View Full Version : Best tow behind ATV mower???

05-27-2011, 01:49 PM
Can I please get opinions on the best tow behind ATV mower for grassy trail cutting, low end brush hogging (1" diam stuff) and clover maintenance mowing.

Funds are a bit limited anymore towards my property projects (as my proerty is beginning to show) so i would like to get the best bang for my buck so I can at least keep pace with all the hard work I have done to this point.

I looked at getting another used garden tractor to do this dirty work, like I did the first time, but being down that road before and not even getting 2 good years out of the tractor, has made me gunshy of that route again.

I have ATV implements to prep soil for plots so strike two against the small tractor route, and a 24" walk behind brush mower that I LOVE for its toughness, but could really use a quicker mowing solution on the fields and access trails, some of which are a bit uneven and rocky.

The ATV mowers caught my eye, but would like some comfort from others that the money is worth it. My co-worker here got a Swisher and short of shearing a few pins and a bolt of two shaking loose he seem to like it. But he owns a farm, I own a logged hil I am trying to farm (plot).

05-27-2011, 02:29 PM
We have always used the swisher mowers. We are now on our second 60" finish mower as we bought the first one used over 10 years ago and it mowed about 5 to 6 acres every single week on rocky nasty uneven ground. We bought a second one becuase it finally just rusted and wore out.

We have also had a swicher rough cut 44" for the same time and it is still going strong, swisher in my experience makes a great product... but they are not exactly cheap either.

05-27-2011, 02:35 PM
Thanks Brownie! Swisher is on my short list and luckily my local Tractor Supply has them in stock. 60" may be too big for some of my trails, so i am looking at that 44" very closely.

05-27-2011, 04:57 PM
I have used a Bush Hog GT42 with the Honda engine for quite a few years. Keep the blade sharp and you will do fine. The 1" saplings will not be an issue.

You can add a spacer to the height adjustment if you want to mow higher. Bush Hog also offered solid tires if you don't want to repair any flat tires.

Bottom line; if your ATV will drive over/through it the GT42 will cut it. On new rough areas I cut high then lower the mower for a finishing pass.

05-27-2011, 08:58 PM
I researched these a heck of a lot when I was in the market and it sounds like 3 respectable brands are Swisher, DR and Kunz. I ended up going with a DR field and brush mower (push mower). I was planning more for the future though. I figured it will work for short term cutting edges and my small plots. Then when I upgrade to a better tractor for mowing/brush hogging, I will still have the DR for mowing edges/frontage/orchard/etc.

I don't think you can go wrong with a DR. They get great reviews and the one I have is a beast. Perfect for edges, trails, slopes. Plus you get a heck of a good workout!! hahaha

There were quite a few swishers on Craigslist when I was looking a year ago, so keep that in mind. But the life of a brush mower is pretty rough, so used may not be the best option.

05-27-2011, 09:55 PM
We got a swisher rough cut 44 new about two months ago when we got our property. We don't have a tractor and need to keep up with about ten acres in foodplot and field. Very pleased with the mower. Better built than i was expecting. Gave 1200 new. Glad to hear how well they hold up. If i was gonna say one negative thing it would have to be a loud clunk like i hit an object when i go too fast. But it's not hitting the ground. Not sure what's going on with that. I checked the blades and they look good.
But i got the feeling that mower is gonna serve us well.

05-27-2011, 11:59 PM
Buy the swisher 44" rough cut. You will not be dissappointed. I had one before I got tractors. If you can drive over it the thing will cut it. Very reliable, easy to start and maintain and very adjustable.

05-28-2011, 05:29 AM
54, I live pretty close to the DR factory and when I was looking for one I went up there and talked to them. Long story short, I bought a Swisher 44 from DR. Yes that's right Swisher from DR, it was a test model they had when they were designing theres. I wish I had the money for the DR though.

The Swisher had a couple hours on it but not in real use. They had theres in production at the time so they sold me the Swisher for $800, I couldn't pass it up!

That being said imo, it's not even a comparison, the DR is a much better mower. I've ended up doing a ton of welding on the Swisher, gone thru belts, wheel berrings and built a stronger tow hitch. It's not that strong for a rough cut mower imo. If you want the "best", the DR is by far, better built, but more expensive.

05-28-2011, 09:37 AM
Just remember that Swisher makes the Trailmower series and the Trailcutter series. The Trailcutter series is made more for mowing brush and heavy weeds. I have the 44" version and absolutely love it. We've been running that thing (and beating it to death) for years without problems. However, we find the cutter series does not cut tall grass as well as the mower series. If I were just mowing food plots, I would go with the mower. If I were mowing brushy trails or overgrown fields, I would use the cutter. And although the cutter doesn't do well with grasses, it is the best choice for "all-purpose" use. Using the mower to cut brush will damage it. It isn't built for brush-cutting.

05-31-2011, 08:52 AM
Thanks guys for all the GREAT input, lots of good points to consider as I wait for the $ accumulate to go get one.

Was up the property for the first time this weekend in quite awhile and it looks abandon :( , kind of hurt to see truthfully that my schedule does not allow for much attention even when it is 10 minutes from my home. I cut some using my self propelled brush mower...but am so far behing the growth now, it may need weed wacked before I use this mower.

Anyway thanks again for reviews and opinions I can trust.

Alpha Doe
05-31-2011, 11:24 AM
Check out the Kunz ATV pull behind mowers. We have the rough cut series and it takes a beating. It will cut small trees down, mow a clover plot as fast as you wanna go and then you can mow your lawn with it. We have cut trails through our established switch grass fields and it handles that...if the blades are sharp.

Kunz Engineering is a member on this site. They are located in Mendota Illinois.


05-31-2011, 12:51 PM
Thanks for suggestion on Kunz...and I looked over their site a few times already and those machines look GREAT and WELL BUILT but that price is a bit too steep for my application .

When push comes to shove, I cut everything before with the HD weekwacker, and an old but reliable walk behind brusher and some full weekends (not just a few hours). I want to updgrade to a tow behind to save on time..but if I was going to spend 4K, it would be on a storage shed building and some tower stands. I am actually looking at how I can make my walk behind brusher be a tow behind at least for the level and easy cutting.

I appreciate all the responses and input I got here, the longer I stew on this the more it tells me to do my heart a favor and get the excercise and realize the budget limits. :rolleyes: , this is moving to a wish list item.