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  1. #1

    Default Advice on Buying a John Deere Tractor

    I am looking for advice on which John Deere small tractor and attachments to buy. I am completely inexperienced, and have never actually driven a tractor (I commute 50 miles to an office in DC each day). We are just completing a home on a mountain side in Northern Virginia (6 acres). There will be a gravel drive of around 800 yards, with a gentle grade generally but with one fairly step hill (a 40 degree grade). Overall the site has numerous grades, some from 30 to 40 degrees. The site is partly wooded, and there will be both a lawn around the residence, but also field grass in other areas; probably about 4 acres of mowing altogether. It doesn’t snow all winter in Northern Virginia, but there are regular storms with sometime accumulations in feet rather than inches.

    I am thinking of a John Deere 2305 or 2520, with a front end loader, mower and maybe a blade or snow blower. Which of these models would be better on hilly ground with steep grades. Should I buy a mid-mount-mower, or one on the back. Do I need both a mower and a cutter, or will the mower work for both lawn and field applications. Should I consider a snow thrower or blower, or will the front-end-loader work to clear a long gravel drive. Given my complete tractor naiveté, any recommendations would be greatly appreciated.

    Frank48

  2. #2
    Elite Member rockyridgefarm's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2002
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    4,455
    Location
    Road 4310
    Tractor
    Deere 4310 HST MFWD

    Default Re: Advice on Buying a John Deere Tractor

    Here are a couple of givens. Size. Most folks want to go small, and often think that the machine is too big. But within a short time we grow into them and even big ones seem small. So even a 3720 is probably not too big. I say that because you can set the wheels out wider for a more stable stance. I am not saying that you need to go that way, but just to open you thinking in that direction.

    A mid mower is great for finish cutting, but won't hold up to field cutting. But you can get a used beat up rotary cutter for that, so I'd suggest getting the finish cutter that you are most comfortable with. Rear and mid cutters each have advantages and disadvantages.

    As to what you reallly need, a good dealer is your best bet. Maybe they can get you a machine to demo at your place. I would think that would be a huge help.

    Another big help is spelled jcmseven, a great guy who posts here, and almost neighbor of yours. I'll point outt this thread to him, maybe he'll chime in with real advice!!!!

  3. #3
    Platinum Member
    Join Date
    Jun 2004
    Posts
    744
    Tractor
    John Deere 3320

    Default Re: Advice on Buying a John Deere Tractor

    Yep John even lives in exactly the same situation and on grade! I am thinking a turbo option might be up for consideration if there are elevation factors. I am a fan of the 3X20 series and am thinking 3520 for you maybe?

  4. #4
    Super Star Member
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    Aug 2001
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    12,101
    Location
    Upper Midwest USA
    Tractor
    JD 4300, JD X485 JD 4x2 Gator, JD 425, JD455

    Default Re: Advice on Buying a John Deere Tractor

    Here is a thread about adapting a snow plow for your tractor, and the size is similar to the Deere 3520 mentioned in a previous post.
    http://www.tractorbynet.com/forumfil...1-plowpic1.JPG

  5. #5
    Gold Member
    Join Date
    Aug 2004
    Posts
    380
    Location
    WA
    Tractor
    JD 3320

    Default Re: Advice on Buying a John Deere Tractor

    I agree with the go bigger statement- I was new to tractors and was going to purchase a 2210 and ended up with a 3320. I could actually easily be using a larger 4000 series tractor at this point, but the 3320 does everything I need it to do. I have a few steep places, and most traditional tractors aren't great on steep slopes. If you need a machine for hills- please take a look at the Power Trac forum and check out Power Trac

  6. #6
    Veteran Member
    Join Date
    Dec 2004
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    2,273
    Location
    western NC
    Tractor
    JD 2320; 4520

    Default Re: Advice on Buying a John Deere Tractor

    Frank,

    Welcome to the forum. There is a lot of good info here. I would like to start by thanking both Mikes for their nice comments. With regard to your tractor choice between the 2305 and the 2520, here are my thoughts: first it would be helpful to know your budget. Second, I would eliminate the 2305 from your list. It is a great machine, but from the sound of things, your property needs will exceed its ability to perform fast. The 2520 is a very nice machine and should handle your hills fine. It has a lot of power for its weight and is very stable on hills due to its longish wheelbase. Several Christmas tree farmers in our area use them (or the 4115 which it replaced) to tend their farms, and one I can think of in particular works on hillsides that make me cringe. He has yet to roll the machine. For a little more money you could step up to the 3000 series, which is a lot more tractor for not a whole lot more money. The 3520 and 3720 are the turbo models and would handle your hills with ease. The 3120 and 3320 are excellent machines, but are heavy and would not handle hillwork quite as well due to power/weight ratio. I would not strongly consider the 4000 in your case, as they lack a little of the manuverability that it sounds like you need. With regard to mowing, I am a fan of RFM's. They cut as well as belly mounts, and are easy to put on an take off. This is not a real issue with the 2520 but is with the mid frames. That said B.Mike has a belly mount on his 3320 which is really nice. For hills though, it cuts the ground clearance a bit. I do not have a rotary cutter, but they are nice. I would wait on that or hire out first to make sure you really need one before buying. A lot of my neighbors bought such things with their tractors first thing, and they collect some dust and take up space in their sheds/garages. For snow removal the boom blade that one can get with a 3000 series is really nice and mounts in a snap. It would do fine for high volume plowing. I would not get a snow blower unless you just want one. My suggestion: go to your JD dealer and try both the 2520 and the 3000 series and see which feel more comfortable on. Then review your budget and decide. Living in a similar topography, I would suggest comparing the following:

    2520, 200cx loader, 54" front blade, 62 on ramp mower and (if you wish) an LX4 cutter. Also consider a 48,54 or 60" Box blade. They are cheap and really handy for grading and driveway maintenence.

    OR a 3520 or 3720 with third SCV, 300cx loader, 72" boom blade with hydraulic angling, 60" box blade, and a 60 or 72" Frontier or equivalent RFM

    I think these would be your two best options in my mind, but of course others might have a different view and there are many with great opinions that have helped me a lot. If it means anything, I have had a 595, 4310, 3720, 4520 and am waiting on my second 3720 tractor for my property which is similar to yours. I have found it fits my needs the best. Good luck.

    John M

  7. #7
    Elite Member
    Join Date
    Aug 2004
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    3,196
    Location
    Red Oak, Texas
    Tractor
    JD 5525 and 5093e Kubota SVL75

    Default Re: Advice on Buying a John Deere Tractor

    Don't go smaller than the 2520 and really consider a 3x20.

    D.

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