Specialty Tractor

   / Specialty Tractor
  • Thread Starter
#11  
OP
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presnewt

Bronze Member
Joined
Dec 9, 2015
Messages
93
Location
Thomson, Ga
Tractor
Steiner 440
Specialty tractors tend to come in either narrow and lower stance or wide and lower stance. There companies like NH that offer some of these specialty tractors, however I don't know what they offer in the US.

Isodiametric tractors, like Ferrari, Antonio Carro and others, are great to use on hills, after all those were made for hills and not even comparable with Ventrac or Steiner. Antonio Carraro is a couple steps above Ferrari/BCS/Pasquali (all made by BCS) in quality and finish but as you may imagine, in price as well.

There are two dealers that I've read nothing but absolutely great things about them. One is in PA and the other is in Florida. I'm sure there is plenty more, but I'm not aware of those.



Forum member @Tunin from Bosnia and Herzegovina dealt with the AutrUSA dealer and had a very good experience.
I have spoken to some people about the Ferrari and Carraro tractors. They are top notch but they are not cheap and dealers are few and far between. I am talking to New Holland dealers near me now about their specialty tractor but they don't really know much about it and I am not expecting much from them.
 
   / Specialty Tractor #13  

rScotty

Super Member
Joined
Apr 21, 2001
Messages
6,651
Location
Rural mountains - Colorado
Tractor
Kubota M59, JD530, JD310SG. Restoring Yanmar YM165D
How much diagnosis have you done to your Steiner diesel. "Keep it running" doesn't sound like a replacement reason to me...yet.👍

I was thinking the same thing. There are lots of good reasons to get a different tractor, but not being able to keep one running doesn't sound like something that a different tractor would cure. But maybe so....I'd have to know more about the problem and what's been done. Otherwise he might just end up spending a lot of money to end up in the same place.

One dealer not being able to fix something isn't uncommon at all. Mechanics come in all degrees of good and not so good. The old time diagnose and repair guys are fast fading away. Their replacements are parts guys. Our local new imported tractor shop doesn't have welding, machine tools, or hydraulic diagnosis equipment in their service shop. I'd suggest that you look for a shop with all those things. Particularly a hydraulic flow and pressure test stand. Without that, hydraulic diagnosis is just about impossible. It's guesswork instead of knowledge.

Those square-body US made tractors are more oriented toward the home mechanic and standard industrial parts than the imported compacts are. I like that aspect; it gives people a choice of what to buy. For some people being able to fix what they buy is still important. Otherwise its a new model of one of the more popular compact tractors. They cost a lot, but are also very reliable.
 
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   / Specialty Tractor #14  

MossRoad

Old Timer
Joined
Aug 31, 2001
Messages
55,436
Location
South Bend, Indiana (near)
Tractor
Power Trac PT425 2001 Model Year
It has been in the shop since labor day of 2021. In 2020 it was in the shop for almost three months. The curreny problems (hydraulic) have taken the dealer four tries to fix and it is still not fixed. In 2020 it took them three tries to fix it. Before that, I had lift problems and I also have had bolts on some of the engine parts shear off causing it to completely tear up radiator and all kinds of other stuff. I do not use the machine commercially so it is not worked very hard and does not have an overabundance of hours on it. It is a model 440 which I have been told by dealer after dealer was a disaster of a tractor. The majority of the work is I do is mowing during the spring and summer. It has never made it more than two or three months before breaking down. There has been plenty of diagnosis done on it by the dealership over the last three years. It has not helped. I have finally gotten Steiner corporate to step in and try to help but you can only waste so much time and money on a piece of equipment that will not run.
Well, sounds like you have some pretty good reasons to seek out another machine.

Ventracs have a pretty good reputation for grounds work like mowing on hills and such. Do you have any need for a front end loader? If so, then ventrac might not be ideal for you. But they have scoops that are OK for moving mulch and loose gravel/stone around.

How big are your hills?
 
   / Specialty Tractor
  • Thread Starter
#15  
OP
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presnewt

Bronze Member
Joined
Dec 9, 2015
Messages
93
Location
Thomson, Ga
Tractor
Steiner 440
I was thinking the same thing. There are lots of good reasons to get a different tractor, but not being able to keep one running doesn't sound like something that a different tractor would cure. But maybe so....I'd have to know more about the problem and what's been done. Otherwise he might just end up spending a lot of money to end up in the same place.
I don't understand your reasoning. I think having a tractor that does not work is the perfect reason to look for a different tractor. What other choice do you have when the dealer cannot fix the problems with your tractor. I have had these issues for 5 years. So your suggestion would be to keep it and hope it begins to function like it should? That does not make much sense to me.
 
   / Specialty Tractor #16  

ArlyA

Super Member
Joined
Mar 18, 2016
Messages
6,481
Location
Houghton MI (the Lake Superior snow belt) USA
Tractor
Polaris Boss 6x6 with pods (tracks) Center actuating lawn mower by Husky
I don't understand your reasoning. I think having a tractor that does not work is the perfect reason to look for a different tractor. What other choice do you have when the dealer cannot fix the problems with your tractor. I have had these issues for 5 years. So your suggestion would be to keep it and hope it begins to function like it should? That does not make much sense to me.
If you'd like to get work done and your machine is again broke, now your fixing it instead of the job you planned to do. I'd say dump it.
 
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   / Specialty Tractor #17  

MossRoad

Old Timer
Joined
Aug 31, 2001
Messages
55,436
Location
South Bend, Indiana (near)
Tractor
Power Trac PT425 2001 Model Year
25 HP diesel engine, dual wheels, rough cut mower and ventrac power rake.

I have looked at those and also at Carrero tractors, they are very similar. They come in much higher HP than the steiner or ventracs but the problem is the dealer network. They are pricier than my tractor, but they are much more tractor also. I like the looks of them too. The neatest thing about them it the reversible seat so you can mow either in front of you or behind you.
Speaking from personal experience, I'd not recommend a tractor like that with no dealer/repair network unless you are willing to do the work on it yourself, or have a very trusted and competent mechanic, and be assured of a reliable parts source.

I have owned a PowerTrac PT425, for 21 years now. They are factory direct with very good tech support over the phone, and excellent parts service via shipping. However, I do all of the work myself. There are no dealers. I enjoy working on machinery and am confident enough and capable enough to do the work, so it's not an issue for me.

So that's just some things to think about with a specialty or unique machine:
Parts
Support
Labor
 
   / Specialty Tractor #18  

rScotty

Super Member
Joined
Apr 21, 2001
Messages
6,651
Location
Rural mountains - Colorado
Tractor
Kubota M59, JD530, JD310SG. Restoring Yanmar YM165D
I don't understand your reasoning. I think having a tractor that does not work is the perfect reason to look for a different tractor. What other choice do you have when the dealer cannot fix the problems with your tractor. I have had these issues for 5 years. So your suggestion would be to keep it and hope it begins to function like it should? That does not make much sense to me.

Don't be so pissy. Just because your dealer cannot fix it doesn't mean it isn't fixable. It just means that he can't fix it. What do you do when you hire someone incompetent? Throw up your arms and walk away? Or take the more logical course of either fixing it yourself or finding someone who can?

There are as many good mechanical shops as poor ones. Sometime during those 5 years you must have considered either fixing it yourself or finding someone who can. I gave you some hints on how to evaluate a shop. But I bet you can figure that out yourself.

However, your point is accurate when you say that if what I am saying doesn't make sense to you it's my shortcoming. So Let me try again by saying this:

"Whatever machine you get is going to require mechanical attention. That's the nature of mechanical things. You need to figure out how you are going to provide that mechanical attention or else you will end up with a similar problem."

No, I'm not trying to be mean. You didn't get a very good model last time. I hear that. I figure you can fix that.
What I'm doing is working on the more general mechanical part of the problem.

rScotty
 
   / Specialty Tractor
  • Thread Starter
#19  
OP
P

presnewt

Bronze Member
Joined
Dec 9, 2015
Messages
93
Location
Thomson, Ga
Tractor
Steiner 440
Speaking from personal experience, I'd not recommend a tractor like that with no dealer/repair network unless you are willing to do the work on it yourself, or have a very trusted and competent mechanic, and be assured of a reliable parts source.

I have owned a PowerTrac PT425, for 21 years now. They are factory direct with very good tech support over the phone, and excellent parts service via shipping. However, I do all of the work myself. There are no dealers. I enjoy working on machinery and am confident enough and capable enough to do the work, so it's not an issue for me.

So that's just some things to think about with a specialty or unique machine:
Parts
Support
Labor
I agree 100%. Steiner has a dealer network and have used a Steiner dealer to repair it. They can't do it for some reason.
 
   / Specialty Tractor #20  

MossRoad

Old Timer
Joined
Aug 31, 2001
Messages
55,436
Location
South Bend, Indiana (near)
Tractor
Power Trac PT425 2001 Model Year
I'll give the example of my mother in-law's Toyota minivan. A bunch of dashboard lights came on, and it started running rough. She took it to her family's much trusted mechanic. He could not figure out what was wrong with it. Diagnostic machine could not figure it out. He said "It's either the engine, the transmission, or both. I can't narrow it down enough to help you. You better take it to the dealer."

The Toyota dealer ran diagnostics on it, and they told her the same thing. "It's either the engine or the transmission or both. We can't figure it out without starting to replace everything, one thing at a time. That could get expensive. A new engine is $5K. A new transmission is $4K. The van is only worth $10K. You'd be better off getting a different vehicle."

So yes, you can spend time and money and eventually repair everything. But at a point, it's not worth the time or money or aggravation of having it fail again and again and nobody can seem to determine why.

I'd think after hearing the OP's reasoning for wanting a different machine, most people would agree with him. Get a different machine.
 
 
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