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Total noob looking for advice on what to buy.


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#1 Mustard Tiger OFFLINE  

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Posted September 05, 2016 - 10:11 PM

I have 3 acres that are currently an overgrown field, and I'd like to get a little used tractor and put the land to use.  But I am a computer nerd and have no idea what I should be looking for.  I really want to be able to put a front end loader on it for moving dirt and manure around.  Other than that it would mainly be for mowing the grass in the summer and clearing snow in the winter.  I know my choice is limited to whatever people have for sale, but in general should I be aiming for an old garden tractor like a Ford LGT?  Or should I get something newer like the kubota tg1860 that seem to be coming up for sale daily?  I can't help but feel if I am paying $3000-$5000 that I may as well just get an old 50s or 60s row crop tractor instead?  Or am I just letting the "bigger is better" mentality get the better of me?


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#2 shorty ONLINE  

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Posted September 06, 2016 - 04:38 AM

Welcome to GTtalk!
Bigger is better until you struggle to use it in the area you want to.
Your budget and how many attachments you might need will narrow the choices considerably. A bigger GT is most times limited to the manufacturer line of attachments. While a compact will accept many different manufacturer line of attachments.
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#3 old coot OFFLINE  

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Posted September 06, 2016 - 04:46 AM

myself i went thru the same ordeal several years back....wanting to get something i could use for plowing snow and some brush cutting  ...didnt want to get into new stuff so after alot of thought and talking to others i ended up with a bolens 1886 large frame 1972 vintage  cost me 800 but the machine was in real good shape and has done all I wanted to do with it .now the original mower deck doesn't do well in heavy brush but I have a tow behind brush cutter, I rarely use the mower deck  , just use this machine for snow plowing and brush cutting..i have a john deere for the yard, you can still find them out there for sale ,parts aren't that bad to find, internet is good to find parts,,,this might not be something that you want but this set up has worked great for me


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#4 MH81 ONLINE  

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Posted September 06, 2016 - 06:31 AM

Smaller tractors are more nimble and generally do a better job on mowing. The FEL's can be harder to find and limited in capacity.
Bigger scut tractors are easier to find attachments (usually) and do a decent job on the lawn.
I would tell you to not get a row crop for loader work. Too tippy is why.
Just Google front end loader accident and you'll see what I mean. Easy enough to have an accident with a wide front.
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#5 DZG OFFLINE  

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Posted September 06, 2016 - 06:47 AM

Honestly, id watch out for an old 8n ford, you can get nice ones for 2k-3k, parts are plentiful, there tough as nails, simple to fix, and with a 3pt hitch and 540 pto will run modern bushhog mowers and if you look you can find one with a loader already installed.

Just my 2 cents
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#6 DZG OFFLINE  

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Posted September 06, 2016 - 06:51 AM

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Ford 8n
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#7 DZG OFFLINE  

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Posted September 06, 2016 - 07:02 AM

Actually, on 2nd thought, a farmall cub would also suit your needs, the biggest drawback of a cub is loaders are rare and you can only use cub attachments.

If you do go with an actual tractor, id reccomend staying away from narrow front ones. They can be a bit hazardous in the hands of an inexperinced operator.

The 8n and cub both are pretty forgiving unless you really get dumb with them.
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Farmall cub
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#8 LilysDad OFFLINE  

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Posted September 06, 2016 - 07:05 AM

From your opening post, I'm wondering how handy you are with a wrench. If you have an old GT, your going to have to do some work at one time or another. We are always here to offer advice, but if this seems overwhelming, You may be better off with that Kubota or John Deere that a dealer will be able to service.


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#9 tater195 ONLINE  

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Posted September 06, 2016 - 10:08 AM

From your opening post, I'm wondering how handy you are with a wrench. If you have an old GT, your going to have to do some work at one time or another. We are always here to offer advice, but if this seems overwhelming, You may be better off with that Kubota or John Deere that a dealer will be able to service.

I have switched camps recently and tend to agree with this post. I was the type to get the old worn out stuff that was 1 owner away from heading to the scrapper. Parts are hard to find for the some of the older stuff and I got tired of working on several tractors all the time.

I bought a new Mahindra E-Max 25 with a loader and belly mower 2 weeks ago. I have already put 25 hours on it doing everything from mowing the grass, prep work for a sidewalk, burying a water line, dirt work and maintaining the gravel driveway. My old GTs may have been able to do the work , but would have taken 4 times as long and something probably would have broke in the process.It isnt much bigger size wise than my biggest 2 GTs but it is a real tractor and built to do the heavier work. I had a hard time writing the check at the time but dont regret it one bit now.

 

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#10 DZG OFFLINE  

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Posted September 06, 2016 - 11:14 AM

My wife has slowly been getting me into new stuff as well, although shell have to pry my 77 F250 from my cold dead fingers :)
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#11 Mustard Tiger OFFLINE  

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Posted September 06, 2016 - 11:18 AM

Alright first of all I guess I didn't actually mean a row crop, I just meant an old 50s or 60s little tractor like that 8n there.  What do you call that class of tractor?  The big advantage of those is that pretty much any implement will work right?  A 3 point hitch and rear PTO is a standard thing across the board?  But the downside of course is that its less than ideal for mowing the lawn.

 

I'm not as handy as I would like to be, but that is part of the appeal to an older model for me.  I moved out to the country to an old fixer upper farm house so I could teach myself to do real things.  I assume that like cars, older tractors are easier to work on myself.  There's a few old guys around here that I could fall back on for repairs or help if I get in over my head.

 

I have two concerns with lawn/yard/garden tractors. First is being sure I can get a FEL for it.  Second is that there's a huge price range on tractors that from a glance look pretty much the same, and even have the same engine.  What should I be looking for to be sure it can handle a FEL, not just physically hook one up but to actually use it regularly without the tractor dying?


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#12 tater195 ONLINE  

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Posted September 06, 2016 - 11:19 AM

I was working on getting my old 94 F1504X4 cleaned up this weekend to sell it. It has ast most of the summer only being moved a few times to mow under it, I brought it in the shop to charge the AC. backed it out and something locked up in the right rear.. brake pad... axle bearing.. who knows. The more old crap you got, the more old crap you gotta work on. I am done with that.



#13 oldedeeres ONLINE  

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Posted September 06, 2016 - 11:25 AM

Welcome aboard! I'm with Lilysdad and tater195 on this as well. I love the old tractors, don't get me wrong, but you will probably be dealing with heavy wet snow most of the time which can really put a load on a machine. Having dealt with narrow front axels on row crop type tractors I can vouch for them not being much fun on uneven terrain. They can be altered and widened out, but if you're uncomfortable with doing that kind of change-up yourself it can get pricy. The Deere or Kubota sound good to me.

#14 tater195 ONLINE  

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Posted September 06, 2016 - 11:32 AM

...

 

I have two concerns with lawn/yard/garden tractors. First is being sure I can get a FEL for it.  Second is that there's a huge price range on tractors that from a glance look pretty much the same, and even have the same engine.  What should I be looking for to be sure it can handle a FEL, not just physically hook one up but to actually use it regularly without the tractor dying?

There are 3 kinds of loaders for the old tractors.

1 is a "trip loader". they dont have a tilt cylinder for the bucket, You pull a rope and it dumps. They are basically just big poop shovels.

2nd is the "jungle gym" pipe frame loaders. Never had one but it is not easy to get on and off the tractor with those.

3rd is the "industrial" style that resembles more of the current style. they work good but are front heavy and dont dig good without rear weight and make for a bouncy ride. The heavier the tractor is the more it will sink in and make it even worse when mowing "across the grain"


Edited by tater195, September 06, 2016 - 11:35 AM.


#15 JBRamsey OFFLINE  

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Posted September 08, 2016 - 10:28 PM

First, you need to figure out exactly what you want to do. You say you have three acres of overgrown pasture that you want to put to use. And then talk about mowing and moving manure and pushing snow. If you are planning on getting three acres of old field in shape, you will be forever riding in circles on a GT between mowing, lime, fertilizing and overseeding. Is your land flat or hilly? If it's hilly, you really should have four wheel drive.

I like 8Ns. I have two of them. But keep in mind you must have an overrunning clutch when using it to bush hog and it is not four wheel drive. And you have to watch the lift when buying one to make sure it's still strong.

How much area do you have to clear snow from? If it's just a little, pick up a cheaper GT with a blower and dedicate it to snow removal.

How much are you planning to mow? The full three acres? If you are planning to mow all three, then be ready for lots of round and round with a GT. If you are just mowing a little like a lawn, then use a GT.

If you really want to work your land--bush hogging, plowing, front end loader work, post hole digging, etc--then a SCUT is probably the way to go. Down here Kubota has some pretty good deals on packages. And you can pick up used attachments reasonably by keeping an eye out on Craigslist and being ready to move when a good deal shows up.

For me, I would get a decent GT with a mowing deck, a blower and a front blade and check out a decent SCUT with a bush hog and loader for the other jobs.

It's all about compromise--what you are going to do versus what you want to do versus the time you have available to do it versus your appetite for spending money.

Keep doing your research. Talk to your neighbor's and see what they are using and what they like and don't like about what they have.

Good Luck.




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