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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Sep 2012
    Burke, VA
    Scag Tiger Cat, 61", Craftsman LT1000

    Default HST or manual shift on B series?

    I'm looking for opinions/pluses/minuses on the manual shift vs HST on the B series tractors. Anyone had both (on any series) and have direct comparison? I have 2.5 acres, mostly grass and flat. Uses will be mostly mowing and some yard/dirt work.

  2. #2
    Elite Member
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Northern, IL
    Branson 2400H

    Default Re: HST or manual shift on B series?

    HST is great for frequent speed and direction of movement changes like FEL work.

    Gear is better for constant speed heavy pulling ground engagement type work like chisel plowing.

    I suspect that if you do a search on this you will have more reading and opinions than you carre to look at.
    Artificial Intelligence will never overcome natural stupidity.

    Branson 2400H MMM & FEL

    JD 112

    BX1850 gone but not forgotten

  3. #3
    Super Member Gary Fowler's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Bismarck Arkansas
    2009 Kubota RTV 900, 2009 Kubota B26 TLB & 2010 model LS P7010

    Default Re: HST or manual shift on B series?

    I have a gear drive 70 HP tractor and a hydrastatic drive B26 kubota. The B26 is so much quicker than the gear drive in loader work and also much easier to inch forward or backward when needing to. For 2.5 acres, I wouldnt look at anything but hydro drive for mowing or any other task. If you had to mow 20-40 acres a gear drive would be preferable to holding down the hydro pedal for hours. Some of the higher end tractors with lots of bells and whistles have a cruise control on them, but I have never used one so I cant say anything about their operation.
    2010 LS P-7010C 20F/20R gear tractor & FEL, 2009 Kubota B 26 TLB, RTV 900 Kubota,17 foot Lund boat with 70HP motor, 2012-20 ft 12k GVW trailer, 2011- 52" Craftsman ZTR mower, 2013 Ferris Zero Turn, 3 weed whackers, pressure washer, leaf blowers, 7 foot bush hog, 8 foot landscape rake , 8 foot 3 PH disc, 2 row cultivator, 350 amp Miller AC/DC welding machine and all the tools needed to keep them all repaired and running.

  4. #4
    Platinum Member bikerdib's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2010
    Kubota B3300SU

    Default Re: HST or manual shift on B series?

    My vote, HST. FEL work and mowing is done much quicker with HST because there is less time spent during the change of direction and making speed change while underway is much easier. Take mowing for example, you are in short grass moving quickly but approching tall grass; you simple back off the pedal to slow down. With gear you would have to manually shift gears requiring a stop. Then when you want to speed back up, another gear shift. On larger tractors doing mainly heavy pulling I think I'd prefer gears but on the B you can't beat HST. I recently replaced my gear drive JD mower with a HST JD and I now wonder why it took me so long to do so.
    My toys: '09 BMW R1200GSA
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    '83 Suzi 125 three wheeler ~ '13 Ram 3500 4X4 Cummins SRW
    '09 BMW 535i ~ '10 Kubota B3300SU
    '12 John Deere X320

  5. #5
    Gold Member wcampbell47's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2009
    Texas Coast
    Kubota 7510 and B3200

    Default Re: HST or manual shift on B series?

    I have both in the B series. I bought a B7510 several years ago with gear. 3 forward with H & L range. Great little tractor. Pro - you can set your speed by RPM and gear selection. Con - reversing direction with the clutch means you disengage the PTO. You have to time your shift just right or there can be a lot of gear grinding.

    About this time last year I bought a B3200 with HST. Far superior for mowing a lawn with back and forth motion. PTO stays engaged as you change from forward to reverse. The B3200 comes standard with 'cruise control' which is a lever that can be engaged to maintain a constant speed. A B3300 is basically the same tractor without a mid PTO.

    I prefer a mid mount mower as opposed to a tow behind finish mower. With the FEL detached you have a lawn tractor on steroids. Con - more difficult to mount and dismount the mower.
    Caution: Some of my posts may be politically incorrect.
    Kubota B7510 & B3200

  6. #6
    Super Member JOHNTHOMAS's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2008
    Somerset, Ky
    currently own F3080 F2680e BX25D Z122r RTV1140

    Default Re: HST or manual shift on B series?

    I've bought 13 Kubotas in 10 years. Number 12 was a geared B2320 which mostly brought about number 13, to get rid of number 12 after about 10 hours of use......... my first and last geared kubota.
    I've gotten used to letting off the pedal and my tractor stopping which an HST does but a geared doesn't. I've gotten used to controlling my forward speed, stopping and reversing and reversing speed with my foot while keeping my hands on the steering wheel and FEL lever for those with FEL.
    About the only thing that I have heard from people preferring a geared over HST is the lose of some HP with HST. Guess I've never had to little HP that a fraction less of HP would have made any difference to me. Most Kubotas I've owned have had more HP than the tires/traction could handle soooo the lose of HP to HST vs geared ............well, for me that has never been any thing to consider. HST costs a few dollars more and I have found out through my experience that the HST is well worth the difference over the cheaper geared units. I think it is usually more for the cheaper than the usability factor that people go geared vs HST. There are also those that believe the "the old ways/stuff iis better than the new ways/stuff" fable. In my opinion most new stuff is better than the old stuff and that's why the old stuff is gone and people are buying the new stuff.
    Just my experience/opinion which may be of no value but I believe it and am sticking to my story.
    2014 BX25D, 2008 F2680e 2WD 72" side Discharge Deck, 2012 F3080 4WD 72" rear discharge deck,2015 Z122r, 2010/2009 RTV1140CPX , RatchetRake, Forks, .. Drawbar and Horse Drawn disk 13 Toyota Tacoma Double Cab, 15 Subaru Outback. 1998 SLK230, 2009 Subaru Impreza Sport

  7. #7
    Veteran Member bandit67's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2004
    Foothills, Colorado
    B3000 HSDCC

    Default Re: HST or manual shift on B series?

    Quote Originally Posted by iptman View Post
    Uses will be mostly mowing and some yard/dirt work.
    My very first compact machines back in the 80s & 90s were geared, and used for mowing, snow removal, FEL work, etc. Even back then, I had complaints with the extra time spent changing gears between forward & reverse, wishing direction changes could be accomplished quicker. HST has made tractor work so much more efficient, whether mowing, FEL work, snow removal, the list goes on.

    On machines the size of the B series, you are obviously not dealing with major ground engaging work such as plowing (otherwise you'd be looking at much bigger machines), so I'd highly recommend going with the HST. You will NOT be dissapointed in the overall work efficiency vs. a geared tractor.
    2012 Kubota B3000, block heater, filled rears, rear wheel spacers, fender extensions, LA403 w/60" bucket, BH77 w/12" bucket & mechanical thumb, Kubota pin-type QA, Kubota forks, Caroni TM1600 flail, Buhler Allied YC6010 3pt blower, Meyer 72" FEL mounted plow, Midwest LR2072 rake

    Previous machines:

    2008 Kubota B3030 (Open Station), LA403, BH75, 4 - 55w halogen front & rear ROPS mounted worklights with L39 dash switches
    2004 Case NH DX24E Subcompact

    Kubotas from Barlow's

  8. #8
    Veteran Member CobyRupert's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2012
    Washington County, NY
    JD 5075E

    Default Re: HST or manual shift on B series?

    Real men clutch!

  9. #9
    Super Member
    Join Date
    Apr 2000
    Shingle Springs California
    New Holland TC40D

    Default Re: HST or manual shift on B series?

    I had a "B" series for 12 years. I can not see any reason to get one in a gear transmission. I have driven gear tractors; they work just fine. But for that 0-10 acre range, and lots of moving about an going back and forth to tasks, a HST is perfect. That is really the heart of what a compact tractor with HST is designed for. Regardless of brand; it could be a kubota, a JD, a NH etc. Compact tractor with HST; that is their market niche.

    I like driving a stick in a car/truck. Gear tractors are just fine. But, for zipping around, loading, unloading, making small adjustments while mowing, scraping etc, HST is a shoe in.
    RobertN in Shingle Springs Calif

  10. #10
    Veteran Member
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    Kubota B2620 (2012)

    Default Re: HST or manual shift on B series?

    Quote Originally Posted by CobyRupert View Post
    Real men clutch!
    Yeah, and they don't have cabbed tractors or scoped rifles.
    Kubota B2620 HST

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