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A Simple Machine that Delivers

7/25/2019 5:00:00 AM

Ariens Zenith lawn mower 

Why the Ariens Zenith is delivering in all aspects of a new grounds maintenance venture with Shropshire Council

Steve Powis, school grounds maintenance officer at Shropshire Council and one of the first to own the new Ariens Zenith when it launched in April, tells us how it's already transformed the grounds maintenance business venture 3-months in, in the latest Ariens blog.

Having recently started a new enterprise alongside Shropshire Council, offering schools and other commercial settings, a complete grounds maintenance package; I needed to specify a cutting solution that would suit the operational, financial and logistical needs of the venture.

I’ve been operating horticultural machinery for over 15-years in a variety of applications including grounds maintenance, formal grounds, open spaces, sports and recreational areas. Having used a variety of different machines to maintain the above including zero-turns, I decided to research what machines were available on the market that would tick all the boxes I was looking for. After getting numerous machine packages and quotes, Paul Butter, Contracts Manager at Shropshire Council and I, consulted with Gary Edwards at Wyvern Garden Machinery, explaining that we wanted a mowing solution that would deliver a great cut and look the part. We decided to go-ahead with Gary and use him because of his excellent technical knowledge and demonstrating to us that the machine he recommended, an Ariens zero-turn, would do what he said it would.

Ariens Zenith lawn mower 

Ariens Zenith lawn mower 

Before long we were demo-ing an Ariens Apex 52 zero-turn at one of the schools I manage, not only were Paul and I impressed with what it could do, the school was too. The long grass was 6-12 inches tall, thicker at the bottom where it hadn't been cut since September. The Apex made light work of the grass, leaving a great finish. I knew then that this machine was exactly what the business venture needed. Paul who's also very familiar with mowing machinery available in today's market, commented that he hadn't seen a machine that could cut and leave the finish it produced in one pass.

Confirming with Gary that this Ariens zero-turn was exactly what we needed, he advised that a larger zero-turn with a 60-inch deck would be available imminently. I pre-ordered it straightaway, without even seeing it. If I could have a machine that could achieve the cut and finish I wanted, took half the time of other, more traditional mowers, available in a larger size, I was sold.

Ariens Zenith lawn mower 

Ariens Zenith lawn mower 

I've had the Zenith now since April and have used it every day. What a machine! I maintain several schools and numerous other sites through Shropshire. Everyone has commented on how nice the finish is.

There are so many benefits to the Zenith. As the operator, I need machinery I can rely on. Downtime is a big no-no as I'm not working and subsequently not earning. I purposely avoided cylinder mowers as they're often out of action if the blades hit concealed debris or extreme temperatures distort the blades. I haven't got time to get my tool kit out and bring it back on-cut. I've used the Zenith in a variety of differing weather conditions, it doesn't have a problem in the wet. You do have to take it slower but you're still cutting and keeping your commitments. The Zenith is actually quite light given its size. Lightweight and the large tyres help it to cope well in wet weather, without leaving the grounds in a mess.

Ariens seems to have got it right with how much of the power the engine produces, its directed to where it needs to be i.e. at the business end. The power is directed straight down to the drive and also the independent drives on the motors to the wheels. It is a nuts and bolts product, the deck height is adjusted with the foot pedal, there are no unnecessary sensors and electronics that could go wrong. It's a simple product that just works.

The Zenith is versatile. It can get into small and defined areas which saves me time as I'm not having to strim around trees and bushes as an additional process. Fuel consumption is very attractive. Despite it being a petrol engine, it's very efficient. I can get 3.5 solid hours of mowing with its 20-litre tank. This is increased when the grass is shorter and cut fortnightly. I am can easily cut two schools' grounds in a day. Before it would take me a lot longer.

Appearance is everything! The Zenith looks the business. Schools are very competitive and want to be seen to be doing well, the Zenith fits right in. I like to take pride in what I do and not only does this machine deliver the nice finish but the machine looks good when its mowing. I was asked what my favourite thing about the Zenith was and if I had to pick one thing, it would be the seat. It's very comfortable. As a sufferer of sciatica coupled with the fact that I am mowing for the majority of the working week, I need a seat that offers continuous comfort and support.

As the business venture grows, I can see the possibility of specifying further Ariens products in the future. It's not often you purchase a product that continues to delight. It looks great, delivers a great cut in less time without compromising on quality. It’s efficient and is making money by enabling me to visit more sites per week than I ever have before.

Simple machine—excellent results, I would highly recommend the Ariens Zenith; in fact, Ariens zero-turns in general.

Ariens Zenith lawn mower 

Ariens Zenith lawn mower 

Ariens Zenith lawn mower 

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Introducing the Ariens zero-turn family

6/21/2019 5:00:00 AM

 

Looking to purchase an Ariens zero-turn but not sure what models Ariens offer? In the latest issue of the Ariens blog we showcase the Ariens range incorporating the ZOOM®, IKON X, APEX and ZENITH to help you understand what features and benefits each model possesses to help you make an informed decision when it comes to specifying.

All Ariens zero-turn mowers are designed, tested and built to provide the toughest, most comfortable ride with the highest quality cut possible. With faster speeds and superior manoeuvrability compared to lawn tractors, zero-turns cut your mowing time in half with no loss of performance. At the end of each pass, it can turn 180° in its own footprint. Eliminating the need for multiple turns or going over cut grass. Find the right zero-turn for you:

Ariens ZOOM®

 

The Ariens ZOOM®​ has best-in-class speed among other zero turn lawn mowers in its category. Available in two sizes, the Compact ZOOM® has a cutting width of 34" (86cm) making it ideal for smaller gardens or where there are access limitations. The larger ZOOM® 42 has a cutting width of 42" (107cm) with additional power and refinement making this a good choice for a slightly larger garden.

The ZOOM® is fitted with a high-back seat, maintenance-free transmission and a washout port to help clean grass clippings from the underside of the deck. Its lever-adjusted height-of-cut system allows operators to easily change between its 8 cutting height settings. Fitted with a Briggs and Stratton® Twin 656cc engine, the ZOOM achieve speeds of 4.7mph (2.5mph in reverse), ideal for “zooming” around the garden.

Both models come configured to side-discharge, throwing clippings out of the right-side of the deck. An optional conversion kit is available to transform the Zoom® into a high-performance mulcher. The ZOOM® series comes with a 3-year domestic warranty.

Ariens IKON X

 

The Ariens IKON X series is packed with commercial quality features and has gained in popularity since its inception. Available in two cutting width sizes, the 42" (107cm) and a larger 52" (132cm) make this mower ideal for medium-sized gardens. The IKON X series has a 4.5-inch deep, fully fabricated deck allows for premium airflow, resulting in a high cut quality.

Users experience all-day comfort, even when mowing lawns of up to three acres, due to the professional-style plush high back seat and arm rests. Fitted with a reputable Kawasaki® 726cc engine, the IKON X can achieve speeds of 7mph (3mph in reverse), ideal for cutting grass efficiently.

Changing cutting heights between one of 13 cutting positions is done quickly with the turn of a dial. The added durability in its fully welded steel tubular frame is part of why this machine is considered one of the best lawn mowing solutions for domestic gardens. Both models come fitted with side-discharge decks, an optional conversion kit transforms the IKON X into a high-performance mulcher. The IKON X series comes with a 3-year domestic warranty.

Ariens APEX

 

The Ariens APEX series represents the very pinnacle of zero-turn performance and is ideal for larger gardens. This commercial-grade zero-turn is available in two cutting width sizes - 48" (122cm) or 52" (132cm). A foot operated deck lift system ensures effortless adjustment between 15 cutting positions. Also included are fully adjustable handlebars, progressive steering and a plush, padded seat for comfort during day-long use.

There is also a 5.5-inch-deep cutting deck for superior airflow and an 18.9 litre fuel tank capacity that allows operators to cut longer with less refuelling time. The frame on this machine supports a folding ROPS option for added protection for the operator if required. Fitted with a Kawasaki® FR691 726cc engine, the APEX can achieve speeds of 8mph (4mph in reverse), ideal for cutting grass quickly.

As an added bonus, the attractive industrial styling of the APEX series appeals to modern homeowners who appreciate how Ariens has added a stylish touch to the look of mowing. A mulching kit is also available for this machine. The APEX series comes with a 3-year residential or 1-year professional warranty.

Ariens ZENITH

 

Designed with the professional in mind, the new Ariens ZENITH is the largest and fastest zero-turn in the range. Boasting a 60-inch cutter deck and a top speed of 8.5mph, the ZENITH is ideal for cutting large areas of grass. A durable, 10-gauge steel deck is designed with 14cm (5 ½”) depth, providing optimal airflow in all mowing conditions for professional cutting performance.

A high-back, plush seat with padded armrests and seat isolation for all-day comfort comes as standard. Changing cutting heights between one of 15 cutting positions is done quickly with an effortless push of the deck lift pedal and a pull of a pin located within the operator’s reach.

Power from a Kawasaki FX730V 726cc engine, a pair of Hydro-Gear ZT-3200 transaxles makes the ZENITH a robust, durable lawn mower for all serious landscapers. A folding ROPS comes fitted as standard. Ariens’ constant belt tension technology on this mower gives a consistent blade tip speed that results in a cut quality expected of a professional-grade lawn mower. The ZENITH series comes with a 3-year domestic or 2-year professional warranty.

Still not 100% sure which is the right zero-turn for you? Speak to your local Ariens dealer to find the zero-turn that best suits your needs.

Why a Zero Turn Lawn Mower is the Right Choice – User Voice: Paul Smith

5/7/2019 5:00:00 AM


By: Helen Dearing,

 

Paul Smith, self-employed gardener from the south of England discusses why he bought the Ariens Apex 52 over alternative mowing solutions in the latest issue of the Arien​s blog.

"The Ariens zero-turn is a different kettle of fish to what I'm used to as there's no steering wheel. This is the first zero-turn I've used and even sat on, don’t let the absence of a steering wheel eliminate this as a new mowing contender. I've had it for three weeks and it just comes so naturally to me now. There was a lot of concentration required in the beginning but now there's no stopping me!

 

One of my clients has a very large estate with an awful lot of grass. There's lots of different scenarios going on: Fields, formal lawns, utility lawns, croquet lawn, walled garden, a big orchard and small fields with lots of trees and shrubs to go around so finding a machine that was capable of mowing in many of these areas was critical. There's seven acres of lawns in total so lots of mowing!

We have a large tractor, a massive diesel thing to do the two fields but it's very old and we had a ride-on tractor to do the smaller lawns and cut around the edges, trees and shrubs. We chose the Ariens Apex to replace the ride-on as it's a lot wider and a lot faster and it can do the same job as the big tractor so we know that we have one mower that can do everything. We like the fact that the Apex can mow most of this estate. We have the tow bar fitted so we can tow a scarifier behind it to scarify the lawns and we use it to tow small amounts in the trailer.

 

There is a lot of garden maintenance required as it's so big and varied. I have been looking after this client's grounds for over 15 years and we've gone through all sorts of machines and the Ariens Apex is certainly the best we've had yet. It's wider, faster and a lot more maneuverable than a front deck steering wheel type ride-on. I think it's also more practical in a lot of ways as there's not so much involved mechanically. The last ride-on we had, had a drive shaft, steering columns and the like where with a zero turn you have an engine and two motors right there underneath the seat without anything too complicated to go wrong. I really like the simplicity of it and how robust it is—it's very well built. I couldn't even stand on the deck on my ride-on as it just tipped over, whereas the Apex is built like the brick proverbial and it looks like it too with its steel frame, large deck and tyres.

 

The last machine we had was about the same price as the Apex 52 but it was a much lesser machine, lesser engine, lesser grade steel. Ariens just beats it in so many ways. Because the deck is wider and it's faster, it's twice as effective. With time management, I can get twice as much done which for a self-employed gardener like myself is spot-on. The fact that the zero-turn does what it says it does and turns on itself does mean that I'm cutting grass in half the time and not going over already cut grass or doing multiple point-turns. There's so much to do on this client's property and we only have on​e day there so you can imagine how busy we get. My colleague and I start early and discuss the priorities for the day, two of us for seven hours and in midsummer we spend 3.5 hours between us cutting grass. The quicker we can get it done the better and my new Apex will reduce this cutting time by half!

It's a really, really good machine!

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