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 05-24-2001, 21:58 Post: 28552
Dana



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 best tractor investment for a 1 year project

Hi all, I've found this board to be about the best source of info while researching tractors. Thanks to all you experts out there. I'm about to build a 11' retaining wall (Keystone block) and also excavate about 60 yards of dirt from alongside my house to make way for an addition. The dirt will be used for fill above the retaining wall. My plan is to buy a tractor to get these jobs done, and then sell it in about a year. There is a local dealer in my area with a new Cub Cadet 7260 with a Great Bend loader for $13,800. What do you think I could get for this tractor in a year (taking good care of it and putting on maybe 150 hours)? Does $13.8K sound like a good deal? Would you go this route or wait to find something used that wouldn't depreciate as much in a year? Nice used compact tractors in my area seem VERY hard to find for a decent price.thanks in advance,Dana






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 05-25-2001, 06:58 Post: 28556
Dave M



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 best tractor investment for a 1 year project

This doesn't sound to me like a big enough job to justify any tractor purchase. Moving 60 yards of dirt can be done in a few hours with the right equipment and an experienced operator. A dozer could do it over a short distance, or a track loader and dump truck over a longer one. Your job would probably only cost a few hundred dollars.

Cub Cadet would not be my choice for holding value on an investment of this kind, either. Some dealers in my area are dropping Cub Cadet because they can't move the equipment like they can John Deere, New Holland, and Kubota.






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 05-25-2001, 08:46 Post: 28558
DennisCTB

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 best tractor investment for a 1 year project

I have to agree the best thing you can do money wise is to shop for a good excavator. You'll find a wide range in excavator prices, if you want to do the work yourself where I am you can rent a Kubota B21 for $250 per day with a Backhoe. to do your project your going to need the BH.

You can also get an operator and full size backhoe for about $350 per day. Track hoes with operator are up to $75 an hour. But with the Track Hoe you excavation job would be done in an hour or so.

Bottom line is unless you want to play you can get the job done for less than the sales tax on the Cub to which you would have to add a BH on for another $6k for a total of about $19k plus tax.






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 05-25-2001, 09:09 Post: 28560
JeffM



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 best tractor investment for a 1 year project

Dana, I assume that part of your plan is that you won't be moving all this dirt and backfilling at one time. You'll excavate, build the wall 3 feet up, backfill that, build another 3 feet, backfill, etc. If you're working this project on weekends like I have to, it will take you a while. I'm with the webmaster on this in that you are probably best off renting a small TLB like a B21 for $200-250 per day. You may have to rent it 4 or 5 times over the course of a year. But if you are talking about putting 150 hours on a tractor, you must have a lot more planned than this. It does sound like you need a backhoe in addition to the loader. Keep feeding us info on this... we'll eventually figure it out! PS - sounds like a fun project.






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 05-25-2001, 19:39 Post: 28573
By the Brook Farm



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 best tractor investment for a 1 year project

I tried something like this a few years ago. Bought a big John Deere tractor with a backhoe with the idea of doing the work and then selling it. The problem is that it makes absolutely no financial sense. Tractors are not investments..bonds are. What took me a year to do a real excavator could have done in a three day weekend. If you are looking at this financially, by all means get a pro to do it and just pay up. If you want to have fun, then buy a tractor and go play.






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 05-25-2001, 22:04 Post: 28582
Dana



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 best tractor investment for a 1 year project

Thanks to all for your thoughts. Jeff, you're correct about the process for this project. The wall will be 90' long, and must be constructed in lifts of about 2' (5 lifts total). Each time a layer of dirt is put down, the material has to be compacted with vibration and then an engineered fabric called geo-grid is placed over pins in the blocks and pulled back over the compacted material. In addition, about 18" of crushed rock needs to be filled in immediately behind the blocks. Then the next layer of dirt can go down. The other major consideration is that each Keystone block is 85 lbs and I don't want to be lifting, transporting and setting these completely by hand. So...that's the reason it's going to take so long, working weekends by myself. I think rentals could end up costing over $5K if I use equipment to move block and dirt. Hiring someone wouldn't be cost effective for helping move block. Sorry, it takes a bit to describe the whole story, but that's why I thought a tractor was the way to go. What do you think about that 7260 & loader for $13.8? The idea for digging was to buy a ripper and tear up the area before using the loader, thus avoiding the $5-6K for a backhoe. I also drove a Kubota B2710 today, price was $16.9K w/loader. With the objective of minimizing depreciation (Kubota will hold value better but has a significantly higher cost basis), which tractor is the way to go? thanks again everyone!






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 05-26-2001, 20:26 Post: 28608
Don M



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 best tractor investment for a 1 year project

I am 110% convinced now that you are considering the wrong tool for the job. Since you don't want to rent or hire it out, you should buy the tool that you would get if you rented or hired out, which is a real tractor-loader-backhoe. A real TLB machine will do the work faster, better, safer. A used real "backhoe" would be in the same price range as you are looking to spend. And it has done about all the depreciating it is going to do. I am talking about the Case 580, JD 310, Ford 555, etc. Like any used eqpt it takes some investigation (maybe a hired 3rd party mechanic) to make sure you don't get a lemon. Or, for new in your price range, consider an Earthforce EF-1. You can look at them at www.earthforce.net. If you search this board you will find a post by me about my one day rental of one. It is much more of a real backhoe and loader than the typical compact tractor.
If you were talking about mowing, brush cutting, or keeping it a long time, I'd be more sympathetic to the compact tractor idea. Good luck.
-Don M






Link:   Earthforce TLB 

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 05-27-2001, 08:15 Post: 28636
Don M



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Dana,
Another, cheap solution might be this... Rent a TLB a dig your 60 yards. Pile it somewhere. Now, half the battle is done, for only a few hundred dollars. At that point your options expand. Assuming you have a lawn/garden tractor, use a pull behind dump cart to move the dirt and blocks to the wall. Or you can buy an old Bolens, Simplicity, or Allis Chalmers garden tractor and a "Johnny Bucket Jr." for less than $1500 total. Or some other used garden tractor with a small hydrualic loader bucket. They are out there, usually less than $4000. And they don't depreciate either. Or any used compact tractor, even a cheap little 2wd 15HP one like a 1980s Ford, AC, Massey, etc, for $4000, then add a 3 point scoop, which is a poor man's loader. Again, no depreciation. Once the job is done you'll sell it for what you paid. Good luck and have fun!
Here's the Johnny Bucket link:






Link:   Johnny Bucket for Bolens, Simplicity, AC 

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 05-27-2001, 22:50 Post: 28656
Dana



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Thanks for the ideas Don. Relative to your first post, if I knew heavy equipment, I'd take your advice and find something that was a perfect fit for the job. Even hiring a 3rd party mechanic to help avoid a lemon, I wouldn't feel comfortable selecting or operating full size equipment. Your suggestion of having someone come in and move the dirt into a big pile and then dealing with the pile with a tractor may be the way I end up going. I don't have a garden tractor, my 10 acres is mostly quite steep. This leads to another consideration for a tractor - stability on a hillside. I've been told that bigger is better, wider wheelbase, more weight, and get the tires filled with calcium. I have a drainfield adjacent to where the wall is going in. Any ideas about how much weight can you have on a drainfield? How much on the septic tank? Also anyone with comments relative to a new 7260 with loader for $13800 would be much appreciated. This option is still appealing because I'm guessing I could turn this tractor around in a year and lose $2000 or less. Thoughts?






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 05-28-2001, 07:05 Post: 28664
Don M



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Dana,
Will you need a tractor to mow or otherwise do work around your 10 acres? Probably not, it sounds like you just have a small lawn and the rest is wild hillside?
Except for the part about excavating the 60 yards, I think a very small compact tractor would be great. I'm thinking Kubota BX2200 or JD4100 for example. They would be reasonably kind to your septic field and have lower CG than bigger machines. It's too bad that it is so hard to find big garden tractors with loaders, and that the new ones with loaders are as much or more than a BX2200. Because once you get the hole dug, a big garden tractor would be super. From the MSRP on the Cubcadet web site, it looks like $13,800 with fel is a good deal, but it looks like a bigger heavier machine. And it is a gear unit, which will not be as easy for precise fel work as a hydro unit. Although you will get used to it. The 7200/7205 are smaller and maybe better for your septic and hillside concerns. For sure you would lose the sales tax and then at least the $2000 you suggest. Plus the cost of tire ballasting and operation costs. I guess I would buy the brand that has the best resale value if I was for sure going to resell it. Around here that would be Deere. There are no used BXs yet, but I bet one would have high resale value, better than the Cub. Around here a new BX2200 with 60" mower deck and fel is about $12400 plus tax. You might not need the mower deck but if it's a lot cheaper bundled with the new unit then you probably should buy it for resale sake. Lastly, don't give up on buying a good used machine, they are always out there. It took me a while but I found mine. -Don M






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Discussion Boards > Active Subjects > Messages as Posted > Cub Cadet Forum

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