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  1. #1
    Platinum Member
    Join Date
    Feb 2002
    Posts
    908
    Location
    SE Ohio, Meigs County
    Tractor
    Kubota L3010HST R4's, Scag Wildcat ZTR, 61

    Default dedicated mower

    I'm looking for suggestions to replace my old simplicity 17hp tractor w/ 48" mmm. I still have the L3010 and it is the workhorse. My wife mowed around the house an such with the simplicity. It bit the dust last summer and to my surprise she really misses helping out with the mowing chores. I have a price point from 2 to 3k for a decent dedicated mower. I'd like a JD unit but would have to go used to keep it within my price range ...or would you go with a new Craftsman / Toro etc.... I don't trust the belt driven cheaper units as a rule and wonder if they are now more dependable than they used to be?
    Any suggestions?

  2. #2
    Veteran Member gsganzer's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2003
    Posts
    1,334
    Location
    Denton, TX
    Tractor
    L3800 w/FEL and BH77, BX 2200 w/FEL and MMM

    Default Re: dedicated mower

    You might want to try to find a used Case 444, 446 or 448 garden tractor w/ 48" deck. I've seen a lot of them for sale in your area. They sell for about $1000 to $1500. They're hydraulic drive (not hydrostatic), real simple to operate and are built like a tank. Almost all the parts are interchangeable with the new Ingersol model. A testament to the proven design is that they haven't changed much in 30 years. Parts are readily available thru folks on one of the Yahoo user groups. They're also easy to repair. You can drop in a new Onan engine for about $1200 if you find a tractor at the right price that only needs engine work.

    I have a 1976 446 with 48" deck that I replaced with a kubota BX2200 w/ 60" deck, FEL etc so I could do additional chores. The old Case gives a better quality cut then the newer Kubota. A friend of mine already offered the Case a new home. I'll miss the little Case, it's been a great machine.

  3. #3

    Join Date
    Nov 2003
    Posts
    71
    Location
    Chattanooga, TN
    Tractor
    New Holland TC18

    Default Re: dedicated mower

    Moon,
    If you plan to buy a new 48" mower in that price range you'll probably have to go with Craftsman or an MTD-made equivalent. Most of them are fairly dependable now. The weakest portion of the mowers is usually the front axle and steering mechanism. I'd insist on a cast front axle and substantial tie rods and drag link. Most of the engines are Kohler or B&S. Both those brands are good and have their own disciples.

    If you don't mind buying used, you can get a more substantial mower for less money. The best units I have seen have been the Case 444, Ford Y16H, or Gravely. I have sold similar units in good mowing shape for around $500. Whatever you get, make sure you have a parts vendor close by.

    Buying used in that price range should get you a unit similar in quality and performance to the Simplicity you are retiring.

    I've bought several riding mowers on Ebay and have been well pleased.


  4. #4
    Veteran Member gsganzer's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2003
    Posts
    1,334
    Location
    Denton, TX
    Tractor
    L3800 w/FEL and BH77, BX 2200 w/FEL and MMM

    Default Re: dedicated mower

    Moon,
    There's a Case 444 on e-bay for sale in the Cincinnatti area. The bid was at $650. It's a newer model, judging by the paint color. It'd be a great winter project to get it ready for the spring, working on it with your wife, son or daughter. You'll all gain an attachment to the little thing. The Yahoo group is casegardentractors@yahoogroups.com if you want to learn more about them.

  5. #5
    Veteran Member
    Join Date
    Dec 2002
    Posts
    1,534
    Location
    Blair, Ne.
    Tractor
    L3130

    Default Re: dedicated mower

    That seller has a negative rating, I would not bid on anything He is selling!!

  6. #6

    Join Date
    Dec 2001
    Posts
    1,187
    Location
    Delaware
    Tractor
    JD 4110 HST w/410 Loader and 60

    Default Re: dedicated mower

    I would consider a newer, used Gravely Pro-G rider or another Simplicity just like the one you lost.

  7. #7
    Elite Member
    Join Date
    Mar 2002
    Posts
    3,647

    Default Re: dedicated mower

    Don't know where you are getting JD prices from, but if you are talking lawn tractors, my step-brother bought this unit for a lot less than the listed price. It even came with a hat and suspenders.

  8. #8
    Elite Member RalphVa's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2003
    Posts
    4,161
    Location
    Charlottesville, VA, USA
    Tractor
    JD 2025R, previously Gravely 5650 & JD 4010 & JD 1025R

    Default Re: dedicated mower

    If your wife is kinda gorilla-like, you might find her a Gravely walk behind with a sulky and 50" deck. You could probably find one for the price you mentioned, IF you can find one. New ones are a bunch more. The 5665s of about 1980-1988 vintage will handle a 50" deck. They're 12 hp, plenty of power. Why do folks need 23 hp for a mowing machine?

    Ralph

  9. #9
    Super Member
    Rest in Peace
    frank_f15's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2001
    Posts
    6,033
    Location
    BUFFALO ,NEW YORK AREA
    Tractor
    kubota b2400- R4 tires

    Default Re: dedicated mower

    i know a lot of folks degrade them but for the last 11 years i have worked the dickens out of my CRAFTSMAN 18 hp GARDEN tractor. only thing that failed other than belts and blades was the starter motor.now mind u this is the heavier duty tractor, cast front axel, grease fittings, etc. the lawn tractors do not have those things. i use it for 2 properties, cutting lawn, cleaning up yard, haluling dirt in the wagon. i can take it where using the b2400 would not be wise. itres are getting a little worn now, and the steering is a little loose. but what the heck, i have used it many many hours. not sure if the new ones will do as well but i will sure lookinto them when i need a new one. also check out the cub's seem to be a nice unit for a few $$$ than the craftsman.

  10. #10

    Join Date
    Dec 2001
    Posts
    1,187
    Location
    Delaware
    Tractor
    JD 4110 HST w/410 Loader and 60

    Default Re: dedicated mower

    Here's a link to the thread started when I found my back-up piece. Several pics included....

    Gravely 8183-T


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