1978 John Deere 850 Questions

   / 1978 John Deere 850 Questions #1  

Ledgemere Farm

Veteran Member
Apr 29, 2002
Limerick, Maine
A bunch
I’m looking at a John Deere 850, 2wd that is in decent looking condition, but it has 2300 hours. The steering, clutch, brakes, hydraulics work ok, R1 tires are 50% and it comes with a Deere 262 grooming mower and 45 blade .

is that a lot of hours on that model, how hard are parts getting to be? Anything I should pay close attention to?

thank you
   / 1978 John Deere 850 Questions #2  
If that is a diesel they were Yanmar engine based and excellent engines. If maintained that is low hours, that many hours or more left.
   / 1978 John Deere 850 Questions #4  
Very good tractors. As in any used machine the value is all in the condition. I've bought two JDs recently in good used condition with over 5000 hours and neither has any problems. With 2300 hours it could be just fine for as long as you plan to own the tractor.... or it could be used up. Luckily, that's enough hours that you can get a good idea of maintenance just by looking at the external appearance. The 850 was a simple tractor without high tech parts.

From what we read here, JD isn't giving their Yanmar/JDs as much support as the larger & older Ag tractors that JD made in their own factories, but there seems to be a decent online aftermarket support because older Yanmars are so popular.
It is a very traditional diesel with a basic transmission & easy to work on and maintain. You didn't mention a loader or power steerng. A tractor with a loader has often been used harder than a tractor used mostly for mowing and blading. Mowing is light duty for any tractor.
   / 1978 John Deere 850 Questions #5  
I owned a John Deere 850. Very solid tractor. If it has power steering, just make sure it is functioning properly. Those parts can be hard to find and spendy. I don't worry about any CUT with less than 4,000 hours.