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Riding Mower Decision

Posted By: MarineHawk

Riding Mower Decision - 07/15/21

So, in August, I’m moving to a house where there is a decent, but not too steep slope on parts of the yard. It’s on 5 acres, and I have about an acre of grass to mow.

The sellers are offering to sell me their Encore Fuzion 48” Deck Zero Turn Mower: https://sleequipment.com/encore-fuzion-48-deck-zero-turn-mower-18-hp-kawasaki.html

They say it is 3 years old and has 50-70 hours of use. I have seen it, and it looked to be in good condition.

They are offering to sell it for $1,900. They retail for $4,900 new. The cheapest ZT mower I can find, for example, at Home Depot is about $2,900.

My only concern is that, for example, all of the zero-turn mowers on the Home Depot website have between 22 and 24 HP. The one for sale has 18 HP.

Would you take the used one for $1,900 of buy something new?

Many thanks in advance for your advice.
Posted By: ready_on_the_right

Re: Riding Mower Decision - 07/15/21

I'd say that's a steal!

Welded steel deck, Kawasaki engine!

You will love it.

Mike
Posted By: wabigoon

Re: Riding Mower Decision - 07/15/21

We have a Grasshopper mid deck mower my wife uses, and likes.

Don't forget dealer support.
Posted By: gregintenn

Re: Riding Mower Decision - 07/15/21

That’s a much better mower than the junk at Lowes or Home Depot. The Kawasaki engine is bulletproof. I’d jump on it if there were no problems. A heavier mower will sit on that slope better than a light, cheap one.

*full disclosure*
I am not familiar with that particular brand of mower, but it appears to be well built.
Posted By: Jim1611

Re: Riding Mower Decision - 07/15/21

I've got a John Deere 445 with the Kawasaki engine and it has over 2000 hours with no issues. I'd say the engine on the zero turn you're looking at will last a long time. 5 acres is allot to mow though and a wider deck would save some time.
Posted By: dubePA

Re: Riding Mower Decision - 07/15/21

It’s on 5 acres, and I have about an acre of grass to mow., Is what the OP posted.

Not familiar with that brand, but Kawasaki gas engines are pretty damn good. If it's a well made mower, go for it?

Have a 61" deck Ferris ZT that's probably 14 years old, 900+ hours. All new belts last year, just replaced all three deck spindles this spring. 24 HP Kawa twin on it. Mows 7 to 10 acres on a regular basis. Filled the front tires w/foam years ago, no more flats.
Posted By: LRoyJetson

Re: Riding Mower Decision - 07/15/21

18HP is plenty to mow an acre.
Kawasaki will run 2-3 thousand hours
Says 3 year warranty, may be some left ?
At $1900, I would definitely buy it .

It's already there, one less thing to do.
(Encore just moved back from China a few years back. IIRC?)

Congrats on the new house !
Posted By: ready_on_the_right

Re: Riding Mower Decision - 07/15/21

about an acre of grass to mow.
Posted By: RJY66

Re: Riding Mower Decision - 07/15/21

I think I would jump on the used one. 70 hours is nothing, its a great price.....less than half of new, and its a better built machine than what you are going to get at the big box stores. You say you only have one acre out of the five to mow and if you ask me a 48 inch ZT is plenty for that.

You can't hardly buy a POS MTD lawn tractor for $1900 anymore. I was at Homey Depot the other day and they had a Troy Bilt pony for 1600ish.
Posted By: rockinbbar

Re: Riding Mower Decision - 07/15/21

At that price, I'd take it.
Posted By: JPro

Re: Riding Mower Decision - 07/15/21

Wish I had a Kawasaki on the 25hp John Deere I have. The Briggs schitt the bed on a valve at 150hrs. Took a thousand bucks to get it out of the shop.

The cheap JD tractor I had before that was one of the low-end L-series and ran like a top for about 10 years before it finally just wore out.
Posted By: blindshooter

Re: Riding Mower Decision - 07/15/21

I wouldn't worry too much about the advertised HP numbers. Lots of engine makers use the same borexstroke with different carbs and tune for different HP ratings. Sometimes slightly less HP and better torque work better anyway.

$1900, I'd jump on it.
Posted By: OSU_Sig

Re: Riding Mower Decision - 07/15/21

Buy a Ferris.
Posted By: ready_on_the_right

Re: Riding Mower Decision - 07/15/21

https://worldlawn.com/mowers/


This is who owns them.

I bet they cut a lot of grass in Nebraska!

Ought to be good mowers
Posted By: chris_c

Re: Riding Mower Decision - 07/15/21

Take it, and if you are worried I had 17hp on a 52" deck no problems. After using it for years I found out the carb was only designed to open part way and by changing parts went to 21 hp. did not make a lot of difference for normal mowing.
Posted By: champlain_islander

Re: Riding Mower Decision - 07/15/21

Originally Posted by OSU_Sig
Buy a Ferris.
Yup they are really well built and are comfortable to operate.
Posted By: NH Hunter

Re: Riding Mower Decision - 07/15/21

Really depends if you want to drink beer while you mow. I had a zero turn at my old house, mowed -5-6 acres. At my new place I bought a lawn tractor and only now 1 acre. Couldn't drink a beer while mowing on the zero turn. I can get two in during my acre now.
Posted By: srwshooter

Re: Riding Mower Decision - 07/15/21

Buy it. All of them have gotten pricey. My bad boy is a2012 and has the Kawasaki engine. Still runs great. 23 hp,50” cut. I gave 3600.00 for it in 2012, I think the new model is 4600.00
Posted By: rem141r

Re: Riding Mower Decision - 07/15/21

figure you will pay 1500-ish for a home depot mtd mower that has a schitty deck, schitty front axle, plastic hood and plastic starter gear among other low-end components. i don't know anything about those mowers but if it has a kawi engine and a good deck, i would think at 1900 its worth a shot. even if it blows up in 4-5 years you will still be ahead. do some research and see if there are known problems with those and what to look out for. and a decent self propelled push mower will do an acre pretty easy if you are in at all decent shape. i've done 2+ quite a few times with my honda when my mtd made mower was down. good exercise if you have the knees for it.
Posted By: MarineHawk

Re: Riding Mower Decision - 07/15/21

Thanks guys for the helpful comments. I think I'll get it. It's too good of a deal, even if there are better mowers. Even the cheapest 42" ones I could find were a grand more.
Posted By: MadMooner

Re: Riding Mower Decision - 07/15/21

I bought the basic HD pos Arians with the non hydro drive. $1k.

I might get 10 years out of it. At 6 years now and it's already a rattle trap.

I figure $100 a year is about the best I can hope for.
Posted By: rem141r

Re: Riding Mower Decision - 07/15/21

Originally Posted by MadMooner
I bought the basic HD pos Arians with the non hydro drive. $1k.

I might get 10 years out of it. At 6 years now and it's already a rattle trap.

I figure $100 a year is about the best I can hope for.





i did the same thing with a "troybuilt" when i bought this house 22 years ago. got 9 or 10 out of it. last 3-4 it was held together with all-thread and gorilla tape. it cost me 2k plus a couple hundred trying to keep it going. i got a simplicity after that and at 12 y/o it is still functional but pretty beat. it was 3k-ish. just bought a used 2002 Scotts branded JD with the briggs and it seems to be a better mower than either of them. its going to camp.
Posted By: hardin284

Re: Riding Mower Decision - 07/15/21

I just bought my second Hustler. They invented the zero turn. I picked up a Fastrak SDX 54”, Kaw 691 commercial engine, 3400 drives for $7,000 out the door in Vidalia, Georgia
Posted By: IA_fog

Re: Riding Mower Decision - 07/16/21

Buy an x700 series Deere 60” deck way way smoother ride can add snow blade snowblower tiller as well
I have had one and I repeat one zero turn and will never have another, rough riding tears the yard up and isn’t that much faster if you have a wide open yard
Posted By: Gypsy_Wind

Re: Riding Mower Decision - 07/16/21

Originally Posted by IA_fog
Buy an x700 series Deere 60” deck way way smoother ride can add snow blade snowblower tiller as well
I have had one and I repeat one zero turn and will never have another, rough riding tears the yard up and isn’t that much faster if you have a wide open yard


You’re recommending he buy a $10k+ plus garden tractor?? 😆 My bad...he could buy a used one for $7k. I get your point, but it must have been a pretty weak zero-turn if it didn’t mow faster than a tractor.

OP, that’s a solid but at $1900. Better than anything new at that price. Plenty of mower for that small of a yard. Used mowers are through the roof $$ right now including on trade so if you buy it and absolutely hate it you will do fine selling or trading but off.

That air-cooled Kaw engine if cared for is good for 2k hours before any major work is likely. Does the mower age, hours, and yard size math add up? 50hrs is barely broke in, but unless there’s an hour meter, they’re just guessing.
Posted By: Jim1611

Re: Riding Mower Decision - 07/16/21

Originally Posted by dubePA
It’s on 5 acres, and I have about an acre of grass to mow., Is what the OP posted.

Not familiar with that brand, but Kawasaki gas engines are pretty damn good. If it's a well made mower, go for it?

Have a 61" deck Ferris ZT that's probably 14 years old, 900+ hours. All new belts last year, just replaced all three deck spindles this spring. 24 HP Kawa twin on it. Mows 7 to 10 acres on a regular basis. Filled the front tires w/foam years ago, no more flats.

Thanks for the bold correction Richard Cranium
Posted By: RiverRider

Re: Riding Mower Decision - 07/16/21

Up until recently, I had a Deere LX280 equipped with a 48-inch deck and had the the Kawasaki V-twin rated at 18 hp (there was a lawsuit a while back alleging it was not really an 18 horse engine, so maybe it really wasn't---I dunno). I cut two acres, and it was not unusual to have to slow down quite a bit to get some of the thicker growth. There were many days it would take me almost four hours to complete the job.

More recently, I acquired a Deere 445. I believe the tractor is rated at 22 horsepower but it may actually be 24, I just don't recall. This one has a 54-inch deck. This tractor cuts MUCH faster and I rarely if ever have to slow down. I can complete the job in about half the time.

I would not want to tackle 5 acres with that old LX280, for sure. The 445, that would be okay once or twice, but I'd want an even bigger tractor for that job if I had to do it regularly.

Based on that experience I'd never consider going with an 18-horse tractor for a five-acre job.
Posted By: reivertom

Re: Riding Mower Decision - 07/16/21

I'd do it. Those are great on a slope, and you know the original owners. Get all the maintenance info from them, too.
Posted By: Barney_Fife

Re: Riding Mower Decision - 07/16/21

For $1900 get it and run it till it scatters.
Posted By: blanket

Re: Riding Mower Decision - 07/16/21

Originally Posted by IA_fog
Buy an x700 series Deere 60” deck way way smoother ride can add snow blade snowblower tiller as well
I have had one and I repeat one zero turn and will never have another, rough riding tears the yard up and isn’t that much faster if you have a wide open yard

I wouldn't piss on a JD zero turn had 3 when our company decided to do their own mowing junk
Posted By: mirage243

Re: Riding Mower Decision - 07/16/21

My take on lawnmowers is, if you need more than a pushmower and a weedeater, then you need cows and a bush hog.
Posted By: Fireball2

Re: Riding Mower Decision - 07/16/21

If you hurry you can get that $1900 added to your mortgage, so you could end up paying like $174,312 for it over 30 years.

Which is nice.
Posted By: Burleyboy

Re: Riding Mower Decision - 07/16/21

I bought the cube cadet zt1 42" at home depot a few years ago. It was about $2700. It looks nice but has a cheap stamped deck and doesn't cut well. I don't think it gets enough lift even with new high lift blades. It has a 22hp kohler and the motor runs well the deck just rattles a lot and it just doesn't do as well cutting as my neighbors Husqvarna or other neighbors Toro. I wouldn't buy another cub cadet.

Bb
Posted By: Dave_in_WV

Re: Riding Mower Decision - 07/16/21

IME slopes are hard on lower cost hydrostatic drives and drive belts. (duh) I had a Simplicity residential rider and then got a Cub Cadet shaft drive. The shaft drive cubs hold up well on yards that aren't level but I found the deck wouldn't raise high enough in hot dry spells here. I bought a Kubota GR2020 4x4 mower last year and love it. Zero turns are dangerous on steep slopes unless you can mow straight up and down and pivot at the top and bottom.
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