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  1. #1
    Silver Member
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    Mar 2008
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    Default Hand Lift or Foot Lift?

    I currently own a LX176 and a LX277 and over the past 18 years have gotten to where I have an almost instinctive feel for using the hand lift when mowing over obstructions in the yard. One day I will be in the market for a newer JD lawn tractor and it seems the same feature range as my present mowers now have foot lift controls. Do they have the same locking and floating characteristics as the hand lift designs? Do folks like the foot lift better than the hand lift? Am interested in hearing your thoughts.
    Thanks
    Bill in NC

  2. #2
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    Default Re: Hand Lift or Foot Lift?

    I see 38 views but no comments. Maybe will ask the question a different way:
    How many of you have had earlier model Deere mowers with hand lifts and now have X300 or X500 series with foot lifts? Do you like your foot lift? Did it take you long to get as comfortable with it as you were with the hand lift?

  3. #3
    Silver Member
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    Mar 2008
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    Default Re: Hand Lift or Foot Lift?

    I can "feather" the hand lift when passing over an obstruction (rock outcropping) so as to clear while cutting the grass above the outcropping and then immediately drop the deck back to its normal setting. Do you find you can "feather" the foot lift in a similar fashion or it harder to reliably make small moves. The hand lift has a wide range of movement so small height changes on the fly can be reliably implemented. I have not mowed with a foot lift Deere lawn mower but in looking at the mowers at the dealership, I wonder if the foot lift has the same amount of "range" when one is rocking along full bore in their yard and want to just barely scoot over the rocks or landscaping stuff that is just a wee bit too high for the normal deck setting.
    Like they said from the laundry detergent commercial from the 1960s, "Inquiring minds want to know".

  4. #4
    Gold Member XSKIER's Avatar
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    Apr 2011
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    450
    Location
    Fenton, MI
    Tractor
    '11 Deere 1026R

    Default

    Ok I'll bite. The hydraulic lift of the X310, X360, X530, X540, and all X700s is better. Either kind of manual lift would be considered "roughing it".

  5. #5
    Silver Member
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    Mar 2008
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    224

    Default Re: Hand Lift or Foot Lift?

    How quick is the hydraulic lift in raising up and down the deck? In the space of five feet at 3/4 speed can you bump it up and back down? This is something I do mowing my lawn (we have lots of rocks in my county). Hydraulic systems on big tractors can move with rapid speed, but they are also pumping at a high GPM. I'd rather not have a hydraulic system as I want to keep the lawn mower as simple as possible, keep the soil compaction loading down and keep the $$ down, too. I'm looking at a used GX255 with low hours and it would be sweet to have a differential lock for two places in my yard, but do not want the additional complexity of hydraulics or liquid cooling.

    Thanks for your response.
    Bill in NC

  6. #6
    Silver Member Eric Barney's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
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    148
    Location
    Palm Beach Gardens FL
    Tractor
    JD X540

    Default Re: Hand Lift or Foot Lift?

    The hydraulic lift is fairly quick on my X540. Maybe just a slight delay from when I pull the control button. I also love the liquid engine. I see no issues from either system with reliablity. The engine, and power steering / hydraulic lift are great imo.

  7. #7
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    Mar 2008
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    224

    Default Re: Hand Lift or Foot Lift?

    Eric, thanks for sharing your experience. I may go the hydraulic/liquid cooled route if a GX345 pops up on the local Craigslist this fall.

    In the meantime, are there any X500 owners out there that formerly owned an LX or GT series with the hand lift who can share your views regarding the foot lift versus hand lift?

    Bill in NC

  8. #8
    Silver Member Eric Barney's Avatar
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    Apr 2012
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    148
    Location
    Palm Beach Gardens FL
    Tractor
    JD X540

    Default Re: Hand Lift or Foot Lift?

    Quote Originally Posted by wstr75 View Post
    Eric, thanks for sharing your experience. I may go the hydraulic/liquid cooled route if a GX345 pops up on the local Craigslist this fall.

    In the meantime, are there any X500 owners out there that formerly owned an LX or GT series with the hand lift who can share your views regarding the foot lift versus hand lift?

    Bill in NC
    Funny you should ask that.... My previous tractor: an LX188 with hand lift. I just never used the lever while mowing. I have the deck height almost all the way up (3-1/2") and very few rocks to deal with. My grass is much happier with the taller cut height.

  9. #9
    Silver Member
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
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    154
    Location
    N.E Tennessee
    Tractor
    Deere 2320, Bobcat 322 mini-ex, Bobcat 763 skidsteer

    Default Re: Hand Lift or Foot Lift?

    I have never used a foot lift either- and usually don't move my hand lift. One gate i go through has a stone ridge under it to keep the dogs from digging - have to lift up goingh through it or the blade hits. Other than that, I usually don't see stuff in time to lift over it, just evasive turn....

    I do have a lx173 and an lx178 same frame but the 8 is the watercooled kawasaki twin motor hydro vs the 3's single kohler gear trans. The watercooled engine is head and shoulders smoother and more powerful than the sigle air cooled engine.

    I have enough trouble adjusting from one machine to another for control location without adding lift controls.....

  10. #10
    Silver Member
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    Mar 2008
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    Default Re: Hand Lift or Foot Lift?

    I got the answers from My Tractor forum. The folks responding there said the foot lift is just as easy/efficient to deal with as the hand lift. The overall opinion of folks who had owned both was a slight preference to the foot lift. Regarding hydraulic lift, they said there is a slight time lag you have to mentally allow for when lifting the deck over obstructions while mowing. Several also said that it took them a while to become instinctive as to which direction to move the hydraulic lever for up and down.

    Thank you for your responses.
    Bill in NC

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