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Old 08-28-2010, 05:00 PM   #1
R.J. OP
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Compact tractors

We are moving to an acreage and are looking for a good yard tractor. Basically, we need to be able to move snow (lots of it) and mow grass. We will also need to be able to level out a few rough spots of lumpy dirt and knock down some alfalfa when it gets a little long (no need to bale it though). We might use a tiller maybe twice a year. So far we have looked at the following:

John Deer 2305 - 27 hp diesel tractor with front end loader and 52" mower deck.

Massey Ferguson 1500 - 28 gas? hp with front end loader and 52" mower deck.

Does anyone have any experience with either of these two models? Likes, dislikes? Advice?
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Old 08-28-2010, 05:40 PM   #2
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How much snow to move and how much grass to mow? I've got about a quarter mile of lanes and 5 acres of pasture to mow. I have a 38hp Kubota with a 6' brush hog and 6' blade. I wouldn't want anything smaller for our place.

And if you get R4 industrial tires like most of these tractors come with, you'll still need chains for the winter. First winter I plowed without and almost got stuck a bunch of times and slid around. Next winter I got chains for the rear and it was huge improvement. Last winter I put chains on all four and now nothing stops me and I can plow in half the time, when I didn't have any chains.

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Old 08-28-2010, 06:21 PM   #3
adam_c_eckhardt
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How many acres?

I'm in the same boat, but probably a year or two away from actually getting one. Currently I'm looking for an excavator...

Anyways... you may want to consider a Kubota- bigger B series like a 2920 or a little L series. The smallest of the L series (the grand 40 series) can be equipped with a belly mower.

In terms of JD maybe look at a few models bigger than the 2305. My father in law has a 2305 and it is an AWESOME little machine, but he wishes he stepped up a notch or two.

There are quite a few people around here that swear by Kioti- you can definitely save a few bucks- They are heavy, a little more crude, less bells and whistles, etc... but I'm still hesitant to go with a brand that I hadn't heard of until a year or two ago. For my wife and I this machine is going to have to last 20 years, so it's got to be good.

In terms of tillers- every dealer I've visited has said to go with a Kuhn- NOT anything built by or for JD or Kubota. After I heard this a few times I figured there must be a reason why they all swear by them.

In terms of moving snow- you can buy a snow blade that mounts to the quick connect on your FEL- The nice thing about that is that you can raise it up high if you need to knock down a bank or push a pile back- can't do that with a snowblower or traditional blade.

Both my local dealers are big on customer service, and have both brought up a good point- "Doesn't matter what you buy- it's going to need parts and service, and it's going to break down once in a while- you need to rely on a good dealer when that happens." Probably not the most important factor when shopping, but definitely something to keep in mind.

Oh yeah- I know a lot of people that enjoy having a york rake and grader blade... they can come in handy if you want to level out a few rough spots.

Good luck- let us know what you get and how you like it.
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Old 08-28-2010, 06:45 PM   #4
derangedhermit
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Like others have said, how many acres to mow? A 52" deck isn't very big.

I looked at the 2305 hard, because of the price. I bought the 2320 and am glad I did. It is a pleasure to use. Consider the additional ground clearance, if nothing else.

Good local service is important in picking between brands.

I can highly recommend the site http://www.tractorbynet.com/ for advice on all things related to compact tractors.
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Old 08-28-2010, 08:29 PM   #5
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I 2nd the www.tractorbynet.com site. I frequent there a lot.

I'll tell you what I have owned and how it has worked for me.

First Tractor was a Yanmar 1702d 4x4 diesel with no FEL - It did what it was supposed to. Good little tractor and easy to get parts for if you needed.

Traded that in on a Kubota BX22 with FEL and BH - Lots of plastic. Refined with no leg room.

Traded that in on a Kioti LK3054 with a FEL. Probably the most "work" oriented. Did everything I asked of it and more. I would buy another Kioti again!

Traded that in on a 1967 Chevelle 396 (won't go there).

Just recently bought a Mahindra 2516 with FEL - Decent tractor. TERRIBLE dealer support here locally. I've had the diff lock rebuilt once already and it still doesn't work right. I'm dealing with the area rep now. Tractor is basically a Mitsubishi and is good but like I said the local dealer (who I did not buy from) sucks.

If you are near PA check out Wallace Tractor and tell him I sent ya. He gave me an AWESOME deal.

I wouldn't even look at a gas tractor. If you have snow you will want 4x4 and make sure you get a block heater. Tire chains are probably a must for you as well. I moved 20in of snow just fine with my Mahindra with no diff lock in 4x4 with the FEL and 5' rear blade angled.

Good luck!
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Old 08-29-2010, 06:47 AM   #6
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Thanks for the input and remarks! Keep 'em coming.

The property itself is just under 8 acres. Most of it is a fairly smoothe alfalfa field that has been hayed regularly for over 10-15 years. There are trees around the perimeter, but I don't plan on mowing around them, only along the row on the inside. Most of the land will be fenced for horse pasture, except for the yard, which is about 1 acre, and a wide enough band around the outside of the fence (inside the trees) to drive a pickup truck, ride a bike or ride a horse around. Periodically, I may need to knock down the alfafa if the horses cannot keep up. Once they start grazing, I don't expect this will be an issue. The lawn area is has no major bumps as it has been mowed regularly. There are few stands of trees and a flowerbed in the front that I need to be able to get around, so a bigger tractor isn't ideal.

As far as snow, I live way north, so we see 6 months of winter at a minimum. Snowfall isn't usually more than a foot at a time and might accumulate to around 2 feet over the winter. The house is relatively close to the main road and has a paved drive that is about 50 yards long and less than 10 yards wide. There is also quite a bit of turn around space on the grass beside the drive, and lots of room to push snow well out of the way.

So, basically, I need a machine that is big enough to push the snow for six months, and small enough to maneuver around a fenced 1 acre yard. Eventually, I will till a small garden and possibly use it to move square bales.

I haven't looked at the Kubota's yet, but plan to this week.
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Old 09-09-2010, 12:59 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by R.J.
We are moving to an acreage and are looking for a good yard tractor. Basically, we need to be able to move snow (lots of it) and mow grass. We will also need to be able to level out a few rough spots of lumpy dirt and knock down some alfalfa when it gets a little long (no need to bale it though). We might use a tiller maybe twice a year. So far we have looked at the following:

John Deer 2305 - 27 hp diesel tractor with front end loader and 52" mower deck.

Massey Ferguson 1500 - 28 gas? hp with front end loader and 52" mower deck.

Does anyone have any experience with either of these two models? Likes, dislikes? Advice?
Don't know allot about your two choices but I needed one for some land I need to clear and a few other chores around the place so I started this thread.

I am pretty happy with the Kubota I ended up with and have found I use it a lot. I have also made a few attachments for it.

This detachable rake I built for it is great for clean up and burning.

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Old 09-14-2010, 05:24 PM   #8
sstewart
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Tractor

Buy a Kubota and you will not regret it. I have owned four of them,still have two and never had a problem.(knock on wood)
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Old 09-16-2010, 04:42 AM   #9
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Kioti makes a nice tractor, I've had this for a few years with
zero problems. It was about 5K cheaper than the big name
brands when I bought it.
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Old 09-16-2010, 10:59 AM   #10
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My neighbor has one of those big tractors like that with a loader on the front. He only has an acre of land, so it is amusing to watch how he uses it for the most trivial jobs-I guess to justify its purchase to his wife.
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Old 09-16-2010, 12:05 PM   #11
Desert Skies
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Kinda like my buddies that deer hunt together. They all have tricked out Rangers and Mules with all the latest gadgetry. They hunt together and usually only can take one to the lease when they go.

I only have 4.5 acres and am amazed at the jobs I can find for mine. Tree pushing, burning and dirt work make up the majority of it. Made a detachable 5' jib for the bucket. I've lifted all kinds of things with it.

Needed to work on my lawn mower so I used it to lift it onto the welding table.

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Old 09-17-2010, 06:41 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jeep44
My neighbor has one of those big tractors like that with a loader on the front. He only has an acre of land, so it is amusing to watch how he uses it for the most trivial jobs-I guess to justify its purchase to his wife.
That is exactly what I am trying to do. I want something like that but probaly only have a few days worth of work for it. Although I could build a wicked motocross track with one of those.
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Old 05-12-2011, 02:35 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jeep44 View Post
My neighbor has one of those big tractors like that with a loader on the front. He only has an acre of land, so it is amusing to watch how he uses it for the most trivial jobs-I guess to justify its purchase to his wife.

Hmm. Maybe he has some sort of physical ailment. Maybe he has a limitation that you are unaware of. I find it amusing that you find it amusing that someone else has a tool you think he doesn't need.

I used to have a Kubota B series 23HP diesel with FEL and 5' blade for my 5 acres. But I paid for it by doing snow removal for about 25 of my neighbors for 2 winters. Price was $50 for a short driveway, $100 for a long one, or $1000 for a season pass. I out-priced all the other snow removers in the area and I lived close enough to just drive over [everyone had 5-10 acres) and we all live 1/4 - 1/2 mile from the paved road. My wife was flabbergasted how easy it was to pay for the $13K "toy". But I heard from people all the time: "Why do you need a tractor for 5 acres. That's stupid". I just gave up explaining. It is so nice to have a FEL and I did find 5000 things to use it for besides snow removal. When we sold the property a few years ago and moved to the burbs I sold that tractor for almost what I paid for it because the prices had risen. I still smile over how much fun it was to do routine tasks with a diesel powered tool.

We have a small cabin in the mountains with a small acreage. I am now 55 and clearly see why someone would like a small tractor with FEL to help out. Work becomes fun and the remaining time can be used for more fun stuff like riding. Someday soon I may be that neighbor with the tractor and you can laugh at me too.

T.

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Old 11-24-2011, 11:07 AM   #14
CodyY
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Buddy of mine selling his 30hp NewHolland 4wd with bucket.
~350 hrs 2003 model

In Fort Worth area. Need it gone before the end of the year. Upgrading to 60hp
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Old 11-23-2012, 04:31 PM   #15
CodeMonkee
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How about two wheel walk behind tractors?

Anybody have experience with those?

For some things it would be nice to have a front end loader that had a grappler on it, but I think I could rent one for the few times I would need that.

The thing about my property is that most of it is too sloped for a conventional tractor - you would just tip it over. Plus some of the areas I want to use a tractor in you can't get to with a large tractor - the space between trees is too small.

Some of the walk behind tractors have some interesting implements, such as snow blowers and chippers/shredders and rototillers. The shredder/chipper and brush cutter attachments would be good for some of the work I want to do on my land.
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