Who Makes a Trouble-Free 60" Diesel Zero-Turn?

   / Who Makes a Trouble-Free 60" Diesel Zero-Turn? #1  

Suburban Plowboy

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Jul 31, 2018
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335
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FL
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Kubota L3710
I know I'm going to get flamed for this, but I have a John Deere 430 garden tractor with a 60" deck, and I am sick of it. It seems like I spend more time repairing it than using it, and John Deere is a real jerk about parts. My alternator is a great example. It looks like I need a new one, and they run about $500.

I don't need a garden tractor. I have a real tractor. I'm thinking I should dump the 430 on some sucker, I mean John Deere fan, and get a zero-turn.

So who makes a good diesel zero-turn that will last forever and give me 60" of width?

I can tell you some features I would like.

1. Not having to pay 5 times what parts are worth or dealing with a company that doesn't supply parts for older machines *cough cough John Deere*.

2. Oil changes that don't require removing an extremely stubborn 340-pound deck or dealing with a messy external oil-sucking machine.

3. Hydraulic cylinders, if any, that aren't welded shut like certain those made by *cough cough John Deere* certain companies.

4. Not needing 3 sizes of wrench to do simple things like adjusting a fan belt.

5. Not having to take the entire machine apart to change a fan belt.

6. A muffler that doesn't cost $250.

7. A total weight somewhere under 1500 pounds, unlike a certain garden tractor I have.

8. Blades that will cut bahia instead of just knocking it over so it can come back up after I pass.

9. Mulching that actually works. On live oak and water oak leaves. Not just on paper-thin leaves that blow away in a slight breeze.

10. Doesn't have the words "John" or "Deere" anywhere on it, nor any green paint.

If your blood runs green, don't bother telling me off. There is no point in making me suffer, because this tractor and the company that made it punish me more than you could every day.
 
   / Who Makes a Trouble-Free 60" Diesel Zero-Turn? #2  

5030

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Personally, I think you are SOL. They all require regular maintenance. Keep the Deere and buy a couple goats.
 
   / Who Makes a Trouble-Free 60" Diesel Zero-Turn? #3  

KennyG

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If you are expecting to buy anything and find cheap OEM parts, good luck. That's just not the world we live in today. I think any diesel ZT will be pretty reliable and efficient and will have some small potential to be a lemon. Sorry to hear you have trouble with your 430, but if the information I have is correct, the last 430 was built in 1992, so we are talking about an over 30 year old garden tractor.
 
   / Who Makes a Trouble-Free 60" Diesel Zero-Turn?
  • Thread Starter
#4  
OP
S

Suburban Plowboy

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335
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FL
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Kubota L3710
This thing supposedly has about 730 hours on it, so I don't think age is the whole problem. Age isn't the reason John Deere welded the cylinders shut. That's just sick.

The alternator has the voltage regulator INSIDE it. Who does that? Bad voltage regulator? No problem. Just fork out $500 for an alternator. Or you can go Chinese, which is what I'll do. Meanwhile, a voltage regulator for a Cadillac costs $14.

I got this tractor for nearly nothing, and I was all excited. The thrill has worn off. They must not have made zero-turns back when the first owner bought it. He must have had some reason for spending nearly 10K on a riding mower.
 
   / Who Makes a Trouble-Free 60" Diesel Zero-Turn? #5  

WM75Guy

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East Texas
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NH Workmaster 75, NH TC40DA
I like my 60" ZD1211. Shaft drive to the deck. No regen as it is under 25 HP. During the winter I take it to the Kubota dealer and it gets serviced, including new blades, for $350. Other than that I keep it full of diesel, clean the radiator screens, and blow it off after I use it. Cutting Bahia is a pain. I cut often and at a 3 1/2 setting on the deck. Let it get too tall and you get to cut twice. I also mow a different pattern every time, so it doesn't grow laying over which what happens if you mow the same pattern every time.
 
   / Who Makes a Trouble-Free 60" Diesel Zero-Turn? #6  

RjCorazza

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Maryland
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Kubota L4060 Cab, ZD1211, ZD326
I prefer diesel zero turns, and currently have a Kubota ZD326 and ZD1211. 1800 hours on the ZD326 and 850 hours on the ZD1211. I also had 1600 hours on my previous ZD331.
I've had remarkably few problems with any of them.
They do weigh more than 1500lbs though... about 1800 lbs I believe.
OEM parts are never cheap, from any manufacturer.
 
   / Who Makes a Trouble-Free 60" Diesel Zero-Turn?
  • Thread Starter
#7  
OP
S

Suburban Plowboy

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I had no idea a mower weighed that much. Seems like buying a mower means buying a big trailer, too.
 
   / Who Makes a Trouble-Free 60" Diesel Zero-Turn? #8  

WM75Guy

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Kubota specs say 1742# for the ZD1211. I use a Big Tex 14' 5000# 2 axle to haul my ZD1211 and the Mule in for service. Mine has a spare. The only time I had a blowout I was taking the ZD in for service. Blew out the right rear but was able to safely slow down and pull off to the shoulder to change the tire.

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   / Who Makes a Trouble-Free 60" Diesel Zero-Turn? #9  

tacticalturnip

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NW Atlantic
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Kioti CK2610HST
I, uh, I'll take that 430 off you... I've always had an affinity for that absurd beast, and I won't be depending on it. 😂
 
   / Who Makes a Trouble-Free 60" Diesel Zero-Turn? #10  

4570Man

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Crossville, TN
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Kubota M59, Kubota L3800, Grasshopper 428D, Topkick dump truck, 3500 dump truck, 10 ton trailer, more lighter trailers.
I have a Grasshopper 428D that’s been a good machine. What few parts I’ve needed were surprisingly affordable. But with that being said I like a Kubota ZT better.
 
 
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