails. Lots of trees to get around and in between. My little 38" John Deere was taking forever to do anything with, and my Kubota with 60" brush hog didn't do as smooth a job at 3-4" on the pasture as I'd like and the rig was too long for the stuff in the trees and trails.

I checked around with some local commercial grounds people and found they were mostly using Scag or Ferris. I checked them both out, and they are both good machines but I liked the deck and front end on the Turf Tiger the best, seemed more heavy duty to me. Could have gone with 72" but that would have been a bit unwieldy around the house. The 61" has turned out to be just right for my purposes. Sort of wanted the diesel version, but the astronomical price jump ran me off that idea. The Kawasaki has plenty of power and torque anyway, I have to be in where I don't belong with it to bog down it the least bit. I don't run it full throttle, just around 2/3 - 3/4 throttle. Very rare to need full throttle.

LIKES: Plenty of power, easy starting, smooth running V-twin with very little vibration (especially if you take care to keep the blades balanced after sharpening). The deck is bulletproof--I've ruined several blades with no deck or drive line damage and there still isn't a dent on the deck anywhere. 383 hard hours on the spindles and deck belts with no problems whatsoever. Wide soft tires, very (VERY) heavy duty front end. Blades are quick and easy to remove, sharpen, and reinstall. Aftermarket blades are fine and much cheaper than buying from Scag.

DISLIKES: The seat arm mounts broke after about 50 hours or so, weren't made to really lean on, I found (I'm 6'4" and 230 lb). Dealer replaced them no problem, but I take it easy on them now when getting off and on and don't put my full weight on the ends. The '05 and up version seats are much better, especially the suspension seats, which I'd like to have but was nearly $500 to buy and install, so I didn't. However, the original cushion and back are still in good shape and are comfortable to ride for several hours. A small NASCAR-type roll-around hydraulic jack is needed to change blades (to lift the front of the mower). Newer models may have a more convenient deck lift setup, I don't know.

Had the electric clutch start geting flakey at about 350 hours, it worked fine until I mowed for a couple of hours, then when I shut down the blades to get off the machine and back on, the blade clutch would refuse to re-energize until it cooled for a half hour or so, after which it was fine, at least until I shut down again. When I recently ordered a replacement clutch it turns out Scag has replaced the original Ogura with a much heftier and larger diameter upgraded clutch kit. I installed the new kit and it works fine, I suspect the original was just a bit light for the job.

Model year: 2003 Date Purchased: 03/15/2004 Number of Hours: 383
Pros: Outstanding build quality and overall "stoutness", excellent and reliable engine, solid hydraulics. Cons: Seat arms are wimpy (newer ones are much better), could use a more convenient deck lift setup. Type of User: Homeowner 1-10 Acres Location: United States Oklahoma I also considered buying:
© 2012 TractorByNet.com. TractorByNet is a registered trademark of IMC Digital Universe, Inc. Other trademarks on this page are the property of their respective owners.