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Need advice on choosing a new (to me) GT


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#1 Mitchkrama OFFLINE  

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Posted August 05, 2017 - 04:43 PM

Long story short, I bought a 1990 Simplicity Sunstar 20 a couple years back for $400, however I have all but given up on finding implements for it. I'm thinking about either selling the machine or salvaging it for its Kohler Magnum 20 engine, locking rear end, and power steering assembly plus a brand new pair of carlisle AG Tires I never installed. I'm looking for a large(ish) frame GT w/ 16-20 hp primarily to move snow in the winter but would like a plow/grader blade, rotary broom, and (in an ideal world) a cab and a 3pt hitch to run a box scraper and rake. As much as i want it all, I would ideally like to stay under $3k (whatever that gets me). I'm currently considering the following machines:

Case/Ingersoll - 3000 series, 400/4000 series
IH Cub - 782/982
Deere - 140, 300/318, 400/420
Wheel Horse - D/C series, 400/500 series

These makes seem to be much easier to track down implements within reasonable driving range from my home in Massachusetts. Would any of these machines be receptive to any of the sunstar components I mentioned above or can anyone recommend any other machines to consider? Or more simply are any other manufacturer implements compatible or more easily modifiable to fit my sunstar? Any advice is appreciated

Edited by Mitchkrama, August 05, 2017 - 04:49 PM.

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#2 Mark 149 J. ONLINE  

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Posted August 05, 2017 - 05:24 PM

In the Cub cadets don't forget to look at the 1811, or 1812 series.  They are almost identical to the 82 series of cubs.  You also should look into the Super GT's by Cub cadet.  They are bigger then the 1800's and 82 series and come with power steering and Cat 0 3 point hitch.  I've seen them from $500 to $1500 on CL in my area.  

Good luck!


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#3 Mitchkrama OFFLINE  

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Posted August 05, 2017 - 05:47 PM

Thanks I'll look into those machines. I'm very cautious when it comes to Cub Cadet because I know they made good stuff when owned by IH, but at some point their build quality went to crap and I'm not sure exactly when that happened.
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#4 Mark 149 J. ONLINE  

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Posted August 05, 2017 - 06:03 PM

Thanks I'll look into those machines. I'm very cautious when it comes to Cub Cadet because I know they made good stuff when owned by IH, but at some point their build quality went to crap and I'm not sure exactly when that happened.

I have a Cub 1811 built in 1986 by MTD.  A lot of the parts are the same as the 782.  Some of the parts still have IH stamped on them.  I also have a 1973 Cub 149.  The 1811 is built as rugged as the 149.  The 1811 also has a 3 point while the 149 has a sleeve hitch.



#5 classic ONLINE  

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Posted August 05, 2017 - 06:23 PM

If you want a tough tractor to move snow, plow, grade, etc., I would recommend an older Power King tractor. You can get them with hydraulics, three points, etc. and you can find them as package deals with all sorts of implements. I would look for a good one if I was going to spend three grand on something to do the type of work that you are talking about. Watch some videos of Power Kings working on you tube and you will see what they are capable of. I'm very happy with the one that I built last year and it's a real work horse. I still have a few things to paint on it before I can call it done, but it's my favorite tractor for the heavy work. This Power King is great for back blading my driveway after the heavy downpours that we've been having this summer. The 9hp Briggs engine has plenty of power to do the work needed to be done.

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#6 boyscout862 ONLINE  

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Posted August 05, 2017 - 06:28 PM

Take your time. The two most popular brands of the 60s, 70s and 80s (and also had the most attachments) were AC/Simplicity and Bolens. They are still available in southern new england. Keep an eye on CL(search by brand) and you will probably see a package that you want. A running GT with mower and snow plow should be available for $400 to $800. Other attachments are available. Check out your local swap meets. Good Luck, Rick
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#7 Mitchkrama OFFLINE  

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Posted August 05, 2017 - 07:42 PM

Thank you for the advice and trust me I've been searching CL under SUNSTAR, SIMPLICITY, and DEUTZ. i will say that while I'm eager to buy, I'm in no rush at the moment but do want to get ahead of winter. The simplicity needs some work and I would like to find something a little more turn-key.

#8 dodge trucker ONLINE  

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Posted August 05, 2017 - 09:07 PM

Take your time. The two most popular brands of the 60s, 70s and 80s (and also had the most attachments) were AC/Simplicity and Bolens. They are still available in southern new england. Keep an eye on CL(search by brand) and you will probably see a package that you want. A running GT with mower and snow plow should be available for $400 to $800. Other attachments are available. Check out your local swap meets. Good Luck, Rick


Around here bolens is all but non existent and always has been. In the Chicago area crapsman is by far the most popular, among the better grade machines it's Cub cadet, wheel horse and of course Deere.
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#9 Mitchkrama OFFLINE  

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Posted August 05, 2017 - 11:00 PM

Bolens are fairly common out here. I'm not as familiar with them, but they have a good reputation and their HT series looks like a strong machine.

Edited by Mitchkrama, August 05, 2017 - 11:07 PM.


#10 glgrumpy OFFLINE  

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Posted August 05, 2017 - 11:03 PM

Hard to find implements for a Sun Star???  I own one now, new to them. I see them in diff configurations at swap meets and shows alot. Is a little harder to find a three point tho and expensive if one is found. Might try ebay for items.  I have a deck, would like a blade for front.  I have a brush for my Power King and I'm not sure I even like it. I use a little for snow work in winter, that is all I've used it for. It's OK, but think the blade is much better attachment for snow. Facebook has a Simplicity forum for collectors and sales, look for that. Think it is even based out East if I recall.


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#11 Mitchkrama OFFLINE  

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Posted August 05, 2017 - 11:17 PM

Believe it or not, those items only pop up every now and then out here. The broom isn't for the snow, its to clean up the yard from sand, gravel, thatch, and in particular those damn acorns that my backpack blower can only do so much with.

#12 LilysDad OFFLINE  

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Posted August 06, 2017 - 07:47 AM

I assume you have checked CL and your local papers to see what the most common brand of impliments are in your area? In my area CC and Sears are thick, WH and Bolens not so much. John Deere are probably available everywhere a JD dealer exists, but are over priced.


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#13 olds45512 ONLINE  

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Posted August 06, 2017 - 08:16 AM

Thanks I'll look into those machines. I'm very cautious when it comes to Cub Cadet because I know they made good stuff when owned by IH, but at some point their build quality went to crap and I'm not sure exactly when that happened.


The quality went to crap around 95, anything prior to that is good. The 1811 is a great tractor and is identical to a 782 but with a better engine, the 1811 has a magnum 18 which is much more reliable than the kt17 found in the 782. Cub Cadet parts support and attachment availability can't be beat.

Edited by olds45512, August 06, 2017 - 08:19 AM.

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#14 Mitchkrama OFFLINE  

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Posted August 06, 2017 - 09:48 AM

I assume you have checked CL and your local papers to see what the most common brand of impliments are in your area? In my area CC and Sears are thick, WH and Bolens not so much. John Deere are probably available everywhere a JD dealer exists, but are over priced.


The four machine makes in my original post are the most common in my area.

Edited by Mitchkrama, August 06, 2017 - 09:52 AM.


#15 Mitchkrama OFFLINE  

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Posted August 06, 2017 - 09:56 AM

The quality went to crap around 95, anything prior to that is good. The 1811 is a great tractor and is identical to a 782 but with a better engine, the 1811 has a magnum 18 which is much more reliable than the kt17 found in the 782. Cub Cadet parts support and attachment availability can't be beat.


Thanks for that info, I wasn't quite sure where exactly that change took place, so it's nice to know where to draw the line.




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