Foresight guides upgrades to specialty mowers
Whether they are trimming fairways, greens or roughs, golf course mowing crews have exacting standards to meet. In response, manufacturers are adding a variety of features to refine their specialty mower lines.
John Deere has added the 3225B — a 100-inch swath mower with five 22-inch cutting heads — to its line of lightweight fairway mowers. “This unit fills a niche between the 3215 and the 3235,” says Chuck Greif, manager of market development for golf and turf. It features proprietary cutting suspension and a 38.5-horsepower, liquid-cooled diesel engine.
Jacobsen Textron has introduced the LF-4675 and LF-4677 lightweight fairway mowers. The new 7-gang mowers are based on the company’s 3400 and 3800 Series mowers. “We have engineered the design and materials of the new mowers to reduce weight and minimize compaction,” says Peter Whurr, vice president of product management at Textron Golf, Turf & Specialty Products. “The 4675 and 4677 actually have two more cutting units (than do the 3400 and 3800), yet they are the lightest fairway mowers in their size range.”
The LF-4675 weighs 3,180 pounds, and the LF-4677 weighs 3,450 pounds. Both mowers are powered by Kubota four-cylinder turbocharged low-emissions-certified diesel engines. They feature 5- to 7-inch diameter reels.
National Mower specializes in reel mowers for slopes, berms and bunkers. This year, National’s 8400 triplex mower includes out-front power steering, hydrostatic drive and a single-switch electric clutch for turning the reels on and off. Slope stability is attained through a combination of weight, balance and low center of gravity, plus wing units that act as stabilizers, says President Stan Kinkead.
National also is introducing the IM25 infield mower. Designed for manicured mowing and ballfield striping, the walk-behind reel mower features a built-in back-lapping device.
Toro introduced its Flex 21 greens mower this spring. The unit features a floating head that follows highly contoured greens while cutting down to 1/16 inch. The traction unit and cutting head are connected at the center pivot points so that the head is free to flex in both directions. “The cutting unit flexes side to side and front to back, enabling fine cuts in today’s ultra-dwarf bermuda grasses and bent grasses,” says Dana Lonn, director of engineering.