In recent years, stand-on spreader sprayer machines have revolutionized the application of fertilizer and chemicals to lawns. Recognizing the potential of stand-on spreader sprayers hadn’t yet been met with existing models, Exmark developed its new stand-on Spreader-Sprayer with a number of innovations designed to maximize productivity, profitability and safety for lawn care professionals.
According to Exmark product manager, Lloyd von Scheliha, the Exmark Spreader-Sprayer was developed with direct input from top lawn care professionals throughout its development. As a result, it raises the bar in a number of critical areas.
“We started the process by asking a number of lawn care professionals what they wanted in a stand-on spreader sprayer,” von Scheliha said. “They told us a lot about what they liked and disliked about their current machines.
“We learned the control layout is very important on a stand-on spreader sprayer, as is the side-hill stability of the machine. We also heard about the challenges these guys were having keeping materials such as wettable powders and flowable solids in suspension in the tank.
About two years ago, von Scheliha and his team began testing prototypes of what would become the Exmark Spreader-Sprayer with a number of trusted lawn care professionals.
The feedback they received was priceless. Testers universally praised the Exmark machine’s innovative “Lean to Steer” controls, which allowed one-handed control of machine direction and speed. Testers now had a free hand to operate spray or spreader controls, or perform spot treatments with the easy-to-access spray wand.
One tester, Kent Harlan of Kent’s Lawn Service in Beatrice, Nebraska, said the Lean to Steer controls allow him to effectively do more with each pass of the machine.
“I end up spraying as much with the wand in reverse as I do going forward. I have enough control with one hand that I can simultaneously spray using the wand in the other hand, even going backward.
“The simple controls make it easy to do.
Harlan said even he was shocked by how much better the Exmark control system was when compared to the controls of other machines he’d owned.
“You don’t realize until you try it (the control system): it’s truly better. In all honesty, at first sight I didn’t think it’d work, but now that I’ve used it, I’m convinced it’s one of the most impressive aspects of the machine.”
According to von Scheliha, Exmark designed the Spreader-Sprayer with no belts and a durable hydrostatic drive system to increase up-time and ease routine maintenance.
Harlan said perhaps the most significant advantage of the Exmark Spreader-Sprayer is the agitation system contained within the machine’s low-profile 20-gallon tank.
With two induction providing aggressive agitation, the Exmark system keeps materials in suspension better. This allows him to consistently apply a mixture of chemicals based on the needs of his customers and their lawns, many in the form of wettable powders that cause other machines headaches.
“I’ll dump all the materials into the tank, open the agitation circuit and wait about 40 seconds for it to mix,” Harlan said. “At that point I’m ready to spray. And if I put the machine away for the night with a half-tank of material inside, as soon as I start that agitation circuit it quickly puts the material back into suspension.
“Nobody else’s machine puts material into suspension and keeps it in suspension as well as the Exmark. In my opinion, that is the key difference between what Exmark is coming to market with and the others.”
In the end, Harlan said that no single machine has positively impacted his business more than the Exmark prototype he used during the 2014 season.
“Not only did my revenue significantly increase for the year, my profitability and customer retention improved as well.”
According to Exmark’s von Scheliha, that’s exactly what the machine was designed to do.
Learn more about the Exmark Spreader-Sprayer at Exmark.com.
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