Go from zero turn to regular riding mower?

Old 06-14-14, 12:09 PM
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Go from zero turn to regular riding mower?

We mow about 2.5 acres and currently have a cub cadet z-force 60 inch zero turn mower. It takes about 1.5 hours to mow. There are only about 8 trees and 2 sheds to mow around. The zero turn is so rio ugh if a ride that it hurts my back and neck after mowing about 30 minutes. I am thinking that a regular garden tractor would be more comfortable but this is the only mower I've owned so I don't know. Am thinking of selling mine and buying a regular lawn tractor if it would increase the comfort and not add too much time to mowing.
-how long would it take to mow with a good lawn tractor and 48-52inch deck? Some are listed at 7 mph which is the same as my zero turn

-is a lawn tractor gong to be more comfortable on uneven/rough terrain?

-my cub has a 23hp Kawasaki engine and only 196 hours. It is a few years old but it good shape. How much do you think I could sale it for?

Old 06-14-14, 01:39 PM
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Why sell it? They make after market seats that have springs or pneumatic cushions built in.
Cheaper then the loss your going to take and have to have a mower that takes longer to mow the lawn.
Check on Amazon.com.
I have both type mowers. The regular mower only gets used if I have to get through a gate.
I just hate how slow it is and have to do a whole lot more weed whacking.
No way can you mow a lawn at 7 mph. That's just for getting from point A to B.
I cheaped out and had a spare 12" inner tube laying around and sit on that, works good.
Old 06-14-14, 03:07 PM
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Yes, a comparable tractor will ride smoother than a zero turn in almost every situation. 2.5 acres with only a few obstacles is not the best application for a zero turn. They excel where there is more trimming. Then there is the ride as you've found out. Even with a good suspension seat it will never ride as well as a tractor. The short wheelbase and tiny front tires work against it in quality of ride.

Zero turns are great when there are more sharp turns (trimming) and and on more level ground. A tractor will track straight, easier on open terrain and handle hills better, especially when cutting sideways on hills. Then there is the ride. Nobody will every say a zero turn rides as smooth as a tractor. There are things you can do like a suspension seat to help but it will never ride as smooth as a tractor. They simply ride rough and cheaper models ride really rough! Those little, solid front tires and short wheelbase do nothing for ride quality.

I have a couple tractors set up for mowing which ride great and will mow with the pedal all the way down. The larger diameter front tires don't fall into holes and ruts as much and tend to roll over them. The front tires are pneumatic which soak up bumps. The very cushy seat and seat suspension soak up the bumps while the arm rests help keep you in the seat if you get too crazy when mowing. The key to mowing fast is power. Lots of power!

I have a Deere X495 with a 25hp, two cylinder, liquid cooled engine that I'd call OK with a 54" deck. It's acceptable for normal thickness grass but it does not have enough power for thick grass and must be slowed down. The same framed tractor, a X595 with a 24hp diesel can run a 62" deck and do it faster through thicker grass. Yes, two nearly identical machines and the gas one has more horsepower by the numbers but the diesel will outperform it in every situation except price.
Old 06-14-14, 03:14 PM
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Hello newguy08,

I tend to agree with joecaption1, Your cut time will likely double or maybe more.

Having a bad back myself, I found my ZTR (Case Ingersoll) to be smoother with the weight of the engine out back over my tractor in the front. Try lowering the rear tire pressure to 8 lbs. and the front to 12 lbs. and see if that helps, You can also get a suspension type seat as joecaption1 mentioned as well.

As far as selling your Z, You'll likely take a good hit because you can only get what someone is willing to pay.

Good Luck
Old 06-14-14, 03:30 PM
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You can tell Joe is a good old boy...no fancy foam pillows for him....lol!
Old 06-14-14, 03:51 PM
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I don't know that the seating would be any different on a ZTR versus a regular mower, but the size of the tires could have something to do with it. I cut 4.5 acres in 1.5 hours with 57 blueberry bushes, 40+ fruit trees and 3 grape arbors. I wouldn't trade my Kubota ZD21 for anything, well almost anything. I do see your point in the small number of turns you would have to make. I would go to a tractor company or sales point and ask to ride one. Take it for a spin over their lawn and see how much different or alike it is. Once you come down from a 60" deck to a 48" deck, plan on using the cup holder, as it will take a little longer.

No idea what the ZTR is worth, but they are in demand, so hold it high.

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