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  1. #1

    Default Stanley lawn tractor

    The local Walmart has a Stanley 22 HP (Tecumseh)/52" mowing deck lawn tractor clearance priced at $1699. I understand that this is a Stanley-branded Murray-built product (although Murray has nothing of this size in its line). The price as well as the size of the mowing deck were major attractions. I'm looking to mow 3.5 very flat, open acres and shovel a little snow from a driveway. I have no brand biases (read prior experience purchasing or owning a lawn tractor). Value for the dollar is more important to me than getting "the best...regardless of cost" but I don't want to end up "throwing good money after bad" because this product isn't up to the task. I'm not ready to drop $12-14,000 on a sub-compact/compact diesel tractor and figure that I could always hold on to the lawn tractor for mowing the yard around the house if I should someday make the jump up. Others have suggested that 3.5 acres is too much lawn for a lawn tractor and discouraged me from counting on/using a lawn tractor for snow removal (I'm talking about with a 46" blade here) because the frame isn't built for such (although Stanley/Murray sells the blade, tire chains and wheel weights for this purpose I presume). Anyones informed opinion(s)/thought(s) would be appreciated. Be gentle, I'm just a suburbanite who fell for a farmhouse and the thought of country livin', and recognized that my 22" Craftsman pushmower wouldn't cut it! I freaked the first time I stopped at a farm implement dealer and learned the price of those "cute little compact tractors." Believe me, my gonads ache for one but my wallet/wife demand I be practical. I would be open to practical reasons to skip the lawn tractor and go directly to the sub-compact/compact tractor. I could see myself, in the future, putting in a fence and getting into some small scale gardening and limited landscaping (I'm not talking major earth moving or trenching) but could probably hire out the fence work or buy/rent a gasoline-powered posthole digger and/or walk-behind garden tiller and still come out, financially anyway, way ahead (except, perhaps, my labor time - but I look upon that as "cheap therapy" for my "real job"). Because I'm not mechanically inclined, a used compact tractor scares me (both in terms of evaluating the soundness of one as well as maintaining it without reliable dealer support, parts, etc). Thanks in advance.



  2. #2

    Join Date
    Dec 2000
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    184
    Location
    Gig Harbor, WA.
    Tractor
    JD 4300HST 4x4

    Default Re: Stanley lawn tractor

    TNBVoyeur
    I've had several peices of equipment with tecumseh engines and I hope some one shoots me if I ever buy anything else powered by tecumseh. They are pieces of junk, very unreliable and very expensive to fix(which you'll have to). Do your self a favor and don't buy anything with a tecumseh engine.

    Jerry

  3. #3
    Platinum Member
    Join Date
    Oct 2000
    Posts
    551
    Location
    Illinois
    Tractor
    Ventrac 4500

    Default Re: Stanley lawn tractor

    A lawn tractor is just that--it is intended for more typical suburban lawns in the fraction of an acre category. With 3.5 acres in the country you are into the category of at least a serious lawn and garden tractor such as a JD 425, 445, 455, etc. No doubt the tractor you are looking at would work for a while, but it is likely you would be facing major problems in a year or so. I would look at used models of a large garden tractor or smaller compact tractor given your stated needs with regard to $.


  4. #4
    Super Star Member Egon's Avatar
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    Aug 2001
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    17,706
    Location
    Nova Scotia, Canada

    Default Re: Stanley lawn tractor

    Lawn Tractors:
    For 20 years I had a sears 16 HP. lawn tractor with 4 ft mower, rotatiller and snowblower. It was used to maintain 3 acres of land, mow about 2 acres. It had a twin cylinder onan engine.
    Yes it did the job. My only problem was the separate 8 Hp. briggs and stratton engine on the tiller. It mowed well and towed a trailer easily. It cost $1700 new and was sold for $650 after 20 years.
    Egon


  5. #5
    Epic Contributor Bird's Avatar
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    Mar 2000
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    37,533
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    Texas

    Default Re: Stanley lawn tractor

    Voyeur, it seems to me that there are so many Tecumseh engines on the market right now that they must be doing something right, but I'm like Jerry. I've only owned one, and that was so long ago ('69) that the ones now are probably nothing like the piece of junk I had, but that one definitely broke me of even considering anything with a Tecumseh. (Of course, the lemon Ford I got in '66 kept me from buying any Ford products for 25 years, too, and now both our car and pickup are Fords).[img]/w3tcompact/icons/laugh.gif[/img]

    However, I do agree with the other guys. I think for your purposes you'd regret buying that Stanley, but with careful use, good maintenance, etc. who knows? You might like it.


  6. #6
    Super Star Member Thomas's Avatar
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    Apr 2000
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    12,211
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    Lebanon,NH.
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    Kubota L2800HST w/Frontloader & CC LTX1046

    Default Re: Stanley lawn tractor

    ahhhh I hope your freezer or refrigerator doen't have a tecumseh compressor,for the company strong in that area also.

    Thomas..NH [img]/w3tcompact/icons/wink.gif[/img]

  7. #7

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

    Default Re: Stanley lawn tractor

    V-
    Went through the same scenario 2 1/2 years ago. Moved to the country upon 7 acres, four of which are hearty fescue that I cut every four to five days in the peak growing season. I have a 250' two-lane driveway that I have to clear eight or ten times a year. After all of my deliberation and after running the life breath out of a Lowe's 12 hp 42" mower, I dove in for a JD 445 with a few attachments, including a 60" deck, 54" hydro front blade, rear scoop, and PTO broadcaster. The whole set up did cost about as much as a 4100 HST with a 60" deck, but the 445 runs a 60" deck too and I got all thgose attachments. I don't regret it, but eleven to twelve grand is a lot of money.

    You should watch the papers and this board very carefully this spring for moderately used JD 425, 445, and 455s. JD is coming out with a 500 series and all of the die-hard 400 series owners are just itching to plant their personal rear attachments in a new yellow seat. Also, an older but solid JD 400 or 430 would likely give you many years of good service for less than six grand and JD will always, always, always have the parts and service you need, no matter what the age of the machine is.

    Another quick comment: It will be very desireable to have a water-cooled, pressurized oil system engine in a machine that will spend those many hours on your turf. Many air colled engines can cut it too, but make sure your are looking at a tried and true engine design, and change the oil as often as you can afford to.

    Good luck!

    Pete

  8. #8

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

    Default Re: Stanley lawn tractor

    TBN V.:

    Another concern might be resale value. Whenever you finish off that Stanley tractor, it will be truely finished. You might get a couple hundred if it is garage kept and still running. Deeres typically hold their value the best of all GTs and compact utilities, and especially in the high-end garden tractor area. Kubotas and Cubs do okay, but also end up being almost completely depreciated with normal use. There is kind of a cult for JD restoration and resale. It exists primarily because you can walk into any Deere dealer and find or order parts for your 196X-200X GT. I know you are a bit leary of used, so I can only recommend Deere if you go that route. You would likely develop a trusting relationship with your nearest Deere dealer. Many have been in business for twenty to fifty years and know that their good local reputations keep them in business. Wal-mart on the other hand, ....?

    Here is a link or two to show you just how big that cult is:

    http://groups.yahoo.com/group/DeereGTClassifieds/

    http://clubs.yahoo.com/clubs/johndeeregardentractorclub

    Pete

  9. #9

    Default Re: Stanley lawn tractor

    Hi Pete,

    What's the word out there among the JD GT owners and the BX clone rumors?

    It sounds like you're in a perfect position for this feedback...[img]/w3tcompact/icons/smile.gif[/img]




  10. #10

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

    Default Re: Stanley lawn tractor

    JD will release its 5XX series this spring with the top model offering 4WD and a 25 hp diesel. Optional Cat 1 3-Point, 540 PTO, and proprietary limited use FEL. It does further blur the lines between high-end GT and compact utility. It appears to me that Deere's purpose is to replace the 400 series with the 500 series and replace the 4000 series with the 4X10 series. I'm sure they have kubota's BX in their minds but you would be hard pressed to get a Deere marketing person or a die-hard Deere user to say that the 500's are Kubota clones.

    It is a perennial debate about the two lines, and it will always fall along lines of brand loyalty. I carefully compared the BX and 400 series and found the BX to offer a few "higher" specs and a good bundled package. I went with the Deere because it was a good fit for my needs, but most of all, the dealer's location and reputation were top notch.

    There is a rumor, beyond the facts that I just mentioned, that Deere has another sub-compact utility in prototype that is directly targeted at the BX . I wouldn't be surprised because it seems that these two comapanies are basing success (to company shareholders) on market share these days. Deere went to the lower-end, urban market segment last year with the gimmicky SST, and failed miserably. It's logical they will try to target the BMW-driving estate crowd the way Kubota has done for a couple of years. This is a change for Deere in the sense that they have always positioned their products on utility, reliability, and service. Maybe they'll call the "clone" something like the "John Deere Prestige" line???

    Pete

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