Looking for some purchase advice on lawn tractor

nannerbelle(8A)March 16, 2014

Hi all, I'm looking for some advice on purchase of a lawn tractor for my new house. I've currently got a Craftsman DLT 3000 which is a 18HP 42 inch lawn mower I want to get rid of. I can't use any attachments with it. I need something that will cut the grass, drag a cart, perhaps a cultivator, drag a DR grader, maybe an aerator. I'll have to haul things back and forth to the greenhouse and around the yard like mulch and dirt, pine needles, grass seed, plants. Maybe even some firewood. I'm an avid gardener and will be working in my own landscaping and at my greenhouse. I've been looking at some of the John Deere and also the Husqvarna. Any recommendations folks? Also if anyone has any suggestions on what I should ask for this Craftsman let me know. We inherited it so I'm not even sure what they cost when my Father In Law purchased it. Thanks everyone!

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mownie(7)

For all that you want to do, you need to drop the Lawn Tractor nomenclature and instead focus on the term Garden Tractor.
A Lawn Tractor is basically nothing but a little bit more robust riding mower.
But all the things on your list are shouting Garden Tractor.
With a Garden Tractor you get beefier everything and where it counts.
The work you plan to do will make a Lawn Tractor cry uncle.
Most important for hauling, dragging, blading and other ground engaging operations is the heavy transaxle and frame that are featured on Garden Tractors.
Plus the serious tires that are part of a Garden Tractor.

    Bookmark   March 17, 2014 at 12:32AM
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jimmy56_gw

mownie is right, Depending on what you want to spend, You might want to look for a nice used John Deere 400 series, If you want Husqvarna I would go with the GTH24K54 or GT52XLS because they have a Kawasaki V-Twin engine,

    Bookmark   March 17, 2014 at 8:43AM
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greenhobby(BugVille)

Remember that 'usually' recommendations here are based on experience with the brand/model/engines. You absolutely have to go and ride one to really determine if you like it.

Buyers remorse is real, and you want to avoid at all cost ;-)
-gh

    Bookmark   March 23, 2014 at 8:58AM
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nannerbelle(8A)

Thanks guys. You hit on one thing I was questioning myself a little on, if I was looking at the right tractor for my needs. Sounds from the advice I may have underestimated a little on what I need. gh, I sure will be "test driving". No way will I spend that much and not touch and feel what I'm getting. One of the heavy tasks I will have is maintenance of my road to my house. I've got about 1700 ft. of gravel/dirt road that I own so I've got to be the department of transportation on it. So I'll be scraping it and keeping the potholes away. I think the Garden Tractor class will be more of what I need now that some of my research and advice is coming in.

    Bookmark   March 23, 2014 at 2:25PM
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mownie(7)

If your budget can stand it, you might even browse around in the class of tractors know as C.U.T.
Those are Compact Utility Tractors.
CUTs are essentially miniature versions of big ole tractors and will be robust enough to do just about anything you ask it to, just maybe not as fast as a big old tractor.
The good things about being a "mini me" of a big tractor is that most CUTs will have features like individual left & right brakes when needed to help steer in conditions where the steer axle gets light or the terrain is so slippery the tractor wants to keep going straight when you want it to turn.
Another very desirable feature is that you will also likely get the locking differential pedal you can step on the lock the left and right drive axles together for maximum traction.
Most CUTs will also have live PTO shaft at the rear for powering implements that require it.
Also, CUTs have a live 3-point hitch at the rear and most have hydraulic set-ups that can be adapted to operate an optional front end loader.
One drawback to a CUT, as I already mentioned.....they are not for a small budget.
A big plus to a CUT is that they can (with proper maintenance) become heirlooms, because they are akin to that pink bunny on the battery commercials.
And, again.....proper maintenance.........if you ever want to sell one, you can just about get back what you paid for it (not accounting for inflation).
As to the implements available for a CUT, when you start dealing in CUTs (and larger), the implements and attachments are tailored to fit "Standard Categories" of implements.
The categories begin at Category 0 and run through Category III.
Some large Garden Tractors may be considered Cat 0, but not all Garden Tractors are up to the task of fulfilling the horsepower requirements nor implement attaching provisions of a true CUT.
Most CUTs will be in Cat 0.
The beauty of picking implements by category is that they will fit almost any make of tractor in the proper category.
Categories are based on pin diameter of the attaching provisions and the horse power required to operate with the implement.

    Bookmark   March 23, 2014 at 3:43PM
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