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DIXON TRACTORS: Does this company have the slightest clue about this market?


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#46 wvbuzzmaster OFFLINE  

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Posted May 16, 2011 - 09:29 PM

I agree there coldone, and wasnt trying to trample anyone, just think that some are underestimated in ability to be a GT.

#47 hydriv OFFLINE  

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Posted May 21, 2011 - 06:09 AM

so why can't we call the Dixon a real GT??


Since you asked that question......... here is my answer.

Because Dixon FAILS when it comes to meeting the standard of what it takes to be a GT. Go to their website. Click on the link ATTACHMENTS and read the words "Full line of attachments". Then look at what is on offer in this "Full Line".

Answer me this. Does a mulching kit, headlamps, two types of baggers, a battery charger, a tractor cover or some absurd "trim lights" have anything to do with being a garden tractor? Do you see any "ground engagement attachments" available? Can you find any mention of a sleeve hitch or 3 pt hitch for any of the three tractors on offer? In the specs, they have left out the shipping weight, tire sizes and four of the dimensions. WHY? This website has been around for almost a year. Why hasn't it been updated. On their BEST model they say the following:

"The Dixon 26HP Kawasaki GT is a true garden tractor. No frills held back on this Dixon tractor, it comes loaded with features. From the electric deck lift system that allows the cutting deck to raise and lower at the touch of a button to the high back seat with arm rests. Premium gauges and controls give the operator total comfort unmatched by the competition."


If it is a "TRUE GARDEN TRACTOR", then explain to me why there is not a single word in that message that relates to what a true garden tractor is all about ..GROUND ENGAGING.

LAWN TRACTORS are supposed to be able to cut grass, blow snow, push snow with a blade, pull a dump cart or perhaps even a small lawn roller and spike aerator. Lawn tractors don't come with sleeve hitches or three point hitches because the manufacturer did not build them with components STRONG ENOUGH to pull a turning plow or a set of discs or many of the available harrows year after year without the trans-axle falling apart or the frame cracking from the twisting that takes place when you put a tractor on really rough ground.

It's not up to you to convince me that a Dixon deserves to be called a true garden tractor. That's Dixon's job and they haven't done it. There's a reason why true garden tractors weigh in at 650 pounds and up. They are made from heavy gauge steel and most often use cast steel or cast iron front axles and rear axles. They need that kind of strength to withstand the rigors of being a true garden tractor that will continue to give service for 40 plus years if it is looked after. Lawn tractors often fail after just five years. I've been a member of Garden Web's tractor forum for about ten years or so and read all kinds of reports from lawn tractor owners complaining about their broken machine that cannot be repaired from an economical standpoint after only six years of use.

If Dixon claims that their tractors are true garden tractors but you can't plow your garden with one, then someone has their head shoved into a spot where sunlight never penetrates and it surely isn't me.

Edited by hydriv, May 21, 2011 - 04:45 PM.

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#48 cp7 OFFLINE  

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Posted May 21, 2011 - 06:55 PM

Tom if you check a different link on their page (specifications) it does give all the specs that your looking for but they only prove to strengthen your point. http://www.dixon-ztr...9,249361,249363

#49 hydriv OFFLINE  

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Posted May 22, 2011 - 06:34 AM

Tom if you check a different link on their page (specifications) it does give all the specs that your looking for but they only prove to strengthen your point. http://www.dixon-ztr...9,249361,249363


Thanks. I somehow missed that link when I was going over their site looking for more information.

Dixon refers to their first two models as "Yard Tractors" and their top model as a "True Garden Tractor". But in looking at the spec sheets, all three tractors are essentially the same except that the "True Garden Tractor" has 12" rear rims and 8" front rims instead of 8" rears and 6" fronts. Yes, it does have ONE more HP and ONE more gallon of fuel in the gas tank along with armrests on the operator's seat along with the all-important "Brush Guard Bumper" on the front. Whoopee!!!! I wasn't aware that those differences are vital to being called a garden tractor as opposed to being the yard tractor this unit actually is. The Brush Guard is laughable. Is Dixon suggesting that this tractor be used for bush hogging some overgrown field while using the stock deck? Or is that Brush Guard just some lame-ass marketing ploy to try and convince the uneducated buyer that he's actually buying a garden tractor?

Does Dixon disclose the make and model of the hydro in each model? Nope. Why not? Shouldn't the prospective buyer be told that the most expensive model uses a different hydro than the other two tractors? Shouldn't we be told what the gauge of steel used for the deck and tractor frame is? Other manufacturers do. And a mere 50 pounds difference between the so-called GT and the YT isn't exactly awe-inspiring. We don't even know if the hydro's in any of these tractors is serviceable or just another sealed unit that will doom these machines to the scrap pile in less than 10 years.

#50 cp7 OFFLINE  

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Posted May 22, 2011 - 01:49 PM

Your using that Canadian math again. 642# minus 492# gives me a 150# difference. I don't mean to be picky but it seems they have you so worked up your not seeing straight. I think that "brush guard" is more of a garage/shed/parked car guard because you know the operator (Steve-YouTube - ‪Steves Riding Lawn Mower DUI Arrest Video‬‏) is probably not going to have coffee in that cup holder.
What I want to know is what the lever on the right rear operates.2.jpg

Edited by cp7, May 22, 2011 - 06:04 PM.


#51 hydriv OFFLINE  

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Posted May 22, 2011 - 04:38 PM

Your using that Canadian math again. 642# minus 492# gives me a 150# difference. I don't mean to be picky but it seems they have you so worked up your not seeing straight. I think that "brush guard" is more of a garage/shed/parked car guard because you know the operator (Steve-YouTube - ‪Steves Riding Lawn Mower DUI Arrest Video‬‏) is probably not going to have coffee in that cup holder.
What I want to know is what the lever on the right rear operates.[ATTACH=CONFIG]14998[/ATTACH]



Nah.... Dixon doesn't have me worked up at all but I have to wonder why anyone could read their website and come away with the conclusion that it's OK for Dixon to declare that tractor the true GT that Dixon claims it to be. And I don't mind you being picky at all. I screwed up the math and I'm happy that you mentioned it. While the 642 pound weight moves the that tractor into the lower realm of garden tractor class, Dixon hasn't added the necessary features to make it a real garden tractor. So, let's look at that.

How hard would it have been to develop a sleeve hitch option for that model with a linear actuator on it? How hard would it have been to offer tire chains, wheel weights and front counter weight? How hard would it have been to cut a deal with Brinly-Hardy or some other company to produce ground-engaging implements with a Dixon decal on them? Where's the garden dump cart, the plow blade, the snow blower, a choice of deck sizes etc? Are we not right in the PEAK season for buying tractors? Why bring these units to market with only a friggen mower deck? If someone wants an all-season tractor, then they are going to want to buy a package deal because that's how you get the best bang for your buck. This "Oooh..... I'll sell you the tractor in 2010 but with luck, you'll be able to come back and buy a blower or blade some time in 2011" really does nothing to inspire any potential buyer when he's left with having to figure out how he'll deal with his snow for the winter of 2010/2011. What does the dealer tell his customer? He can't really say much of anything because he has zero control over the timing of attachments. And if these attachments are close to being released, then why are they saying nothing about that on their website?

Marketing like this is just plain asinine. Who would want to be a dealer for what is essentially a lame-duck tractor? Even the lowest cost D-100 John Deere lawn tractor is backed up with a choice of two garden carts, a canopy, a snow cab, lawn sweeper, cargo mount, snow blower, snow blade, two sprayers, lawn roller, two fertilizer spreaders and several aerators. All of that equipment is sanctioned for a $1500.00 MSRP LAWN TRACTOR. The top model Dixon is around $3500.00 and offers none of that equipment.

#52 wvbuzzmaster OFFLINE  

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Posted May 22, 2011 - 05:02 PM

I would like to say this ONE MORE TIME: It looks like a Craftsman, and Craftsman is a real GARDEN TRACTOR.

ADDITIONALLY: It Doesn't matter WHAT they offer, it matters WHERE they offer it. If they are offering it at Home Depot, then the Brinly-Hardy attachments are available for them, because Home Depot sells Brinly-Hardy attachments. So how can you say Dixon was too ignorant to cut the deal themselves, when there was already a deal cut with the SAME company (Brinly-Hardy) at the distributors of the Dixon tractors.

I think you are getting so worked up about Dixon's website to consider the dealers. Business is not about putting it ALL on the website, it's about getting the PEOPLE where their product IS. Once you get them there it is up to the DEALER to help get the customer the package deal the customer WANTS.

#53 hydriv OFFLINE  

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Posted May 22, 2011 - 05:48 PM

I would like to say this ONE MORE TIME: It looks like a Craftsman, and Craftsman is a real GARDEN TRACTOR.

ADDITIONALLY: It Doesn't matter WHAT they offer, it matters WHERE they offer it. If they are offering it at Home Depot, then the Brinly-Hardy attachments are available for them, because Home Depot sells Brinly-Hardy attachments. So how can you say Dixon was too ignorant to cut the deal themselves, when there was already a deal cut with the SAME company (Brinly-Hardy) at the distributors of the Dixon tractors.

I think you are getting so worked up about Dixon's website to consider the dealers. Business is not about putting it ALL on the website, it's about getting the PEOPLE where their product IS. Once you get them there it is up to the DEALER to help get the customer the package deal the customer WANTS.



Casey,
It's obvious that you know very little about marketing products. The purpose of a website is to provide FULL information about your product to potential buyers. The internet is the place where many people shop for products. If someone clicks on Dixon's website and does not see information that fully explains the capabilities of the tractor, then they will just go and buy a Cub Cadet, Deere, Craftsman, Husqvarna or some other brand that DOES give them the information they are searching for. In this world, you get ONE SHOT at impressing a potential customer. If you fail to make that impression, you just lost him or her for good.

Just because you think the Dixon looks like a Craftsman does not make it identical to any Craftsman model that you are familiar with. Tractors are made to the customer's specifications and apparently, Dixon themselves don't manufacture these models. Until someone does a side-by-side comparison between a Dixon and a Craftsman, no one knows for sure how the Dixon is made or what it is truly capable of. Show me another manufacturer that is in the Yard Tractor/GT business that does not show the attachments available for their machines?

Where does it say on their website that Home Depot carries their product? I checked their dealer locator and after clicking on well over 100 of their dealers in Florida, Georgia and into Indiana, I never saw a single Home Depot store pop up. So if it matters "where they offer it", then you should see some of the names of so-called Dixon dealers on that map. Someone in the appliance business doesn't instil much confidence in me as a place to buy a tractor for any price. Where's his repair shop, parts department and other things that should be there to support the product he's selling?

Maybe you should call up Dixon and become a dealer since they seem really good at giving away dealerships to just about anyone that applies. :bigrofl:

#54 cp7 OFFLINE  

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Posted May 22, 2011 - 06:02 PM

If you enlarge the pic of the tractor on their website or in my previous post you'll see a lever that looks like it might actuate a rear lift. I can only assume it's a sleeve hitch that's manually lifted like the old sears hitches. But like you say there's no mention of ground engaging capabilities.
Going to Sears site it does look exactly like a Craftsman model. Sears does says that they have ground engaging capabilities but if you really look at the specs they look real bogus. 6" fronts and 8" rears? 8" turning radius? 596 lbs? 12 ga. frame? they give all the specs your looking for Tom but I don't think they're real accurate.
http://www.sears.com/shc/s/p_10153_12605_07128861000P?prdNo=1&blockNo=1&blockType=G1
The worst thing is that "garden tractor" is open to to much interpretation. I've seen Craftsman's pull a plow but the question is for how long will it do it.
I've had my wife help me hang some drywall but until she can do it day in and day out she's not a sheet rocker.

#55 wvbuzzmaster OFFLINE  

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Posted May 22, 2011 - 06:26 PM

Casey,
It's obvious that you know very little about marketing products. The purpose of a website is to provide FULL information about your product to potential buyers. The internet is the place where many people shop for products. If someone clicks on Dixon's website and does not see information that fully explains the capabilities of the tractor, then they will just go and buy a Cub Cadet, Deere, Craftsman, Husqvarna or some other brand that DOES give them the information they are searching for. In this world, you get ONE SHOT at impressing a potential customer. If you fail to make that impression, you just lost him or her for good.

Just because you think the Dixon looks like a Craftsman does not make it identical to any Craftsman model that you are familiar with. Tractors are made to the customer's specifications and apparently, Dixon themselves don't manufacture these models. Until someone does a side-by-side comparison between a Dixon and a Craftsman, no one knows for sure how the Dixon is made or what it is truly capable of. Show me another manufacturer that is in the Yard Tractor/GT business that does not show the attachments available for their machines?

Where does it say on their website that Home Depot carries their product? I checked their dealer locator and after clicking on well over 100 of their dealers in Florida, Georgia and into Indiana, I never saw a single Home Depot store pop up. So if it matters "where they offer it", then you should see some of the names of so-called Dixon dealers on that map. Someone in the appliance business doesn't instil much confidence in me as a place to buy a tractor for any price. Where's his repair shop, parts department and other things that should be there to support the product he's selling?

Maybe you should call up Dixon and become a dealer since they seem really good at giving away dealerships to just about anyone that applies. :bigrofl:


I read through this entire thread and remember the first person to say Home Depot sold them was Chuck.

From what I have read they are made like the husqvarna garden tractors.

And are available thru Home Depot.

Product Information Error Page


Now Hydriv, why don't YOU go down to Home Depot and LOOK for YOURSELF!!

#56 hydriv OFFLINE  

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Posted May 22, 2011 - 09:18 PM

Casey, I was in HD yesterday and there wasn't a blue machine in sight. They had lots of green/yellow ones though. How about the HD's in your area? Been to those lately?

#57 wvbuzzmaster OFFLINE  

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Posted May 22, 2011 - 09:22 PM

Casey, I was in HD yesterday and there wasn't a blue machine in sight. They had lots of green/yellow ones though. How about the HD's in your area? Been to those lately?

I don't shop at HD because the selection of stuff (hardware, lumber, and tools included in that) sucks 9 times out of 10, so I go to Lowe's.

#58 hydriv OFFLINE  

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Posted May 23, 2011 - 07:12 AM

Rather than continue to go 'round and 'round on this issue, I decided to do some digging on my own.

It turns out that Dixon began as a family business that was originally a machine shop operation doing custom work for certain airplane manufacturers. For reasons I won't go into here, the owner's son found himself with the rights to a patented ZTR mechanical drive system and began making ZTR's at a price that homeowners could afford. He eventually ventured into the commercial end of the business before selling the company to Coleman Products (camping stoves, generators, pressure washers etc) . A few years later, Coleman sold Dixon to Blount, the company behind the Oregon brand of chainsaw products along with a few other brands. Blount eventually sold Dixon to Husqvarna and I understand that they still own Dixon.

That information certainly casts a whole different light on this discussion since AYP, Electolux and Husqvarna are all tied together and made tractors for Sears under the Craftsman name. Purchasing Dixon simply afforded Husqvarna a fresh opportunity to sell their tractors under a different name. That would explain the similarities in appearance between the Dixon's and the Craftsman's. Further digging produced this Press Release.

Dixon’s New Garden Tractor Delivers Function and Form

CHARLOTTE, N.C. – October 28, 2010 – Expanding on its successful 2010 entry in the tractor market, for 2011 Dixon introduces the D2654GT.

A truly multi-functional garden tractor, the D2654GT features a 26HP twin cylinder Kawasaki FR engine that carries a 3-year consumer warranty and features a 54” ventilated stamped cutting deck with four anti-scalp wheels and a nose roller. A sleeve hitch for ground engaging attachments is also sold separately.

The unit is loaded with features such as a hydrostatic pedal control transmission, electric push button blade engagement, cruise control, premium gauges and controls, upgraded front bumper, and deluxe comfort features like the high back seat with standard with arm rests.


“We wanted to make sure that we could produce a quality product and also deliver features that make sense for users,” said Brian Rowan, Global Product Manager, Tractors. “No detail was overlooked when creating this tractor.”


What makes the D2654GT a true garden tractor is its ability to work with ground-engaging attachments, such as a ground-breaking plow, harrow, and cultivator. Other accessories are available, including a core aerator and mulch kit for effective lawn fertilization, snow blade and blower, and a dozer blade. These additional products make the tractor a year round tool for larger land owners.


The D2654GT has a recommended MSRP of $2,799.95.


The MSRP pricing provided herein is for reference purposes only. Actual retail prices are established by the applicable dealer and may vary by location. MSRP pricing is subject to change without prior notice.

The above information does answer the question about whether that model was capable of using ground engaging implements but it also amplifies my original question that made up the subject title of this thread.

Why is the availability of a sleeve hitch not posted front and center in the description of the tractor? Why should a prospective buyer have to spend an hour digging for that information? Is the Dixon tractor simply a Husky or a Craftsman in a blue suit?

Dixon has enjoyed an enviable reputation in the ZTR field for 30 years or so. However, as I see it, the only thing "Dixon" about these tractors is the color and the decal that says Dixon. From my research, it appears that all the Dixon ZTR products are continuing to be made in their original Coffeyville, Kansas facility but the yard/garden tractors are produced in Husqvarna's plant in Orangeville, South Carolina.

What we are seeing here is not unlike what Modern Tool and Die has done over the past 40 years. They bought up several highly respected brand names known for producing quality products and then continued to use those names to bring their own designs and quality standards to the marketplace. The problem with that strategy is that many consumers have formed the belief that current products bearing names such as Bolens, White, Cub Cadet and Troy-built are not built to the same standards of quality as they were prior to MTD acquiring those companies.





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#59 wvbuzzmaster OFFLINE  

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Posted May 23, 2011 - 11:32 AM

Thank you for finally digging up something to prove my point earlier with it looking just as stout as my Craftsman. With that said we can move on with our lives and find something else worth discussing. :deadhorse:

#60 hydriv OFFLINE  

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Posted May 23, 2011 - 12:06 PM

Casey,
Don't expect me to do your job for you the next time. :bigrofl::bigrofl::bigrofl:




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