Looking for a JD to replace my Craftsman

   #1  

Menagerie-Manor

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May 24, 2021
Messages
157
Location
Brookings Oregon
Tractor
Yanmar YM2310D
Shopping around locally for a used JD probably in the 100 series to cut about a 1/2 acre and other minor activities related to lawn and garden. I have a full grown tractor for all the heavy work. So it comes down to the choice of engines (42" or 48" not a concern) Briggs or Kawasaki and not being a big Briggs fan is there anything that should be avoided.
 
   #2  

beenthere

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Aug 16, 2001
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16,996
Location
Southern Wisconsin, USA
Tractor
JD_4x2_Gator, JD_4300, JD_X485, JD_425, JD_455, JD_110
Go for a JD 455, or 425. Older, but solid tractors. IMO better than the X series mower decks. Like the 54" but some can be found with the 48" deck.
Good buy in the midwest for a 700 - 1000 hour 425 is around $3500. The diesel 455 another $1500 but well worth it IMO.
Overkill for 1/2 acre, but will treat you well for years to come.. again just my opinion.
 
   #3  

Wagtail

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Jan 15, 2013
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10,305
Location
St Helens, Tasmania, Australia
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JD 4105 / JD D110
Mate, I've had a JD D110 (with the B&S engine) for the past 8+ years. I bought it new from my JD Dealership and have close to 300 hours on it, maintaining 6 acres. No problems whatsoever.

I've replaced the OEM blades (after 4 years) with predator blades... the OEM blades were wore-out by 'establishing' (finding things) the paddocks. Last year I needed to replace the mower belt, so, 7 years of use on that.

FYI.
 
   #4  

dadohead

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Sep 30, 2021
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15
Location
Horicon, WI
Tractor
John Deere 2520, John Deere GX335
You're focusing on the wrong end of the tractor IMHO. The transmission is the weak link in any lawn tractor. Deere tractors have 3 levels of transaxles: K46, K58, K72. All are made by Tuff Torq in Tennessee. Because the tractors all look similar in size, buyers tend to overlook the transaxle.

The K46 is a non-rebuildable, non-serviceable, sealed for life (can't change oil) lawn tractor tranny (think L series and X300/X350). It has a 3/4" axle, no charge pump, and is designed for no bigger than 20" tire (some tractor brands mate the K46 with way too big of tire). Tractor weight, tire size, and usage determines its life. If you're an average size guy, have no hills, and don't pull anything heavy... you'll get about 350 hrs of trouble free service (35 hrs / year for 10 years is the design life). Your mileage may vary.

The k58 is serviceable and is a decent step up. It has a 1" axle and a charge pump so is commonly mated to 22" tires. The unit is designed to change trans oil (some here have figured out how to service k46 though).... huge dealy if you want the unit to last. Deere X380 has a K58. If you plan to pull anything, mow on hills, or just a big guy... I wouldn't go under a K58.

Deere puts the K72 into all of the X5 series tractors... a garden tractor actually. The K72 is a beast: 1" axle, charge pump, diff-lock, and completely rebuildable. You can pull a plow with these things and put on high hours... just need to change the trans oil. The weakness in these is the input sheave/shaft joint... they will 'fret' and strip the input sheave splines @ 350 hrs if not taken apart, cleaned, and greased every 100-200 hrs.

I have hills and mow with an older GX335 because of the K71 transaxle. They are beasts! Just change the transaxle oil and grease the input sheave splines every 200 hrs and she'll out-live you. Hope this helps!
 
   #5  

4570Man

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Crossville, TN
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I’d get a ZT but if you’re set on a rider a 100 series wouldn’t be my pick. A 455 can be picked up for an affordable price and they’re way more durable.
 
   #6  

Wagtail

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Jan 15, 2013
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St Helens, Tasmania, Australia
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JD 4105 / JD D110
Look, I fully understand the transmission argument/debate. Indeed, I agree to the transmission argument for a robust usage of a lawn tractor. The OP can certainly take that advice 'on board'.

However, the OP has stated that it's for a flat 1/2 acer and for 'minor activities'. A JD 100 series is adequate for that.
 
   #8  

arto98607

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Aug 27, 2014
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692
Location
S.W. Washington State
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Kubota F3060, Grasshopper 721D, Ford 1310, John Deere 440 ICD, John Deere 300
My 1977 JD 300 came with the house back in 1992 and we are still using it regularly.

With proper basic maintenance it will probably outlive me and my kids will inherit it!


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  • Thread Starter
#9  
OP
M

Menagerie-Manor

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Joined
May 24, 2021
Messages
157
Location
Brookings Oregon
Tractor
Yanmar YM2310D
Look, I fully understand the transmission argument/debate. Indeed, I agree to the transmission argument for a robust usage of a lawn tractor. The OP can certainly take that advice 'on board'.

However, the OP has stated that it's for a flat 1/2 acer and for 'minor activities'. A JD 100 series is adequate for that.
That's what I was thinking.
 

dadohead

New member
Joined
Sep 30, 2021
Messages
15
Location
Horicon, WI
Tractor
John Deere 2520, John Deere GX335
Sorry but your 1977 JD 300 shouldn't be put in the same sentence with a newer 100 series with K46 transaxle (L, X300, or X350). The old Sundstrand transaxle and horizontal shaft drive has a design life WAY beyond 350 hrs.

To the OP's question of engine choice... it doesn't matter. Any engine you pick will wear out three K46 transaxles before dying.

I'm a retired JD L&G engineer. Inside Deere MANY of us have the same machine: 2000-2005ish 325, 345, GX325, GX335, or GX345. Why? Because they are the pinnacle mowing tractor for 1/2-2 acre yards. There are other great tractors made before as well but the decks?... not so much. All have K71 transaxles (the GX tractors have diff-lock), really good mower decks, are smaller statured, and still have all the premium do-dads that make mower (and attachments) easy to remove. Most guys have the GX345 (KHI liquid cooled) variant because there are more of them out there. I prefer the GX335 because the Kawasaki big block air cooled engine is bullet proof... there is just rarely any warranty issues with them (that's why they're still in the JD lineup and the liquid cooled is not!)

The new JD X5's w/ K72 are great tractors. The new decks are AWESOME.... just $$$ My GX/48C was $2500 3 years ago with 200 hrs. I'd look there. Hope this helps!
 
 
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