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 09-19-2003, 17:55 Post: 64365
jjmellon



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 How big a tractor to farm 20 acres?

I've just bought a farm with about 20 acres of rolling fields to farm, 1/4 mile of rolling driveway to maintain and snowplow, and 50 acres of rolling woods to "manage".

What size tractor is big enough to farm 20 acres, including plowing up pasture? I assume that is the hardest job I've got, right?






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 09-19-2003, 19:23 Post: 64367
F350Lawman



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 How big a tractor to farm 20 acres?

I am no tractor expert but I'll take a stab.

I would say you can buy something a little bigger than you need and in the end you will save money. I think the large tractors are too big for the majority of us horse owners/hobby farmers/general use guys sot there's less competition. With the smaller market for the larger ones you can get them at a good price.

I help a farmer around here and use his JD 3020's and 4020's they are from 1969 to about 72 or so and are 65 and 95 pto horsepower respectively.

I think the 3020 with a FEL at around 65 or so HP would work great for you and they are not that much money considering what you get and the availability of parts and acessories. The 95 HP 4020 might be overkill but the prices seem to be about the same.

I see them online well under $10,000 U.S. or around 10,000 Candian some with 3rd party loaders.

If I had 70 acres I would look for something like that. This way I could plow, fix the road and haul wood without having to worry about having enough machine, all for much less than folks pay for new 25 hp compact trcators.






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 09-20-2003, 06:53 Post: 64405
TomG

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 How big a tractor to farm 20 acres?

Our expression around here that they all do pretty much the same work is well worn but is still a pretty good idea to start with. The expression goes along with 'size determines how fast a job gets done and seldom whether it can be done. Big ones do field work quickly and small ones do maneuvering quickly. A compact can plow a pasture with a small plow but it may not manage heavy bales. A big tractor may make a mess of a lawn or take all day to maneuver around landscaping, and they may not get into the woods at all unless major trails are made.

It's good to think about what the tractor will be doing five years from now. Neighbours sometimes help with big one-time projects. There's always going to be job contractors or small engine toys can do better than any single tractor. The trick is to find a size where the work over decades is going to keep the tractor reasonably busy.

I know this is pretty vague but you're probably just starting to think through this tractor stuff. Most people here went through the same thing and it does become clear. Just take some time to get the idea focused, and it's good to concentrate on what a tractor needs to do and how much time there is to do it rather than the tractor itself.






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 09-20-2003, 07:06 Post: 64406
Art White



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 How big a tractor to farm 20 acres?

There are several ways to get this done and part of it depends on you and your desires. A thirty to fifty horsepower four wheel drive can handle all of your needs and work well for years. The new tractors are very manuverable and agile with great performance with the best fuel economy ever seen. I feel an L-series Kubota would be the best value for you, to pick the exact model I would need more input from you.






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 09-20-2003, 08:34 Post: 64426
F350Lawman



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 How big a tractor to farm 20 acres?

One of the reasons I suggested the bigger tractor was economics. I think it might be the cheapest way to get all the work done now and any future work.

I also thought that farming 20 acres, it is not going to be very economical to buy a 50 HP new compact tractor unless he's gowing certain...err, shall we say "restricted" crops Smile. The 30hp would be good price-wise but he indicated he has an additional 50 acres of woods and a decent ammount of roads to maintain so that sounds a little small.

What do you think?






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 09-20-2003, 09:21 Post: 64433
Art White



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 How big a tractor to farm 20 acres?

My salesman was just telling me about a customer that can't afford a new chopper which he really needs ot get his crops in because he just had his 4020 engine rebuilt to the tune of 14000. Not bad to buy a used tractor that you don't know anything about for 7000. then six months later have to invest major money to repair. The 30 horsepower is fine as the chassis sizes are the same just differnt horsepowers so for the most part the attachments are identical. The manuverability of the new tractors are far improved over the old. The start ability of a new diesel vs the old is something I'd be worring about as the older JD diesels need to be 70 degrees or better to start.






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 09-20-2003, 11:59 Post: 64439
F350Lawman



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 How big a tractor to farm 20 acres?


hy-per-bo-le [ hi-prbolee ]
noun

exaggeration: deliberate and obvious exaggeration used for effect, for example, "I could eat a million of these'








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 09-22-2003, 17:55 Post: 64577
jjmellon



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 How big a tractor to farm 20 acres?

I visited my local Kubota dealer on Saturday, and he suggested the MX5000 with FEL and a rear snowblower. That's a 50HP basic tractor, apparently the lowest $/HP for a Kubota. Does that sound like the right tradeoff, or would less HP and more features for the same price (e.g.. the L-series) make more sense? I guess "more features" means front PTO, syncromesh gears and/or hydrostatic drive. Would a 30HP tractor with these features be better value than 50HP without? Or maybe I should pay more money and get both the extra HP and the extra features?






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 09-23-2003, 07:26 Post: 64619
TomG

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 How big a tractor to farm 20 acres?

It's a tough call and it may be that you don't quite have confidence in the dealer. Dealers are good at matching tractors to needs and budgets, which is what they do and why they are worth the price. You do have to be sure that you don't give a dealer a one-sided view of what the tractor will be doing. For example, if there is fieldwork but no particular need to get it done fast plus a bunch of smaller maintenance jobs then the dealer may have recommended something different. If the dealer knows the budget was flexible then there may have been a different recommendation.

A good recommendation would depend on exactly what working the wood and farming actually means. If it means skidding big logs and trying to get haying done before rain than a big tractor would be good. If it means cleanup or food plots and maybe tilling a big garden then maybe smaller will do other work better. Features have to have a use to be interesting. For general work, mid-pto's are used for MMM's and sometimes front snow blowers. If there's finish mowing a big tractor might be a liability so there may not be a need for a mid-pto on a big tractor. If there's lots of loader work, HST is very good or some type of syncro'd gears design is highly desirable. If you save some budget on tractor size, there may be more left over for implements, and the implements for it are less expensive. More implements keeps most any tractor busier.






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 04-08-2005, 22:52 Post: 109607
jd60kid



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 How big a tractor to farm 20 acres?

Im currently looking into buying a John Deere 5103 2wd 50hp.
Its an awesome machine, and quite easy to operate.But you best bet would be to go to your local john deere dealership and test drive one!!






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Discussion Boards > Active Subjects > Messages as Posted > Size Tractor Needed Forum

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