The riding greens triplex used on many golf facilities today has varied a bit in popularity since its emergence back in the 1960’s. Prior to the greens triplex, golf courses used walking greens mowers exclusively. The triplex offered significant advantages from a cost savings standpoint vs the traditional walk mower. Less operators were needed to mow greens and with three cutting reels vs. only one productivity was nearly tripled. The initial shift from walking greens mowers to triplexes was dramatic. Despite these advantages there were two big drawbacks that eventually caused some golf course facilities to shift back towards traditional walking greens mowers. While early triplexes offered a more economical solution, they were not capable of providing the same quality of cut as a greens walk mower. Modern golf greens are expected to have more speed and playability which necessitated lower heights of cut achievable only through a walking mower. The other major drawback of early triplexes were the complex hydraulic systems required to power the reels and lift systems of a triplex. Nothing is more damaging to a green surface than a hydraulic leak!
During the past decade the golf industry has seen a renewed demand for more economical machinery solutions. With operational costs increasing and relatively flat revenues, golf operators have to do more with less. More productive mowers such as the triplex have begun to make a bit of a comeback on courses that traditionally walk mowed their greens. Aiding substantially in this shift are several advancements in the triplex design including electric reel motors and better 'contour following' cutting unit systems. The electric reels found on triplexes such as Toro's Greensmaster 3320 have nearly eliminated the risk of a catastrophic hydraulic failure. Triplexes manufactured today provide an economical solution along with the traditional quality of cut and reliability of a traditional walking greens mower.
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