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Old 05-06-2019, 05:05 PM   #1
txwhitetail
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Default Zero Turn Recommendations

Ok I've read through about 30 posts on zero turns and of course there is every recommendation under the sun. Also seems like a lot of those are recommendations on $3k type units.

I would like to find a 52" range unit that is a step up from the homeowner models. Would like to stay in the $5-6k range if possible.

What unit would you buy and why?

So far I have looked at Gravely, Scag, and Ferris.
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Old 05-06-2019, 05:34 PM   #2
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You will not find a more comfortable ride than the Ferris! They make a dang good mower.

2018 ferris 27hp briggs commercial w52 deck
2019 ferris 23hp kawasaki fs691v w52 deck

Last edited by jlinville; 05-06-2019 at 05:38 PM.
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Old 05-06-2019, 05:36 PM   #3
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Bad boy. They are built like a tank and you get more bang for your buck. You can get a compact outlaw, 48” deck is as big as that model goes, with an FX Kawasaki or a vanguard engine for around 6300
You will be hard pressed to get a scag for 5-6 that’s not entry level.

Last edited by 12RingKing; 05-06-2019 at 05:38 PM.
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Old 05-06-2019, 05:40 PM   #4
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Iíve been researching too, seems best value may be bad boy from tractor supply
The new cub is a lot of bang for the buck but I canít get a good read on the quality
Iím looking for a 60Ē or bigger though

Iím finding lots of second hand deals out there too.


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Old 05-06-2019, 05:46 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by OldRiverRat View Post
Iíve been researching too, seems best value may be bad boy from tractor supply
The new cub is a lot of bang for the buck but I canít get a good read on the quality
Iím looking for a 60Ē or bigger though

Iím finding lots of second hand deals out there too.


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The ultima is getting a solid reputation but itís only been a year or so. No where near the issues of MTD mowers in years past. They are nice machines. Get the XT2 if you go that route. It has serviceable hydros. Xt1 is sealed I believe.

If youíre going to buy a bad boy, go check out a dealer before you snag one from TSC. Big box stores donít get the same models as the independent dealers do. Might be surprised what you can get for the money.
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Old 05-06-2019, 05:49 PM   #6
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Scag
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Old 05-06-2019, 05:54 PM   #7
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I’ve got a 60” Bad Boy ZT Elite with the Kawasaki engine and it’s a pretty sweet lawn mower. They make it in a 54”. Around $5k if memory serves me.
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Old 05-06-2019, 06:02 PM   #8
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Gravely is what I just got. Couldnít be happier


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Old 05-06-2019, 06:04 PM   #9
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Hustler raptor sdx, 54” deck. Or raptor sd same size deck
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Old 05-06-2019, 06:12 PM   #10
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I liked that gravely hd model I think was zt hd or zx hd canít remember exactly.


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Old 05-06-2019, 06:16 PM   #11
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Quote:
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I liked that gravely hd model I think was zt hd or zx hd canít remember exactly.


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Gravely ZT HD. Itís a beast. May be a little higher than the OPís budget. But itís a one and done type mower.



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Old 05-06-2019, 06:21 PM   #12
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Gravely ZT HD. Itís a beast. May be a little higher than the OPís budget. But itís a one and done type mower.



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What engine do you have on that thing?
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Old 05-06-2019, 06:22 PM   #13
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What engine do you have on that thing?


I got the Kawasaki. Had best reviews.


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Old 05-06-2019, 06:24 PM   #14
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I got a Gravely 60” and couldn’t be more happier. That thing is a beast!
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Old 05-06-2019, 06:45 PM   #15
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My Hustler Fastrac Super Duty is about 9 years old and itís been fantastic.

If I had to buy another tomorrow Iíd go straight to the Ferris and not look at anything else.


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Old 05-06-2019, 06:47 PM   #16
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Check out grasshopper they might be a little more than you want to spend. Im still running my 2007 model 223 61Ē cut and it is an awesome mower.
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Old 05-06-2019, 06:54 PM   #17
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Iíve got a 60Ē Bad Boy ZT Elite with the Kawasaki engine and itís a pretty sweet lawn mower. They make it in a 54Ē. Around $5k if memory serves me.


You can the 60Ē zt at TS for $4999


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Old 05-06-2019, 07:30 PM   #18
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Quote:
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My Hustler Fastrac Super Duty is about 9 years old and itís been fantastic.

If I had to buy another tomorrow Iíd go straight to the Ferris and not look at anything else.


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Why straight to Ferris and nothing else? Thereís legitimately 15 mower manufacturers that I would look at before purchasing...
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Old 05-06-2019, 07:32 PM   #19
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And from my research on Kawasaki engines... they aren’t all created equal. If I was spending 5000 on a mower I’d expect at least a FS series, not the FR.

I’m more inclined to spend a few more bucks and get the Vanguard or Kawasaki FX series... just food for thought
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Old 05-06-2019, 07:39 PM   #20
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I’m sure glad someone talked me into riding a Ferris 4 years ago. Built solid and rides like a dream.
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Old 05-06-2019, 07:47 PM   #21
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Skag, been using one for 11 years now and no problem.
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Old 05-06-2019, 08:02 PM   #22
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Bad boy from my nephew, Michael, at Hoffpauir in Goldthwaite. He's a country boy and will treat you right. Tell him uncle Mark said to give him a call. They have a website and also deliver.
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Old 05-06-2019, 08:06 PM   #23
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Quote:
Originally Posted by OldRiverRat View Post
You can the 60Ē zt at TS for $4999


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But thatís with a Kohler engine. Donít buy a mower from a box store.
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Old 05-06-2019, 08:19 PM   #24
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Quote:
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Why straight to Ferris and nothing else? Thereís legitimately 15 mower manufacturers that I would look at before purchasing...


Because Iíve been on one, and Iíve been on several others.


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Old 05-06-2019, 08:20 PM   #25
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We've got a Bad Boy and Kubota and both are great but Scag Turf Tiger is about the best mower you can buy. Gravely, Ferris, Hustler, Bad Boy, Kubota, dealer John Deere, etc you can't go wrong. Lots of threads on this that say the same thing.
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Old 05-06-2019, 08:22 PM   #26
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Quote:
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And from my research on Kawasaki engines... they arenít all created equal. If I was spending 5000 on a mower Iíd expect at least a FS series, not the FR.

Iím more inclined to spend a few more bucks and get the Vanguard or Kawasaki FX series... just food for thought


You donít get the FX Kawi engine until you get up in the commercial grade units. Waaaaay over the OPís budget he posted.


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Old 05-06-2019, 08:35 PM   #27
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Texas Stalker View Post
You donít get the FX Kawi engine until you get up in the commercial grade units. Waaaaay over the OPís budget he posted.


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Badboy compact outlaw with FX is 6499. With vanguard itís 6299. He would compromise on deck width a smidge
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Old 05-07-2019, 07:14 AM   #28
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Just bought a used 2015 Scag tiger cat off FB with 244 hours. Has the Kawasaki FX motor. One owner from an old man. Got it for 4,500 with the 52" velocity deck. Love it.

When I mowed yards in high school, the only zero turns the company used was Scag. There's a reason 95 percent of the lawn crews run Scag. The commercial grade Hustlers are awesome too, but more expensive.

One thing to keep in mind that is almost as important as the motor is the deck. Everyone says "welded deck" well most of the junk home depot zero turns have welded decks now. The Scag velocity deck is by far the best deck out there. It cuts the best when the grass is high and wet.

Last edited by Arrowthreat; 05-07-2019 at 07:19 AM.
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Old 05-07-2019, 07:57 AM   #29
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Whichever you decide, make sure you have a ROPS (Roll Over Protection) on it. A 1000lb+ mower will kill you, just ask The City of Pearland when they tried to go cheap on Bad Boy Mowers.
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Old 05-07-2019, 08:15 AM   #30
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How many acres do you mow and how much time do you have to mow?

My dad and i both have Ferris IS2100 his is a 52" 25hp and mine is a 61" 28hp. He mows 5 acres once to twice a week which takes him 3.5 hrs. I mow 3.5 acres in 1.5 hours. Our Ferris cost $8100 for 52" and $8500 for 61".

I do not have the time my dad has to mow. Also make sure you get enough motor if you plan to cut higher grass.

I would highly reccomend the Ferris to anyone due to comfort alone. They do have other models below the IS2100 that will be in your price range.

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Old 05-07-2019, 08:19 AM   #31
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We just got a Bad Boy from Texas Tractor in Bastrop. Kawasaki engine, 54 inch cut, side discharge will open and close for mulching. Had Todd add the assist, which is a must if you've got a little senior in you. $4100
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Old 05-07-2019, 08:29 AM   #32
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www.spartanmowers.com This would be my recommendation for the price range you are looking at.
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Old 05-07-2019, 08:33 AM   #33
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We are a Gravely dealer. You are probably too far to want to deal with us but the ZT HD 52 can be had in your budget easily and is one heck of a residential unit.
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Old 05-07-2019, 08:38 AM   #34
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if you have a bobcat (not skidsteer) dealer in the area I would check them out. lots of bang for he buck. Hasa a different pulely system to reduce power loss. and best warranty that I know of ( 6 yr unlimited hr for homowners) used it once in three years but they even gave me a new battery while the repair was being made.seeing more of them around and the dealer here said a lot of landscapers are replacing scags with these. I got the 52" xrz pro and it has been great.
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Old 05-07-2019, 08:39 AM   #35
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Seems like after 30 posts, the answer would be clear.
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Old 05-07-2019, 08:44 AM   #36
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Buckshot-73 View Post
Seems like after 30 posts, the answer would be clear.


Lol Didnít see any asking in this price range is why I asked.

Thanks for the responses.


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Old 05-07-2019, 08:49 AM   #37
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ive been happy with my Kubota z725 w/ 60" deck
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Old 05-07-2019, 08:52 AM   #38
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Quote:
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if you have a bobcat (not skidsteer) dealer in the area I would check them out. lots of bang for he buck. Hasa a different pulely system to reduce power loss. and best warranty that I know of ( 6 yr unlimited hr for homowners) used it once in three years but they even gave me a new battery while the repair was being made.seeing more of them around and the dealer here said a lot of landscapers are replacing scags with these. I got the 52" xrz pro and it has been great.
I'll second this, I have the exact same mower. I think I paid somewhere around 5300 for it. I called every lawn mower sales place within 60 miles told them to match specs and give me a price. Some were 2k more and no where close to warranty Bobcat offered. I would definitely give Bobcat mowers a look.
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Old 05-07-2019, 09:01 AM   #39
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The scag turf tigers are the best mowers around. That being said I own a Ferris. If you need a mower that your guys are going to run hard everyday that you want to get the most amount of hours out of buy a turf tiger... which will run you over 10k. If you're buying a mower for yourself get a Ferris. It will last forever as long as you maintain it properly and the ride is far superior to everything else. All the other mowers listed (gravely, hustler, bad boy, ect.) are fine mowers but not in the same class as the scag and ferris.
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Old 05-07-2019, 09:18 AM   #40
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Also the scag and ferris have velocity decks. It's a lot better for mowing grasses with long seed heads like kr bluesteam. Supposedly it bends the stalk over at an angle so the blades can cut it instead of bending it over flat and the blades missing it. I don't really understand how it works, and from my experience it doesn't work 100% of the time, but basically it means you don't have to run back and forth over the same areas to cut all the seed heads that lay flat if that makes sense.
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Old 05-07-2019, 09:32 AM   #41
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I dont see the hype on spending an extra 3 grand for commercial
I bought a raptor and it cuts as good as I can imagine... and fast..
What am I missing?
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Old 05-07-2019, 09:42 AM   #42
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kingranch View Post
I dont see the hype on spending an extra 3 grand for commercial
I bought a raptor and it cuts as good as I can imagine... and fast..
What am I missing?
You would have to operate the better ones to feel the difference.
I have a Hustler Raptor as well. It works well, but it's not in the same class as some of the better mowers.
I will be upgrading next time.
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Old 05-07-2019, 09:56 AM   #43
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Quote:
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I dont see the hype on spending an extra 3 grand for commercial
I bought a raptor and it cuts as good as I can imagine... and fast..
What am I missing?
This is somewhat true....

We have a big dog (just an upgraded Hustler) that was about 5500 and a Kubota with efi and a digital dash that was almost 10k.

The seat is better on the Kubota.

The rest of it is actually not that big of a deal.
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Old 05-07-2019, 10:10 AM   #44
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kingranch View Post
I dont see the hype on spending an extra 3 grand for commercial
I bought a raptor and it cuts as good as I can imagine... and fast..
What am I missing?
There is a LOT more mower in the higher commercial end. The suspension seat alone is about a $700 seat on my mower. The serviceable spindles, larger flow hydraulic pumps, better motors, better cutting at faster speeds, faster speeds, better/thicker decks.......

I bought a Scag Tiger Cat II and very pleased with it. Full 3 year 1000 hour warranty. Very comfortable and VERY responsive to controls. It will turn instead of spin like smaller machines. I mow around a pond and that it HUGE! I tried my son's Bobcat hoping it would work for me, but that mower isn't even close.
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Old 05-07-2019, 10:30 AM   #45
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44+ posts and nobody has mentioned Ex-Mark?
You could get the Ex-Mark Radius series for around 5K.
My dad went a step above and got the Ex-Mark Lazer Z series which is higher than your budget, but it is one bad machine.


We had 2 of the 54" Bad Boy mowers, both with the Kawasaki engines. The engines worked great, but the spindles dont last. Our newest mower, less than a year old, has already been in the shop. The electric deck motor has burnt out as well as the switch giving issues getting stuck and going full up or full down.
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Old 05-07-2019, 10:39 AM   #46
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ckamp52 View Post
if you have a bobcat (not skidsteer) dealer in the area I would check them out. lots of bang for he buck. Hasa a different pulely system to reduce power loss. and best warranty that I know of ( 6 yr unlimited hr for homowners) used it once in three years but they even gave me a new battery while the repair was being made.seeing more of them around and the dealer here said a lot of landscapers are replacing scags with these. I got the 52" xrz pro and it has been great.


This! Bought one last year and best value for entry level commercial mowers.
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Old 05-07-2019, 10:50 AM   #47
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Quote:
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44+ posts and nobody has mentioned Ex-Mark?
You could get the Ex-Mark Radius series for around 5K.
My dad went a step above and got the Ex-Mark Lazer Z series which is higher than your budget, but it is one bad machine.


We had 2 of the 54" Bad Boy mowers, both with the Kawasaki engines. The engines worked great, but the spindles dont last. Our newest mower, less than a year old, has already been in the shop. The electric deck motor has burnt out as well as the switch giving issues getting stuck and going full up or full down.
My Brother in laws Bad Boy broke a spindle about a month ago.
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Old 05-07-2019, 10:51 AM   #48
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Ferris
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Old 05-07-2019, 12:54 PM   #49
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I have a 12 year old exmark 52 in .. my next one will be a spartan..
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Old 05-07-2019, 01:05 PM   #50
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I have an ex mark pioneer that is about 7 years old with zero issues. I’m knocking on 300 hours. My brother in law has a lawn business and runs 3 exmarks. That being said, I’d look at the brand that has the spring suspension on the front wheels. Zero turns ride like crap on rough ground, so I’d look into that or into the upgraded seats. Ex mark makes some nice upgrades seats that Make a noticeable difference in comfort. All that said I don’t think there is a dealer sold machine that is junk, I’d just stay away from the base residential models
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