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  1. #1
    New Member
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    Sep 2003
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    23
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    Connecticut
    Tractor
    PT 1460, Ventrac 4200, Toro dingo TX425. Bobcat 2200 diesel

    Default Steiner 430 vs Ventrav 4000 series

    I am seriously considering buying one of these machines and would love any and all feedback comparing them. I am quite familiar with the "specs" of each and the technical differences, but would love to have input from those who know the real world practical differences. Please share your experiences and bias.
    Thanks

  2. #2
    Gold Member
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    Jul 2003
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    Western NY

    Default Re: Steiner 430 vs Ventrav 4000 series

    I demoed a Steiner 420 (predesessor of the 430) a few years back and was impressed with everything about the machine. At that time, there were two local dealers, both about 30-40 miles away.

    I stopped in at the first dealer and was told that there was only one person who knew anything about them, and that you had to make an appointment just to talk with him about the possiblity of a demo.

    Not being overjoyed with this first experience, I called the other dealer. He was the one who suggested, actually insisted, I demo one. I was thinking just a 60" mower would be great, but he said he would bring along a slip scoop too, just in case. He brought the machine out on a Friday, and told me he'd be back on Monday to collect it. I felt really bad that after working numbers a few different ways with the CFO, we decided we just couldn't do it (a decision I keep kicking myself for).

    Since then, one (the one I dealt with for the demo) switched to Ventrac. When I asked why, he said that when the Steiner family sold the business to Textron, many policies and practices that pertained to dealing with customers were changed for the worse - he didn't go into detail. Apparently, the Steiner family didn't like these changes either, hence their starting the Ventrac line as competition.

    My choice, without a doubt, would be the Ventrac. Not because I feel it a better machine, but because I feel the dealer is better.

  3. #3
    Super Member Bob_Skurka's Avatar
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    Jul 2003
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    7,503

    Default Re: Steiner 430 vs Ventrav 4000 series

    I recently purchased a Ventrac 3000. I didn't need another CUT so I didn't consider the 4000 or 4100. I looked at the Steiners and figured the 415 was the closest to the Ventrac 3000 in terms of capabilities. Both are fine machines, both are smaller than what you are looking at. But in my mind the Ventrac dealer could not be beat. He was a Steiner dealer and switched. He hauled the Ventrac to my house for a demo, it is a 6 hour drive from his store to my door! I was under no pressure and no obligation to buy. I bought the slip scoop and have used it several times, it is far less capable than the FEL on the larger tractors, but it has taken stone & mulch into areas of my property that no larger tractor dare venture into. I love the little machine. I don't know if this is any help to you, but I think both machines are more capable than most tractor owners would ever believe.

  4. #4
    Elite Member
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    MessickFarmEqu's Avatar
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    Feb 2004
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    5,180
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    Lancaster County, PA

    Default Re: Steiner 430 vs Ventrav 4000 series

    They are very simular tractors. Demo each and decide what you like better. The Ventrac does tend to be more expensive.

  5. #5
    Platinum Member
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    Oct 2000
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    609
    Location
    Illinois
    Tractor
    Ventrac 4500

    Default Re: Steiner 430 vs Ventrav 4000 series

    RAS,

    I have owned 2 Steiner 420s and a 430 and now own a Ventrac 4200. As others have noted, both brands of tractors were actually designed by the same people--the Steiner brothers--so they are similar in concept. I would say the Ventrac is a refinement of what they learned over the years with their original tractors. Two big items that are clearly superior on the VT in my opinion are: (1) control layout and placement for the right hand and optional foot, and (2) the integrated weight transfer system.

    Another point to mention is that Venture Products is actively designing and improving their products, but for the most part, the Steiner products are the same as they have been for many years with only incremental tweaks. Any engineering work that is done on them is now in the hands of an entirely new shop (Jacobsen at Johnson Creek, WI). This is not to say that new models, improvements, and new attachments won't come out, but just that they haven't so far.

    As far as the prices are concerned, if you compare LIST prices on units that are comparably equipped, I find there is very little difference. Steiner publishes theirs on their website, but you will have to get them directly from a Ventrac dealer.

    I just returned from the Lawn and Garden EXPO in Louisville this past weekend. A photo of a digging demo at the Ventrac outdoor site is attached. They were drawing a lot of attention. A second photo follows in the reply.

    JackIL
    Attached Images Attached Images

  6. #6
    Platinum Member
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    Oct 2000
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    609
    Location
    Illinois
    Tractor
    Ventrac 4500

    Default Re: Steiner 430 vs Ventrav 4000 series

    Another shot of the digging demo.

    JackIL
    Attached Images Attached Images

  7. #7
    Gold Member BKBrown's Avatar
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    Sep 2004
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    481
    Location
    Madison, VA
    Tractor
    Ventrac 4231 Gas

    Default Re: Steiner 430 vs Ventrav 4000 series

    I told you I was scheduled for a Demo on the Ventrac 4200 -- A dealer and a Ventrac Rep. came out with 2 4200 machines (they had just been to UVA Campus -- They started with the single wheel unit on the back side of my pond dam (there is a spring there and we have had a great deal of rain from the huricanes) It was very overgrown and he couldn't see where the wet started - I had never seen it wet as high as he started - He got the single wheel unit stuck - got it out - and used the dual wheel unit --- I'm very impressed The dam is 30+ degrees and he drove all over the back side with the tough cut mower. It took down everything some over 1" with ease. The unit slid sideways a few times, but showed no sign of being unstable. The dealer is going to bring the unit back for me to try out on other parts of my property. It was getting late when they finished the dam. I am just about sold. I'll let you know.

  8. #8
    Super Member SPIKER's Avatar
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    Ohio, Jeromesville, Ashland County
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    Jinma 284

    Default Re: Steiner 430 vs Ventrav 4000 series

    What others have said is pretty much what I was told @ the VENTRAC factory when I was there quoting and checking out soem industrial equipment they needed back 2 yrs ago. anyhow the people who started stiner sold out and while a no-compitision stuff was signed they (new owners) changed so much in the way the STINERS were made and where parts came from they (OLD stiner owners & starters) ended up opening up VENTRAC. used much of the same design set ups but changed it enough to make better all the needed changes that they didn't do in the past. also they hired back many of the workers who were either fired, laid off or treated like $#!^ by the NEW stiner owners. anyhow what you are seeing above is also part of it about dealers being able to test stuff better under the ventrac names vs the old stiner names... anyhow I haven't used either but there are quite a few OLD stiners floating around here (wayne county, orville ohio) is their HOME of operations for both companies orriginally. and VENTRAC still going strong there...


    Markm [img]/forums/images/graemlins/cool.gif[/img]

  9. #9
    Gold Member BKBrown's Avatar
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    481
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    Madison, VA
    Tractor
    Ventrac 4231 Gas

    Default Re: Steiner 430 vs Ventrav 4000 series

    I'm told the Steiner 48" mower deck will fit the Ventrac 4200 -- does anyone know for sure and do other Steiner attachmnets fit the Ventrac? <font color="blue"> </font>

  10. #10
    Platinum Member
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    Illinois
    Tractor
    Ventrac 4500

    Default Re: Steiner 430 vs Ventrav 4000 series

    Many of the Steiner and Ventrac attachments are usable on the opposite brand. The front hitch dimensions are the same, but the PTO drive belts are different from one brand to another. It takes a bit of trial and error to determine the right one, but after that there is no problem. On some attachments there may be clearance problems when lifting to maximum height on the Ventrac since it has a greater range of motion than the Steiner.

    JackIL

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