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Sub Compact Tractors

Post in 'DIY and General non-hearth advice' started by JDC1, Mar 14, 2012.

  1. JDC1

    JDC1 Feeling the Heat

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    After battling the soggy ground with my Zero Turn Mower the past two years, my wife and I have decided to look into a 4x4 SCUT. I mow about 4 acres of uneven, rolling lawn that in the spring turns into a swamp. The Zero Turn Mower is great when the lawn is completely dry but I am sick of sliding and getting stuck.

    I am in the process of looking at Kubota and JD with a mid mount mower and a front end loader. I am in process of clearing out some old fence row and would like to run a box blade, rake and small brush hog.

    I have Kubota and JD close and am looking at the 1026R and the BX2660.

    Does anyone have any experience with either tractor or comparable. Anyone go from a Zero Turn to the MMM on a Sub Compact?

    Thanks.

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  2. smoke show

    smoke show Guest

    I have a 2003 Kubota L5030 with FEL and many attachments.

    It was purchased brand new by my family and I have used it since day one and now am the sole owner of it.

    I do not finish mow with it, but it has seen its fair share of hard work.

    Nowadays it mostly flail mows, snow removal, rototills, and whatever I may need the loader for.

    Have a snow blade, bucket, and pallet forks for the loader.(quick attach)

    Rear blade, rototiller, box blade, disc, spring and spike tooth drags, flail mower and cultipacker for the back.

    It has about 700hrs on it now and has not needed anything other than normal maintenance.

    So far my biggest complaint would be the cost of the genuine Kubota fluids. $$$

    Its bigger than the B series you mentioned but bulletproof.

    Internet pic of a L5030.

    Attached Files:

  3. JDC1

    JDC1 Feeling the Heat

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    We only have 5.5 acres. As much as I would like to justify a bigger tractor it just doesn't make sense. I will be doing some landscaping, driveway maintenance but mostly mowing. I really like the way the Deere implements attach and detach as my wife would like to be able to use them when I am busy or not home. I still need to look at the botas in person.
  4. mithesaint

    mithesaint Feeling the Heat

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    If the ground is pretty soggy, you might want to consider the weight of the tractor. I'm in the same boat, except that my acreage is perfectly flat. I'd love to get a small tractor, but I'm afraid of what the extra weight would do. I have an older garden tractor that weighs about 700 lbs (JD 212) and that sometimes leaves tracks if the ground is a little soft. I hate to think of what a 1500 lb tractor would do.

    Have you ever tried more aggressive tires on your ZTR? I've been tossing around the idea myself, but haven't gotten to it yet.
  5. JDC1

    JDC1 Feeling the Heat

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    We have considered different tires but want the utility factor of the tractor and loader. We purchased the zero turn right after we moved in and did not consider diying the things that we are doing. I am worried about rutting as well and might do turf tires if we decide on a tractor. The other option we might be able to do its purchase the tractor and keep the ztr.
  6. SolarAndWood

    SolarAndWood Minister of Fire

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    Even with turf tires, my little Kubota made a mess if it was wet. Always had enough power to mow it down after it dried out a little though.
  7. smoke show

    smoke show Guest

    My post was more or less a testimonial to the reliability, not pushing bigger tractors.

    my .02
  8. JDC1

    JDC1 Feeling the Heat

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    Thanks for the insight.
  9. begreen

    begreen Mooderator Staff Member

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    I have even less acreage, but would love to have a tractor that can deal with field mowing, yet handle yard mowing. And with a small FEL for moving wood, compost, and a tiller. Does anyone have a Kubota BX series tractor or equivalent that is working well for them?
  10. MasterMech

    MasterMech Guest

    Even a SCUT on turf tires is going to trash a "swampy" yard. I'd keep the ZTR and buy a pair of HDAP or Ag-style tires for it.

    Here's what a HDAP tire looks like....

    http://www.carlisletire.com/products/atv/hd_field_trax/index.html


    Absolute most annoying thing about the Kubota BX tractors is that they have no hydraulic power at idle. You MUST bring the throttle up to 1/3 or more just to move the loader/backhoe/hitch etc. Great machines otherwise.

    New 1000 series Deere's are still too fresh for me to form any hard opinions so far. Some of the cost cutting that they've done is disapointing like the lawn-tractor key switch (not even a nice one!) and the econo-stick loader control. But having seen one with much of the skin removed, I like what's under there. The new plastics for the hood/fenders/platform are fantastic and a huge improvement over previous models with painted steel panels. The new panels are made out of the same indestructible stuff they use on the bigger machines.

    IIRC the 200X/200CX loaders are vastly superior to the Kubota BX loader in just about every way. Especially lift height and bucket break-out force.
  11. SolarAndWood

    SolarAndWood Minister of Fire

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    Seems you are consistently biased against using a SCUT or CUT as a lawn mower even if it is a hydro and easy to shed the weight?
  12. billb3

    billb3 Minister of Fire

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    Seems like a lot of people who cut lawn with a CUT either with a belly mower or otherwise often get a Zturn for the extra speed and better finish and less tendency to rut a soft lawn.

    I know even with turf tires I'll rut my lawn if I don't wait until it is fairly dry and I live on a gravel hill. 4WD will tear it up right quick, too. I can't imagine trying to cut my lawn with my JD2520.


    A lightweight golf course mower might make more sense if it's really that wet and soft and a Z - turn is sinking in.
    Maybe wider tires ?
  13. JDC1

    JDC1 Feeling the Heat

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    The JD 1026R is advertised as 9mph top speed, about the same as my ZTR. If I go the tractor route, I will be going from a 52" deck to a 60" belly mower. Do you guys think there will be much of a time difference between the two. Will the diesel SCUT cut deeper grass better than the ZTR? If I were to get a walk behind to compliment the SCUT would that work well?

    With our yard, the tractor seems like a more versatile tool than a dedicated mower.
  14. JDC1

    JDC1 Feeling the Heat

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    I think I will check into the different tires for the ZTR. I have the stock tires on now and am not really a fan. When it is wet even the front wheels dig.
  15. lukem

    lukem Minister of Fire

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    I've got to agree with MM. A ZTR with proper tires is pretty capable in the wet stuff with minimal rutting. A SCUT is going to leave some major ruts no matter how much weight you drop. My ZTR has 12" wide turf tires on the rear that float over about anything...and the mower itself weighs 1,100 lbs. I'm not afraid of getting it in the mud and not being able to get back out.

    For reference, I'm running a Bad Boy Pup 60" w/ 31 HP Kawasaki.
  16. Jack Straw

    Jack Straw Minister of Fire

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    What about a large garden tractor with 4 wheel drive?
  17. Highbeam

    Highbeam Minister of Fire

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    I mow large acreage, well large to me at about 7 acres, with my 4500 lb tractor dragging a rotary cutter. I also mow about one acre of lawn around my house. There are several types of grass areas that need to be classified here. I have a hard time believing that any of us have 5 acres of golf course putting green style manicured lawn around our homes. Is that the case?

    I am a fan of having about an acre of the land closest to your home being a well manicured lawn. That is, without big ruts and kept short and soft. This area is mowed with a riding mower or a ztr. Get away from the lawn and into the pasture and you can do a fine job of maintenance with a rotary cutter and sharpened blades behind a tractor. Don't cut it until the ground is firm enough.
  18. JDC1

    JDC1 Feeling the Heat

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    I looked at them, the deeres have 4 wheel steering as well and look really handy for mowing. I want to be able to use pto driven implements and by the time you get a loader and 3 pt. on the 7 series, the price is really close to the 1 series.
  19. Gasifier

    Gasifier Minister of Fire

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    I own a Simplicity Broadmoor. Excellent lawn machine. It has automatic controlled traction in the rear end. Very handy when things are slippery. When your one drive tire starts to spin it engages the other one.

    I almost traded it in on a Legacy 4WD in the link below. But I decided to keep my Broadmoor and go with a larger tractor so that I could complete some larger jobs that I want to do. Bought a Kubota L3710 4WD with a Kubota Loader and Woods sub-frame mount backhoe. Found a nice used one so I didn't have to spend crazy money.

    The Legacy is expensive. But you can do just about anything with it, and it is not too big if you do not need a large tractor. Gasoline and deisel options. F.E.L., three point hitch, p.t.o. with all kinds of attachments. With, or without a belly mower, three different sizes available. Like I said, expensive. But really well built machines, made right here in the U.S. I'm a believer in "You get what you pay for."

    http://www.simplicitymfg.com/products/yard-and-garden-tractors/legacy-xl/
  20. semipro

    semipro Minister of Fire

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    I think you've gotten some good advice regarding the potential rutting that a SCUT/CUT will do to turf.
    I have a JD 3032e with a finish mower and various riding mowers.
    The tractor can make a real mess of turf when its wet whether in 4WD or not and our yard is relatively firm. 4WD actually contributes to rutting when turning but minimizes it when going straight.

    Maybe you could keep the ZTR and put chains or different tires on it and buy the tractor?
    Use the ZTR for mowing when its wet and the tractor when its not.


    An unsolicited recommendation on the tractor....go hydro.
  21. JDC1

    JDC1 Feeling the Heat

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    Great Advice, as usual hearth.com comes through. Thanks for everyones input.
  22. MasterMech

    MasterMech Guest

    No matter what you do to the tractor it's never going to get as light as a ZTR. No matter what you do to the ZTR, it's never going to be as strong as the tractor. ;-)
  23. MasterMech

    MasterMech Guest

    Unfortunately most of the "lightweight" golf mowers are reel mowers and I doubt the OP wants the constant maintenance that comes with that. Plus reel mowers, even those designed for rough, SUCK in muddy conditions since the reels do not float over the ground. Usually the rollers pack with mud/grass and then it's game over. Golf course rotary mowers are designed to mow small amounts of grass every couple days. Not take a big bite once a week. Ask a Sidewinder or other "trim/surround" mower to mow wet/heavy grass and the result is going to be less than attractive. I guarantee you're going to be upset when your neighbor mows with a $800 lawn tractor and his machine cuts better!
  24. SIERRADMAX

    SIERRADMAX Feeling the Heat

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  25. JDC1

    JDC1 Feeling the Heat

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    That thing is sweet.

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