This mower has been replaced with the Craftsman 54 in Zero Turn Riding Lawn Mower. Look over in the right hand column on this page to read my review.
Last year this Craftsman zero turn mower got a new deck and it went from a mediocre lawn mower to decent homeowner machine. I personally know at least 15 owners of the 2009 version who are very happy and glad they purchased this one.
Read the rest of the review below the specs:
Listed on Sears.com as: Craftsman 26 hp 52 inch Zero Turn Yard Tractor
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Read My Review Below These Specs:
Series: ZTS 6000
Ca Model: None
Engine HP: 26
Engine Brand: Briggs & Stratton
Transmission: Twin Hydrostatic
Transmission Control: In Front Lever
Mower Width: 52
Cutting Positions: Infinite Electric Lift
Gauge Wheels: 4
Washout port: Yes
Blade Engagement: Electric
Turning Radius: Zero Turn
Front Axle: Pivoting Cast Iron
Rear Tires: 18 x 8.5
Seat: Hi-back with Arm Rests
Slide Seat Adjust: NA
Service Minder: Yes
For your reference I was one of the first landscapers to use zero-turn mowers in the Chicago area and I have owned a dozen different brands and types. I currently use a Dixon 30 inch on my lawn (It’s is the worst zero-turn I have owned) I like the ExMark Lazer Z, Toro Grandstand, and Wright Stander commercial zero turn mowers. When reviewing zero-turn mowers I use these as my reference point.
Today’s residential zero-turn mowers fall into two general categories. Barely adequate or worthless. Many of them are at worst unsafe for most users or at best tear up your lawn.
Most of them either:
1. Turn well but are unstable going up a hill.
2. Go up a hill well but don’t turn well.
3. Don’t do either well.
All of this has to do with how the unit and operator’s weight is balanced in relation to the rear drive wheels, the type of front axle, the tires, and the stiffness of the unit.
With that in mind, let’s continue on with the review of the 28992.
The 28992 is designed for relatively flat lawns. If you have a road ditch or slopes more than 15 degrees you will have difficulty mowing them with this mower.
What I like about the 28992:
Zero-turns that allow you to sit up straight are the most comfortable to drive. This zero-turn let’s you sit up straight (like you do in a pickup) and allows your spine to stay vertical. You won’t get back aches from reclining in the seat.
This zero-turn puts the engine just in front of the rear drive axles. You sit over the engine so all the primary weight is centered slightly forward of the rear wheels. This allows this mower to be very stable going up and down slopes(zero-turn mowers that have the engine behind the rear wheels turn better but are not as stable going up and down slopes)
Putting your weight over the engine also gives a good balance for turning. (Zero-turn mowers with too much forward weight tend to dig into poor lawns when turning.) This design gives the front caster wheels the best traction when turning yet it doesn’t put too much weight where it wants to dig in all the time.
I really like the floating front axle. On most of the residential zero-turns the front caster wheels are just welded to the frame and there is no flex. This stiffness makes the units hard to turn, gives you an uneven cut and are rough to drive. The floating axle on the 28992 gives you a better cut, and gives you a smoother ride. (Ladies, you will still have to wear a sport bra when using this or any zero-turn. The way zero-turns bounce will cause you some discomfort without one)
The new deck Craftsman put on this mower in 2009 really cuts well. The owners I know like the evenness of cut. (If your cut is uneven always check the tire pressure first)
I like the dampeners on the drive levers. Mowers without dampeners are very jerky to use and most people complain about having to hold the levers in one position while mowing. Dampers give you a much smoother feel and take some of the pressure off your wrists when mowing large areas.
The electric blade clutch and electric lift are usually not found on this price range and they are a welcome addition on the 28992.
What I don’t like about the 28992:
You sit up nice and high on this machine and this may feel like the mower is unstable on slopes. If you have slopes greater than 15 degrees I recommend you stay with a Yard Tractor or spend the extra money and buy a commercial stand-on mower.
Zero-turn mowers are not for everybody. If you have never drove one, it does take some practice to mow well without tearing up your yard. But if you are willing to learn the 28992 can easily mow your lawn 50% faster than a 42 inch lawn tractor and 30% faster than a 54 inch Garden Tractor.
The Craftsman Model 28992 is a decent residential zero-turn mower. It is designed well and all the trade-offs of balance and weight transfer are well designed. The additional perks of steering dampeners, electric lift, and front floating axle make this zero turn one of the best for the money of all the residential zero-turns.
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