Craftsman DGS 6500

jlgt5000(USDA 6)October 11, 2008

I currently have a 2003 Craftsman GT5000 Garden Tractor (25 hp, 48" deck) and am looking to purchase a new Craftsman DGS 6500 Model # 28848 Garden Tractor (24 hp, 48" deck). Judging by the picture online it looks exactly like the GT5000. I'm perplexed though. My GT5000 has 16x6.5x8in front tires and 23x10.5x12in rear tires. Sears website specs indicates the DGS 6500 has 16x6.5x6in front and 23x10.5x8in rears. This doesn't sound right; I think it might be a typo. How could their largest garden tractor have such small rims? I went to the local Sears Hardware to look at their product book and what do you know; it only lists the tire size w/o the last rim size number. I called a couple local Sears stores to see if they had any floor models that I could look at. They didn't. The reason I need to know is that I want to be able to use the chains and wheel weights from my old tractor on the new one but won't be able to if the rims are different. Does anyone out there have the DGS 6500 model #28848? If you do, please respond with the tire sizes that are on your tractor. Thanks.

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From what it looks like, it appears that the tire height is the same and the rim diameter (facing the center) is the same but the rim width (looking at the tire tread from side to side) is narrower. Not sure why that was done but it was done.

    Bookmark   October 13, 2008 at 12:31AM
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Also, it seems that your weights may fit and the chains may need some modification if those numbers are correct.

    Bookmark   October 13, 2008 at 12:33AM
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Fit up guide only goes to 2007, but I compared a 917.287480 vs a 917.288480 and they have the same PN for the rear wheel.
The weight for these is PN 26234

For your tractor, ASSUMING it's a 917.276310 or 917.276320, which are the only GT5000 numbers I have, it's still the same. PN 26234.

Therefore, I agree with Jdowner about the weights fitting.

for BOTH according to the fit up guide.

    Bookmark   October 13, 2008 at 12:03PM
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jlgt5000(USDA 6)

I found the new 917.288480 parts list on line also. My old GT5000 is 917.276021. Both new and old tractors have the same part numbers for tires but different part #s for rims. Also, the DGS 6500 uses the same parts #s for wheel weights and chains as the GT5000. How can chains that fit on a 23x10.5x12 also fit on a 23x10.5x8? I'm still going with the typo. But we shall find out because I bought the DGS 6500 yesterday with 3-bin bagger and snow plow. Was on sale for $2299 with 5% off for using Sears card and another $100 off for Craftsman Club card. Will be in at the end of the month. The 5% only applied to the tractor so I bought the bagger and plow on Discover card so I could get cash back for that.

    Bookmark   October 13, 2008 at 5:35PM
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jlgt5000(USDA 6)

Oh yeah, I hope this Kohler engine is better than the 25 hp in the GT5000. It's the infamous "blow a head gasket" model. I've replaced the head gasket (well documented on this forum) 2x already and now it's smoking again. Last time they sent me a new flywheel to replace with the gasket (both free of charge). They claimed the difference in timing would cure the hot spot that was causing the head gasket to go. Obviously that didn't work because it's been a year and the right side cylinder is at it again. Since the new flywheel has been installed the engine runs much hotter. I can't leave the tractor parked on the grass with the engine running (even at idle) or the grass underneath burns. For awhile I thought it was the neighborÂs dog pissing in my yard but finally realized the 2 side by side yellow spots were from the hot engine air blowing down from the cooling fins burning the grass. I'm going to put the old flywheel back in before selling it. Would have liked a B&S but have no choice because I want the 48" deck on a Garden tractor.

    Bookmark   October 13, 2008 at 6:02PM
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Maybe your neighbors dog has 2......

    Bookmark   October 13, 2008 at 7:38PM
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Make sure you visually inspect the tractor before taking it home. Some of those clearance tractors can be pretty beat up.

    Bookmark   October 14, 2008 at 6:51AM
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Jlgt500 - Good luck on your new tractor !!!
You got a Good Deal, but beware of the interist rate Sears charges, I believe it is around 20%, and what I don't understand is that Chase or Citi bank are the owners of the "Sears Card" and I have credit cards with both of them at 12.99%, Go Figure.


    Bookmark   October 14, 2008 at 9:08PM
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jlgt5000(USDA 6)

Well, I ordered the tractor on 10/12 along with a snow plow and 3-bin bagger. Told they would be in for pickup on 10/31. The bagger and plow came in on 10/31 but still don't have the tractor. Have had to put up with different people telling me "it will be in this Wed" or "it will be in this Friday" several times. The first person said it was delayed due to a snow storm. What, are they trying to get through Donner Pass? Getting fed up with it. Last Friday the Customer Dis-Service Manager said I could trade for something they have in stock. No thanks. SEARS SUCKS! Luckily I had time to put a new head gasket in my GT5000 last Saturday so now I'm not so hot for the new tractor. If it doesn't come in this Friday I just might go down to the store and request a total refund. I'll want to do that before my Sears credit card bill for the tractor is due 11/18. In these tough times you would think they would be jumping through hoops to satisfy a customer who plunked down $3K+. I don't feel sorry for them.

    Bookmark   November 12, 2008 at 5:49AM
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hawker1(C. FLA)

I have the 2003 GT5K with the head blower Koehler too. I only have 175 hrs. and 1 blown gasket at this point. Guess I didn't know they did it after the bolts were replaced. Tractor runs fine and I don't think I can wear it out. I did look at the latest DGS6500 adn it didn't look as rugged as the GT5K. Tires did seem smaller and the structure was cut down to give the 'walk thru' floor. I'm just keeping my present one for the foreseeable future.

    Bookmark   November 14, 2008 at 12:47AM
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The new 'garden tractors' Sears is selling are not half the machines your (and mine) GT5000 is. The frame is substantially reduced in both weight and strength. When I finally destroy mine I will be bypassing Sears and looking at CC.

    Bookmark   November 14, 2008 at 10:24AM
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hawker1(C. FLA)

I've just gotten a new Exmark Lazer commerical ZTR which is quite a machine. But I intend to keep the GT5K for the hauling and ground engagement work I might have to do.

I've got a few trails thru the woods that the GT can keep chopped down easy enough. Its got the AG tires and doesn't mind going thru that crap.

    Bookmark   November 15, 2008 at 1:53AM
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jlgt5000(USDA 6)

Got my tractor a week ago Wednesday; about 2 weeks overdue. The tires are the same as my GT5000, so Sears was wrong. I wrote back to Cust Service to advise them of their incompetence. They wrote to me to inform me that they would put a request in to update their web page and data base to reflect the correct information. That hasn't happened yet, nor will it probably ever happen.
They must be cheaper now. Comparing spec sheets, new tractor is about 100 lbs lighter than the GT5000. That'll make for better mpg.

    Bookmark   November 21, 2008 at 4:04PM
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JLGT5000, How much did the GT5000 weight?

I bought one of the DGS6500 on close out about same time as you.

Hows your reverse speed?

    Bookmark   November 22, 2008 at 6:47AM
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jlgt5000(USDA 6)

I still have spec sheet I printed out when I bought the GT5000 5 years ago. Weight is listed at 682 lb.

New DGS6500 spec sheet has tractor weight listed at 596 lb.

Since they had the tire sizes all wrong on the web site, who knows if you can trust any of the info they have listed?

Reverse is no faster than the GT5000.

    Bookmark   November 22, 2008 at 12:40PM
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They definately cut some metal out of it for that big of weight drop.

I had some crazy customer service experiences during my purchase. I'm somewhat suprised they are still open.

I like the DGS6500 although I bought it thinking it was a beefed up yard tractor not so much a GT anymore. It does have a decent hydro in it, the K66. You have to spend over 1000 more at every other brand to get the tranny.

Is your 5000 a manual or hydro?

    Bookmark   November 22, 2008 at 8:30PM
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jlgt5000(USDA 6)

Hydro with fender mounted shift. The pedal shift should make it much easier to plow snow. Nothing worse than having to use the same hand for operating the plow and speed control.

I haven't looked at the DGS6500 that closely yet but 85 lb is a lot of weight to drop. Who knows where it went, or even if spec numbers are accurate?

I put about 100 hrs/year on my tractors and have replaced the head gasket 3x on the GT5000 in the 5 years I've had it. Let's hope the new Kohler is better. I wouldn't have minded switching to a B&S but I had no choice but to take the Kohler.

    Bookmark   November 23, 2008 at 6:09AM
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Yeah, I started looking fall of '06 at gt's. Finally had to have one this fall due to move to larger yard. Waited to get low price on year end closeout.

The motor for me was a real crap shoot. The trannies a nice unit and why I bought the machine. But many mfg from kubota to simplicity use the courage on machines that are twice as much with lessor tranny.

When I first started looking i thought the els b&s was a better motor. Then they had that bad air cleaner design and people weren't being taken care of fairly on it. Of course now sears doesn't offer anything but kohler.

I adjusted my idle down to 1300 from about 2400. Makes easier too live with. Also made change to tranny linkage to get a little better reverse speed. The reverse hydro pedal/linkage is a real weakness on these machines.

Otherwise it was worth the money(really worth the money if motor last a long time). Does an excellent job cutting grass and mulching. Give a real smooth cut and has plenty of power. We don't have any real snow down here so I have no other use for it supposed ground engaging capabilities.

    Bookmark   November 23, 2008 at 7:09AM
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