Need help selecting a mower

Myster21January 26, 2013

I purchased 1.5 acres in the country. It is not flat and does have several trees on it. In the middle is a valley area. I was told I needed to stay away from stamped decks and box store riders. However, I want to stay at $2,000.00 or less. I was also told that I shouldn't use a rider for snow plowing, but, I kinda want to go that route just due to economics. I don't want to buy another machine just to plow snow. I was told to stay away from John Deer. I was also told that all box store riders are made in the same MTD plant. I am trying to cut through the bull and just get the right mower without paying too much or gettin too much mower. I also want to stay under a 60" deck.
Any thoughts?

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krnuttle

What reasons were given for staying away from a John Deere?

I have had my JD LT 155, hydro, 15hp 38" deck for about 10 years. It has regularly been serviced, and has required minimal maintenance. I use a JD service kit for the yearly maintenance, and the dealer for the big stuff. The cost of the JD service Kit is cheaper than buying the same parts from the discount big box store. If you need parts they are easily obtained even for my 10 year old tractor.

I am currently using the JD on my 3/4 acre. It is not flat, raising about 60 feet from front yard at the road to the back. The JD has no problems in mowing the slopes in the road grade. I also use the tractor to pull a small trailer for moving plants, dirt, and other things around the yard, and from the garage to the back yard.

For a tractor that meets your needs and budget, I would seriously consider an old larger JD. Talk to your local JD dealer not the guy in the big box store.

    Bookmark   January 26, 2013 at 6:23PM
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exmar

With your budget you're looking at a used machine. If you want to plow snow, you're looking at a GT with chains and weights, plus the cost of the plow. How long is the driveway and is it gravel, paved, ? With a used machine, are you "handy" is a critical question.

You might consider a LT for mowing and consider a snow blower for the driveway. You didn't mention where you are and how much snow you have to deal with.

Good luck,

Ev

    Bookmark   January 27, 2013 at 11:38AM
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Myster21

Thanks. As for the JD, The people I mentioned to talked about the maintenance cost being high. I have heard from a lot of JD loyal people after my post that they do not have this problem. As for how much snow I get, We haven't had to shovel any thing year. The most we usually get is up to 4 times a year. My driveway is anticipated to be about 100 feet long plus a circle drive.

    Bookmark   January 27, 2013 at 4:39PM
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gdj204

If your driveway is paved, get a Toro 621 single-stage machine - it will handle up to ten inches of snow pretty easily, clean to the pavement, and won't take up too much storage space. If it is a gravel driveway, then you will need a two-stage machine or a plow. The tractor-mounted two-stage machines work, but will take up quite a big of storage space when attached to the tractor.

As mentioned earlier, look for a good used garden tractor (not lawn tractor). IMHO, a ten-year-old GT that was $4-5k new and will cost you $2k now will be a better deal than a brand new $2k LT.

I have some MTD equipment. It can be a good deal if you are handy and don't mind doing repairs yourself. But I certainly wouldn't consider it quality or long-term equipment. You can find other makes in the big box stores that are better (Husqvarna, AYP (Briggs & Stratton), JD), but if you want quality, you need to think commercial equipment or garden tractor. You will find that stuff at stand-alone dealers or possibly farm supply stores.

    Bookmark   January 28, 2013 at 10:25AM
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rcbe(6)

gdj204 -

quote: "I have some MTD equipment. It can be a good deal if you are handy and don't mind doing repairs yourself. But I certainly wouldn't consider it quality or long-term equipment. You can find other makes in the big box stores that are better (Husqvarna, AYP (Briggs & Stratton), JD)" unquote:

Statement of fact or personal opinion?

    Bookmark   January 28, 2013 at 12:01PM
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grass1950

I agree with what has been said regarding suggested tractors and/or alternative of a mower and snowblower as a viable option. Plowing snow takes a rather robust tractor unless you are willing and able to plan for small, time-consuming swaths (or unless you can plow every 2-3" of snowfall). As you only get 4 or so snows a year, the snowblower sounds like a good choice and a single stage can be bought for about 2x what a cheap plow will cost.
I don't understand why "stamped" decks have such a bad reputation. First, just about anything under $5000. is going to have one. Secondly, if maintained, they last. I've found that they give as good a cut as any other deck and usually do a better job of mulching. Look for a heavy gauge stamped deck (13 gauge or better--the lwer gauge, the better).

    Bookmark   January 28, 2013 at 12:01PM
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gdj204

rcbe -

Some of it is based on personal experience owning/operating the various types/brands of equipment, and friends/neighbors with various equipment. Some of it is based on gleaning information from various outdoor power equipment forums over the last eight years or so.

So, I would say it is mostly the opinion of a large number of folks, probably a majority of which is the folks who post on the internet. Whether or not it is fact may be a matter of opinion. :�

    Bookmark   January 28, 2013 at 1:49PM
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rcbe(6)

gdj204 - we take it that you are offering an opinion...

    Bookmark   January 28, 2013 at 2:26PM
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wheely_boy

    Bookmark   January 28, 2013 at 9:00PM
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tomplum

Is this one of those "is worth a thousand words" kind of thing?

    Bookmark   January 28, 2013 at 10:35PM
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grass1950

1The caption says it all.

    Bookmark   January 28, 2013 at 10:58PM
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