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  1. #51
    Bronze Member
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    Posts
    72

    Default

    Hi there - good luck with house & tractor!
    I run an X540 w/54" mulch deck for grounds maintenance here in the UK.
    I've been looking at the X7** series too - as I'd like to be able to run a flail mower and have more grunt.
    I tried a x749 last week with a 48" rear discharge deck on a clients site...

    I still have my X540!!
    The 749 was certainly a lovely machine but the 540 tackles everything the 749 did, nearly quite as well! And with an 8k diff to pay after P/X, I couldn't justify it.
    For me, I'll be towing a donkey engine flail for long stuff, and my usual deck for a nice finish.

    No doubt I'll keep looking at bigger tractors though!!

  2. #52
    New Member
    Join Date
    Jul 2012
    Posts
    24
    Location
    Western NC
    Tractor
    Deere 1026R, D100, Gravely 1132

    Default Re: Lawn Tractor, Zero Turn, or Sub-compact?

    Matt,

    Just wondering what your latest thoughts were on the subject now that you have had some feedback.

  3. #53
    Member
    Join Date
    Aug 2012
    Posts
    34
    Location
    Suwanee, GA
    Tractor
    None Yet

    Default Re: Lawn Tractor, Zero Turn, or Sub-compact?

    Quote Originally Posted by parkerpusher View Post
    Just wondering what your latest thoughts were on the subject now that you have had some feedback.
    Thanks for asking. I think the subcompact is the way to go. I like the 1026R with a loader and a 60" 7-Iron mower deck. Now debating whether to order it right after move-in or to wait until I've had a chance to build the shed that it will be stored in. Another major expense to consider.

    I spent the weekend building a 20' gravel path with stepping stones at my current house (which we plan to rent out). I did it all by hand and spent a lot of time digging it out and building up a new crushed-stone base because it is an area prone to be wet and muddy. In fact, a heavy rain in the middle of the project filled my pit with water, so that made it more, er, fun. The space was too tight and the project was too small for a tractor to add much benefit, but a loader will be a huge time-saver with the larger projects I have planned at the new house.

    Moving at the end of the month. Tractor or not, I'm excited about the future!

    Thanks for checking in. And a big thank you to everyone for all the feedback and advice.

    Matt

  4. #54
    Veteran Member
    Join Date
    Apr 2004
    Posts
    1,900
    Location
    East Coast of Lake Huron
    Tractor
    Deere, several

    Default Re: Lawn Tractor, Zero Turn, or Sub-compact?

    I had thought only small equipment powered by Lister-petter air cooled diesels was marketed and used in the British Iles.

  5. #55
    Bronze Member
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    Posts
    72

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by buickanddeere
    I had thought only small equipment powered by Lister-petter air cooled diesels was marketed and used in the British Iles.
    Definitely not! Lots of small machines use kubota 950 engines (think that's the right one!).
    Stacks of small machinery used here, but generally, it seems (from this forum), that we use 360 excavators more, and larger tractors?
    Most large gardens (yards) here rarely exceed one/two acres!

  6. #56
    Platinum Member
    Join Date
    Mar 2010
    Posts
    567

    Default Re: Lawn Tractor, Zero Turn, or Sub-compact?

    Well, what did you get?

    Wrooster

  7. #57
    Member
    Join Date
    Aug 2012
    Posts
    34
    Location
    Suwanee, GA
    Tractor
    None Yet

    Default Re: Lawn Tractor, Zero Turn, or Sub-compact?

    Oh Wrooster, you may be sorry you asked!

    We got moved in at the new place and, sure enough, the grass kept growing. We hadn't been here a week and the lawn needed mowing. I wanted to buy the 1026R, but I really don't have a place to put it, yet. I can't leave a $15K machine sitting out in the weather. But it would be silly to move a car out of the garage to make room for a tractor, right? So, short term, we paid somebody to mow the lawn once.

    Since my last post on this topic, I've continued to read everything I can get my hands on, and I found some posts on another forum by a couple different folks that had mowed with both X700s and 1026Rs. In both cases, they said the X700 is a much better mower, both in terms of usability and quality of cut. It wasn't long before I found myself back on the fence about what to get.

    Upon expressing my quandary to my dad last month, he said that he had a Husqvarna GT2254 riding mower that he bought a few years ago that wasn't strong enough to handle his rough mountainside property. It had started falling apart and he had spent some time trying to repair it, but he got frustrated with it, threw a tarp over it, and let it sit for about 18 months. He suggested that I borrow it and get it fixed, and he'd "probably forget where he left it". It's got a 54" deck, so I drove up to NC and picked it up that night. I figured that would get me through the winter before I had to make any big decisions, at least. That weekend, I sent the Husky to the shop for a battery, spindle, and a couple deck wheels to replace the ones that had gone missing. The shop replaced the spark plug, greased all the appropriate points, and generally got it running again. $275 spent. But, I only got one mow out of it before it started making a horrendous noise when the blades were engaged, so I stopped using it. I thought I might have bent the deck when I loaded it on my dad's pickup truck, since most of the tractor's weight was on the deck, which partially straddled the wheel wells of the truck. So I found a closer shop that would do pickup/delivery, and had them come get it for a second repair.

    In the meantime, the grass kept growing, so I pulled out the only mower I own. A little Honda push mower with a broken transmission (all push, no self-propel). It took me almost 3 hours to mow the front and side yards (but they looked great!). Then a friend down the street had mercy on me and let me borrow his Kubota BXsomething diesel with a 60" deck for the back yard. I think I finished the back yard in about 20 minutes. SO MUCH FASTER than a 24" manual push mower!

    I got the Husqvarna back from the shop yesterday. They had replaced another spindle, a pulley mandrel, and the belt. Another $215 spent. Unfortunately, they did not fix the problem. By the time I got the front lawn mowed last night, the mower deck was making so much noise that my ears were ringing for an hour afterwards. I called the shop and they came back to get it this morning. I'm supposed to have it back again tomorrow. We'll see what happens with that. I'm approaching $500 in repairs for the free mower that's probably not worth more than about $500. So, I'm concerned that I may still have to buy a tractor sooner rather than later.

    Lots of lessons learned, however:

    1. Turning radius is a big deal on a riding mower. Interestingly, my friend's big Kubota with the 60" deck has a tighter turning radius than the Husqvarna with the 54" deck. More importantly, according to the JD website, the X700 has a ~25" turning radius and the 1026R has a ~7.2 FOOT turning radius. That is a HUGE win for the X700 in my book.
    2. I probably don't really need 4WD. My yard is flat enough that I can mow with a manual push mower. And the Husqvarna and Kubota both have no problem with the biggest "hills" I can find in my yard. They just go right up 'em without even slowing down.
    3. My yard is bumpier than it looks. I'll need to smooth it out somehow to really be able to mow as fast as I'd like.
    4. I can mow with a push mower in a pinch.
    5. I think I like mowing. Weird. I never used to.
    6. I am not impressed with Husqvarna riding mower at all. Yes, the one I have hasn't had the best care, but it doesn't seem like it's built very well, either. The engine starts and runs nicely, though. My issue is the deck.
    7. Traveling back and forth to the shop and waiting for them to actually work on the tractor is a big inconvenience. Better buy something reliable so I don't have to do that very often.
    8. While I'd really like to have a FEL for all the reasons mentioned earlier in this thread, it probably won't get used very often. And I'll need more space to store it.
    9. I really need a shed with a minimum 70" wide door. That way I can fit whatever deck I want to. The door should probably be high enough to accommodate a ROPS, too. You know, just in case.

    In summary, to answer your question, I got a used Husqvarna GT2254 riding mower. Once I get it fixed, it will probably do the job. But, I plan to replace it just as soon as I can. I sure would like to have an X748!

    Matt

  8. #58
    Silver Member
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    Posts
    145
    Location
    Southcentral PA
    Tractor
    Deere 345

    Default Re: Lawn Tractor, Zero Turn, or Sub-compact?

    Matt,

    A great post, but I'd like to address one point:

    Quote Originally Posted by ritmatt View Post
    More importantly, according to the JD website, the X700 has a ~25" turning radius and the 1026R has a ~7.2 FOOT turning radius. That is a HUGE win for the X700 in my book.
    Don't worry so much about the published numbers for turning radius, look for what deere calls the "UNCUT DIAMETER". The turning radius is just how sharply the steering can turn the tractor but it does not completely explain how much grass the deck leaves uncut. The size of the deck makes a difference, even on the same tractor (for example - on the X700 the 48" deck actually has a LARGER uncut diameter than the 62" deck since the 62" deck sticks out farther on the left side of the tractor). And of course a 4WS tractor will have a smaller uncut diameter, and a ZTR will have a zero uncut diameter.

    I hope that explanation made some sense ...

  9. #59
    Super Member
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    Posts
    8,826
    Location
    somewhere usa
    Tractor
    Deere 110tlb, 4520, x749, L130

    Default Re: Lawn Tractor, Zero Turn, or Sub-compact?

    sklunk,
    I agree that uncut radius is an important consideration but so is turning radius. I have an x749 aws with a 48" deck to fit between trees and obstacles and it will leave about a 12"uncut radius. Using the same mower with a 62" deck yields a 6" uncut radius which would be nice but the deck won't fit all the places I need to go.


    From a manueverability stand point the difference between a 2' radius and a 7' radius is very obvious in actual use, the x700 series will out manuever the 1026R. There are pluses and minuses to each model so a buyer has to decide what is most important in their own case.

  10. #60
    Platinum Member
    Join Date
    Jul 2012
    Posts
    722
    Location
    Southeast Minnesota
    Tractor
    JD 4720, JD X748SE, JD 997, Farmall "B"

    Default Re: Lawn Tractor, Zero Turn, or Sub-compact?

    Quote Originally Posted by jenkinsph View Post
    sklunk,
    I agree that uncut radius is an important consideration but so is turning radius. I have an x749 aws with a 48" deck to fit between trees and obstacles and it will leave about a 12"uncut radius. Using the same mower with a 62" deck yields a 6" uncut radius which would be nice but the deck won't fit all the places I need to go.


    From a manueverability stand point the difference between a 2' radius and a 7' radius is very obvious in actual use, the x700 series will out manuever the 1026R. There are pluses and minuses to each model so a buyer has to decide what is most important in their own case.
    If I remember right.... the x748 has an uncut circle of 2' NOT a 2' turning radius. The x748 will no doubt out manuever the 1026R, but I think the 2' vs 7' numbers are not "apples to apples".

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