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  1. #1

    Default 2-Speed vs. 3-Speed HST

    I've narrowed my tractor choices to the JD 2520 and the kubota B2920 or B3030. They seem to be very similar and there are some specific features that I prefer on each. One seemingly big difference, however, is the Deere has a 2-speed HST vs. 3-speeds on the Kubotas. I've tried to find information on the speed and torque ratings in each range of each HST, but have come up empty. One Green dealer told me the third range on the Orange tractors is a "creeper" range. Sounds good for pulling stumps, but not so attractive for mowing. I'm not sure I believe this comment, but it got me thinking about how to determine how big an advantage the 3-speed would be. Does anyone have any data and/or real world experience with this question? I'll be using the tractor for mowing, occasional landscaping (FEL work) and moving wood around to support my woodburner. Knowing the experience base on this forum, this should spark some debate and I hope honest opinions.

    Thanks,

    Chuck

  2. #2
    Veteran Member daTeacha's Avatar
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    Funk, Ohio

    Default Re: 2-Speed vs. 3-Speed HST

    My Case has a 3 range hst. The top range is useful for going down the road, if there isn't too big a hill. Other than that, it's geared too high to be any good. Check the speed ranges of both tractors in each of the hst ranges and you might get some idea. A really low top speed would indicate a lot of pull, whereas a high one (15 mph or more in a CUT) would indicate a road gear. You should find that information in the booklets from the dealership. A good salesman should be able to check his books to tell you, too. I would be a little wary of a salesman that can't/won't/doesn't want to tell you the top speed in a given range for a tractor you're interested in. To me it would indicate that either they're too lazy to do a little work prior to the sale, or they know very little about what they're selling, neither of which is a good thing in my book.

    Or you could post a question on the brand specific forums here and someone will be able to tell you.

    I find the ability to move really slowly when I need to is the biggest advantage of having the HST. If the kubota is geared lower, it could come in real handy for some delicate jobs.
    Rich
    300 hours on the DX29, 850 on the JD 240 and too many to count on the Cadet
    Funk, Ohio

  3. #3
    Elite Member
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    ChuckinNH's Avatar
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    Jun 2003
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    3,075
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    NH
    Tractor
    (B2620, had BX22) Simplicity Legacy w/48" mmm

    Default Re: 2-Speed vs. 3-Speed HST

    I think the low range on the JD2x20 series will allow the tractor to go about 4.5 MPH. kubota doesn't separate the speeds on their web site, but most folks mow, and do many chores in the mid range, and find it plenty fast, and powerful for that work, even on hills. The low range on the Kubota may only go about 3.5 mph on some models, and that might be a bit slow for mowing. In reading the posts here, I've found that quite a few folks think the low range speed on the John Deere's is just a little slow for most mowing...... though I probably would be happy with it with all my obstacles.
    B2620,Loaded R-4's , Wallenstein BX42 chipper, Bush Hog SQ148 RC, 4' x 8' chain harrow, Blizzard 54" 3PT snowblower, Tirechains. com v-bar duo grip chains (hate them), Simplicity Legacy with 48"mmm, turbo collector, Country Line carry all, Countryline Middlebuster, Woods 48" BB, Kubota QA for loader, Kubota forks, Kuhn EL23 rototiller, and more to come...

  4. #4
    Platinum Member
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    Sep 2005
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    721
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    West Michigan
    Tractor
    B3030

    Default Re: 2-Speed vs. 3-Speed HST

    I have a B3030 that I use for many different tasks. I like the 3 speed HST. I use low occasionally but use medium the most including most loader work. High is useful for plowing snow. It has plenty of power for that and really speeds up the job compared to medium. Medium is just about perfect for mowing. It is plenty fast and when the ground is smooth you can just push the pedal all the way down and go. Reverse is fast and turns can be made quickly at the end of a row. I believe medium is about 1 mph faster than low on a JD2520. That may not seem like much but cutting an extra 1 mile long swath of grass each hour is a lot. The kubota MMM handles that speed just fine unless the grass is extra tall or thick.

    For heavy loader work I use low. Or, when I want precise control of the machine.

    For me, a 2 speed machine limits the ability to get the most out of the equipment. The larger JD CUTs have 3 speed hydros. I think if they would have put a 3 speed in the 2520 it would be a lot better machine.

  5. #5
    Gold Member
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    Sep 2007
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    Western US

    Default Re: 2-Speed vs. 3-Speed HST

    Ceres,

    From my speed chart, the B2630 with ag tires will go 0 - 3.0 in low, 0 - 5.5 in medium and 0 - 11.5 in high - reverse is a little slower at 2.4, 4.4 and 9.2 top speeds respectively.

    Unless you are doing a lot of heavy work, you will probably spend most of your time in medium.

    High range in most used in transport or light duty work.

    Good luck!

  6. #6
    Gold Member
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    Jan 2008
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    473
    Location
    WEBSTER, MN
    Tractor
    JD 4720

    Default Re: 2-Speed vs. 3-Speed HST

    Not really part, but put the tractor in low range when neighbor is using it so does not go to fast and get into trouble, esp if FEL work. (Same person who has rolled her 4 wheeler twice! Safety feature.
    JD 4720, 7' back blade, forks, FEL, 6 wheeler (yeeha!)

    If you are not having fun, it is time to change the rules.

  7. #7
    Silver Member Grand_Pooba's Avatar
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    Apr 2007
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    Wyoming County, NY
    Tractor
    Bobcat CT230 & John Deere X324

    Default Re: 2-Speed vs. 3-Speed HST

    I've used my father's Mahindra 2015 hst with which has 2 ranges and found it quite limiting. I was moving a pile of loss dirt to differt low spots in my yard. It had to be in low to get into the pile with the fel and than back th high to get to where you were going. It seemed like a lot of shifting for hydro.

  8. #8
    Gold Member
    Join Date
    Jul 2004
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    335
    Location
    Rochester,NY
    Tractor
    Kioti CK20HST

    Default Re: 2-Speed vs. 3-Speed HST

    you will find several threads in the Kioti forum discussing this issue relateing to the CK20HST vs. the CK25/30 HSTs.

    Virtually all CK20 owners (me too) have few if any complaints (not counting the cracked older loaders) about the CK20 except the lack of a thrid medium speed range that Kioti added when they came out with the CK25/30's . I'm positive that there are speed charts for all models from all manufacturers, steer clear of a salesman that doesn't care about the most basic information about his products.
    I'm sure most other tractors are about the same ,the low range is great for heavy work and hill climbing, and high is too fast or lacks power for mowing or snow plowing and working a load uphill, the CK 20's really need that medium range.

    Take a look at Kioti and Mahindra if you have them in your area.
    However the bottom line is go to the dealer that gives the best service and helps YOU the most regardless of make. He should be able to discuss with you how you will use the tractor now and in the future and recommend the the best size and features to meet your REAL NEEDS and pocket book. I wouldn't go near that JD salesman again,see if they have someone more knowledgeablke and honest there if you like the JD's.

    good luck, Joe48

  9. #9
    Elite Member
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    MessickFarmEqu's Avatar
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    Lancaster County, PA

    Default Re: 2-Speed vs. 3-Speed HST

    I've seen both the Deere and kubota tractors hooked to load cells, in low the Kubota pulls almost double what the Deere can manage in low. To say its a creaper is probably not too far from the truth... IMO, thats a good thing. The low range would be great for pushing into a pile or dirt, pulling logs, etc,etc.

  10. #10
    Veteran Member
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    Oct 2005
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    Southern Indiana
    Tractor
    Kubota/B7800

    Default Re: 2-Speed vs. 3-Speed HST

    I have a B7800 which has one more HP that the 2920 and can tell you that the 3-speed trans is the reason I bit the bullet and bought the larger machine. I was interested at the time for a 23-26 HP unit and the dealer talked me into the B7800 for my plans for a lot of loader work. I operate the unit 85% of the time in the Mid range and it has enough power to spin all 4 wheels during loader work. If I am in some good clay dirt with excellant traction I sometimes need to select the lower range to get all 4 tires to spin. High range is very high and only used when not towing anything and no large hills. My drive is pretty steep and I cannot stop in the middle of the hill in high range and start going again without downshifting. I have heard of too many people say they are always switching gears with the two speed. Why have a hydro if you are switching so much is my thought.

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