Buy decision on Wheelhorse 518xi
Been researching a Garden Tractor buy for a little while now and came across you folks. Here's my net, newly-built house with about .75 acre to mow regulary (a little more occaisonally), which could be handled by a lot less machine. But I have a newly paved 850 foot driveway with about 300 feet of it at a nice incline that I want to be able to plow snow off of. Want to avoid chains so as not to tear up that investment. Here in Maryland hills north of DC, winter on average means 1 or 2 snows of 12 to 18 inches a year and 5 to 10 lesser ones.
Was leaning towards a kubota TG-1860G (about $6K including 48" deck, plow and taxes) until I saw the Wheelhorse 518xi (about $7K equally equipped). It's pushing the budget for sure after building, but want to think long term. My thoughts are that the added weight (1000 lbs vs 700), shaft drive, and low range that the Wheelhorse offers would probably do that hill without question. Never have plowed for myself though.
Have owned others (Cub Cadet, Sears Crapsmen), but not this big. Would appreciate any input from any angle on quality, reliability, capability, etc. Thanks in advance for your experience/thoughts. Tim