JD vs Craftsman: Craftsman  -- Lawn and Garden Tractors Discussion Forum and Review JD vs Craftsman: Craftsman -- Lawn and Garden Tractors Discussion Forum

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 05-20-2007, 00:55 Post: 142241
nisan17



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 JD vs Craftsman

Hi,

I'm new to this group. Thanks for allowing me to be a part of this. I have a question regarding an upgrade. I have a rear engine 9hp 30" XL75? JD. We just moved onto a new property that has three acres to cut as opposed to our old 1/2 acre, so now I'm definately on the market to get a bigger mower. I really don't have the budget for a new/newer mower right now.

A friend who owns a thrift shop has a Craftsman 44" 18hp that's needs a little TLC that he will sell to me for $100. It needs a starter gear and some tire tubes and probably a tune up as well as sharpened blades.

I just recently observed a JD 116 for sale at a local pawn shop and I'm pretty sure I can get it for $300, asking price of $400. I know the JD has a 36" cut, and also needs a little tlc, like some minor adjustments.

I like the larger cut to make a quicker cut of the lawn. But I like JD because of the quality issue. I bought my current JD almost new 7 years ago, and it's lived up to it's reputation!

Can I have some other opinions to help sway my thinking?

Thank you in advance,






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 05-20-2007, 06:13 Post: 142245
hardwood

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Nisan17; Welcome to the board, Noticed you are from the SECOND greatest state in the US of A, Keep that cheese coming across the "Sippi", good stuff. I am a bit bias toward green paint, but they have earned a reputation for being reliable and almost endlessly repairable. A couple of my experiences in the past of trying to get parts for ANYTHING, (except broken sockets), Craftsman I'll have to rate a minus 5 on the 1 to 10 scale. I haven't bought a mower from a pawn shop, but have in the past for the same reasons you have, bought fixer uppers from people who said just a bit of TLC is all she needs. I won't go into that too far, but as you can guess I usually ended up with an old smokin limpin mower with three times as much money in it as it was worth and it would die before the season ended, so for the most part that neve worked too well for me. Being we are past mid May and the prime mower selling season is geting away fast why not check out a couple Deere dealers, I'm sure they would be a bit more wiling to "DIcker" on a lower cost Deere that has been thru the shop than have it sit in the snowbank till next spring. Keep sending that cheese our way. Enjoy your Sunday. Frank.






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 05-20-2007, 11:58 Post: 142250
nisan17



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Thanks Hardwood! And thanks to WI dairy for addicting me to cheesecurds; seven years and 25 pounds later after moving north from Milwaukee.

I have a friend, whom is a gearhead, told me 25 years ago that the MTDs and like are made with inferior parts and will not hold up overtime. Maybe this hasn't changed yet?






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 05-20-2007, 14:30 Post: 142253
kwschumm



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 JD vs Craftsman

I'm a JD fan but my opinion is that the lower end JD equipment probably isn't any better than Craftsman. At that price point quality is usually compromised. But JD dealers are usually better than Sears.






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 05-20-2007, 17:25 Post: 142256
hardwood

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Nisan17 and KW; Nisan, you have thrown me a curve. MTD?

KW; Sorry, I did'nt mean a Home Depot Deere, yes they are a marketing scheme designed by Deere to sell you a very low end mower. When the HD provides no warranty, you go to Deere, who will warranty it, but usually recommend you trade for a better quality mower from them. It must work or they wouldn't keep doing it. What I meant to tell Nisan is that there are a zillion 15-20 year old Deere mowers on dealer lots that were the top dogs in their day that have been thru the shop and can have years of good service still left in them. This time of year dealers can be a lot easier to bargan with than on April first, thay don't want to carry them over till next spring. 99% of the boners of any brand thay trade in get parked out back till the scalper guy with the gooseneck load of old mowers comes around and away they go. Frank.






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 05-21-2007, 10:05 Post: 142276
AnnBrush



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 JD vs Craftsman

I have the 18hp craftsman mower you are looking at. I used it on 5 acres before buying my JD tractor. It was bought used at auction and needed a little "TLC", that included tires, a new pulley, some caps and belts, blades and a new filter and carb tune up all before working for me. In two years, my 5 acres plumb wore it out. I regularly replaced belts and had to do many small repairs. I dont think it was that the craftsman was of particularly poor quality, it was just never designed to do what I was asking of it. It is now semi retired and just does some edging work that I cant do wih the tractor due to size. The unit has a Kohler engine which has been very reliable but the rest of the unit is falling apart. It suffers from a portion of the deck that is plain wore through, numerous vibrational cracks and at the end of last season I noticed I was getting blow-by so I have developed a valve issue. It had a new starter at some point and I have replaced two key/ignition modules and the PTO switch, all because they just wore out. I used a carb repair kit that helped as well. Note it is VERY loud and I have to wear ear protection. I have never had issues with getting parts - Sears catalog is accurate easy to use and they have mailed everything I ever ordered - you just cant get it immediately. Sears has a service center about 20 miles from me where they carry most of the consumable items (like belts and blades in stock) and I have used that too without incident. I have been generally pleased with the unit but it's not a tractor. At an asking price of $100 I wonder what major problem is lurking beneath the surface.






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 05-21-2007, 13:35 Post: 142287
nisan17



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In the seven years I had my JD GL75 I had to put tubes in the tires, oil changes, blade sharpened and a small electrical problem in the ignition switch/gear selector. Considering some of my family members would cutting grass for five hours at a time. It's a blessing that there hasn't been any major mechanical failures
Maybe I'll get that JD116 and throw tlc into it and put my worries aside.






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 05-21-2007, 14:09 Post: 142290
hardwood

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Nisan; I just made a phone call for you. A good friend of mine has been the service manager for a fairly large Deere dealership nearby for 20+ yrs. I did'nt remember much about the 116's. His comment was that if the pawn shop owner gave you the 300.00 and the 116 to boot it would still be high priced. He said Deere used a Briggs engine in them that wasn't much when new and just got worse from there on. Again, nuff from me. Frank.






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 05-21-2007, 14:22 Post: 142291
nisan17



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Frank,
The name is Kevin.
Had to laugh.
The pawn shop did say there was a choke problem, but, ??????
I'll kind of dink around with my decision this week, it's a horse a piece now?

Thanks a bunch!

Maybe I should drag around my 22inch Lawn boy with my JD GX75(the correct model)!!!!






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 05-21-2007, 14:49 Post: 142292
Oliver



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 JD vs Craftsman

A few years ago I bought a brand new Craftsman mower after looking at JD as well as the JD Sabre. The Craftsman was cheapest -- but after mowing the lawn one time I realized I had made a mistake and returned it. Instead, I spent a few dollars more for a used JD 166 (I think that is what is was). The JD just felt so much more substantial.






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