My Lawnmower Forum banner

1 - 20 of 22 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
11 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
My dad and I recently decided to look into a ZTR mower. I live next door to him so we share. We've been using a Craftsman riding mower, or I guess you would call that a tractor, and it's not fun as you can imagine. I eventually started paying a good friend $60 every week to week and a half or so to cut my yard because I just hated doing it. I've been in envy of his Exmark and how it only takes him 30 minutes to cut my acre, as opposed to 1 hour and 15 minutes for the Craftsman, not to mention how amazing it looks when he is done, so I decided to look into the ZTR's.

I've been reading online, asking friends, and visiting all the dealers in the area for about a week now and have pretty much decided on the Hustler brand since the dealer is only a few miles away, pick up and delivery is free in January and February for yearly tune-ups, and I have yet to hear or read anything that suggests Hustler would be a bad purchase. Seeing as I am trying to build a home on my land in the near future and the wife is wanting a little one soon, I'm trying to make the absolute best purchase for my money as anyone would.

So my question is this:
The Fast Trak vs the Fast Trak Super Duty for 2.5 to 3 acres, which one would make the most sense for us? My understanding is the Super Duty has the better Kawasaki engine, has steel pulleys, and something to do with the big roll bar thing on the back vs the lower Kawasaki and composite pulleys on the Fast Trak. The dealer said they have the same transmission and are mostly the same mower, but the Super Duty is considered full commercial while the Fast Trak is not. The Fast Trak is $5600 and the Super Duty is $6700 I think. My acre is flat with no trees and dad cuts 2 yards with numerous trees and obstacles. We are looking at the 54" deck.

Thank you all in advance for any info.
 

·
Administrator
Joined
·
7,359 Posts
I don't think you can go wrong wither either one. When it comes to longevity, a lot of it really boils down to maintenance and how well it was taken care of. I think the Fastrak would be more than enough machine for an acre and would suit the job very well.

The commercial grade unit with it's beefier parts may hold up better in the long run as it was made for harder useage and if you like that idea I say go for it, but for regular homeowner use, the standard model shouldn't have any trouble at all holding up with proper care and maintenance.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
11 Posts
Discussion Starter · #3 ·
I don't think you can go wrong wither either one. When it comes to longevity, a lot of it really boils down to maintenance and how well it was taken care of. I think the Fastrak would be more than enough machine for an acre and would suit the job very well.

The commercial grade unit with it's beefier parts may hold up better in the long run as it was made for harder useage and if you like that idea I say go for it, but for regual homeowner use, the standard model shouldn't have any trouble at all holding up with proper care and maintenance.
Thank you Austen. What about the 3 acres since dad will be using it also? Still minimal enough if taken care of you think, or does that add a significant amount of usage?

Forgive me for the complete newb questions, I hope to be better educated on this stuff before too long
 

·
Administrator
Joined
·
7,359 Posts
I think the Fastrak would be fine, it's still within the manufacture's recommended acreage range.

Is the land pretty smooth without too many tree roots, hills, rocks etc? If not, I might take a closer look at the commercial grade model then because it probably would have a better time holding up for that type of terrain in the long run, but if it's just standard (mostly smooth) lawn throughout, I have no reason to believe the Fastrak wouldn't be able to handle the job.
 

·
Administrator
Joined
·
7,359 Posts
Yes it is mostly smooth flat ground.

Awesome man, thanks a ton for your input.
Yeah, no problem. Keep us updated and ask questions anytime! :cool:
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
583 Posts
Ditto to the advice Austen has given you already. I think the decision is basically up your choice based on how much you're looking to spend etc. Most guys would say go for the Super Duty one because 'you get what you pay for'. However, since you are only mowing 3-4 acres that are mostly flat I'm going to say it's even each way. I would agree that the Kawasaki in the Super Duty is better, but only by a slim margin. Personally if I were 'in your shoes' I'd go with the lower level Fastrack probably.

Hope this helps...
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
11 Posts
Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Ditto to the advice Austen has given you already. I think the decision is basically up your choice based on how much you're looking to spend etc. Most guys would say go for the Super Duty one because 'you get what you pay for'. However, since you are only mowing 3-4 acres that are mostly flat I'm going to say it's even each way. I would agree that the Kawasaki in the Super Duty is better, but only by a slim margin. Personally if I were 'in your shoes' I'd go with the lower level Fastrack probably.

Hope this helps...
Thank you Wayne. I think I'm going to go with the Fast Trak. I still am not 100% sure because I know myself and if something happens to it early on I'm going to wish I would have bought the Super Duty, but I think these things are made well. $5600 is a lot of money and I never thought I'd spend that on a mower but in this case it's more about quality of life for me. Thanks to you guys I feel good about it and look forward to the purchase. I'll post a pic when we get it, hopefully tomorrow or Saturday.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
11 Posts
Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Here we go. Too wet to cut right now with the big storm that just rolled through so I'll have to wait another day or two. I'll post back after the first cut. Thanks again guys.



 

·
Administrator
Joined
·
7,359 Posts
Here we go. Too wet to cut right now with the big storm that just rolled through so I'll have to wait another day or two. I'll post back after the first cut. Thanks again guys.



Wow,

Now, that is awesome!! Congrats!!:cool That is so cool.

You're going to enjoy it for sure, what nice looking machine! I think you and your Dad will be counting the days inbetween mowings, or better yet, fighting over who's going to use it, lol.

Really looking forward to hearing your review on it and more about it. Sure looks like a heavy duty unit and you just gotta love those wide rear tires!:D
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
11 Posts
Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Thank you Austen! Dad couldn't resist, he cut his front yard in what he said felt like 5 minutes lol. He loves it. We rode his next door neighbors Gravely the other day just to see what it was like driving a ZT. When I asked him what he thought, he said he couldn't believe how comfortable it was vs the Gravely so we're off to a good start.

I'll definitely post as soon as I use it.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
583 Posts
Very nice!:cool I'm sure you're gonna like it a lot especially when you compare the speed to that of a lawn tractor. I've mowed my lawn with a ztr for years, but I never had such a nice and fast one.

Have fun!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
11 Posts
Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Very nice!:cool I'm sure you're gonna like it a lot especially when you compare the speed to that of a lawn tractor. I've mowed my lawn with a ztr for years, but I never had such a nice and fast one.

Have fun!
Thanks Wayne! I hope it lasts as long as everyone says. We are starting on a little small building to store it in today. There's an old slab in the backyard dad used when they had a dog so we are making that into a little 8'x10' drop shed.

Oh I have a question. Dad said when he cut with it the mower pulled to the left when the handles were even. He had to keep adjusting it. Is that normal?
 

·
Administrator
Joined
·
7,359 Posts
It sounds like maybe one of the handles needs to be adjusted.

I would contact the dealer and ask them about what to do. Maybe they could come out and take a look at it.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
28 Posts
You will be happy with your choice. When it comes to ZTR's or for any mower, the quality and money should be put into the deck itself. That is where all the work is done. Both of the machines you were looking at have fabricated decks not cheap stamped decks. This is important and you will be amazed at the difference compared to the POS Craftsman (MTD) you were using.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
583 Posts
If it is made like most other ZTR's there should be a simple adjustment that can be made to the levers. I wouldn't be surprised if your owners manual would have instructions in it on how it's to be done.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
11 Posts
Discussion Starter · #18 ·
Thanks guys. I called the dealer and they said give it a month for the transmissions to break in, then adjust or bring it in if necessary. I may over adjust and have to adjust it again if I do it now. I didn't even notice it hardly when I cut yesterday though.

I can honestly say I can not believe we have waited this long to get a ZTR. It is effortless, the cut is spectacular, and most of all it's just FUN to do. All of my concerns were no concern at all after 5 minutes of cutting. I worried about the learning curve; it was a breeze, especially with no gearshift. I worried about the comfort since I drove the Gravely for a couple of minutes the other day and it was SO rough, but wow, the Hustler literally felt like I had suspension. Certain areas of my yard were rutted up when my mobile home was brought in many years ago and I never smoothed them out. I bounced a little when going over those but I found if I just pushed my feet into the foot rest with a little pressure it took away the bounce so that was nice. I worried about the cut quality; but my yard hadn't been cut in 3 weeks and the ground was wet so I knew this wouldn't be a good measure of performance. Surprisingly I had no clumps of cut grass anywhere in the yard once I was done. The Craftsman would have left rows of clumped up grass and left the yard looking like a big garden. Another bonus was being able to cut as close to anything that I wanted; some areas didn't even need trimming afterwards.

Although I have nothing to compare it to except the Gravely, I couldn't be happier with the Hustler so far.

I do have another question. My brother told me I could lower the deck all the way and cut the yard since it "floats". Is that true? I cut at 2.5" yesterday since the grass was so tall.

Wayne, thank you for taking the time to look up that manual for me. I tried opening it but it was taking too long at work so I'll have to look into it at home. What's funny is when they delivered the mower Friday my brother was there and he put the manual on the back of mom's car. They ran to the store shortly after and forgot the manual on the car so it's gone lol.

Again, I can't thank you guys enough for helping me with this purchase. I'm very happy.
 

·
Administrator
Joined
·
7,359 Posts
Great to hear!! :) Thanks for the review!

That's awesome you're not only pleased with the cut, but having fun opperating it too. It sure sounds like a well built, comfortable machine to opperate. ZTR's do take a bit of practice to learn at first, but once you get it they are a lot of fun and boy, you can make some quick time on one of them too. That's what is important. One of my previous employers used to take them out in the parking lot and do 'dancing shows' with them, it was pretty interesting to watch. I'm glad that it's a whole new and improved mowing experience compared to your previous machine.

I'm not sure how it would cut all the way down, a lot of it depends on the type of lawn. Sometimes you can, sometimes it doesn't work so well. If you want a really short cut, give it a shot and see how it does. If it seems to work fine and doesn't scuff the lawn or anything, great.
 
1 - 20 of 22 Posts
Top