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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
We live on a piece of ground that has been in the family for over 100 years, our section is approximately 6 acres of lawn, all flat. The senior family member used to handle the mowing but since he is now 99 years old, it was time for him to retire. He always used Craftsman mowers and the last one is just about done.

So, what should we be looking at as a replacement?
Thanks
 

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There is a quite a list of things that you would need to consider. I will throw a few out there.
Rider (GT/LT)
Zero turn
width 48" 54" etc...
Obstacles, gates, trees?

New or Used?
Definitely go with a dealer , not a box store
Residential grade or Commercial grade?
What brand do you prefer?
John Deere, Gravely, Dixie Chopper, Toro etc. Stay with a popular brand as parts will be easier and usually cheaper because of the whole supply and demand thing.
 

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And what is your budget, because we will likely recommend a $10,000 zero-turn to you if you don't say! :sidelaugh
 
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A $10,000 zero turn will last a long time ... unless you wreck it into a tree . :bag:
 
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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
The area is a combination that I would say is 60% flat with some trees scattered in. "0" turn would not be important as the trees that are there are spaced out quite a distance. As for the budget, I know what I can personally afford which would be in the neighborhood of 10K. I would like to have everyone share the expense equally but we all know how that goes. I wouldn't want to commit to anything that I wouldn't be prepared to pay for myself.

You answered one big question though; Avoid the box stores.
Thanks
Bill
 

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If you are looking for longevity I would definitely go commercial. A Zero would save you an incredible amount of time. I mow @6 acres [email protected] 3 hrs. with various terrain and obstacles.
I run a John Deere Z810A with a 48" 7 IRON deck and a 22HP Kawasaki engine. It's a commercial and I chose the smaller deck size due to gates and trees and other obstacles.
 

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:ditto: A commercial ZTR will last longer and cut faster than a residential machine. 6 acres is enough that I would definitely go for a commercial. In terms of brand, there are many good manufacturers out there, but I think that Scags are built the heaviest.:2cents:
 

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I second Five Points and Motorhead12 I mow commercially and I run a Scag 48" which is Ideal for most lawns . I run it about 10 months out of the year 38-40 hours a week and mine is either 6 or 7 years old now.
 

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I would choose Scag over John Deere but that's just me.
 

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I would also pick Scag for the fact that all they build is commercial machines and don't sell at big box stores.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
3 hours to mow 6 acres? It takes us at least 4 times that now using the old Craftsman mower. This is the first time I have ever heard of a Scag mower, they do have a local dealer, I will check them out.
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Yes, I shaved countless hours off of my mowing from going to a Z vs. a rider. BTW Brands are a matter of research and opinion. I've had no issues with my John Deere for several years barring 1 drive belt which was my fault and a $12 piece on my air intake. ;) and the green colors are more appealing on the landscape. :) :2th:
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Years ago, (Mid 1980's) one of the family patriarchs here worked for the school district, he bought a number of old Sony reel type mowers that were retired. They ran pretty good but were expensive to have the blades sharpened. He took one of those mowers and scrapped the reel unit, Turned the engine around and added the biggest deck he could find. (I think it was about 54" at that time). Problem was, the engine didn't have enough power to run the deck and the mower so he simply added another engine. He had a twin engine mower that could mow a 5 acre trace in no time. I (I think he told me it would mow at around 9 MPH?) It's still around, although he isn't. I'll see if I can get a photo of it. The local newspaper did an article on him.
 

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That would be a "Reel" neat photo.. :sorry::bag:

Honestly though, that would be neat to see. especially if you could find the article too.
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
That would be a "Reel" neat photo.. :sorry::bag:

Honestly though, that would be neat to see. especially if you could find the article too.
I talked to the inventors Grandson today. Sadly, the mower was scrapped a few years ago. I think he has some photos that I will post along with the article. The system was really quite remarkable; he used it for years.

What I am getting is the commercial grade of mowers are faster even with narrower decks. They seem to go a lot longer. The Craftsman mowers we have been using have 48 inch or larger decks and it still takes hours to do the lawn and they leave a lot to be desired as far as reliability goes.
 

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I can speak for the JD, the deck is heavy steel and double edge wall construction with thick steel bottom edges, heavy duty spindles that have a grease (zerk) fitting right in the top for easy access. The blades are extremely thick and last most of the season and I have quite a bit of sand from time to time. Heavy duty pneumatic front wheels (casters) and a solid steel body. As far as speed it will cut about as fast as you can stand it, I mow at a slower pace to preserve my back ;)
 
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