JD X500 with 30 inch mechanical tiller for 3 acres?

krisd_in_wvFebruary 25, 2009


I have a JD X500. I recently purchased a used 30 inch mechanical tiller blindly and as it turns out, it is en earlier model made for the GT & GX series tractors. I'm looking to sell it and get the one specific for the X500. Does anyone have an opinion as to whether this tiller will be sufficient to till a 3.5 acre field twice a year?

For a while, I was feeling like I should have spent the money on something bigger than the X500 for all that I want to do, but since my purchase in 2007, it seems like there are more attachments for it and I could really start to exploit all it can do. I have the 48" blade, front mounted thatcher, the big tow-behind spreader, and the 13 ft3 cart. If I can use the 30" tiller for my field, I will be elated. Any guidance is greatly appreciated!

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tomhoffman(NE Iowa)

While a John Deere of that size is a stronger model than a normal garden tractor, the Idea of tilling 3.5 acres even once would be more than most small tractors should be subjected to. Typically a garden tractor w/tiller is for a garden, Normally up to 1/4 acre or a little more.

While your machine probably could get the job done, it would take hours and hours and hours.

A better use of time, money and machinery, would be to rent a CUT with a 60+" tiller or a 3 bottom plow and then a disc to break up the furrows and clods left by the plow.

4 hour rental at $70.00 per would be cheap to get that much done and not beat your machine to death. Even better would be to find a farmer close by that could run over with his big equipment and do it in a fraction of the time and make a new friend in the bargain.

Tilling is very slow work...

    Bookmark   February 25, 2009 at 11:12PM
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Thanks for the feedback. I'm quite new to all of this and really appreciate the insight.

    Bookmark   February 26, 2009 at 12:29AM
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You do not need to sell the tiller all you need is the right mounting kit for the tiller if it is indeed for a GT or GX it is basicly the same tiller for the X500 they have not changed the tiller that much since 1988 I till 3acres with a JD X485(same as X720) and a 42inch Hydraulic tiller every year. I used a JD 425 before that and a 240 with a 30 inch mechanical in 2 diffrent garden plots on my property that 30inch mechanical tiller can do the Job it will be slow but it can be done because I Have done it. But tom is right it will be all day Job. But it can be done In the long run I would suggest moving up to a X700 or a Sub compact or compact or just even a X540 with a 42inch hydraulic tiller. But the tiller is the right Tiller for you tractor unless it was designed for a 200 series made prior two 1988 which was based on the fender deck 110 or 112. That tiller will fit just fine on your X500. No since buying the same tiller twice

    Bookmark   February 26, 2009 at 9:31AM
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Thanks sergeant. I've tried to work with my local dealer on finding the right linkage, but they appear to be stumped. Where I'm having difficulty is on the front end of the tiller frame, where the two clips bolt to the frame, there are no pins for the clips and no holes in my frame to insert bolts at those points. Also, the two arms that hang down which raise and lower the deck, are in the way. Last, the lift rod on the tiller is on the right side and my pedal to raise implements in on the left side. I have two exploded views of the X500 tiller frame and the linkage, but can't fathom how I would go about installing any of it without drilling new holes in my frame and removing the lift arms for the deck. The installation manual for the tiller doesn't seem to indicate that you need to remove the arms, but it also assumes that there are holes (and pins) to secure the front of the tiller frame.

I really would love to get this to work somehow. I also wouldn't mind if I had to till all day long. I'm a city boy that moved his family to the country two years ago and I'd much rather be in my field tilling than scurrying around airports and living out of hotels.

    Bookmark   February 26, 2009 at 12:24PM
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I would contact Deere corperate because according to what I have learned it should fit. Have your dealer call his Deere Rep. Because Deere rep can fined out in about it 5 minutes from the design engineer's what has to happen for it to fit.

    Bookmark   February 26, 2009 at 6:45PM
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krisd in WV send me your email address through my profile and I will give you a link to another tractor forum where one of the members mounted the older GT,GX series 30inch tiller on his X500 I cannot post the other forum link here because I will be sent off to disney land

    Bookmark   February 26, 2009 at 8:49PM
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A 3.5 acre field, if that is a garden, is a BIG garden. I assume you are planning to sell some of what you grow. I don't know if you are just starting out doing this or not, but it sounds like it.

Before I invested a lot of money in equipment, especially so if you are new to this, I would go either the rental route, or I would hire a local farmer to till it up. There are a lot of guys who own tractors who don't have much real tractor work to do with them ( I have 3 right around me) who might be glad to get the work. You could find out hourly rental rates for the equipment and pay the farmer at least that much, plus and hourly rate for the operator.

I say all that because the garden tractor you have was just not made for the work you want it to do. Yes, it will do it, but you could do it with a good walk behind tiller also, and it wouldn't take a lot longer (you will need one of those anyway). You would be at it all day.

A farmer with a big tractor and tiller could be done in an hour or two.

If I did it one year, and I thought, yes, this is just what I want to do, then I would start looking for a good used farm tractor, because that is what you will need.

    Bookmark   February 28, 2009 at 11:37PM
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Came to this forum because I'm looking at a JDX320, or X360 for next year. But, after reading this post I'd like to advise you to find an old International (Farmall) 140 with implements. It's a true garden (small farm) tractor, esp. for cultivating. We have one that doesn't get much use anymore, but when we did, it served us well. They are for sale everywhere, just check local classifieds.

Tilling 3.5 acres is too much for any riding mower.

    Bookmark   June 28, 2011 at 1:44PM
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