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  1. #1

    Default Tractor Buying Advice

    We just acquired a piece of property in central Wisconsin (read snow), 35 acres in all. 2 -3 acres of lawn, about 1.5 miles of a 10 foot wide trail that runs through the property part of which goes through some swampy areas that needs mowing. In the next few years we will do some landscaping work with stones, develop a water garden, and keep a kitchen garden. There is a half acre pond that needs mowing around, and a 300ft gravel driveway that may be upgraded to asphalt soon that will need to be cleared of snow.

    I need input regarding what CUT to acquire for the jobs stated above. I believe I will need a mower, an FEL, an a backblade or boxblade. Tilling and other garden attachments will also be required. Do I need to get a snowthrower too? I have space on the property to dump snow if necessary.

    I will limit my options to GREEN, BLUE and ORANGE. My wife will be "driving" sometimes. We will like to keep the cost before taxes to about 15 - 17K.

    Thanks in advance for all responses.

  2. #2

    Join Date
    Mar 2002
    Posts
    49
    Location
    Fairfax Station, VA
    Tractor
    Kubota BX22

    Default Re: Tractor Buying Advice

    I'm real pleased with my kubota BX22 after agonizing long and hard over the new JD "ten" series. In the end, the Kubo was a far better dollar per value buy than the JD, as it was the only 22HP tractor I could get with a proper backhoe, midmount mower and loader for under $ 17K. The JD "ten" series would have been well over $ 24K similarily equipped. The BX22 is one tough little tractor. You probably can do almost everything you need with the above and a bush hog. Wait on the boxblade and try some bar teeth for the FEL. You can virtually the same work with the boxblade as a toothed front end loader and save a lot of money.

    Skip the snowblower and use the front end loader in the snow.

    I mow my 1.5 acres w/60" MMM in half the time that I was able to do it with my Cub Cadet Garden Tractor (48" deck) due to the wider cut, faster speed, and mow-in-reverse capability.

    Your wife would like the BX....it's much less intimidating being a sub-compact, steers quite easily and is a very stable platform, especially when mowing.

    You're looking at premium brands in all ....... you won't make a bad choice with any of them.

  3. #3
    Veteran Member
    Join Date
    Jan 2002
    Posts
    1,726
    Location
    Cambridge, New York
    Tractor
    JD425 lawn tractor; JD4710 CUT; JD JX75 Walk Behind

    Default Re: Tractor Buying Advice

    Seth,

    <font color=blue>I need input regarding what CUT to acquire for the jobs stated above.</font color=blue>

    Based on the size of your property and jobs you've described, I think you'll need a CUT at least in the upper 20s HP range....more likely low 30s HP. You need beefy HP to do the snowplowing, carrying rock, bush hogging dense vegetation around that pond, etc.

    You may want to think on spending a little bit up front and buy Muhammad's book. He addresses all these issues in it and after reading it you'll likely be in a much better position to narrow down your choices.

    A primarily limitation is the budget you've developed. Upper limit at $17K may buy you just the tractor with nothing left over for FEL or other implements. Your $17K may get you a good used tractor package but you'll have to shop around even more and know your tractors.

    Regards,
    Bob Ancar
    Cambridge, NY

  4. #4
    Platinum Member
    Join Date
    Mar 2002
    Posts
    880
    Location
    N.E. PA
    Tractor
    BX22

    Default Re: Tractor Buying Advice

    dcollie:

    I agree with you completely...except for the snowblower. I think that the proper tool for snow depends on the need. I have a 2100' drive and using the FEL would take much longer than a blower. Also with a bad storm and the right drifting, I would not have any where to dump the snow with a FEL. I have found in the past that the blower was the only way to get the snow far enough out of the way. Same was true for a plow. Many times I had to use my Simplicity with a snowblower to open up my neighbor's road. He has a plow on his pickup, but when there is nowhere to push it, blowing it up and out of the way was the only option.

    paul

  5. #5
    Platinum Member knucklehead's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2002
    Posts
    818
    Location
    Maine
    Tractor
    1979 Ford 1700

    Default Re: Tractor Buying Advice

    Seth, welcome from another new member who has only been here a few weeks. We started thinking about just getting a $5-6k 2wd farm type tractor w/ no FEL to haul wood, clear snow, rough mow trails, and grade gravel. Having gone through the whole gamut, up to being very tempted on a new kubota L series, we finally found a '79 Ford 1700 4wd w/ FEL &amp; 60" rear bush hog. We were actually starting to look at older JD's, then back to older farm tractors (more HP and lift capacity for the $$$, but less refined, if you care about that) when this came along via phone call (Spread the word a little among friends).

    If you are open to the idea, there are smaller older tractors out there to be had. We sort of settled in the +/- 30 hp range, ourselves, and the 1700 is 28 engine/23 PTO hp. The transmission is straight, non sychromesh gears, but you'll find that the best choice is often either a synchro or hydro transmission for ease of use and when changing direction a lot. The people here on TBN are great, and you can get quite an education regarding models and specs for a relatively small investment of time. That new BX Kubota is nice, and there are B models that are larger, too, then the L models. The JD's have an older numerical series: 6xx, 7xx, 8xx, 9xx, as well as the new 4xxx series. The older Fords are 12xx 13xx, 15xx, 17xx, and 19xx series, now replaced by the "Boomers". I'm just learning about them, since I got a blue tractor. There are other models among the "three colors", but I kept the range down on purpose.

    If you are looking at other than new tractors, and want a little info on some of them, just ask. I'm no expert by a long shot, and there are many who are, on this board. I did just come out of three weeks of total immersion in this, so it's pretty fresh. I'm sure you will also be advised to find a good dealer in your area. You can learn a lot by just visiting and telling them what you are doing, and walking the lot to compare models. Beware the dreaded shiny new paint fever, though. I almost got me!

    Happy hunting!


  6. #6
    Platinum Member
    Join Date
    Aug 2000
    Posts
    681
    Location
    Valrico, FL
    Tractor
    No longer have :-(

    Default Re: Tractor Buying Advice

    <font color=blue>I have a 2100' drive and using the FEL would take much longer than a blower. Also with a bad storm and the right drifting, I would not have any where to dump the snow with a FEL.</font color=blue>

    I have a 1400' driveway and used the FEL the first year to remove snow. After a few good snow falls we ordered a snowblower. With the FEL it was taking close to 4 hrs to clear the driveway, depending on how the snow was drifting. With the snowblower it now takes 20 to 30 minutes, depending on how much I want to play.

    There is a difference in snowblower quality and the propensity to break shear pins. Many here on TBN have talked about the hassle of changing shear pins out a few times per winter. Only sheared mine once in two years when I picked up a compressed concrete 12" round (2 inch thick) stepping stone. Other then that I have picked up and thrown rocks and gravel up to 5" or 6" without damaging the snow blower or shear pin. The research in purchasing a snowblower can almost be as much fun as the amount of time that gets invested in the tractor purchase.

    Being in snow country be sure to consider your snow removal equipment/method when purchasing your tractor. You don't want to be underpowered or you might spend more time then you wish out in the cold.

  7. #7
    Veteran Member Carl_NH's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2002
    Posts
    2,016
    Location
    Coastal NH
    Tractor
    01 Kubota B21TLB, 2010 Ferris 52" ZTR, Cub Cadet 1811, Gravely Super8

    Default Re: Tractor Buying Advice

    Seth,

    Reviewing the other posts re 1/2 mile drive etc.. needing snowblower is accurate, but with a 300' run no, unless you get 20" in a week..

    Plow snow 300' driveway, work with stones, develop a water garden, and keep a kitchen garden, and mow 3 acres of lawn and 1.5 mile of swampy trail land.

    You can get by with a 18-24HP unit but will likely trade up to a 30HP class tractor eventually as your acreage and location mean a slightly larger unit will adapt better to the potential attachments that you might want (or must have).

    Regardng a basic unit get a 28-32+-HP with FEL and RMM or bush hog with a scraper blade attachments.

    The L3010 series kubota as above is about $18-20K, or as suggested the BX 22 with the BH and MMM is a great Pkg at about $17K.

    Personally, the BH is the best investment I have made, just get a unit that is easy to use and attach.

    Carl






  8. #8
    Veteran Member Slamfire's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2002
    Posts
    1,494
    Location
    Coker Creek, TN
    Tractor
    Mitsubishi D 1800

    Default Re: Tractor Buying Advice

    I don't think you can do it. You want a newer machine that has enough power to run a finish mower, bush hog, some kind of earth moving equipment, and tillage equipment. By the time you've acquired all the implements, you won't have any money left for the tractor.

  9. #9
    Platinum Member
    Join Date
    Mar 2002
    Posts
    880
    Location
    N.E. PA
    Tractor
    BX22

    Default Re: Tractor Buying Advice

    Dave:

    I already have a kubota 50" blower I ordered with the tractor. I felt that it was the best choice to stick with origonal equipment brand. I could have ordered another brand rear mount and saved a chunk of money, but with the distance I have, I felt driving backwards that far would be a pain in the neck (literally).

    I have yet to try it, but I feel that it will be at least as good as my old 42" Simplicity on a 7119. I used it for 14 years on gravel and blew a lot of stone. Getting the driveway paved this summer, so the job should be easier and less stress on the blower.

    I am actually looking forward to the first big snow !.

    Paul

  10. #10

    Join Date
    Jun 2002
    Posts
    96
    Location
    Fallbrook CA

    Default Re: Tractor Buying Advice

    I think the BX series will accomodate you while keeping the price down. The BX2200 is under 10k, and the loader is around 2k. It's 22 horsepower, and has hydro so your wife will fel very comfy operating it. If you squeeze it out though, I would suggest getting into the B7500, or the 2410/2710 series. A lot more tractor for the buck, but we know the mighty buck is always the factor in such a huge investment. I don't think you need the use of a backhoe, but the bucket is a must. a MMM may be all you need for mowing, but you may want to consider a rear finish mower to offset the weight of the FEL. If you have the time, then the FEL should be enough for moving snow. Otherwise, the blower is faster. Perhaps go with the FEL now, and if you feel the blower would be better, get it later on.

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