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  1. #1
    New Member
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    Aug 2016
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    jacksonville FL
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    trying to decide

    Default Potential Newbie owner

    Here is my first post,

    I have been contemplating getting a tractor for a few months now. I have been trying to find answers by scouring the different threads in TBN.
    A great deal of info out there, but now comes the time to request advice...

    I am responsible for 35+acres of Pine forest. About 7 freshly planted, the rest big old tall pines with many areas of almost impenetrable undergrowth and with little evidence of good management. There are trails on the perimeter and through the property that will need to be mowed and kept open. Sandy, flat land mostly, with a few acres of wetland. I foresee the need for a tractor, bushhog, FEL and a grapple. Maybe renting a BH at a later date to cut drainage ditches. Have not thought of clearing, tilling and growing anything yet, but everything is possible.

    Being 'tractor naive', I am cautious about new Tier 4 tractors and the implications of costly maintenance at a future date. However, the thought of fixing someone else's problems in a used machine that does not come with a warranty, and also from a dealer not depreciating the final cost of used purchases much, is pushing me towards a new tractor. I am not in a hurry to rush into a purchase, just trying to narrow it down to a reasonable group.

    There are 3 kubota , JD dealers and a Yanmar dealer <1.5 hrs away, MF and KIoti further away which may take them out of reckoning?
    I thought of the Kub L2501 initially, just to remove the threat of Tier 4 problems, but TBN advice seems to suggest this will not be big enough.

    I have since then focused on a MX 4800 HST (Ok you may see I lean towards the orange). It appears to be a good tractor for my purposes, but wait, I just noticed the factory warranty on an L series e.g. L4701 is better (6 years). Why is this ? Is kubota suggesting that they anticipate the MX series may well see a harder life than the L ? and they won't give a longer powertrain warranty as the L ?

    Just to end this, I notice that a Grand L Kubota with HsT+ with all the 'advances' like auto throttle etc can be had at a good discount, maybe because they don't fly off the lot ? With all the electronics involved in addition to EGR and DPF, would the Grand L series be a poor choice, especially long term, when trade-in, selling as a used tractor raises its head ?

    Questions, questions....
    Many thanks for reading this far, I eagerly await your experienced comments.

    Thanks

  2. #2
    Veteran Member varmint's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2003
    Posts
    2,352
    Location
    Northern Maryland
    Tractor
    Kubota B8200, then a Kubota L3130 HST, now a Kubota L3400 HST

    Default Re: Potential Newbie owner

    By chance alone, I will be the first to respond. Not necessarily the most useful, though. I too am partial to orange. I don't think the Grand L Kubotas are going to give owner's trouble, and they sure have some nice features. I had an older Grand L, and didn't really appreciate it until I moved into a newer L model (the L3130 was too heavy for our uses).

    I personally have had zero issues in buying three used Kubotas... a 70's B8200 around 2001, an 80's L3130 in 2012, and a 2006 L3400 in 2014. No issues at all. All tractors were nicely maintained, responsibly used, and clean. The first two were all cleaner, and lightly modified, when I sold them for what I had in them. The buyers were happy, I was happy. I would say they hold their value.

    A tractor like our L3400 may do what you need, but I would think something larger would be better. I don't think the tier 4 emissions stuff should be a determiner in your search. For a grapple (good idea, by the way) you will want SSQA loader, and one rear remote at minimum. A third function on the loader would be handier. If Grand L pricing works for you, I doubt if you will find a nicer tractor in the size range. Although, were I shopping today, I would look at Kiotis, too.

    This will be interesting to see how it plays out!

  3. #3
    New Member
    Join Date
    Aug 2016
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    8
    Location
    jacksonville FL
    Tractor
    trying to decide

    Default Re: Potential Newbie owner

    Quote Originally Posted by varmint View Post
    By chance alone, I will be the first to respond. Not necessarily the most useful, though. I too am partial to orange. I don't think the Grand L Kubotas are going to give owner's trouble, and they sure have some nice features. I had an older Grand L, and didn't really appreciate it until I moved into a newer L model (the L3130 was too heavy for our uses).

    I personally have had zero issues in buying three used Kubotas... a 70's B8200 around 2001, an 80's L3130 in 2012, and a 2006 L3400 in 2014. No issues at all. All tractors were nicely maintained, responsibly used, and clean. The first two were all cleaner, and lightly modified, when I sold them for what I had in them. The buyers were happy, I was happy. I would say they hold their value.

    A tractor like our L3400 may do what you need, but I would think something larger would be better. I don't think the tier 4 emissions stuff should be a determiner in your search. For a grapple (good idea, by the way) you will want SSQA loader, and one rear remote at minimum. A third function on the loader would be handier. If Grand L pricing works for you, I doubt if you will find a nicer tractor in the size range. Although, were I shopping today, I would look at Kiotis, too.

    This will be interesting to see how it plays out!

    Thank you Varmint.
    The SSQA loader with a third function for the grapple I understand.
    Kindly explain what rear remotes would be useful for. I haven't worked that one out.
    Appreciate your input.

  4. #4
    Super Member jeff9366's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
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    6,269
    Location
    Fanning Springs, Gilchirst County, North-Central Florida
    Tractor
    Kubota Tractor Loader L3560 HST 37-hp / 5,400 pounds

    Default Re: Potential Newbie owner

    I am responsible for 35+acres of Pine forest. About 7 freshly planted, the rest big old tall pines with many areas of almost impenetrable undergrowth and with little evidence of good management. There are trails on the perimeter and through the property that will need to be mowed and kept open. Sandy, flat land mostly, with a few acres of wetland. I foresee the need for a tractor, bushhog, FEL and a grapple. Maybe renting a BH at a later date to cut drainage ditches.
    Have not thought of clearing, tilling and growing anything yet, but everything is possible.

    Is The Plan to eventually sell your trees for lumber? Have you looked into selling pine straw? Do you own this land?

    How fertile is your land? If you have Pines as the native trees around your land, the soil is probably not very fertile. If you have hardwood trees as the native trees around your land, the soil is more fertile.

    You will likely want to rent a tracked excavator, rather than a TLB. Excavator will be faster for trenching and can dig out tree stumps much faster. Wheeled TLB is prone to bog in or near wetlands.

    There are 3 kubota , JD dealers and a Yanmar dealer <1.5 hrs away, MF and KIoti further away which may take them out of reckoning?

    I have purchased two new Kubotas because I have an excellent Kubota dealer just six miles from my property. I have the dealer perform all maintenance work, except greasing, which I do myself. Evaluating your dealer is integral to a tractor purchase for tractor newbies. You will have a lot of questions your first two years operating, the usual new tractor first 100 hour 'punch list' adjustments and probably a few "learning" collision repairs.

    Buy Kubota KTAC insurance: KTAC Insurance Agency - Default KTAC insurance covers transport for repair.

    Do you have a truck and trailer to transport your potential tractor for repairs? Dealers have to charge for tractor transportation for repair. If you are 30 miles from the dealer, that is two round trips which is 120 miles of transportation and time.

    I have since focused on the MX 4800 HST. It appears to be a good tractor for my purposes.

    Just to end this, I notice that a Grand L Kubota with HsT+ with all the 'advances' like auto throttle etc can be had at a good discount, maybe because they don't fly off the lot ? With all the electronics involved in addition to EGR and DPF, would the Grand L series be a poor choice, especially long term, when trade-in, selling as a used tractor raises its head ?


    Most of us think the MX4800 is a fine, no frills tractor. Some of us suspicion the L4760 is based on the MX4800 chassis and engine, enhanced with a plethora of options; maybe, maybe not. Most tractor buyers have price as their second concern, after deciding on the size tractor for their needs. My county is not high income. As a result not many Grand Ls are sold round me. My dealer does not inventory Grand Ls. It is almost impossible to get first time buyers (and I include myself) to understand how important tractor WEIGHT is in the tractor equation, both to accomplish work and producing strength.

    Having operated several basic John Deere tractors in the 20-horsepower to 55-horsepower range and having owned a basic Kubota B3300SU before having purchased my Grand L in 2013, I am completely spoiled and will never buy another tractor of whatever brand without all the Grand L features, with HST+ at the top of the list, followed by the spacious operating station. I have no idea how to quantify the productivity increase the Grand L features provide....but they are there, offsetting the higher price to some extent, maybe entirely.

    (In this hot, humid, August weather the pin adjustable, telescoping Lower Links are worth their weight in GOLD, when mounting implements on the Three Point Hitch.)

    Kubota Grand Ls are much sought after in the secondary market.

    Over simplifying: Kubota dealers do not pay for "planned" tractor purchases for two years. When one Kubota model or tractor is discounted it may have been in the yard almost two years and the dealer wants it gone before payment comes due. Is the paint a tad faded?

    Tractors are theft prone. Make sure you have SECURE tractor storage on your land, preferably with humidity control.



    A commendable first post. I hope you continue to contribute.
    Last edited by jeff9366; 08-18-2016 at 01:16 PM.

  5. #5
    Veteran Member AxleHub's Avatar
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    Sep 2011
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    2,198
    Location
    Western Wisconsin
    Tractor
    Massey late 2014 model GC1715

    Default Re: Potential Newbie owner

    TractorSz, your opening post states you are "responsible" for 35 acres of mostly pine trees. That implies you don't own the land. You talked about maintaining the existing trails but you didn't seem to say what else you are actually planning to do. There was no mention of a home and yard or landscaping. You mentioned a bunch of the acres is virtually impenetrable . . but no mention if you needed to correct the situation and do some logging yourself or have someone else doing it or ???

    My question is . . Other than just maintaining a couple existing trails on this land . . what will you be using the tractor for ?

  6. #6
    Super Star Member TripleR's Avatar
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    Mar 2009
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    18,774
    Location
    Missouri
    Tractor
    Kubota M8540HDC, L5740HSTC, BX2200, BX2660, John Deere 425&1025R, Case, Massey Ferguson, Ford

    Default Re: Potential Newbie owner

    jeff9366 pretty much covered it, regions, dealer sales will differ. Our dealer handles New Holland and kubota with a mixed customer base of farmers to hobbyists urban to country dwellers and stocks a full line and stocks/sells a variety of Grand Ls. I noticed three new Grand Ls in my area the past year. The debate on reliability, longevity of the electronics etc. is never ending and the importance is going to depend on the owner. I remember dad's complaining about buying a car with no backup hand crank and people whining when a kick starter was no longer offered on motorcycles. Most of us will never never use our tractors long enough for it to be a concern, but some might, so only you can decide.

    My preference is the Grand L, but the MX is a good, heavy models, very similar to the old GL30 Series. I prefer the MX5200 up for the extendable lower link ends, an option on the MX4800, but expensive.

    Kioti, and others makes really good tractors well worth consideration depending on dealership availability and quality. My brother loves his Kioti and it is a nice tractor, but he has to had to go out of state to buy it and has a big truck and trailer if it ever needed to go back and he's a mechanic; too far too much trouble for me.

    I don't have a clue why there is a difference in warranty coverage, longer warranties may be for an incentive to buy or to ease a customer's mind; just don't know.

    You might want to check with your neighbors, my son was stationed at Mayport and I know just how your land is, much different than up here, so local input will mean more than anything I can offer as to specific needs.

    Hooking up a Three Point Implement - YouTube

    Three Point Options - YouTube

  7. #7
    Elite Member
    Parts Supplier
    MessickFarmEqu's Avatar
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    Feb 2004
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    5,365
    Location
    Lancaster County, PA

    Default Re: Potential Newbie owner

    Quote Originally Posted by jeff9366 View Post
    Over simplifying: kubota dealers do not pay for "planned" tractor purchases for two years. When one Kubota model or tractor is discounted it may have been in the yard almost two years and the dealer wants it gone before payment comes due. Is the paint a tad faded?
    FYI. While I wish this was true, its not. The base terms vary and there are programs for extensions, but a blanket 2-years has never existed.

  8. #8
    New Member
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    Aug 2016
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    Location
    jacksonville FL
    Tractor
    trying to decide

    Default Re: Potential Newbie owner

    Thank you Jeff9366,Axlehub and TripleR. Good advice.

    Let me clarify and answer some questions.
    I own the land.The pine trees will be harvested at some stage but not now. I love the peace and solitude on the land and don't want to see it clear cut.
    I would like to open out the undergrowth ( controlled burn by forestry service planned next year). Thin some trees. No home for now. Undecided on crops. Land has some hardwood trees, not very fertile I would say.
    I have a truck and will have a trailer good enough to transport a tractor before date of purchase. One of the kubota dealers said they will pick up and deliver for warranty work if necessary. 45 miles ! Thank you or reminding me that tractors can and do walk. I will not be leaving anything unattended.

    Hot humid weather is here for sure Jeff9366. I thank you for your thoughts on the telescopic links, something I didn't think appreciate.
    I also didn't know that some tractors may linger on a lot for up to 2 years. I have seen new tractors with rust on a chrome rod on the hood.
    Does this mean that it could give one some wiggle room when negotiating price on such a machine at say the end of the month ?

    Jeff9366, your comments on HST+ are significant. I was veering away from the grand L series because of what I saw as too much complexity. From what you say I can see there is an upside, especially if one plans on keeping the unit for a long time. Do you ever wish you went with a larger L ? Would you consider a 6060 too much for my needs ?

    Many thanks again

  9. #9
    Elite Member nybirdman's Avatar
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    Feb 2009
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    3,690
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    north of upstate ny
    Tractor
    Kubota L4240 HSTC,L3000DT

    Default Re: Potential Newbie owner

    I currently have a L4240HSTC and my son a L3000DT.I traded a L3130 HST for the L4240.While my son really likes his basic gear driven tractor,I full appreciate the full features of the HST+ and the air& heat.
    I have just turned 1,000 hours on my tractor with zero problems(other than tires).I have had the dealer do all fluid changes and transport.The tire problem is/was self induced not a fault of the tractor.
    If you are going to add a grapple( I have a thumb on my bucket) you will appreciate a larger ,heavier tractor.I use mine for land clearing ,snow removal and food plots.

  10. #10
    Super Member jeff9366's Avatar
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    Jan 2011
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    6,269
    Location
    Fanning Springs, Gilchirst County, North-Central Florida
    Tractor
    Kubota Tractor Loader L3560 HST 37-hp / 5,400 pounds

    Default Re: Potential Newbie owner

    Quote Originally Posted by TractorSz View Post
    Your Comments on HST+ are significant. I was veering away from the grand L series because of what I saw as too much complexity. From what you say I can see there is an upside, especially if one plans on keeping the unit for a long time.

    Do you ever wish you went with a larger L ? Would you consider a 6060 too much for my needs ?
    About 60% of my tractor time is non-commercial in woods. For my conditions the width and weight of the L3560 is just right. Had I 35 acres, I would buy a bit larger/heavier.

    I would not say the L6060 would be too much. However, keeping everything simple is an objective in every purchase I make. The L50/54/6060 are turbocharged. The L40/4760 are normally aspirated on the same chassis as L50/54/6060. Unless you need to power a big Bush Hog (or another PTO powered implement needing a lot of PTO horsepower) or need the dual Category I/II Three Point Hitch on the turbo models, either the L4060 or L4760 should fully meet your needs, be maneuverable in the woods and amply power a Rotary Cutter/Bush Hog slightly narrower than your 67" to 76" outside-to-outside tire width. (R1 ag tires are narrower than R4 industrial tires.)

    (If you acquire a Bush Hog wider than tire width for work in the woods, it will jam between close spaced trees the tractor passes between. Reversing a 'Hog in the woods can be objectionable.)

    ((If you were at 8,500 feet altitude in Colorado, rather than sea level Jacksonville, I would recommend the turbo models over the normally aspirated models.))


    I am age 69. It is prudent to plan high energy activities in hot, humid weather, like swapping 800 pound tractor implements, to be as strain free as possible at this age. And I plan to tractor until age 80.
    Last edited by jeff9366; 08-18-2016 at 01:22 PM.
    The word tractor was taken from Medieval Latin, being the agent noun of trahere, "to pull, draw".




    Kubota B3300SU; no longer with me but still pulling in the community.

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