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#488233 - 04/12/06 12:07 AM Big wheel mowers
9296D21B14 Offline

Registered: 01/20/05
Posts: 387
Loc: Louisiana
Can anyone recommend brand and availability for a self propelled, walk behind mower with 16" or so bicycle type rear wheels, 22-24 inch blade? They are hard to find retail here. I located a web site for Sarlo mowers and am interested but wondered if there were others, maybe commercial lines I am not aware of. I need a decent sized trim mower for my yard with many heavily rooted trees that regular push mowers cannot handle plus all the shrubs, etc. My current one is a Johnson Big Wheel with a 9 hp tech motor. They went out of business and the main seal needs replacing, deck rot, etc. I know the prices can ruin a $1000 but it's what I need for this big country yard I keep up. All help appreciated!

#488234 - 04/12/06 12:36 AM Re: Big wheel mowers
Dark Jedi Offline

Registered: 09/20/05
Posts: 871
Loc: virginia
I would try like some of the mower specialty stores or find a mower repair shop and ask them if they know where to find the type of mower you are looking for.

ever try to search ebay for a replacement deck and just switch all the stuff from one to the othe mower? heck maybe the mower repair shop might have a replacement deck. have the main seal replaced. might be cheaper than a new mower. how old is this mower. sounds old. for the deck to rot lol.

#488235 - 04/12/06 05:34 AM Re: Big wheel mowers
JTK Offline

Registered: 08/14/03
Posts: 9257
Loc: Buffalo, NY
929- have you had/tried a big (rear) wheel push mower in the past? We had one years ago & found it to be terrible for rough terrain and tight trimming. The axle on the big wheels takes a beating and needed constant 'rebuilding'. We wound up tossing it since we couldn't keep the rear wheels aligned anymore. If you do get one, make sure the rear end is overbuilt.


#488236 - 04/12/06 06:24 AM Re: Big wheel mowers
9296D21B14 Offline

Registered: 01/20/05
Posts: 387
Loc: Louisiana
I have gotten soft estimates on seal replacement on the 9 hp Tech motor, etc, but it is a discontinued mower and my thought was just to put the repair money into a new mower. Shop guy said those type of mowers are now not available to the consumer market. Also tried Google for big wheel and commercial mowers and Sarlo seems like the best bet. Already had a machine shop fabricate a control lever for the Johnson when it broke last year and everything else framewise, etc is looking shabby. Age of mower about 6-8 years but has seen regular heavy use. Needs replacement. Big names like MTD, Ariens, Toro, Craftsman, Gravely, etc no longer offer anything less than about a 36" self propelled walk behind which are for smooth surfaces and large areas rather than trim work. Sarlo looking better all the time. When I called Sarlo, the rep asked if I had ever been in prison? [Confused] He later clarified that his mower is often used by prison work crews for on grounds and road mowing and is frequently ordered in lots of 20 or more. Been around for decades. Any other ideas? Just want to be sure. Thanks for the replies.

#488237 - 04/13/06 08:22 PM Re: Big wheel mowers
thiggy Offline

Registered: 11/07/02
Posts: 63
Loc: Alabama
I'm still using a 30 year old Pro Mow big wheel mower. I think it was manufactured in Shreveport. I don't know if they are still in business. I'm on the 2nd engine (replaced the original with a Honda), 2nd set of rear wheels, don't know how many tires and bearings. Several blades later it still goes.

#488238 - 04/14/06 09:01 AM Re: Big wheel mowers
Wasuchi Offline

Registered: 11/22/04
Posts: 35
Loc: Texas
I saw a Toro walkbehind selfpropelled yesterday at a store that looked to be about 24". It looked exactly like their commercial series but it sure looked more like a 24" to me.

#488239 - 04/13/06 10:38 PM Re: Big wheel mowers
tom slick Offline

Registered: 05/26/03
Posts: 9093
Loc: Central Coast, Calif.
what about one of those DR mowers? they look like they can eat anything.

#488240 - 04/14/06 01:56 AM Re: Big wheel mowers
416Rigby Offline

Registered: 01/24/05
Posts: 478
Loc: Florida
The best was a company named Kee Mowers. I had one for about 15 years that worked great. It used regular bicycle tires and had a Honda engine. Had grease fittings on the main shaft and wheels. But, I think they went out of business a few years ago. You might look for a used one.

#488241 - 04/14/06 06:36 AM Re: Big wheel mowers
9296D21B14 Offline

Registered: 01/20/05
Posts: 387
Loc: Louisiana
I need to look into the DR line. The Kee is a Yazoo from what I can tell and thankfully may no longer be available. I bought a Yazoo years ago based on long time reputation before I got the Johnson but the Yazoo lasted TWO seasons before quitting. Burned! Thanks again for the suggestions. The boss (Mrs. 929) gave the reluctant ok on the Sarlo. Woohoo! I hope...

#488242 - 04/14/06 10:19 AM Re: Big wheel mowers
416Rigby Offline

Registered: 01/24/05
Posts: 478
Loc: Florida
The original Kee mowers had thick, cast-aluminum decks. They had nothing to do with Yazoo. They were one of the first "commercial duty" mowers made.

#488243 - 04/16/06 09:02 AM Re: Big wheel mowers
jimfulco Offline

Registered: 04/09/06
Posts: 30
Loc: Shreveport LA has some history of Yazoo & Kees, and a dealer locator.

My dad has an old Yazoo (early '70s vintage) and it has always been a good mower. As usual, they probably don't make them like that any more. He also has a DR Brush Mower (made by Bachtold), which, as tom slick suspects, will eat just about anything, but it cuts too rough to use for a lawn mower. I watched it turn 1-1/4" willow trees into tiny pieces, and that was just with the light mower blade.

#488244 - 04/17/06 08:50 AM Re: Big wheel mowers
416Rigby Offline

Registered: 01/24/05
Posts: 478
Loc: Florida
For the record, Kee and Kees are two separate companies. Always have been.

#488245 - 04/17/06 07:40 PM Re: Big wheel mowers
trdtaco Offline

Registered: 01/19/06
Posts: 7
Loc: California
I would check out billy goat. We sell them at work. The contoure(sp) model is what you are looking for. We have sold a lot and they seem to be better built than the sarlo. We get a lot more of them in for repairs. Hope this helps

#488246 - 04/17/06 08:19 PM Re: Big wheel mowers
9296D21B14 Offline

Registered: 01/20/05
Posts: 387
Loc: Louisiana
416Rigby. Thanks for the heads up on Kee. Found a nearby dealer with the model I want in stock for inspection and after some research found out that Kee is still in business and well regarded at a decent price. The Sarlo unit was going to take a long drive to get one with no local dealer support. This sounds much better. Again, thanks.

#488247 - 04/22/06 10:49 PM Re: Big wheel mowers
9296D21B14 Offline

Registered: 01/20/05
Posts: 387
Loc: Louisiana
Thanks again, 416Rigby! And the others who responded, too. Ain't BITOG sweet. Yesterday I picked up the Kee KC24 with 6.5h/p B/S I/C self propelled, steel deck. Been breaking it in on heavy trim work around the remaining seven surviving post-Katrina white oaks in the front yard which haven't been mowed since last August. Splurged on the front pivot wheel option and it basically works like a ZTR walk behind. Light weight, plenty of power and seems easy to maintain. Closest thing to the 5h/p Brister model made here locally years ago which sold me on the heavy duty big wheel models. Plus the dealer carried a Husky rear tine tiller and an entry level Gravely rider which both had me drooling... Maybe next year!

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