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  1. #1
    New Member
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    Oct 2011
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    John Deere 1023e

    Default Help Sizing/Upgrading John Deere Lawn Tractor Please Help

    Hello Everyone,
    I am new to this forum so please bare with me as I do my best and I appreciate any feedback anyone has to offer.

    I am looking to upgrade my lawn tractor. I would like to upgrade to another John Deere as they have been reliable for my family for a long time (father, grandfather). I am John Deere dedicated ;-)

    My current lawn tractor is a Deere X320, which works great for mowing and some light material hauling (wood chips, landscape supplies etc..). I put on about 50 hrs a year currently with mowing and landscaping work.

    I only have to mow a 1/2 acre but it is very steep (all of it, there is not one flat spot really) and though the X320 works great for mowing, when going up the hill with a 17P utility cart can sometimes be challenging depending what I am hauling. Even with 2 rear weights the tires don't grab all the time and there are times where I have not been able to make it up the hill and have had empty carty halfway and make multiple trips (pain in the rear). I am concerned about adding more wieight (if it is possible) or HDAP tires as I don't want to burn out the tranny or tear up the lawn too bad (if the tires do spin).

    So here is what I am looking for a lawn tractor to do and any insight from anyone is welcome and appreciated as I do not want to under do this or over do it.

    Questions:
    1. I would like something that can easily pull a 17p utility cart full of dirt or gravel up a steep slope (say 30-40 degree slope roughly)?

    2. I am in Southeastern Wisconsin so I would like something that can handle all of my snow removal needs using a blade. I know some poeple might disagree but I will use the blade for snow removal and light landscaping purposes so it is more functional than a blower at this point. My drive is not very large 45 feet long by 40 feet wide, relatively flat with plenty of room to pile snow on the side. I would like something that can plow through the 2 feet of snow the plow leaves at the end of the drive.

    3. I am also thinking of using the tractor and blade to clear sidewalks and driveways in the neighboorhood as some side work. The blade would make this go much faster than having to blow the snow.

    4. I would also like it to be able to handle more attachments someday, rear tiller and some other PTO attachments.


    So I think that covers most of what I am thinking and I apologize for the long post but I am really up in the air at this point.

    I was originally considering a 4WD Deere X728, then thought maybe the X748 to go with the Diesel because I have been reading that it will last longer and have a little more pushing and pulling power??? Then I thought maybe I am overkilling this and could get by with a X540 or something in that range. I need to manuever around a 1/2 acre yard and mow so I am thinking 54" deck so I can still get around everything easily. I want to be able to get the mowing done as well as all of the other things mentioned above.

    I also don't want to look silly in the nieghboorhood mowing a 1/2 acre yard with a giant tractor.

    I will wrap up with this, my motto is always go big or go home, but I don't want to go to big in this case....whatever that may be. I would like to keep the cost under the price of say a new X748 or in that ballpark I guess.

    If I am missing any info please ask a question and I will respond. Sorry for such a long post and a big thanks to anyone who can help provide some info to me so I can decide what to do...
    Last edited by jdmark; 10-20-2011 at 05:40 PM.

  2. #2
    Gold Member
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
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    297
    Location
    Outside of Detroit, MI
    Tractor
    DK50SE Cab

    Default Re: Help Sizing/Upgrading John Deere Lawn Tractor Please Help

    Hmmm...Have you considered an ATV? They push snow pretty well and will DEFINITELY pull your cart no matter what you put in it. You of course would keep your x320 for the lawn.

    You can get an ATV w/a blade for quite a bit less than any x7xx series mower, that's for sure....

  3. #3

    Default Re: Help Sizing/Upgrading John Deere Lawn Tractor Please Help

    The ATV is definitely one way to go.

    Or you can trade that X320 in for a X500. It has differential lock for pulling up the slope or pushing snow and you can put a belt driven pto on it later if you want.

    The transaxle on your X320's days are numbered. The tranny on that mower was not made for mowing up steep slopes much less towing substantive weight.

    Don't ask me how I know that. I have a 17P poly cart with 2' sideboards and I've loaded mine down with so much weight it would make a Cummins turbodiesel hiccup.

    An X500 may do what you want just fine without the expense of a X700.

    Rod
    Pamlico Lawn Care, LLC
    Oriental, NC

  4. #4
    Member bcb's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2011
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    8410 john deere

    Default Re: Help Sizing/Upgrading John Deere Lawn Tractor Please Help

    id go whit a 4100 as u can add a bucket a lawn mover deck and a bush hog in the back and its 4x4 i think this would be a great tractor for u for what ya do

    TractorData.com John Deere 4100 tractor information

  5. #5
    New Member
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    John Deere 1023e

    Default Re: Help Sizing/Upgrading John Deere Lawn Tractor Please Help

    Thanks for the feedback everyone....

    I thought about a four wheeler but it can't handle ground attachments, tiller, etc...great for snow though I am sure....

    I though about X500 series but I want to make sure I have more than enough power to pull loads up and down hill and handle plowing a lot of snow. If an x5xx series can handle that, that would be great! I will have to do some more research on the x5xx series.

    I will check out the 4100 as well, I am concerned that a sub compact type will not be as agile around mowing obstacles, mulch beds, tress, etc.. I would imagine the turning radius is a bit worse on a sub compact than say an x5xx or x7xx series...I will check it out though.

    Thanks again for all the feedback thus far....any more ideas just throw em at me. I m open into checking all options thus far

  6. #6
    Elite Member Gittyup's Avatar
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    Mid Atlantic
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    Kioti CK25 Shuttle Shift, loaded tires, JD X739

    Default Re: Help Sizing/Upgrading John Deere Lawn Tractor Please Help

    ATV's are effective, but have a terrible turning radius. And can't do anything else.

    I'd go with the X728. Or even consider an older 400 series. Diesels are great and all. But, that longevity thing is a bit over valued. I have a 425 gasser. Now finishing it's 18th year (1028 hours). Expect to get many more out it. It has pulled a CMI 6' trailer with well over 1000 lbs of dirt up my steep drive. Loaded trailer isn't an issue for it.

    Also, a gasser is quieter and doesn't take near as long to warm up.

    You'll love the hydraulics on the X or 400 series. Great with a snow plow ro blower too.

    Also, consider the 4WS versions. Pointing the drive wheels in the direction of travel really helps with traction on slopes, especially if turning. Same for snowplowing. You can still steer with the rears when the blade lightens the front end. And the maneuverability lets you plow sideways in most drives if you need to.

    I do recommend weights and chains for snow.

  7. #7
    New Member
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    John Deere 1023e

    Default Re: Help Sizing/Upgrading John Deere Lawn Tractor Please Help

    Thanks Gittyup...

    How long does a diesel have to warm up? I have never owned one before and I dont want to have to wait too long before I can get going.It will be stored in an insulated garage which will not get below freezing, if that helps any..

    I have only read about advantages of diesel as everyone points out the advantages of better gas consumption, little more power, less maintenance typically because it does not have all the parts EFI models have....Nobody has really pointed out diadvantages, but having to wait for to it warm up would be a disadvantage for me....unless we are talking like waiting a minute, then not that big a deal.

    regardless, thanks for the info and I have some more good info to go off of and research..Thank you.

  8. #8
    Elite Member Gittyup's Avatar
    Join Date
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    Mid Atlantic
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    Kioti CK25 Shuttle Shift, loaded tires, JD X739

    Default Re: Help Sizing/Upgrading John Deere Lawn Tractor Please Help

    Quote Originally Posted by jdmark View Post
    Thanks Gittyup...

    How long does a diesel have to warm up? I have never owned one before and I dont want to have to wait too long before I can get going.It will be stored in an insulated garage which will not get below freezing, if that helps any..

    I have only read about advantages of diesel as everyone points out the advantages of better gas consumption, little more power, less maintenance typically because it does not have all the parts EFI models have....Nobody has really pointed out diadvantages, but having to wait for to it warm up would be a disadvantage for me....unless we are talking like waiting a minute, then not that big a deal.

    regardless, thanks for the info and I have some more good info to go off of and research..Thank you.
    It depends on how picky you are about warmups. Some just let warm up for a minute or two when doing simple tasks. Others say to wait until gauge reads in the "normal" range. If I were to let my diesel reach the "normal" range before mowing (I mow with my gasser), it would take about 8 to 10 minutes at or near idle, I would guess. On the gasser, it's more like 2 to 3 minutes.

    Gassers are quieter at idle and better suited to "bursty" tasks where the machine is turned off/on alot. But, diesels are a lot more powerful.

    I also don't really buy that gassers cost more to maintain. Almost anything for a gas engine is cheaper than for a diesel. My yearly maintenance costs on my gasser are less than $100, and I change oil every 25 hours.

    I own and like both. But, my garden tractor for everyday general mowing/carting will always be a gasser. And, for my tight quarters, I also perfer the smaller machine (not that it couldn't be a diesel here) for snow blowing. Just fits into tighert spaces than my much bigger diesel machine.

  9. #9
    Silver Member
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    Jun 2007
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    Location
    Middle of west TN
    Tractor
    JD: LX172, X740, 3520

    Default Re: Help Sizing/Upgrading John Deere Lawn Tractor Please Help

    I don't have a reccomendation as to the size machine you need, but don't discount the X7xx diesels because of warm-up time. I like to allow my X740 to warm until the temp gage needle moves into the edge of the normal range which only takes a minute or so in the summer and two to three minutes at freezing temps. Reccomended oil & filter change is at 100 hours or one year - which ever occurs first. I have close to 450 hours on my 2006 X740 and am extremely pleased with it.

    My dealer tells me "no warm-up required" on these small diesels - he says they are designed to go to full throttle as soon as they crank with no damage. He does reccomend a warm-up on CUTs and larger diesels - the bigger the engine, the longer the reccomended warm-up.

    Good luck with whatever you choose!

  10. #10
    Veteran Member Pete Judd's Avatar
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    The Thin Gravy Ranch in The wet PNW
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    Yanmar 186d, JD 314

    Default Re: Help Sizing/Upgrading John Deere Lawn Tractor Please Help

    On the diesel tractor that I have, I start and drive to the far part of the yard before I start mowing, as it takes a few min to get there, it's warm enough to engage the mower deck and speed the engine up. On the boat, I start the engine, and get it up to temp before untying the lines, as I worry about a stall, (never has happened) as a 32000 pound boat lose in the marina without power is kind of scary. Also to replace the motor on the boat would cost over 15-20 grand. I expect the one on the boat will get 50 plus thousand hours before rebuild, or replacement.

    I mow a little over 5 acres of rough lawn, and on the JD328 gas, it took about a gallon an acre or a little over 5 gallons of gas. A lot of my land is steep. On the the same HP diesel, I mow with a slightly bigger deck, and about 1.3-1.5 gallons of diesel. Get the mowing done faster, because of the 4wd. The diesel is a lot less expencive to operate, as oil changes are at about the same except the diesel tractor takes a little more oil, but the filter prices are about the same. I expect to get around 3-10 thousand hrs out of the diesel, but the engine fried on the JD gas at around 300 hrs.
    Yanmar 186D 1981
    5 foot Unknown brush hog.
    5 foot HF Finish mower.
    5 foot J-Bar back blade.
    HF Quick Hitch.
    Home made land leveler.
    Countyline Middle Buster.

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