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 02-21-2001, 12:06 Post: 24485
Ray Stelly



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I am purchasing a home on five acres in East Texas. The home itself is on the front acre or so. The rest of the acreage is pretty much a flat field. I want to buy something so that I won't be mowing all day. I also want to have a fairly large garden. My brother-in-law says I need something in the 40 hp range. I have no idea, being a city boy myself.Can anybody give me some ideas on what to buy as far as the size of a tractor and what equipment I should buy along with it. And while I'm asking, what can I expect to pay for all this new or used?






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 02-21-2001, 12:31 Post: 24487
Bird Senter

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Ray, nothing wrong with buying a 40hp tractor if you can afford it, and how many things do you think you'll be doing later besides the mowing and the garden? You always find more things to do than you expected. However, a much smaller tractor (20-25hp) will probably do all the things you want to do; just takes a little longer than a big tractor. As for price; new or used? You need to start visiting some dealers and talking to them. I'm on 10 acres and even do a little on my brother's 10 acres, my brother-in-law's 10 acres, and occasionally for neighbors. And I have about a 9,000 sq. ft. vegetable garden. I used a 16hp Kubota for 4 years, but traded up and now have a B2710 (27hp) and a number of implements. The tractor in 1999 cost $12,600, front end loader $2,900, 5' brush hog $495, 5" finish mower $1,695, 5' box blade $395, and in 1995 a 40" tiller $1,300, middle buster $99, cultivator $199, etc.






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 02-21-2001, 12:41 Post: 24488
Ray Stelly



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Thanks for the quick response. As a matter of fact I just sent an e-mail to a dealer asking him some questions. I think your advise is good. I'm going to see what he says and also visit some dealers here in the Houston area.

I am very interested in your garden. Which of those implements do you use on the garden? Obviously the tiller, but what else? I don't think I am going to start with anything nearly as big as 9,000 sq. ft. I am going to start small but eventually work up into that neighborhood.

Thanks for the advice.






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 02-21-2001, 12:57 Post: 24489
Bird Senter

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Ray, I started my garden with just the tiller, but every year or two, you can break up the soil deeper if you go over it first with a moldboard (turning plow) or the middle buster before using the tiller. I also have an antique piece of junk that was a 14" horse drawn moldboard that, with a little cutting and welding, was converted to a 3-point plow so I use it for that purpose. When I had the B7100, I planted by rows 5' apart and could run the tractor and 40" tiller between the rows, but now that I have the B2710, I till the garden before planting, but plant the rows 4' apart and use the one row cultivator by straddling the row with the tractor. When the plants get too tall to straddle, I do an absolute minimum of work with a hoe.






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 02-21-2001, 13:03 Post: 24490
Ray Stelly



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I can see that I am going to be a regular around this place. Thanks.






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 02-21-2001, 19:15 Post: 24503
Todd



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Hi Ray,
I agree, lots of great info on this site. Like Bird, I've got a B2710, 10 acres, and a garden about 1/4acre that I've decided to shrink a bit. I have less toys and experience than Bird, but I'm working on that. Looking at your original post, it sounds like a lot of your use will be mowing, like mine is. Is the field smooth enough for a finish mower, or will you have to use a rotary cutter (aka a bush hog). I ask, because if you use a finish mower, going bigger than our 2710's doesn't buy you much in time savings. We can use a 72" belly mount mower, and the tractor's small enough to maneuver fairly easily. But if you need the rotary cutter, we're limitted to 60", and Kubota only recommends a 48", which is what I use. Going up a little bit in HP, and probably quite a bit in weight, might get you an easier 60", or even a 72" rotary cutter capability. It'd be faster, but on only 5 acres, bigger might have some downside too, besides the increased cost.
Todd






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 02-21-2001, 20:21 Post: 24505
Roger L.



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One of the fun things about having a little land is having a place to play with your tractor. Almost everyone wishes that they had bought a slightly larger tractor. You rarely hear of anyone wishing that their tractor was smaller. But the truth is that for 5 acres just about any size will work fine. The smaller ones will take longer to do the job, but not too much so. Frankly, anything from about 18 hp on up will do the job. BTW, you will never use all that extra horsepower. What the larger horsepower tractor is buying you is not horsepower - that is just a bonus. What you are really getting is a wider heavier platform to use wider heavier tools.






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 02-22-2001, 12:05 Post: 24542
Craig Dashner



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You can get by with a small tractor. I have a JD 4100. I am pleased as punch with it! The loader works great, have moved much dirt with it. I have a 5' finishing mower in back and as far as the power is concerned I don't even know it's back there. I even have a steep hill I mow up and down. I can mow uphill(20%-30%grade), with grass taller than it should be with the engine barely bogging at all.I am sure it would run a 6' if I could keep the front wheels on the ground. Smile I like the size and manuverability of this tractor. It does everything I ask of it with no complaints and comes back for more. Bigger certainly is not going to hurt, but I think you could start at the bottom with no problems either. I think it is important to state that I have never run out of power. You lose traction way before you ever run out of power with these things. If you are used to a "riding mower" with a 20hp engine, these compacts with a 20hp engine will blow you away. If you have reservations about size, try to set up a demo, or even rent a unit. I would suggest getting it with a mower, if that is the bulk of what you plan to do, so you can see what it is going to be like. Whatever you chose you will be happy!






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 02-23-2001, 13:17 Post: 24593
Dave Wells



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Ray,

Let me jump in with my $.02 worth...

I have about 3.5 acres, with about half wooded, half in lawn, with about 800' of paved 10' wide driveway. I have a JD4100 Hydro, which I got because my primary need was to cut the grass then keep the driveway cleaned up. You'd be amazed at what that li'l 20hp diesel will do - and a 5 gal tank of diesel lasts a long time while doing it. I initially YEARNED for a 4200/4300, but that would have cost me over 1000 lbs, for just a few extra horsepower, AND any implements I got would also cost a lot more too, because I would have gotten bigger implements! As, I recall, my initial pricing (new JD4200) with the few "must have" implements came in at greater that $45,000! For my 4100 I currently have a Curtis Hard-Side Cab, FEL with both a bucket and pallet forks, 54" belly mower, hyd. dump bagger, Snow Blower, Front Blade, Rotary Broom, Landscape rake, scarifier, lawn roller, dump cart, 8' tilt trailer, Chipper/Shredder, Spreader, 3PT weight Box, and Sickle-Bar Mower (the only thing I bought used) - and I have less than $35,000 TOTAL in all that. Which means, of course, that I can get a Kelly (or JD if they'll get it out!) backhoe, a 3PT Quick-Hitch, and I really want a li'l tiller....

Don't be afraid to look at the so called "Sub-Compact" tractors. And above all else, look at what YOU need to do with it. My neighbor has about 57 acres, with a pretty big kubota (about 37 hp) w/ Ag tires. If he gets on a lawn, he ruins it - that big Kubota is NOT for cutting the grass! He was really disappointed that I didn't get a Kubota - but the fact is, I looked at them HARD, and both my wife and I drove one. They are sweet tractors, but the decision for me was easy - first thing I needed to do was cut the grass and take care of the driveway, and Kubota didn't have a bagger or rotary broom. Although after-market rotary brooms are available, JD had one with their name on it. I REALLY liked the looks of the New Holland Boomers, but the local dealer didn't have a one on his lot - and wasn't interested in getting any! I sincerely believe that any of those 3 brands would provide you with a fine tractor, one that you can easily give to your kids. Whether or not YOU are satisfied with it depends on YOU making sure YOU get the one that works for what YOU want to do with it.

Remember that it's YOUR tractor - sure would be a shame to not get what you really WANT and NEED, especially since you're paying for it!

Hope this helps,
Dave Wells






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 02-23-2001, 13:37 Post: 24597
JeffM



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Dave, you have more implements than my local dealers! Sounds like a candy store! Do you have a place to store all those toys? Man, my wife would absolutely kill me if I came home with a rotary broom. Have fun.






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Discussion Boards > Active Subjects > Messages as Posted > Field Mowers Brush Cutters Forum

Thread 24485 Filter by Poster:
ALAN 1 | Bird Senter 3 | Craig Dashner 1 | Dave M 1 | Dave Wells 3 | Frank R Taylor 1 | harvey 1 | JeffM 3 | Ray Stelly 3 | RCH 1 | Roger L. 1 | Todd 2 |




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