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Mower – Zero Turn
Lawn mowers come in a variety of styles, but one favorite is the mower – zero turn, also known as a Z-Turn. These riding lawn mowers have a zero turning radius which means that both front and rear wheels turn simultaneously and allow for tight rotation in any given area. There are different ways that companies design this turn on their mowers but the most common is using a hydraulic system to control the drive speed of each wheel.
Most models feature two large wheels in the back and two smaller wheels in the front. On occasion, you will find models with a fifth small wheel that is seated in the center and behind the driver. The large wheels independently steer the direction of the mower. The driver can make each wheel go in opposite directions if necessary! These steering controls allow for a variety of turn styles that can handle any situation you face when mowing large property. Especially if the property features trees, stumps, and large rocks scattered around.
Steering controls tend to vary on this type of mower. Zero turn means you won’t see a steering wheel often, as throttles are a more efficient way to steer. Usually, there are two throttles, one for each wheel, and each throttle controls the direction and speed. These throttles are anywhere from waist-high to shoulder-high to the driver, making the use of throttles easy on the driver. Some mowers feature an engine throttle with a joystick – and on occasion, a steering wheel – but many do not allow you to control the engine during use.
The mower (zero turn) also uses differential steering in its design. While the throttles are on either side of the driver, they also lay over the lap (referred to as lap bars) and work the same as a shopping cart handle. Therefore, you do not see steering wheels on many Z-Turn mowers. Steering wheels require a different design that requires an axle at the midpoint of the machine and connects to the tires.