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  1. #1
    New Member
    Join Date
    Apr 2017
    Central IL
    old one

    Default Considering selling BOLENS HT-20

    Good condition hydrostatic garden tractor (believe 1973). Includes K532s Kohler 20 HP engine, 54" mower deck (18071), 54" Hydraulic lift/tilt front blade (18085-02), 33" tiller (18093), rear wheel weights (16167), front tires 18-8.5x8 (with tubes inside) , rear tires 26-12.00x12. Well cared for but some surface rust as it has never been repainted.

    Thoughts on what is a reasonable selling price and what should I minimally accept?

  2. #2
    New Member
    Join Date
    Oct 2010
    Allis, Ariens, Bolens, CASE, Homelite, Massey, Simplicity

    Default Re: Considering selling BOLENS HT-20

    There are two problems in answering that question, one is about price and selling, and the other is about cognitive reasoning and risk exposure. Problem number one about price is that very few people have more than a couple hundred dollars of disposable cash, which makes them run to the big box store and buy on credit. Second, people of society today tend to look at price alone as a deciding factor, so a 200.00 20 hp Murray twin will out sell a 1500.00 Bolens HT-20 with implements, even though the latter is a lifetime purchase and the former is a seasonal purchase because men today use the greatest satisfaction for the least amount of money model. The second problem is the SWMBO (She Who Must Be Obeyed) problem. The expenditure of money on a tool that accomplishes the needs of the household are viewed as a luxury and purchased for the happiness of the Gimp (husband), there is no money in the budget for this type of expenditure, and if it must be purchased, it will be purchased on payments so happiness is delayed or denied due to further expenditures on unexpected maintenance and repairs on said equipment. Even though SWMBO has to incur part of those expenses the joy of the denial of real happiness to the Gimp is worth the added cost. The tractor and implements if they were John Deere green and yellow could bring 4k, Bolens green and white will be difficult to realize less than half of that. Not my view, but just what the market says. The person that pays 4k for a 400 series JD paid retail plus 1K for the paint, the person that buys the Bolens will never forget the deal he got.

  3. #3
    Veteran Member
    Join Date
    Sep 2011
    Hurlimann 435, Fordson E27n, Bolens HT-23, Kubota B7200

    Default Re: Considering selling BOLENS HT-20

    As the owner of a HT23, I must confess to wondering at times if a more "agricultural", and less "urban groundskeeper" little tractor would be better suited to my needs. (B7100 or the like)

    I use the Bolens to pull a yard trailer, drag a small york rake, blow snow and push snow. Plus it comes in handy for moving the firewood splitter from one place to another. It's a self propelled trailer hitch in summer, but I could not manage without it for winter's snow removal. Heck, I've only ever put on that mower deck once, and that was just to try it out. I haven't got much grass. ;-)

    But then I look through the local craigslist and see that the asking price for just about any suitable replacement is north of $7K and that is usually sans implements. I would then need a blower and blade. So it would cost $10k to replace the old dog, minimum.

    I really don't feel I could get much more than $2k for the works and that would be separate sales of each attachment.

    So for all the reasons oolagahan has mentioned, I'll keep the HT until something better jumps me in a dark alley Even if I need to rebuild the engine again, or purchase a new Eaton hydrostatic unit.
    Then I'll be ready to give someone a great deal on a powerful small tractor that will last their lifetime too.

    I really should fit that emergency electric generator to make the Bolens even more useful.....

    So.... Not a very good response to the original question, but a validation of just why anyone might justify paying a fair price for one. ;-)

  4. #4
    Veteran Member Ilikeurtractor's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Iseki TX1300F/TX1500/ TX2160F/TS2220F/ Satoh S370D/S373D

    Default Re: Considering selling BOLENS HT-20

    The other problem with practical pricing on these sort of items is the prospective buyers, at some point in their life, heard of someone who found the item, an HT-20 in this case, for $200 so that's what they have in mind. I've purchased many Bolens/Iseki tractors and yes, I have found some of these "awesome" deals and seen others who have too. The problem is the people who sell these tractors for this price usually don't know anything about them and the tractors seem to have a pattern of having been heavily abused over the years. Wiring is stripped, fluids have either never been changed or have leaked out and continued to be run, tires don't hold air and are bald, multiple leaks, worn out rings, etc. etc. So after you spend the $2k on tires, ring job, leak repairs, and redo the wiring nobody will even reimburse you for the parts because they saw that same tractor for the $200 and it pretty much looks the same as the one that has been gone through or is still working like new. So, I would second the notion that you might as well keep it unless you're willing to give it away because there are few people who understand the value of such items.

    My general philosophy on pricing, is I price it for the dollars I have into an item and I don't put a dollar amount on the time I put into them. If nobody wants to pay me for the amount I have into it then I keep it because I'm not running a charitable foundation. My benefit is I get to use the item in the meantime while keeping it properly maintained.
    One nice thing about being average is you're not alone.

  5. #5
    Elite Member Sawyer Rob's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2014
    Upper Mid West
    several brands

    Default Re: Considering selling BOLENS HT-20

    The last "real" job I had for my Bolens was, blowing snow,

    and that job was taken over several years ago by my Grasshopper,

    The GH is a much superior sno-blower...but at a price!

    Anyway, now the Bolens just sits around, although my wife will use it once in a great while, to pull a small trailer with a few buckets of water for some plants...


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