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  1. #1

    Default Help

    I am searching for some experienced and informed information to help make a tractor decision. I am preparing to start up a landscape company in the spring of 2003 (mostly preparing a rough grade for seed planting). I have local JD, kubota and Kioti dealers with a decent inventory and service department. MY 1st 2nd and 3rd impressions have been this: JD overpriced for what you get??? Kioti most economical but the YUGO of tractors??? Kubota beefiest (front axle twice that of the deere and just looks good-means little when you are spending 25 grand) with good options - most bang for your buck. I have come to the preliminary decision that a 30hp will do what I need (ie L3010)??? Options I think will be useful or even a required. Front end loader, Box scraper, pulverizer (do I need both?), primary seeder. I would appreciate any advice, experience or comments on any topics listed here. Any experience with cost would also be benefial. I have NOT made up my mind yet I am just leaning toward Kubota.

  2. #2
    Veteran Member
    Join Date
    Aug 2001
    Posts
    1,003
    Location
    Vermont
    Tractor
    NH TC33D

    Default Re: Help

    Drewb -

    The kubota L3010 is a nice tractor. I was considering that, but ended up with a NH TC 33D.

    Someone with more landscaping experience than I may have better info for you, but my first impression is that the 3010 MAY be a bit undersized for a landscaping BUSINESS tractor (as opposed to a homeowner-type landscaping tractor). Time is money when you are in business, and the larger models will allow you to do bigger jobs more quickly. On th eother hand, if you are doing smaller jobs with this tractor, it may be just the ticket (you may want to rent a dozer for the really big jobs anyway).

    John_Mc

  3. #3

    Default Re: Help

    I am looking to do 1-2 acre lawns. Most of the rough grade should already be done??? I looked at the L3710 and felt it was simply to large to do 1 acre lawns (more at home in a farm field?). I would eventually like to get a back hoe (to do septics), and if I did I would probably trade in for the L3710. I also felt the HST was a worthwhile upgrade on the kubota (approx $500).

    I am so confused with ALL the possible choices!!!!!

  4. #4
    Epic Contributor Bird's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2000
    Posts
    37,504
    Location
    Texas

    Default Re: Help

    Personally, I would definitely go with the HST for that kind of work. And while the other tractors are certainly good machines, and a great deal depends on personal preference, and dealer support, it sounds to me like you're looking at the right stuff already.

  5. #5

    Join Date
    Jan 2002
    Posts
    280
    Location
    Western N.C. from New Orleans.
    Tractor
    MF 220 - Long 2360- Kioti 3054

    Default Re: Help

    Drewb
    Looks like you have already decided on the kubota. Now all that you need to know is which attachments to get with it. Personally, I don't do landscape work so I'm no help there. I am sure that someone on TBN can steer you in the right direction. Now, to compare my Kioti with a Yugo, all that I can say is don't knock it if you ain't tried it. I think that if you were to borrow one for a day that you would be in for a surprise.

  6. #6

    Join Date
    Feb 2002
    Posts
    953
    Location
    Texas
    Tractor
    Mahindra 4110

    Default Re: Help

    Welcome to the gauntlet of tractor buying decisions!

    I'll throw in my $.02 about Kioti's & HST.

    HST - Without starting a holy war, here's my take - if you are doing a lot of back & forth movement, HST is generally more straight forward - meaning there is less for the operator to do & it is therefore easier for a novice to pick up quickly. By saying this I am in no way saying that "experts" don't use HST or that you can't be very efficient with a gear based transmission. If you are going to do lots of traveling in one direction at a constant speed (e.g. mowing), I see the HST loosing a lot of its advantages (e.g. if you aren't changing speeds or directions, you don't have to change anything on a geared tractor - just like an HST).

    I've seen an operator run a shuttle-shift tractor w/ a loader just as fast as a good HST tractor/operator. The thing was that the operator was very good on the shuttle-shift. I guess I think of it like people who drive standards vs. automatic cars - nothing is wrong with either transmission type, and they both have +'s & -'s. You put a good driver behind either and you'll be hard pressed to tell the difference watching them from the side of the road. I've operated both and don't have any problems or issues with either. It's just a personal preference thing.

    Kioti - I think you'd be hard pressed to find a Kioti owner who thinks their tractor is in the "YUGO" class of machines. I seriously considered a Kioti. I haven't owned one, but based on looking at them and reading posts here, I think they are a very high quality of machine - if anyone says they have bad fit/finish, they haven't looked at them close up. Where it appears Kioti has had issues in the past is dealer/parts network, but this doesn't apply to everywhere. In my area (Texas) there seem to be quite a few Kioti dealers & good parts supply - but this may very well not be the case in, say, South Dakota. It just depends on where you are I suppose.

    If you determine that HST is a requirement, that will essentially kill off the Kioti (they don't offer it). But, that being said, if you are considering a shuttle-shift transmission, I think that you should look into Kioti a bit more. Again, I'm not saying that it would or would not be the "right" choice - I'm just saying it isn't the Euro-junk you might think it is.

  7. #7

    Default Re: Help

    I appologize if I offend anyone with the yugo comment. I would never have looked at one if I did not feel it had merits. The Kioti was actually my preferred choice before I started this search. That said, I do not have any working experience with any of these machines and am relying on advice, reading material and "parking lot road tests"

    HST- my understanding is that they hold up better, have better resale but are much more expensive to repair when they need any major work. I would believe that the landscaping bus. would require a fair amount of speed and direction change.

    This is why I started out my search 12 mos early. Unfortunately the kubota dealer wants to give me a "good Deal" on a new but year old on the lot L3010

    I APPRECIATE the reply and your $.02, I will need everything I can get when I write the check.

  8. #8

    Default Re: Help

    As I told ranchman, I appologize for the Yugo comment. I would not consider the Kioti if it was not a worthy machine!

    The Kioti actually started off as my first choice.

  9. #9

    Join Date
    Feb 2002
    Posts
    953
    Location
    Texas
    Tractor
    Mahindra 4110

    Default Re: Help

    No offence taken, I hope I didn't come across as "defensive" that wasn't my intent...[img]/w3tcompact/icons/smile.gif[/img]

    Sometimes it just appears that Kioti gets a kindof unfair "shake" and was just trying to say that they seem to be a pretty good machine in my book. No harm, no foul.

    Since I'm typing agin, I throw in a couple of more cents on your reply since you say you are starting a collection [img]/w3tcompact/icons/laugh.gif[/img]....

    I'm not sure I'd agree on HST holding up "better" - I haven't heard anything about poor reliability with gear based transmissions. I guess that *could* be true in that you could easily abuse a gear transmission (e.g. grinding, poping the clutch, etc.) Again, I think it goes back to the operator - if you take care of your equipment, it should probably be OK.

    As far as the landscaping business, we have friend in it. (finished yardwork). Basically, the rule of thumb for upkeep is "straight lines, always forward". Of course, they can't always do this, but it decreases time & therefore increases productivity.

    If you are building berms or digging stuff out (e.g. FEL work), then a lot of direction changes seem accurate. If you are essentially preparing seed beds (e.g. making "yards"), I don't think you will be changing direction that much (e.g. Fwd vs. Rvs.)

    I guess I'm kindof having a hard time imagining exactly what you'll be doing, so it's kindof hard for me to form an opinion one way or the other regarding the HST.... [img]/w3tcompact/icons/hmm.gif[/img]

    12 mo - I spent just about that long before I made my decision too!!! [img]/w3tcompact/icons/grin.gif[/img]

    Enjoy the $.04 I've contributed to your fund! Just don't spend it all in one place!!! [img]/w3tcompact/icons/laugh.gif[/img]

  10. #10
    Veteran Member
    Join Date
    Oct 2001
    Posts
    1,134
    Location
    South Carolina
    Tractor
    Kubota B7500

    Default Re: Help

    I just moved into a sub that has 1 to 3 acre lots. The builders choice to do the finish landscape work is a bobcat equipped with a pulverizer (wish I had one) and a front bucket. I recently tried to do with my fel what he did with that pulverizer and nearly drove myself crazy trying to make it look as nice. Anyway, just a thought on the type of impliments.

    I think the Yugo comparison would be more appropriate when looking at some of the Chinese offerings I have read about on TBN. Hyundai might be a better comparison for the Kioti. Not quite mainstream, but gaining.

    Jeff

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