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  1. #1

    Default Tractor impaired

    Heh, I read the various messages and see similar posts to this one. Sorry for the overlap, veterans.

    I am tractor challenged, having bought my first 25 acre horse farm (ok, it's a field now). It's slightly rolling, little to no obstacles (other than fence) and I want a tractor to mow, and perhaps handle driveway snow. But 99% is for mowing. I doubt i'll be digging holes, or carrying hay, or anyother farm-like activity. (HaHa you say!--well ok, that's what i'm thinking anyway)

    I guess the thing I've gleaned is that local dealers are important, makes sense, and so I limit myself to JD or kubota.
    This will be Warwick MD.

    The JD guy suggests the 990, for my price range, but duffis that I am, looks at it and wonders if it's too small. He suggests a thousand options, which bring the price up to bigger machines, such as the 5205 at the base level. How do you decide what options, etc, you need. Is a basic bigger tractor better than a decked out smaller one?

    He says prolly a 6 ft jd deck is the upper end of the 990. Hmm, perhaps that woods 990 could be dragged, me thinks. Is that a bad idea?

    Maybe used is better, but I AM an idiot about such things and would be going on the complete say-so of the dealer, a position I really don't want to be in. Plus the usedies all seem to be 1960's editions, and that's just out for me.

    Of course there are other tractor versions, as well, as a neophyte, it would seem JD has a marketing problem, just too many dang models. 'Course, you guys all know the nuances of each model, and where they fit. To me it looks like 30 similar tractors from 35-50hp.

    Thanks for listening to me moan. The grass is growing, and I've got to do something. Thanks.

    --dave

    (INSERT PRETTY TRACTOR PICTURE HERE)

  2. #2
    Gold Member
    Join Date
    May 2002
    Posts
    296
    Location
    Zelienople, PA
    Tractor
    L2500

    Default Re: Tractor impaired

    I think you should look for a good used Ag, utility tractor. Something in the 30-50 hp range. Lower priced than a new compact. And alot more tractor. Get a diff lock and chains for your driveway.

    Ford 2000, 3000, 4000 series tractors are very good units as well as IH 574, 584 etc. JD 3010, 4010 (I think are the right numbers).

    It really does not mater what color as long as it has the power and features you need.

  3. #3
    Veteran Member
    Join Date
    Apr 2001
    Posts
    1,701
    Location
    Cherry Valley, New York (near Cooperstown, NY)
    Tractor
    Kubota L4630, with cab and loader, 1951 Ferguson TO-20, 1986 Ford 5610 with FELl

    Default Re: Tractor impaired

    Howdy, Dave! We've all been where you are. This is the place to get info. I'm a solid veteran of living on my farm for two years[img]/w3tcompact/icons/laugh.gif[/img]. I have horses, too, so that's a similarity to start with. If you have horses, one thing I strongly suggest you get is a front end loader. You'll have lots of horse poop to move. In fact that's what I spent this weekend doing, and you can see pictures of my work, on the Vintage Tractor Forum right here on TBN. Just click on Vintage Tractors In Action. There are a wide variety of tractors for you to choose for what you may need. In my case, money was a huge factor so I got two vintage tractors, for far less than most people pay for one.

    In order for us to help you, one thing we need to know is how much money you're willing to spend, and what your property is like. You'll probably need a finishing mower (I always suggest a rear mounted one) and a brush hog, as well as the FEL. You'll probably need a backblade and a landscape rake. But you have to let us know more about your property and what you want to do.[img]/w3tcompact/icons/smile.gif[/img]

  4. #4
    Elite Member hazmat's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2002
    Posts
    4,015
    Location
    West Newbury, MA & Harrison, ME
    Tractor
    Kubota B3030 loaded!

    Default Re: Tractor impaired

    Yup, you need a tractor. Rich covered the basics for implements. As far as how big, It is a question of time and money. Which do you have more of? More time = smaller tractor, more money = bigger tractor. Are you retired or is this a "part time" farm?

    If you have future ambitions of baling your own hay (I'm not a farmer so I don't know if 25 acres is big enough to sustain a couple of horses) you will want a utility tractor. Otherwise I'd say a large Compact (35-45 HP) should do nicely.

    Search the previous posts here, there is a lot to learn.

  5. #5

    Default Re: Tractor impaired

    Wow, quick responses.!

    I'd like to stay at or under 20K for tractor and deck. ('Like' being the operative word). I have a regular job, and am going to be tractor-boy, but my wife will be farm-girl full time.

    We are going to use a container-managed poop hauling company, so hopefully large mounds of it won't be an issue needing a loader. (Unless you collect from the field?)

    We absolutely will not be bailing hay, or growing anything. No post hole digging, moving trees from one spot to the other, digging 500ft trenches, digging for oil or any other nasty chore. Just cuttin' grass and raising horses.

    <insert: got to love the word 'vintage' it's so much nicer than 'nasty-stinkin old'!>

    The property again is all grass, fenced, ready to go. I want to mow, mow and mow again. That's almost completely what i want to have a tractor for. Slightly rolling, no obstacles (other than fence).

    Basically (perhaps misguidedly), I'd like to get the biggest deck I can afford, to shorten cut times. {with the above 20K constraint}

    Questions:
    Do you really need 4wd?
    Do you really need synchro? wassat: automatic tranny?
    Do you really need DSVC? <won't even venture a guess>
    Is a 'pseudo-finishing mower' a bad idea - eg. woods 990




  6. #6
    Super Member
    Join Date
    Dec 2000
    Posts
    6,737
    Tractor
    JD 8320 MFWD, JD 6415 MFWD, FEL, and cab, John Deere MFWD 4600, John Deere 4020, John Deere 4430, John Deere 455 mower, Deutz, and Gehl 4610 perkins skidsteer

    Default Re: Tractor impaired

    If all you want is a good mower I would look at getting one of the new X's with a 64" mower. I got a price of $8500 for the X485 with a 64" deck.

    Otherwise go for one of the lower end 4000 models if you want to step up or that 900 series would be fine as well. If your ground is all flat then no you don't need 4wd. Hydro is nice for lawn mowing if that's all you're going to be doing but certainly isn't necessary. With as big of an area as you are mowing it won't come into play that much. You do need the synchro transmission though. Basically this is a transmission that is like a vehicle. You just clutch and shift. Without synchro you have to completely stop before you shift gear. You can get a 6' deck with the 4000 series but that's about as big as you're going to go unless you get a utility tractor. If you do get a tractor I would at least get one scv set. You may not need it now but you never know and that is one thing that is much cheaper to do now than wait. Also for resale it will be a better deal as well.

  7. #7
    Veteran Member
    Join Date
    Jan 2002
    Posts
    1,491
    Location
    Lancaster PA
    Tractor
    Yanmar 186D

    Default Re: Tractor impaired

    Dave,
    25 acres of grass is a LOT of mowing. It kind of changes the calculations of which machine to get.

    Have you tried out a tractor with hydrostatic transmission? It is great when you are mowing around fences and trees. I don't have it on my tractor but the front mower that we mow the lawns with has it and I sure like it. It is so simple and safe that a kid could use it and both my wife and her sister have mower the lawns without any trouble when I was out of town. You may not believe this but there are guys here who had to get a second machine because their wives liked mowing with the hydro so much.[img]/w3tcompact/icons/laugh.gif[/img]

    You might want 4WD if you have hills, wet spots or snow. I have all of those and my tractor is small and light so whenever I use ground engaging implements I need the 4WD. I mow a road at the back of our farm that was so wet this spring that it was only in July that I could even think of going there without 4WD. We didn't have much snow last winter but I sure like 4WD when I plow snow.

    I think syncro lets you shift gears on the fly which you can't do with a lot of gear shift transmissions. You have to stop shift gears and restart.

    I'll bet that most of the tractor addicts here keep finding new things to do with their machines so that they are usually glad they got the options. As long as you don't get hooked, as long as it is just a tool then you don't need extra hydraulic outlets (SCV) or the loader or a posthole digger. But there are guys here who couldn't help themselves. [img]/w3tcompact/icons/laugh.gif[/img]

    Chris

  8. #8

    Default Re: Tractor impaired

    Ya know....20K will buy a lot of sheep....but that just wouldn't be any fun now would it![img]/w3tcompact/icons/laugh.gif[/img] Just gotta have that tractor!!!! I would definitely go with the 4wd. It is standard on most tractors these days and it can really come in handy, makes the difference of getting stuck or getting out! Also makes a big difference when plowing snow. Good luck in your search....Baaaaaa!

  9. #9
    Veteran Member
    Join Date
    Apr 2001
    Posts
    1,701
    Location
    Cherry Valley, New York (near Cooperstown, NY)
    Tractor
    Kubota L4630, with cab and loader, 1951 Ferguson TO-20, 1986 Ford 5610 with FELl

    Default Re: Tractor impaired

    As Cowboydoc said, 4wd is not neccessary if you dont have big hills. I don't have it on either of my tractors, and have never needed it. You've got a lot to mow, and you have to remember there is a difference between a finished lawn and pasture. For pastures, you'll need a rotary cutter (brush hog), which is a heavy duty mower designed to cut brush and saplings as well as grass. For any real lawn, you'll need a finish mower, which gives a finer cut.
    For a brush hog, King Kutter gives you one of the best buys. Many of the guys are also getting into First Choice, which I have no experience with, but is getting good reviews on value and quality from many TBN'ers.
    Cowboydoc explained synchro. Again, it's a nice option, I don't have it on either of my tractors. It would be nice to shift on the go, but, to me, it's not essential.

    Does the $20,000 include the tractor, and implements?

  10. #10
    Gold Member
    Join Date
    May 2002
    Posts
    296
    Location
    Zelienople, PA
    Tractor
    L2500

    Default Re: Tractor impaired

    With that kind of budget I think I would still opt for for a good used ag tractor with a 6 or 7 brush hog. You do not have to spend 20K to do this. There are plenty of excellent used machines out there that have years of service left. Spend 5 to 8k and invest the rest to make money or take a vacation. I appologize if I sound like I have a strong opinion. I am just trying to help you out. A new tractor is nice to have but if all your going to do is mow the field then buy used. It sounds like you do not need 4wd wich costs more and to mow in a field a utility ag unit has plenty of room to move. A gear tractor is not hard to drive.

    Get a 6' rear blade to clear the snow or even a front mounted like on a pick-up truck.

    Good luck.

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